25 Hilariously Bad Booze Tattoos

File under: Mistakes.

  • boozetats1
  • This tattoo aims for hyperrealism and almost pulls it off, except for the bizarre purple aura. (Photo: "a href=http://poundedink.com/top-tattoo-artists/cecil-porter-awesome-color-tattoos/">Pounded Ink)
  • The people at Smirnoff must be thrilled at this guy's dedication to the brand. (Photo: Cherrybombed)
  • Champagne gives you wiiiiiiiiings! (Photo: Flickriver)
  • Two exclamation points make sure the reader gets the gist. (Photo: Lucky 7 Tattoos)
  • It's tacky, sure, but at least it's safely out of sight most of the time. (Photo: Beer Advocate)
  • An olive either reaches enlightenment or gets beamed up out of a nasty-looking martini glass. (Photo: Ink Art Tattoos)
  • It's not clear whether she's sitting on the rim of the class or magically floating in the martini. (Photo: About)
  • An absinthe tattoo should look like absinthe, not what you think absinthe looks like when hallucinating. (Photo:
  • Looks like the Ghost of Octopus Past is coming to steal your stogie and whiskey. (Photo:
  • "Patat" means "potato" in Dutch, apparently. (Photo: Absolut Regis)
  • Caveat emptor. (Photo:
  • Congratulations! This is officially the worst tattoo you could have gotten. (Photo:
  • If you're gonna get a tattoo of a whiskey bottle, you should probably spring for some shading. (Photo: Twitgoo)
  • Go away butterfly, I'm trying to get drunk here! (Photo:
  • There's even a handy "this side up" arrow for when you've had one too many. (Photo: Myspace)
  • Why use a shot glass when teacups are so much cuter? (Photo: Blogspot)
  • Class defined, complete with correct spelling and grammar. (Photo: Bad Mods)
  • It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a badly drawn version of the Bacardi logo! (Photo: DeviantArt)
  • The pirate imagery is not entirely ill-advised, but the execution leaves something to be desired. (Photo:
  • Purple genie vapors really take vodka bottles to the next level. (Photo: Squablo)
  • How long did it take to come up with this work of art? (Photo:
  • In that order. (Photo:
  • Mad profound, yo.
  • Nothing goes better with prayer than a cold one. (Photo: Seattle Beer News)
  • What the wine glass has to do with the text, nobody knows. (Photo: Tattoo Gathering)

Handled well, a booze-themed tattoo speaks to the human condition. Sailors once lined the streets of America’s busiest ports to get “Stewed, Screwed, and Tattooed.” Popularized by Norman “Sailor Jerry” Collins of Honolulu, the phrase encapsulates the three steps of a successful shore leave—have a few drinks, get laid, then cap it all off with an indelible mark. One of the craft’s great themes, Man’s Ruin, combines a trio of vices—drinking, gambling, and women—to form a single, powerful image. Traditions in tattooing have standardized appropriate boozy images, steadying the ship (so to speak) and promoting proper articulation of alcoholic adulation.

But when booze-themed veer off a steady course, the results are wobblier—in conception and execution—than a local barfly at 1am. You’ll find few celebrations of classic cocktails or historic brewing imagery here. Instead, there are shaky drawings of popular brands and brazen calls to “DRINK!” Rather than reflecting the culture and history of inebriation, these curiously ill-conceived pictures come off as things you would only choose to commit to skin when you are literally inebriated.

Take heed should you want to celebrate your love of rum or whiskey in ink. Follow tradition, or end up like these poor souls.

Click through the gallery above to see the most heinous examples of when booze-themed tattoos go wrong.

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