8 ball tattoo meaning tattoo design pool ball

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning

The eight ball is deeply symbolic as it is the final and deciding ball in a pool game. Get it in at the right moment and you are victorious and at the wrong time you lose by foul. So what about getting the eight ball as a tattoo? What does it mean?

The eight ball is strongly associated with luck, whether good or bad. So ultimately, its meaning focuses on outcome or fate. There are other meanings, too, like ties to friendship, chance (like risk-taking and gambling), and of course, simply an appreciation for the game of pool.

The eight ball is a modern-day talisman in some regards as it is easily recognizable by anyone and pop culture holds the eight ball in high regard. Should you get an eight-ball tattoo? Where should you put your eight-ball tattoo? How does the design change the meaning?

What Does The 8 Ball Tattoo Mean?

The meaning of the 8-ball tattoo has several interpretations; some are also interconnected. The intention of the person choosing it and their desire for the tattoo is the most important factor for the meaning of this tattoo. The main ideas are luck, good and bad, fate, skill, and of course, the game of pool.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Luck

There are links to this tattoo being a prison tattoo, which translates to bad decisions and bad luck. Of course, any prison tattoo has a rich history and should serve as a warning to others. You may still consider the eight-ball tattoo quite lucky if you want to repent for your situation and are grateful for the lessons and opportunities to grow as a person.

However, the eight-ball tattoo can also be connected to good luck, as it can lead to many positive outcomes, successes, and victories. Ultimately the black ball won’t choose sides, so if you want your tattoo to reflect a luckier side, choose to partner it with notoriously lucky symbols, such as horseshoes or 4-leaf clovers.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Fate

The eight-ball tattoo is a strong symbol of fate and destiny; how things unfold is how they should. There is finality and outcome or result in situations, and the eight ball can be there for guidance and accepting the way things are. 

Being what the eight ball is in a pool game, it always determines the game’s winner and the novelty Magic Eight Balls, which give the user some answer on which to proceed. The eight-ball tattoo links strongly to fate, destiny, and even guidance.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Chance

The eight-ball tattoo is considered popular for those who like the game of chance linked to gambling; that is where luck comes in. There is some chance, calculation, and skill required to win a pool game, and where the eight ball falls can determine if the odds are in your favor or not.

The eight-ball tattoo has strong links to gambling and risk-taking and can be designed on its own or paired with other talismans associated with gambling, such as chips or playing cards. However, you decide to depict the eight-ball tattoo. The message of possibility and reward is a strong meaning for this tattoo.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Friendship And Love Of The Game

Entering the bar scene and playing a pool game after the game will inevitably win you some great buddies. You may wish to commemorate your social life with an eight-ball tattoo that will remind you of all the good times with your mates.

Similarly, you may always want to remember how you feel when you play pool and enjoy yourself, owning the table and impressing spectators. The eight-ball tattoo will always remind you of the game itself.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Fun

If a person is a risk taker, they are doing it for fun; if a person is playing a game (besides hustling to make a buck), they are doing it for fun. The eight-ball tattoo can be invented as a fun icon of good times and having fun.

When you are winning, pool is especially fun. However, the game’s challenge is enjoyable, win or lose. When you love the game or are playing with friends, there might not be anything more fun, and the eight ball can symbolize that.

8 Ball Tattoo Meaning For Skill

When you have control of the eight ball or are the first to have a chance at it, it is no doubt that you are a skillful pool player. The eight-ball tattoo could mean you are a bit of a show-off regarding your talents on the pool table.

Should You Get An Eight Ball Tattoo?

If you are a pool enthusiast, getting an eight-ball tattoo may be a compelling idea, especially if you are also a person who presses their luck. You would be well suited for an eight-ball tattoo. The eight-ball tattoo suits an adventurous person who enjoys taking calculated risks. Sometimes when you know to wait, it can be the difference between winning or losing. 

Does Placement And Design Of Your Tattoo Change The Meaning?

The eight-ball tattoo placement is on your shoulder, for example. However, wherever you decide to place it, let it be seen. The eight-ball tattoo as a symbol should be visible for its meanings of luck and destiny to be accessible.

When it comes to the design of your tattoo, adding other symbols could strengthen and personalize the meaning of your tattoo. The purpose of any tattoo is to have it resonate with you and your intentions for it, so design it with that in mind, and you won’t go wrong.


The eight-ball tattoo has many meanings connected to life and its outcomes. When you get or consider getting this tattoo, think carefully about its reasons; if you want to be reminded that fate may be in your favor with skill and acceptance, then it’s definitely the right meaningful tattoo.

When you design this tattoo, have it reflect your intended meaning, and try to personalize it to your intentions. This tattoo is for a person who enjoys calculated risks and wants to have fun in their life.

Some of my favorite designs, tattoo books, and aftercare products, selected for you

working on tattoo at my studio
Working at the studio on one of my projects

Thank you for reading my article, I hope that you have found it helpful. If you would have trouble finding ideas for your tattoo, wonder what is meaning of design that you have found or what to buy for aftercare, to make sure that your tattoo will be healing quickly and easily, here are some of my favorite products in one place, hope that this will also help.

Design and tattoo ideas

For some ideas you can have a look at those 3 books with hundreds of designs that I use with my clients, they are available on Amazon for Kindle or in classic, paper version (links below):

Tattoo meaning

If you would like to read more about the meaning of different tattoo styles and designs before you will decide what you would like to have, I can recommend a book that was really useful for me when I was starting my tattoo adventure – it’s “Conscious Ink: The Hidden Meaning of Tattoos” by Lisa Barretta (through the link you can find it on Amazon for around $10).

Tattoo aftercare

The skin at the tattoo site often dries out. To prevent it and speed up healing for my clients, I usually recommend one of those tattoo aftercare balms (you can find them on Amazon):


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