The Many Meanings of Death Moth Tattoo

The Many Meanings of Death Moth Tattoo

Tattoos are a big part of our culture, so much so that you may know more people who have tattoos than people who don’t. While some just enjoy awesome designs ( Death moth tattoo ), for many, inking their bodies has a special meaning and each tattoo is chosen with care. Moth tattoos have been growing in popularity due to their symbolism.

This may seem surprising as one’s initial perception of a moth may be that of a drab, winged creature repeatedly flying into a lamp. This single-minded behavior even landed moths a place in meme culture. Though all of this may cause us to think moths are stupid, they actually have an important place in our ecosystem.

Once you learn more about moths and what they represent, you can appreciate why this “silly” insect has become a popular piece of permanent body art. You may even begin to want one for yourself (if you aren’t already interested)!

What Do Moths Symbolize?

Not only do moths make for bomb tattoos design-wise, but they also represent a number of different things. If you love tattoos that have meaning, then a moth may be perfect for you.

Adaptability and Evolution

Moths have been around for a long time, nearly 200 million years. They are still abundant today, with about 160,000 species in existence (in comparison, there are only 17,500 species of butterflies).

This is because moths have been able to adapt and evolve as the world changes. An example of this happened during the industrial revolution. Trees became covered with soot, and moths that had salt and pepper coloring were nearly invisible upon them. These moths were better able to hide from predators and survived long enough to produce offspring.

Many people can connect with this idea of adaptation and evolution. We all face different challenges in our lives that require us to adapt and change. For this reason, the moth can be a symbol of overcoming hardship.


As we explained, there are around 160,000 species of moths in the world. This means that they come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, and patterns. Though many of us think of moths as dull and brown, there are a vast number of colored moths.

For example, the sunset moth is considered to be among one of the most beautiful in existence. This month, like many others, can be seen during the day — proof of the fact that not all moths are active at night.

Therefore, moths can represent diversity. You may decide to get a moth tattoo because you believe in or support a diversity of culture, religion, sexuality, or whatever it may be. Alternatively, you may connect with the symbolism of the moth if you come from a diverse cultural background that you’re proud of.

Moths come in many different shapes, sizes, and colors, but every single one is important to the health of an ecosystem.

Metamorphosis and Rebirth

Moths and butterflies are cousins (you can check out our butterfly tattoo article here), so it’s no surprise that moths also undergo metamorphosis. They, too, begin as caterpillars that crawl but emerge from their cocoons capable of flight.

This idea of growth and rebirth is one that many can relate to. For those that have already had life-changing experiences, a moth tattoo can honor that transformation. For others, it can serve as a reminder that the hardships of life can help us grow into someone more beautiful and capable than before.

Some may also connect the idea of rebirth to their spirituality, for many believe that our souls are reborn either in Heaven or into another life on earth. Therefore, a moth tattoo (often in tandem with a name) can be used to honor loved ones who have passed on to their next life.


Moths are moths, so of course, they don’t go to church every Sunday. Nor are they collecting crystals and leaving them outside to be charged by the sun. However, for some people, the moth can be a symbol of spirituality.

As we all know, moths are drawn to the light in the dark. While this is a very real occurrence, the idea of the “light in the dark” is a common metaphor for hope and faith, especially in dire or bleak situations. It is in these situations that many look to a higher power for comfort and guidance.

And light is exactly that for moths, a guiding beacon. Scientists believe that moths use moonlight to help them navigate, and they call this “transverse orientation.” While it’s true that man-made lights may be throwing moths off, the symbolism behind searching for a light in the dark remains.

The Luna Moth

luna moth on pink hydrangea flowers

We can’t talk about spirituality without mentioning the luna moth. This is an especially popular moth for tattoos, particularly those that include moon phases or other moon imagery.

The luna moth is said to represent rebirth, regeneration, transformation, and renewal. Some cultures even believed that the luna moth was a physical manifestation of a person’s soul leaving their body after they died.

Because the luna moth is named after the moon and, like other moths, is guided by the moon, many connect it to this celestial body. In this way, it can represent femininity, intuition, and psychic perception.

Some even believe that this moth is a spirit guide, and seeing one is a message from a greater power. Since the luna moth represents renewal and rebirth, this message is believed to be an omen that it is time for you to open yourself to positive change, but that you will be protected as you do so.


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