Death moth tattoos have been trendy in the last decade or so, which isn’t surprising considering how rad they look.
In a nutshell, death moth tattoos are pretty similar to regular moth tattoos, except these moth designs also contain a human skull right in the centre of the image.
Related Read: Moth Tattoos Ideas & Meanings
Tattoos of insects are usually packed with meaning and symbolism, and if you’re into this type of style, finding the perfect one for you is no walk in the park.
The vast majority of insect tattoos have a badass dangerous vibe to them, but in our humble opinion, the death moth tattoo is probably the coolest one.
How Death Moths Became Popular
The death moth gained worldwide notoriety when the 1991 cult classic “The Silence of the Lambs” was released. This insect was used as a central theme for the theatrical poster and played a significant role in the plot of the film.
Moth designs have also been an important staple in traditional American tattooing.
Are Death Moths Like Normal Moths?
Since death moths are a subspecies of the regular moth (they are known as Death’s-head hawkmoth), their symbolism directly coincides with the symbolism of regular moths, except they’re a bit edgier.
So, to thoroughly understand the death moth as a symbol, we will acquaint ourselves with the meaning behind the regular moth symbolism and what it can represent.
We will also cover the rich history of the moth as an image and discuss how the meaning changes when combined with other symbols.
The Meaning Behind Death Moth Tattoos
Death moths can have a wide range of meanings behind them, and in this section, we will cover the most important ones.
Death Moths Can Represent Metamorphosis
Since moths pass through several stages (egg, larva, cocoon) before turning into their final moth form, they are a powerful symbol of change and a desire not to remain stagnant.
Their metamorphosis makes the moth a symbol of transformation, and a person adorned with a moth tattoo can express a strong desire to move forward in life continually.
Death Moths Can Represent A Connection With Nature
Moths are nocturnal creatures, and they use the moonlight to navigate through the treacherous night.
As they rely on the faint moonlight to see in the darkness, moths can greatly represent the connection with the nature of all living things.
Because of this death moths are frequently tattooed in combination with the moon, and these two symbols together create a mystical, esoteric vibe.
Death Moths Can Represent Night Owls
Since moths are only active during the night, they can be used as a powerful message for anyone leading an alternative lifestyle.
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Considering how different moths are from most animal species, they can represent a deliberate separation from the herd.
Death Moths Can Have A Carpe Diem Connotation
The lifespan of moths in their final form is extremely short, which can be used as a symbol that tomorrow is never promised and that we have to seize the day and live life to its fullest.
Death Moths Can Represent Resilience
Moths are an ancient insect species and help represent toughness and that they’ve had to survive through some rough times.
For this reason, moths are a clear symbol of resilience, but they can also represent adaptation in times of hardship.
Death Moths Can Represent A Symbolic Rebirth
Similarly to butterflies, moths pass through several different stages in their lives, and this can be representative of our transformations in life.
How to Color The Death Moth Tattoo
Since the death moth has an overtly ominous appearance, these kinds of tattoos are generally done with only a couple of colours, usually just black and grey, but sometimes also accompanied by dark red.
Choosing to make your death moth tattoo stand out is always a good idea. An artist can achieve this by drastically changing the colourway, like using bright watercolours with a menacing design.
Where To Tattoo The Death Moth?
The death moth typically has a very powerful meaning, and for this reason, it is usually tattooed on an important place of the body, such as the chest, neck or forearms.
This image requires complexity to look realistic, and for this reason, the death moth is rarely done as a small design.
We sincerely hope you found this article helpful, and if you’re looking to add additional meaning to your future death moth tattoo, feel free to combine it with other symbols such as the moon.
An emerging trend is to incorporate complex geometric patterns with the death moth, increasing its intimidating appearance.