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Marilyn Monroe Tattoos

Updated on June 27, 2014

Quality of Marilyn Monroe Tattoos

I love to find various tattoos, especially of people we know, and see how tattoo artists and designers depict and show them.

So when I went looking for Marilyn Monroe tattoos, I was really surprised to find so many that weren't done in the quality I expected, for one of the great celebrity icons of the 20th century.

And in many cases, not only were they not done that well, but they actually made her look old, and in many cases, like she was 20 years older than she actually lived to.

I've seen a lot of tattoos in my lifetime, and this is among the worst portrait tattoos I've come across; maybe because we all recognize Marilyn Monroe and so can critically judge it better, but with many other portrait tattoos I've come across, none seemed to be so bad as Marilyn's.

This doesn't mean there weren't any good ones, just that I was surprised at how many bad ones there were. Usually you'll always find a few bad ones and the majority are done well. But in this case, it is much different; at least how I look at them.

Tell me in the comments whether you think they're as bad as I do as an overall Marilyn Monroe tattoo gallery.

I'll begin with the worst ones and then bring you some that were done better.

Terrible Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

What's odd about this Marilyn Monroe tattoo is it had a lot of potential, but almost looks like a Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde look from one side of the face to the other.

To me it's like you really want to like it and find the quality in it, but then there's this thing that seems like she's young on one part, old down the middle, and seems to be snarling or even old in it.

It's like the tattoo is one step away from great but also just a short step from being sloppy. I think that's what makes me not like it: the contrasts being together.

Worst Marilyn Monroe Tattoo?

Sloppy Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

Here's one that just doesn't capture anything of Monroe at all, maybe other than a little of the hair and partially one eye.

The mouth is plain strange, and the eyes look like they're from two different people.

Weird looking Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

Barely recognizable Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

This tattoo has difficulty even being believable as Marilyn Monroe. The only hint is partially the hair style, and her signature eye look, which resembles her a little.

It's possible the location of the tattoo was a problem, but I wouldn't have done it with how this turned out.

Is this tattoo really Marilyn Monroe?

Horror Marilyn Monroe Tattoo?

On this one, don't ask me, as I don't get it. They have the date of her death and what looks like a bloody face. Is it supposed to be a zombie Marilyn. I don't know, but it sure is strange and ugly looking.

It's easy to miss, as in the heart is says 'camelot,' which is a reference to John F. Kennedy and the illusion of vigor and family life that had allegedly existed during his short term as president. Is the one wearing this saying this is what killed and made Marilyn what she was in the end? It could be.

Zombie Marilyn Monroe

Real Zombie Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

This is really a strange tattoo, but in contrast to the others, this was an attempt to make her look this way, and from that point of view is a well done tattoo, although I know Marilyn Monroe fans won't appreciate it.

But the art aside, why would someone what this inked on their body?

Andy Warhol's Interpretation of Marilyn Monroe

I've never liked this version of Marilyn Monroe as a painting, and so obviously dislike it as a tattoo.

But as far as quality and looking similar to what is expected, it's not badly done if you like the style.

Tattoo of Andy Warhol's Marilyn Monroe

More Shoddy Marilyn Monroe Tattoos

Here's another terrible Marilyn tattoo. I'm not kidding when I say I wasn't looking for these, and at first I didn't look close, and it was only later that I found out how bad they were when I enlarged them and saw them for what they are. This is terrible though.

Terrible Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

Finally a good Marilyn Monroe tattoo

This tattoo at least let's you know it's Marilyn Monroe, and it captures her beauty and likeness pretty good, although if you look at a real photo of her you can tell it's a little off, but I could live with this tattoo on me, and finally someone got one right.

Decent Marilyn Monroe Tattoo

A fantastic tattoo that unfortunately doesn't look like Marilyn Monroe

As my caption says, this is a fantastic tattoo, and extremely well done. The only problem is you couldn't guess that this was supposed to be Marilyn Monroe. But I guess if it isn't going to look like the model, if you're going to miss, this is a good way to do it.

