Top 20 Barcode Tattoo Designs

A collection of some cool tattoos that will reflect your personality and wit.

Reviewed by Terisa Green, Tattoo Researcher Terisa Green Terisa GreenTattoo Researcher
Written by , MA (Mass Communication) Nisha Baghadia MA (Mass Communication) Experience: 3 years
Edited by , BSc Shatabdi Bhattacharya BSc Experience: 2.5 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English) Shreya Mukherjee MA (English) linkedin_icon Experience: 2 years

Barcode tattoo designs have always led the body art inking trend, and wearing them can add a unique touch to your personality. While tattoos let you share your personality out loud, going for modern designs like barcodes help you flaunt innovative tattoos without being artsy about it.

If you are a tech-savvy person, you will surely dig these futuristic designs. A barcode is a collection of thick and thin black lines representing unique data about a product or item for sale. They can be read through laser scanners and define the printed product. So, if you love technology and machines, you might as well show your love in the form of these fashionable gorgeous tattoos.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Barcode tattoos are often considered a way to represent social values of being priceless or unique. In fact, you can also scan these tattoos in actual barcode machines to reveal secret messages.

Here are some of the most incredible bar code tattoos to inspire you to head to the tattoo station. Keep scrolling to check them all out!

Barcode Tattoo Meaning

Barcode tattoos hold diverse meanings, often symbolizing individuality, societal critique, or personal history. They represent the idea of being labeled or categorized by society, challenging conformity. They may also encode significant dates, initials, or secret messages, adding layers of personal significance.

For some, they reflect a sense of rebellion against societal norms, while for others, they serve as a reminder of the complexity of human identity. Barcode tattoos can also signify a desire for anonymity or a satire of consumer culture. Ultimately, their meaning is deeply personal, reflecting the wearer’s unique perspective and experiences.

Barcode Tattoo Designs

The barcode tattoo is the perfect example of how a tattoo design can have completely opposite meanings, depending on the wearer’s intention. In its original context, it’s placed on products and the wearer might be signifying that they’re a mass-produced commodity.

But the exact opposite interpretation could also be true: by wearing a barcode they might also be using irony to the extreme and signifying their utter uniqueness. Here are some barcode tattoo designs for you:

1. Barcode Tattoo With Name

A black ink barcode tattoo with a name on the upper arm
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

This barcode tattoo is a modern way to represent your identity. Wearing it on the upper arm shows confidence, boldness, and acceptance of the self. The addition of the name, Ana, acts like a title to the story of your life. The same tattoo design can also be used to engrave the name of a person who is your constant or a celebrity you admire. It is a good way to immortalize a loved one!

2. Neck Barcode Tattoo

A small barcode tattoo on the neck
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

This barcode tattoo, despite its small size, commands immediate attention due to its bold placement. It hints at rebellion, prompting onlookers to reflect upon their race to fit in. It may also be read as an acceptance of the fact that we are chained to materiality and the norms of our society.

3. Wrist Barcode Tattoo

A minimalist barcode tattoo on the wrist
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

On your wrist, a minimalist barcode tattoo speaks volumes in its simplicity. Bold lines in black ink encode a narrative that is uniquely yours. With every flick of your wrist, you project confidence, inviting the world to decode the layers of your story etched in timeless ink. It makes you appear strong and reliable. It shows that you have truly accepted yourself.

4. Barcode Tattoo With Date Of Birth

A delicate barcode tattoo with a date and month of birth
Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

This delicate barcode tattoo graces the nape of your neck, marking the timeless significance of your birth on July 15th. In fine lines of black ink, it is more than just a date — it is an autobiography, it is the story of your beginning, a symbol of your journey through time. You can customize this tattoo with other significant dates as well to commemorate momentous events.

5. Arm Barcode Tattoo

A barcode tattoo designed with birds
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

A tiny tattoo with a barcode and birds looks cute on your upper arm, forearm, or wrist. This captivating barcode tattoo is adorned with delicate black ink birds soaring above the lines. The birds symbolize freedom, contrasting the structured barcode that cages one within the norms of society. This tattoo is a good representation of your journey towards liberation against conformity.

6. Hitman Barcode Tattoo

A barcode tattoo on the back of your neck
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

Have you heard of the video game series featuring trained killers working for a corrupt corporation? The tattoo on the upper neck is reminiscent of the tattoos that the hitmen were given. You can take inspiration from this tattoo to ink strength, secrecy, and determination. It is placed high up the nape of the neck, so it can be easily concealed by your hair, adding more to the secretive vibe of the piece.

