What Does Spider Web Tattoo Mean On Elbow? Meaning Of Spider Web Tattoos

Last Updated on March 6, 2021 by

Most people think that a spider web tattoo represents only negative things. However, spider web tattoos are among the most popular tattoos and express positive meaning in present times. They are found in men mostly and commonly inked on the elbow. The spider web tattoos are one of the classes of the old school tattoo design. The spider web tattoo is one of the most criticized tattoos in the world of tattoo. 

Spider Web Tattoo Mean On Elbow

History Of Spider Web Tattoos

1. The spider web tattoos became popular in the USA in the 1970s and 1980s to symbolize the time spent behind bars. Prisoners used to have spider web tattoos inked on their elbows. Besides spider web tattoos, teardrop was also famous among the prisoners. 

2. Along with incarceration, people also used it as a symbol of racism. People used to ink spider web tattoos to show their loyalty to the white supremacy groups. 

3. The spider web tattoo is also a symbol of protection. It is a belief of several native American tribes that a spider woman protects all the newborns by weaving protective webs over newborns’ cradleboards. 

The Symbolism Of The Spider

People consider the spider as a creative force, which weaves the designs of life and fate. The spider establishes the power to work magic over things and people. It achieves several elements of control by weaving. When the prey is wrapped up, the rule is complete. 

Some find the spider as the symbol of infinity. Some find fear in a spider. The main lesson of the spider is maintaining the balance between past and future. 

Meaning Of Spider Web Tattoos

People thought earlier that the spider web tattoo reflects only negative things about nature. But in modern times, this belief has changed a lot. Nowadays, people take the spider web tattoo both positively and negatively. Here are some symbols of the spider web tattoo.

Positive Meanings

Spider web tattoos represent some positive things about nature, such as 

1. Magic

2. Beauty 

3. Safety

4. Protection

5. Creativity

Negative Meanings

The spider web tattoo symbolizes some negative things of nature, such as

1. Racism

2. Murder

3. Prison

4. Violence

5. Gangs

6. Incarceration

7. Evil

Why Is The Spider Web Tattoo Inked On Elbow Mostly?

There are many tattoo variations, and the most common spider web tattoo has the most pragmatic reason. Spider web tattoos are most commonly inked on the elbow area. The main reason is that the elbow area is notoriously more rigid than other parts of the body. The skin of the elbow is also thicker than another part.

 Additionally, the elbow is not much noticeable part of the body. Another most important reason is this tattoo is deeply connected with racism. In the earlier time, white people had to kill the minority to prove their gang’s loyalty. They used to ink this tattoo on the elbow area as a symbol of killing the minority. That is why tattoos on the elbow are most common.

The Meaning Of Spider Web Tattoo On Elbow

The meaning of elbow spiderweb tattoo varies in different parts of the world. In the USA, most people associate the spider web tattoos with prison and racism. But this is not the only meaning. People started to think differently nowadays. Many people now believe that this tattoo is associated with positive things about nature too. Here are some implications of spider web tattoo

1. A spider web tattoo’s meaning depends on a person’s society, culture, and social structure.

2. For a group of people, the spider web associates the time in prison. It means being trapped, tangled in the system. The ring number shows the number of years spent in jail. 

3. The meaning also changes depending on the race. White gangs had to wear this tattoo as a symbol. 

4. Sometimes, this tattoo indicates some sort of trouble that a person has gone through in his life. Most of the time, drug or alcohol-addicted people are likely to have this tattoo.

5. Sometimes, the spider web indicates a sailor’s waiting to go home. The cobweb formed from the side of the board clearly shows the waiting of a Navy. 

6. The spider web is also famous among biker gangs. Here, the spider web symbolizes the meaning of ‘caught’ so to speak. 

7. For some people, a spider web tattoo contains the essence of beauty. Many famous artists, actors, musicians sport this tattoo because of its look.

8. Many people nowadays think that having a spider web tattoo on the elbow is cool.

Other Parts Of The Body To Ink A Spider Web Tattoo

People ink a spider web tattoo on various parts of the body other than the elbow. It depends on a person’s preferences. For example-

1. Some wear the tattoo on the hand.

2. Some people wear it on the knee.

3. Some people wear it on the shoulder.

4. Some people like to have it on the neck. 

5. Some people want it on the face.

Whatever the area is, the meaning is mostly associated with prison and racism. The definition varies depending on the race and wearer.

Similar Symbol Of Tattoos That Can Be Worn On The Elbow

Along with spider, there are a lot of symbols to wear on the elbow. Some examples are-

StarSome people consider getting a star tattoo on the elbow instead of a spider web tattoo. 
HeartA heart, a diamond, or a skull can be a great tattoo choice.
VampireVampires, graves, gothic designs, or other dark symbols are also a preferable tattoo option.

Considerations Before Getting A Tattoo

Before getting a tattoo, you should take enough time to research the symbol and understand the proper meaning. For example, a spider web tattoo possesses both positive and negative connotations. So, you must know the significance of the tattoo before getting it. If you find out the opposite meaning later, it will be very unexpected because you have to wear this tattoo for the rest of your life. 


1. Why Do People Get Tattoos?

Answer: Some common reasons for getting a tattoo are media influence, personal preference, being part of a group, being accepted by friends, etc. 

2. What Are The Most Common Areas Of Getting A Tattoo?

Answer: The most common areas of getting a tattoo are shoulders, wrists, chest, ankles, elbow, legs, ribcage, hips, hands, and face.

3. Which Tattoo Is The Most Famous?

Answer: Small tattoos are the most popular and smartest tattoos for men. Tribal tattoo, owl tattoo, lion tattoo, phoenix tattoo are popular tattoos for men. 

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