79 Filler Tattoo Design Ideas – [2020 Inspiration Guide]

We all know that filler tattoos usually need to serve a purpose. They’re used to fill gaps, distract, and draw the eye away from imperfections. Don’t shy away from classics to cover small defects or fading.

Leaves, flowers, scrolling, or lettering in small doses can go a long way in covering up those little mistakes.

But sometimes, your filler ink is even more important than the main piece. They don’t have to be bland or go unnoticed. Fillers can serve to enhance the choice ink you already have, make it pop on your skin, or make it blend easier into other pieces.

If you have a bold, dark tattoo, such as the outlines of stars or a cross, choose a filler in a smoother, lighter grey. It will make the dark ink look a little less harsh against the natural color of your skin, but it will also ensure the main piece is seen first. Contrast is a bold move for fillers, too. It doesn’t just have to be about softening the space.

If you’ve just gotten a sleeve of bright artwork, such as flowers or animals, you may feel the need to balance it out with something a little darker. A shark, spider, or skull won’t damage the ink you’ve already got. It will only serve as a contrast to show people your personality.

1. Skull Tattoo Fillers

Chest Skull Wth Ladder Filler Designs Mens Tattoo

Amazing Small Traditional Skeleton Hand With Skull Mens Filler Tattoo Designs

Male Cool Filler Grim Reaper Tattoo Ideas

Skull Candle Man With Filler Tattoos

Mens Filler Skull With Wings Old School Traditional Tattoos

Simple Skull Cool Filler Tattoo Design Ideas For Male

Skulls are a common theme in tattoo work: there is something fundamentally appealing about permanently inking your body with such a powerful symbol of our limited time on earthThese bad-ass designs are popular thanks to the wide variety of styles and approaches that can be applied, and this is true of filler work as well. Skulls are also a great way to add a bit of conceptual contrast to otherwise delicate work and they can help to create a more interesting overall composition. 

2. American Traditional Filler

Arm Rabbits Foot Distinctive Male Filler Tattoo Designs

Lower Leg Anchor With Heart Filler Tattoos For Gentlemen

Guys Tattoos With Heart Dagger Filler Design

Wrist Sword Filler Tattoos Men

Arm Snake Head Filler Tattoo Designs For Males

Arm Snake With Flower Design Filler Tattoos Guys

Cool Male Sparrow Filler Tattoo Designs

Mens Awesome Saw Through Heart Filler Tattoo Ideas

Small Outer Arm Traditional Diamond Filler Guys Tattoo

Flower Filler Tattoo Designs On Gentleman

Guys Filler Compass Tool Forearm Tattoo

Mens Boxing Gloves Cool Filler Tattoo Ideas

Leg Horseshoe With Yellow Flowers Filler Male Tattoos

Hard To Kill Tombstone Filler Mens Tattoo Design Ideas

Mens Tattoo Shark Shoulder Filler Design

Sharp Filler Male Tattoo Ideas

Mens Tattoo With Filler Red Rose Flower And Stem Design

It’s tough to beat the original, and in the world of Western tattoos this title goes to American traditional work. The tattoos that arose from this style are perfectly suited for filler work. American traditional flash art is made up of self-contained designs that work equally well as standalone pieces or as elements in larger designs. The small stars and dots that are also favored as fillers in this style are a great way to cover blank skin and create a more cohesive sleeve or body suit by tying disparate designs together.  

3. Black Line Fill Tattoos

Cross Manly Filler Tattoo Design Ideas For Men

Forearm Noose With Staircase Filler Male Tattoo Ideas

Arm Small Skateboard With Sunglasses Filler Male Tattoo

Guys Filler Flying Paper Airplane Tattoo Design Idea Inspiration

Spider Web Male Filler Tattoo Ideas

While color ink can help make for some stunning work, when it comes to filler, black line work is a great choice. This style of tattoo is perfect for filler work—especially when used with vibrant color tattoos—because black line designs can cover empty skin and increase contrast at the same time. The variety of styles and concepts that can be created with this method also increases the appeal of black line tattoo work. 

4. Axe Fill Ink

Creative Filler Wood Axe Outer Arm Tattoos For Men

Mens Filler Tattoo Axe Design Inspiration

Gentlemens Forearm Axe With Tree Strump Filler Tattoo Ideas

Axe Outer Arm Male Tattoo With Filler Design

Axe Filler Tattoo Ideas For Gentlemen

For some people, an axe is the perfect choice for a tattoo. These versatile tools are a great way to express a love of the outdoors, camping and the importance of self-reliance. They also look really cool. When it comes to filler work axes are also a great choice. There are a number of axes to choose from: pick-axes, hatchets and battle-axes all have different symbolic associations. Axes are also a great choice for filler work thanks to their unique shape: they can fit perfectly into the long, thin blank spaces that many highly tattooed people end up with. 