7. Rainbow Barcode Tattoo

A colorful rainbow barcode tattoo on the upper back
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

A colorful barcode tattoo between your shoulder blades looks attractive and chic! Each color is a spectrum of emotions and experiences encoded within the lines. The rainbow not only celebrates diversity but also represents different experiences and memories. It exudes happiness and joy. You can customize the color palette of the design to best describe your emotions.

8. Barcode Tattoo On Foot

A simple barcode tattoo on the foot
Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

Etch simplicity onto the side of your foot with a discreet barcode tattoo. The black ink tattoo holds a profound meaning known only to you. With every step, it, as if silently, encodes your journey and the highs and lows within its lines. The lines, according to your preferences, may depict your achievements and desires or even flaws, outlining that you are only human.

9. Slave Barcode Tattoo Design

Slave barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This is a barcode tattoo design with a message at the bottom. It is in black ink. The message at the bottom says “SLAVE”. The letters are in capital in a clear font. This tattoo is specifically meant to be made on the hand. It is a quirky design that shows us how we are all slaves to retail therapy.

10. “I Belong To You” Anniversary Tattoo Design

I Belong To You' anniversary barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is for the love struck couples. It is very stylish and bears the inscription “I Belong to You” followed by the name of the significant other. Above the inscription is the date of the anniversary. The barcode design is placed above the date.

11. Freedom from Corporatisation Barcode Tattoo Design

Freedom from corporatisation barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is in black and white and stands for freedom from corporatization. It is made up of thin and thick barcode stripes. In between the stripes is a gap which looks like someone has punched out a fist through the barcode. The lines are haphazard. Below it is written ‘’FREEDOM” in capital letters.

12. Barcode Growing Into Grass Tattoo Design

Growing into grass barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is in black ink. It shows the typical barcode design that consists of thick and thin stripes that are picked up by the optical scanner. The top part of the barcode is not a straight line. It is open, and the barcode lines are seen rising up and curling into grass. The barcode turns into a shrub. Miniature bees are seen among the grass length.

13. “So Not Right” Barcode Design Tattoo

So Not Right' barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is in black and white. It shows the typical barcode design that consists of thick and thin stripes that are picked up by the optical scanner. Below it is an inscription that reads, “So Not Right”. It is in bold letters and a clear font. It means that uniformity is not good and we should strive to stand out in a crowd. This tattoo looks best on a shaved head.

14. Made In And Birth Date Barcode Tattoo Design

Made in and birth date barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is about national pride and the patriotic feeling of unity. The barcode is used as a stamp or a mark to specifically denote an object. The design shows a barcode tattoo in black ink. Below it is an inscription of a date which is the birth date. Above the barcode is the inscription, “Made in South Africa”. This celebrates a sense of belonging with the country’s population as well as the identity of being one in a million as a citizen of that country.

15. Human Inscription With Barcode Tattoo Design

Human inscription barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is done in black ink. It shows the barcode design, below which is an inscription reading “Human”. The inscription is in bold letters and clear font. It celebrates humanity.

protip_icon Quick Tip
This style of tattoo is a way of identifying oneself and has been adopted by many people. You can also add any word of your choice that connects with you the most.

16. Birth Date With Leaf And Barcode Tattoo Design

Birth date with leaf barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is also in black ink. It shows the barcode design, below which is an inscription of a date. The date is the birth date of the person. Growing out of the barcode design is a sapling. The sapling symbolizes birth.

On the other hand, Annie Goodman, a blogger, details her experience of getting a barcode tattoo on the back of her neck. The numbers beneath it correspond to her mother’s death date. But the barcode tattoo symbolizes a specific chapter in her life when she felt like a commodity on the rack and was violated. However, when asked about the symbolism she usually answers, “I have since moved past that way of thinking though, so I chose to put it on my back where it will hopefully stay behind me (i).”

17. London Skyline Barcode Tattoo Design

A cityscape barcode tattoo featuring skyscrapers in all-black ink
Image: StyleCraze Design Team

Your tattoo says a lot about you, even a creative rendition of a barcode tattoo design that shows a cityscape. The bars of the barcode rise up to form buildings of the London skyline. The tattoo emerges in bold black ink, each skyscraper a silhouette against the skyline. It is more than just a design, it is a tribute to your urban spirit. A beautiful reflection of the hustle and bustle coursing through your veins.

