- Celebrities are just like us – sometimes, they make questionable tattoo decisions.
- These celebs all took the plunge and got pieces of body art for reasons ranging from honouring their significant others to getting inked for a movie role.
- But alas, they all either covered up their regrettable ink or got their tats removed completely.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Celebrities are no different.
From Ariana Grande tattooing an incorrect translation of a song title to Demi Lovato drunkenly choosing a set of lips that border on NSFW, keep scrolling to see how these celebs decided to deal with their most ill-advised ink.
Chris Zylka covered up a Disney-inspired Paris Hilton tattoo with a gorilla after they broke off their engagement.
Zylka and Hilton first made things official in February 2017, and five months later he debuted his Paris tattoo. According to a friend, it was because “she is his most magical place on Earth,” the Daily Mail reported.
They got engaged in January 2018, but were broken up by November. It took nine months, but Zylka covered up ex’s name in August 2019 by paying a visit to Chronic Ink in Ontario. “Paris” was replaced by an intricate rendering of a gorilla.
Pete Davidson covered up yet another one of his Ariana Grande-related tattoos.
Back in September 2018, when Davidson and Grande were still engaged, the two got multiple matching tattoos, or tats honouring each other. One of these was the simple phrase “mille tendresse” in cursive on the back of his neck, exactly the same spot and font as Grande’s. The phrase, which means “a million tendernesses,” was popularised by “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.”
But after the breakup, the two have slowly been covering up or altering their tattoos dedicated to each other. In February 2019, Davidson’s tattoo artist spotlighted a new tattoo of an owl sucking a Tootsie Roll Pop from a popular commercial, but eagle-eyed fans spotted that the comedian also covered up the French phrase with “CURSED.”
Ariana Grande altered a on her palm, after learning the kanji characters translated to small charcoal grill, instead of the title of her single “7 Rings.”
The singer has been embracing Japanese culture recently, amid cries of cultural appropriation, but Grande took it to an entirely new level when she debuted a new tattoo on her palm, “七 輪,” in kanji. Kanji is a system of writing Japanese with Chinese characters.
The only problem? 七 輪 translates to small charcoal grill,not “7 Rings,” the title of Grande’s latest single. She made matters worse when she explained that she knew that the translation would be off, but it was simply too painful to get the entire phrase.
Zoë Kravitz’s tattoo artist just revealed two new pieces of ink, one of which replaced an Arabic quote that turned out to be grammatically incorrect.
According to Refinery29, the actress began the process of removing her tattoo in the past few years, and in November 2018 at the “Fantastic Beasts” premiere, it was almost completely gone.
Jhené Aiko covered up her tattoo of ex-boyfriend Big Sean in November 2018 with a large galaxy scene.
The singer debuted her tattoo of of Big Sean in October 2017, after roughly a year of dating. A year later, the tat has disappeared from Aiko’s arm and has been replaced by a very large, detailed celestial piece. The new ink sparked break-up rumours, which have plagued the couple for months, since the pair unfollowed each other on Instagram back in May.
Aiko neither confirmed nor denied the split when addressing her new tattoo, only stating “i covered ALL my tats w/ a big arse Dragon w/ a Phoenix wing breathing life and light into a new galaxy. NEW ART! NO BEEF!,” in a since-deleted Tweet.
Angelina Jolie covered up her ex-husband’s name with the coordinates of each of her children’s birthplaces.
In light of their break-up, it makes sense that Pete Davidson was spotted covering up his tattoo of Ariana Grande’s famous “Dangerous Woman” bunny ears.
Davidson was spotted with a new tattoo on his neck just a few days before news of the split broke. Instead of the “Dangerous Woman” bunny ears that Grande sported on the album cover, there’s a big black heart, plus a lowercase “a” right next to it – potentially a more subtle tribute to his ex.
Keith Urban drew over his tattoo of a Latin phrase he’d gotten with his ex-girlfriend with the initials of his wife, Nicole Kidman.
Keith Urban had the Latin phrase “omnia vincit amor,” which means “love conquers all,” tattooed on his right wrist. He and his then girlfriend got the same tat.
Once Urban met his future wife, Nicole Kidman, he covered up the phrase with her initials (NMK) inside a Celtic symbol. He also has her name with hearts on his right bicep.
Denise Richards had a simple tribute to her then husband Charlie Sheen — his first name on her ankle. After the divorce, she covered it with a fairy.
Denise Richards revealed in her autobiography that Sheen surprised Richards with a tattoo of her name while they were engaged. Richards decided to follow suit by getting some ink for her new husband.
After their bitter split, Sheen announced he was getting rid of all 13 of his tattoos. Richards took the hint and went to famed tattoo artist Kat Von D, who transformed “Charlie” into a fairy.
Marc Anthony paid tribute to his then wife Jennifer Lopez with her name on his wrist, but after their split he covered it with a tribal design.
Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony seemed like the perfect couple – Anthony even got her name tattooed on his wrist. But, sadly, they split, and Anthony’s “Jennifer” tattoo was covered up.
But Anthony’s not afraid to keep getting ink for his loves. He debuted a Statue of Liberty tattoo in honour of his ex-girlfriend Shannon de Lima, “because she ‘freed’ him from his past,” according to TMZ.
Heidi Klum got her then husband’s name tattooed on her arm for their fourth wedding anniversary, along with stars for their children. The stars remain, but “Seal” is gone.