Great Tattoo, Poor Marilyn

Nice Marilyn Image Tattoo

I call this a nice image of Marilyn because the second you see it you know who it is and where it's from. Because the tattoo isn't at an angle to be able to clearly see her face, it's hard to tell the quality, but the overall tattoo looks really good.

Tattoo Marilyn Monroe holding her dress

Every time I think it can't get any worse, another tattoo comes along like the one below that continues to leave you scratching your head and wondering what the tattoo designer and artist were thinking.

This one just sucks, and that's about all I can think to say about it.

Another horrible Marilyn Tattoo

Cute Marilyn Tattoo

I like this one because it's a caricature that depicts and says exactly what it wants about Marilyn, while allowing you to know who she is.

The New York Yankee reference is to her husband at the time: Joe Dimaggio, who had married her for a time.

Ankle Tattoo Marilyn Monroe

Maybe this tattoo artist looked at other Marilyn Monroe tattoos and decided to go this route. I actually do like it, and enjoy the way they left the openness, yet kept the unique features that remind you of the one and only Marilyn Monroe.

Minimalist Marilyn Monroe Ankle Tattoo

Final thoughts on Marilyn Monroe Tattoos

Like I mentioned at the beginning, I had no idea what to expect when searching out Marilyn Monroe tattoos, and really expected to find some great ones; and plenty of them.

But I probably searched harder for Marilyn Monroe tattoos than any other I ever have, and literally could only find the ones shown here. By that I mean there were many others, but the quality of them were even less than these.

For such a major celebrity who everyone knows, it was surprising to find tattoo artists unable to bring her out in a way that would have shown her beauty and strengths.

Of course other were doing their usual artist thing and creating shock stuff and other things. But for those attempting to make a good Marilyn Monroe tattoo, most failed miserably in my opinion. What do you think?


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    • profile image


      9 years ago

      lke the yankees one and the zombie one im going to have to disagree with mike ive seen better, as a matter of fact i have a badass marilyn tattoo on my forearm have of her face is skeleton, one of the best ive seen and im not just saying that because its on me

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      I found a website that has a few good ones of her .. Can`t rem the name.. I`m searching for good ones too and yes i agree so many are just tuuurrible , but there is hope =)

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      That third one is hilarious, although not so funny for the owner, I expect. The following has to be one of the worst tattoos ever, let alone of Marilyn

    • profile image

      mike ryan 

      9 years ago

      actually the marilyn monroe tattoo on megan fox's right arm is the best tattoo of her any one can ever see

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      The first one looks like Margaret Thatcher. Not a good look.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Marilyn Monroe was my icon growing up

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      i love the one of Marilyn Monroe holding her dress its so cute

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      I liked the one of her by warhol jus cause its a very fitting marilyn sleve tattoo. This is my marilyn tattoo [IMG][/IMG] its not bad. But i was too afraid to get a good grey scale or pin up yet cause you cant trust ppl to make it look perfect, ecspecially Miss Monroe. But one day, ill have three for her. and the channel no. 5 one I Loved if the mouth was done better.

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      yeah i would have to say this selection on tats are pretty ugly but they have ALOOTT of really good ones im in love with her ..u just seem to have found the older very ugly ones

    • Whitney05 profile image


      11 years ago from Georgia

      I like the Minimalist Marilyn Monroe Ankle Tattoo the best.

    • Connie Ho profile image

      Connie Ho 

      11 years ago from Quebec, Canada

      Fantastic tattoo designs of M. Monroe. Nice description too

    • Kudlit profile image


      11 years ago from Laguna

      The Zombie Marilyn Monroe tattoos are really scary! I like the minimalist one on the ankle. Simple and captures her image.

      I wrote a hub about the first issue of Playboy that featured Marilyn Monroe:


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