18. American Flag Barcode Tattoo Design

American flag barcode tattoo design
Image: Pinterest

This tattoo is in color. It shows the American national flag subset in the barcode design. Each stripe and star encoded within the lines represents the essence of freedom and unity. It is a symbol of your unwavering allegiance to the red, white, and blue and a constant reminder of the values you hold dear and the land you proudly call home.

19. DNA Barcode Tattoo Design

DNA barcode tattoo design on wrist
Image: IStock

This DNA barcode tattoo design on the wrist takes personalization to a whole new level, intertwining genes and body art. This truly unique pattern serves as a visual representation of one’s individuality by displaying the combination of genetic codes that makes you. It goes beyond aesthetic appeal and is bound to spark fresh conversations.

20. Music Barcode Tattoo

Music barcode tattoo on the arm
Image: Created with Dall·E

This music barcode tattoo can be a distinctive and creative way for music enthusiasts to showcase their passion and love for songs and melodies. This visually intriguing fusion of art and music can act as a personal and permanent homage to your favorite artist, or a song that has seen you through much adversity. The design works as a symbolic celebration of the universal language of music and its overall impact.

Infographic: Top 5 Barcode Tattoo Designs

Barcode tattoo designs combine art and technology in mesmerizing ways. They take you to an innovative world of designs and personal expression. Check out the following infographic to know the top 5 incredible barcode tattoo designs that you can refer to get inspiration for your next tattoo adventure.

top 5 barcode tattoo designs (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Barcode tattoos are witty and creative in their own right, and their cleverness can be tweaked to meet your personal motivations with minimal effort. Barcode tattoos have become popular among the younger population and have garnered widespread acceptability. So, the next time you have a barcode tattoo on your neck or wrist, make sure to double-check its meaning, as each barcode tattoo is significant. I hope you found this article on barcode tattoos useful and interesting, and use one of them as the basis for your next tattoo design.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a barcode tattoo be scanned?

Barcode tattoos typically cannot be scanned by standard barcode scanners as they lack the necessary precision and alignment. They are primarily decorative rather than functional in terms of scanning.

Are there different types of barcode tattoos?

Yes, there are various types of barcode tattoos, including traditional linear barcodes, QR code tattoos, and creative adaptations that incorporate personal elements or artistic designs.

Where are barcode tattoos commonly placed on the body?

Barcode tattoos are commonly placed on areas like the upper arm, wrist, neck, or back. You may also opt for more discreet locations like the foot or back of the head.

What does a barcode tattoo symbolize?

Barcode tattoos can be interpreted in many ways. A barcode signifies origin, creation, and belonging. They also stand as a symbol of individualism, opposition to capitalism, and indignation towards multinational corporations.

What does the 3-bar tattoo mean?

The 3-bold, black line tattoo signifies uniformity and symmetry.

What does the barcode tattoo mean for human trafficking?

The barcode tattoo has been used as a symbol of human trafficking in some popular dystopian novels and movies. However, there is no evidence of barcode tattoos being related to human trafficking in real life.

Are there any risks associated with getting a barcode tattoo?

Barcode tattoos are no different when it comes to risks and precautions. The major risks include infection, scarring, and allergic reactions.

Are there any barcode tattoo designs that are only visible under black light?

Yes, there are tattoos that are only visible under black light. These are also called UV tattoos and are made using ink with a fluorescent compound which makes it invisible in normal light but glows brightly under UV light.

Key Takeaways

  • Barcode tattoo designs are a modern trend that represents a tech-savvy and innovative personality.
  • A barcode is a combination of thick and thin lines found on products. When included in a tattoo design, it may symbolize that humans are mass-produced or even depict the wearer’s uniqueness.
  • They usually have writings below the code that give deeper meaning to the tattoo.

Wondering what the latest barcode tattoo designs are? Find inspiration from 25 unique and creative designs shared in the video below.

Personal Experience: Source

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Terisa Green

Terisa GreenTattoo Researcher

Terisa Green, PhD, is a tattoo researcher with over 20 years of experience and the author of The Tattoo Encyclopedia: A Guide to Choosing Your Tattoo and Ink: The Not-Just-Skin-Deep Guide to Getting A Tattoo. She undertook a tattoo apprenticeship at Sunset Strip Tattoo in Hollywood and learned about all the aspects of tattoos - from mixing pigments to full bio

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