Heidi Klum explained that the tattoo signified their family, saying “it’s my husband’s name and our three children – their initials, in the [three] stars.” But once Klum and Seal announced their divorce, Klum immediately began the process of removing her ex-hubby’s name.
Most people know about Johnny Depp’s “Wino Forever” tattoo that used to be “Winona Forever.” But Depp also had a tattoo dedicated to then wife Amber Heard: her nickname, “Slim,” on his knuckles. He changed it to “Scum” following their bitter divorce.
You’d think a guy would learn. After famously getting a tattoo in honour of then girlfriend Winona Ryder changed to a declaration of his love for wine (from “Winona Forever” to “Wino Forever”), Johnny Depp had to alter another one of his tattoos following a bitter breakup.
Eva Longoria had the word “Nine,” removed from the back of her neck after reports of her then husband Tony Parker’s infidelity. (Nine was the basketball player’s jersey number.)
Though Longoria is now happily married and has a baby, her love life hasn’t always been picture-perfect.
Longoria’s marriage to NBA player Tony Parker ended harshly after cheating allegations were made public. Longoria had not one, but three tattoos in honour of her marriage, and had all three removed. She had her husband’s jersey number on her neck, their wedding date in Roman numerals on her wrist, and his initials in an “undisclosed location.”
Melanie Griffith inked husband Antonio Banderas’ name on her right bicep, but after the two separated, she had it removed.
Before her tattoo was completely removed, Melanie Griffith made a bold statement by walking the red carpet with the “Antonio” blurred out with makeup, while leaving the heart intact.
But a year later, the tattoo had the trademark fade of laser removal, and now it’s essentially gone.
Megan Fox paid tribute to one of her idols, Marilyn Monroe, with a portrait on her arm, but later claimed that she didn’t “want to attract this kind of negative energy in my life,” and began the removal process.
Megan Fox explained that she thought her tattoo of Marilyn Monroe brought negative energy into her life because “she was a negative person, she was disturbed, bipolar.”
Fox revealed that the tattoo removal process was “traumatic” and “incredibly painful.”
Kaley Cuoco honoured her wedding date with its Roman-numeral equivalent on her back, but, post-divorce, covered it up with a moth.
Kaley Cuoco’s previous relationship was a whirlwind – she dated Ryan Sweeting for just two months before getting engaged, and was married to him three months after that. But before splitting after 21 months of marriage, Cuoco found the time to commemorate her wedding day by tattooing the date in Roman numerals on her back.
Cuoco later covered the numbers with a moth. Her reason for picking a moth is extremely relatable: she told Ellen DeGeneres that she chose it because “it was big enough to cover the numbers.”
Nas had a NSFW portrait of his ex-wife, Kelis, on his forearm. His cover-up was simple: he covered her head with a lion’s.
Nas and Kelis’ divorce was scandalous enough without the tattoo cover-up – Kelis filed for divorce while she was seven months pregnant. Nas immediately decided to change the portrait of his topless wife into a lion-woman.
As Nas told MTV, “Love is a beast.”
Pamela Anderson had barbed wire tattooed on her arm for a movie — she decided to have it removed 19 years later.
Anderson got her famous barbed wire tat for her role in 1996 film “Barb Wire.” She explained that “the makeup people were going to paint this on my arm every day, but I had a tattoo artist just sketch it on me and I wore it around for a half a day to see how it looked.”
Apparently, she liked it enough to have it permanently etched onto her skin – at least, until 2014.
Amber Rose had her husband’s face tattooed on the back of her arm. After their divorce, it morphed into famous guitarist Slash.
Amber Rose and Wiz Khalifa were only married for 14 months, but within that time, Rose was able to have a fairly realistic portrait of Khalifa tattooed on the back of her arm.
But just a year after the divorce was finalised, Rose debuted the altered tattoo: it’s now the famed Guns N’ Roses guitarist, Slash.
Demi Lovato drunkenly had a set of lips tattooed on her wrist that many felt looked like a different body part. She eventually covered the tat with roses.
The “Confident” singer posted on Instagram that she was finally getting rid of her “vagina tattoo” by covering it up with roses. She hashtagged the warning #kidsdontdodrugs, suggesting that she was under the influence of something when she decided to get it.
When the tattoo artist got wind of Demi Lovato’s comments, she blasted the singer and called her out for not paying for the tattoo, caling her a “slob.” Lovato clapped back, and explained that she was probably acting like a “drunk a–” because she was, in fact, drunk, and questioned why a tattoo artist would tattoo a clearly intoxicated, underage girl.
Malin Ackerman updated the Z she had on her wrist for ex-husband Roberto Zincone by adding an S for her son, Sebastian.
Malin Akerman had a Z inked on her wrist for her then-husband Roberto Zincone. But seven months after the birth of their son, Sebastian, the couple split. Instead of getting rid of the entire piece, she just added an S on top, turning it into a tribute for her son.
Keyshia Cole had the words “Truly blessed, D. Gibson” inked on her shoulder in honour of her husband, Daniel Gibson. But she debuted a butterfly cover-up before the couple announced their official split.
- Read more:
- 12 celebrities who got tattoos of their significant others – for better or for worse
- 11 of the most common types of tattoos, according to an artist
- Here’s what 18 celebrities looked like before they were covered in tattoos
- 9 questions you’ve always had about tattoo removal, answered
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.