Whether in large bold print or tiny hidden characters you can never go wrong with XO tattoos. The design is gaining popularity with guys and one has to wonder exactly what is going on. Below is all you need to know about XO tattoos for men and why ink enthusiasts just can’t get enough of the trend.


XO Tattoo Meanings

Everyone is familiar with the term ‘XOXO’ which is text imagery for hugs and kisses. In fact, you’ve probably already used or received it in a text or an email. For the most part, it is used by couples as a way to express their affection. However, it is also commonly used in completely platonic relationships.

The XO tattoo is a short form of this already shortened term and is one of the most popular text/print tattoo ideas there is. The tattoo usually represents an intimate relationship or a very close friendship. As a guy, you may choose to get one in honor of your girlfriend or even wife. You may also choose to get it as a way to mark a great friendship.

More often than not, men get it as a part of a matching tattoo. In this case, you and your partner or your group of friends can have both characters per person or you may choose to have them split where one gets the X and the other gets the O. Whatever the case, it is a great choice if you are looking for personal and meaningful ink.

Ways to Jazz Up XO Tattoos for Men

Despite all the emotions and warm fuzziness surrounding this tattoo design, it is very possible to keep it cool as a man. Below are awesome ideas and tips that should help you make a statement with your piece.

1. The paint brush strokes design – This might take up space and cause you lots of pain but it will definitely be worth it. The brush stroke design makes the tattoo look like it was literally painted on using a brush. This is perfect for the XO tattoo design taking the otherwise plain and boring letters to a whole other level of awesomeness.

2. Watercolor ink – Watercolor tattoos are all the rage these days and with the amazing results seen every time it isn’t so hard to see why. So why not turn your intimate piece into a true work of art with this style?

3. Choosing the right font – Should you decide to go the old fashioned minimalistic route, it is important to ensure that you choose the right font. Here, you are free to choose whatever you want with options ranging from simple typewriter fonts to cool Wild West inspired lettering.

4. Choosing the right placement – Another way to spice up your tattoo is ensuring that the placement is just right. This is especially important if you decide to get is as a part of a matching set.

5. Symbolism and imagery – Finally, you can use symbols to illustrate the already symbolic piece. For example, instead of an ordinary X and O you may choose to have 2 crossing swords for the X and a shield for the O. This is the perfect way to personalize the tattoo and make sure that your piece is as unique as it can get.

Is a XO tattoo for you?

After all is said and done, XO tattoos for men are pretty awesome. The best part is the fact that the tattoos can be customized to suit your individual or relationship needs. In a nutshell, whether you get both characters on your skin or you choose to make it a matching couple’s tattoo, the XO design is worth it.

Striking Examples of XO Tattoos for Men


This particular XO tattoo was designed for the neck, and is meant to attract people’s attention. On one side of the tattoo is a lotus flower; while on the other side is a Sanskrit script. The XO is also written using an aggressive looking font.


This xo tattoos idea features the words “If it ain’t XO then it gotta go” written in contrasting fonts. The XO is written using a graffiti-like font, while the rest of the words are written using a more formal font.


This interesting looking tattoo portrays a strange, dark silhouette, a flock of birds and the words XO written on the lower half of the image. The tattoo was also designed to have that distinctive black and white look that many tattoos have.


This rather special tattoo design features the words XO in a classic looking font. Despite its simplicity, though, the tattoo projects an air of mastery and dignity that makes it almost seem like it’s a military tattoo.


This red and black tattoo features an owl and the letters XO. The XO is written in a wild fashion using bright, red ink, while the owl image is drawn in a cartoon-like manner using black ink.


This wild looking tattoo features the letters XO, written in a wild, black font, and under it are the words, “Til We Overdose” written with an elegant and flowing font. The tattoo also includes a bright red heart on top of the XO letters.


This interesting xo tattoo design features the letters XO written in a wild black font, and in between the two letters is a simple black heart. Despite its simplicity, the tattoo’s wild appearance adds to its appeal.


This simple xo tattoo for men is designed for the arms. It includes the letters XO and a heart image in between them. All three characters are written using a black, graffiti-like font to project an impression of simplicity.


This slightly political tattoo features a man wearing a hoodie with the letters XO printed on the front. From the man’s outstretched hands are a several bloody droplets with crossed out guns, knives, swastikas, etc. inside of them.


This matching tattoo features the letters XO written on both wrists of the hand. On top of the letters are heart images, both of which are drawn in a simple but charming style. The fonts of the letters are also simple and pleasant to look at.


This rather large tattoo design features the letters XO written in a bold, black font. In between the letters is a black heart. Also, the letters and the heart are designed to look like they were written by a messy brush.


This simple looking tattoo contains the letters XO as well as a heart image in between and on top of them. The letters and the heart are hollow, which creates an impression that the tattoo was created using a pen or pencil.


Compared to most tattoo ideas for men, this particular design looks rather artistic. It features the letters XO and a bright red heart in between them. Both the letters and the heart were created to appear as though they are melting.


This Asian-style tattoo features the letters XO as well as a cartoon heart situated in between them. Below the XO tattoo are three black diamonds, and below them are several Chinese characters, written in a black, formal font.


This amusing little tattoo features the letters X O, written in a simple but pleasant font. This tattoo design is also intended on the side of people’s fingers, but it’s compatible enough to be added onto any part of the body.


This tattoo design features the letters X and O with a red heart in the middle. The characters are also designed in a way that they appear like they were created using spray paint. The heart image, though, has an appealing design that adds to its charm.


Unlike many XO tattoos, this particular design has separated the X from the O. The X is printed on one hand, while the O is placed on the other, and the only way to create the XO symbol is by holding both tattooed hands next to each other.


Compared to other XO tattoo ideas, this particular design’s distinguishing feature is that it looks like it is melting. The letters XO and the red heart in between them have a dreary, melting appearance that many other tattoos lack.


This simple tattoo is fairly straightforward. It features the words XO, written in a simple black font, and in between them is a small heart image, which also happens to be black. The tattoo’s simplicity allows it to be compatible with various parts of the body.


This sharp, black tattoo looks like it was created by a marker. Both the letters and the heart image between them have a classic punk rock appeal, and their placement on the front of the neck makes them even more interesting to look at.


Compared to other XO tattoos for guys, this particular design contains a lot of words and details. Aside from the XO letters and the heart in between them, the tattoo also includes several balloons and a couple of phrases written in elegant fonts.


This interesting tattoo includes the letters XO, written in black, as well as a brightly colored flower. The flower’s bright red petals and green leaves create a sharp contrast with the black color of the letters that spell out XO.


This particular tattoo features the letters XO, plus a bright red and pink heart in the middle. Also, unlike most other xo tattoos for men tattoos ideas, this particular design is best placed on the side of the abdomen.


This tattoo was designed to be placed on top of a person’s hands. It includes the letters XO as well as the black colored heart in between them. It also features the words “Til We Overdose” under it.


This tattoo design involves a pair of XOs, one written on the wrist of the left hand and the other on the right. The letters also appear to be written using a classic Roman-style font, which gives them a rather majestic appearance.


This matching tattoo features the letters XO written on the bottom-side wrists of two people. One person gets the X while the other gets the O, and by combining both wrists, the persons create XO. Also, the letters are written using a very simple type of font.


This tattoo features the letters XO, written in black and is compatible with any part of the body. The letters are written using a simple and direct font, while the tiny heart between the X and O has a cartoon-like appearance.