5. Horror Themed Fill Tattoos

Guys Filler Leg Vampire Fangs With Blood Tattoo Design Ideas

Artistic Zombie Finger Male Filler Tattoo Ideas

Mens Filler Tattoo Demon Design Ideas

Shaded Ghost Filler Mens Tattoo Designs

Some people are afraid of the dark, while other folks embrace it. For those with a macabre sensibilityhorror inspired designs are a no brainer, and this goes for filler work as well. This is a great tradition to draw from thanks to the wealth of material that has been created as a way to frighten people. From the classics of Dracula and the Wolf Man all the way to the modern slasher films, there is a creepy design to suit all tastes, and sneaking these tattoos in as filler is a great option 

6. Black and Gray Filler Tattoos

Forearm Water Well Filler Tattoo Ideas On Guys

Guys Filler Shaded Lighting Bolt Arm Tattoo Deisgns

Guys Filler Shark Chest Tattoos Ideas

Number 7 Jack Daniels Bottle Filler Tattoo Design Ideas For Males

Leg Paper Airplane Black And Grey Ink Filler Tattoos Male

Guys Flower Black And Grey Arm Filler Tattoos

Guy With Filler Sheild Tattoo Design

Noose Rope Optical Illuson Outer Forearm Male Filler Tattoo

Mens Filler Pistol And Eye Tattoo Ideas

Like a good whiskey or a classic sports car, there is just something fundamentally sophisticated about black and gray tattoos. The black lines and smooth gray shading allow talented artists to create an endless variety of concepts and designs using this approach and utilizing black and gray ink for filler work is just another use for these excellent tattoos. This style is also great for this purpose—especially with color designs—because of the way it can create contrast while highlighting details in existing work.  

7. Tooth and Nail fill

Outer Forearm Tooth Filler Tattoo On Men

Small Forearm Tooth Filler Guys Tattoo Designs

Railroad Spike Filler Tattoo Designs For Men

Mens Filler Railroad Spikes Wrist Tattoo

To fight tooth and nail is an old idiom that highlights the ferocious nature of how some people tackle obstacles set in their way. Incorporating these elements into tattoos can be a subtle way to express the wearer’s wild and fierce nature and at the same time create appealing tattoos. The small size and the different styles that can be applied to these elements make them perfect for filler work. 

8. Neo Traditional Filler Tattoos

Incredible Filler Blue Eyewith Arrow Shoulder Tattoos For Men

Small Hourglass With Grim Reaper Hand Awesome Ink Filler Tattoos For Men

Mens Manly Filler Bottle Tattoo Designs

Pencil With Leaves Male Filler Tattoo Design Ideas

Small Arm Rocketship Planet Filler Guys Tattoos

Remarkable Filler Tattoos For Males

Rope Knot Old School Traditional Arm Filler Mens Tattoos

Neo-traditional tattoo work is a style that grew out of American traditional tattoos and borrows many elements and concepts from this original tattoo style, while taking a less stringent approach. American traditional work is governed by rules limiting the color palette and the use of bold lines for the outline of the piece, while neo-traditional gives the artist a bit more freedom when it comes to colors and designs. This style is great for filler work thanks to the wider variety of concepts that can be utilized as well as the varied and vibrant colors that can be applied.  

9. Weapon Tattoo Fill

Broken Arrow Inner Forearm Filler Tattoo Designs For Guys

Gentleman With Uzi Machine Gun Small Black Ink Filler Tattoo

Scythe Male With Cool Filler Tattoo Design

Small Traditional Old School Pocket Knife Filler Mens Tattoo Ideas

Small Outer Forearm Arrowhead Filler Guys Tattoo Ideas

Straight Razor Blade Traditional Forearm Filler Tattoo Design On Man

Unique Mens Filler Dagger With Bald Eagle Head Tattoos

Humans are warlike animals and there are few images that illicit such powerful responses than the seemingly endless variety of weapons we use to kill each other. From switchblades and swords to the unmistakable AK-47, there is a weapon for every occasion, and thanks to this diversity these tools of destruction make for great tattoos. No matter what the size and shape of the blank skin that someone is trying to cover up, there is sure to be some sort of weapon that will fill the gap.  

10. Unique Fill Tattoos

Ladder With Skeleton Hand Leg Male Filler Tattoo Design Inspiration

Guy With Filler Quote Skin Is Borgin Tattoos

Mens Cool Filler Shadow Figure Dog Tattoo Design Inspiration

Vintage Rifle With Hat And Flowers Male Filler Tattoos

Guys Tattoo Magnet Ideas Filler Designs

Masculine Filler Rose Flower Hand Tattoos For Men

Mens Pipe Shoulder Tattoo Ideas With Filler Design

At their core, tattoos are a way for the wearer to express themselves. Tattoos are interesting in the way that the act of permanently marking your body with ink is deeply personal, but at the same time these images are often on display for the whole world to see. Because of the element of personal expression at the heart of the discipline unique designs are the pinnacle of tattooing. This is true when it comes to filer work as well; no one wants to see the same ink on someone else, no matter how big or small.  

Filler Tattoo FAQ’s 

What are flash tattoos? 

Flash tattoos are the pre-existing designs that are hand painted and adorn the walls of tattoo shops as a way to give customers ideas for new tattoos. These pieces can also be applied as is, with many classic American traditional flash sheets becoming quintessential tattoo designs. 

Enjoy these filler tattoo ideas but are looking for more options? Check out the links below for more killer small ink inspiration: