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Eerie Hannya Mask Tattoos | Radiant Harajuku outlining and shading tattoo ink

When it comes to Japanese-style tattoos, (or Irezumi), the Hannya mask is most certainly a very popular subject of choice, and whether incorporated into a sleeve, back piece, or just as a single entity, Hannya masks are absolutely fascinating.  They are normally portrayed  in the form of a terrifying devil face with horns, and an eerie grin, but it actually represents a jealous woman.
Hannya Masks have been around since the Edo period of Japan, and were often portrayed by actors in theatre.  Japanese legend describes the Hannya mask as representing a woman who has became insanely jealous through heartbreak.  It is represented in a Japanese play, telling the story of Prince Genji, who was married to Lady Aoi.  Genji had a secret mistress named Lady Rokuj, and when his wife became pregnant, he was no longer interested in Lady Rokuji, who then became extremely jealous enraged with anger. From this anger, she turned into a demon, possessing Lady Aoi, and murdering her. 
Japanese tattoo subject matter is filled with folklore, and there are some really incredible Japanese-style tattoo artists out there.  As stockists of Radiant Harajuku outlining and shading tattoo ink, ideal for Japanese pieces, we love seeing excellent tattoo work, and we’ve came across some beautiful Hannya Mask body art.  Check it out here.
First up, an incredible back piece done by talented artist Luke Stewart.  Hannya Mask tattoos are often portrayed in a grey colour with yellow eyes.  The yellowness in the eyes, emphasising the jealousy and rage.
Done by artist ‘Hades’.  A really abstract piece featuring little colour.  It’s not often you see a Hannya Mask tattoo portrayed with the woman’s face underneath, and we really love this interesting piece.
A more old school style of tattoo, this excellent piece of work was created by Vini Irezumi.  The bold lines and block colour are really cool.
This tattoo is really intriguing. Done by Aaron Hopman, this black and grey piece represents a half Hannya, half woman face. 
 It’s great to see a Hannya Mask tattoo portrayed in a blackwork style.  This piece is simple, yet really stunning.  Done by Tyson Tattoo.
A wonderful black and grey Hannya themed sleeve by Yang Lee. We love the other Japanese elements in this, in the form of waves, and a black background.
Lastly, a bright and bold piece done by @conradism.  The colours are stunning, and the expression on the Hannya Mask’s face is really vengeful.
So there you have it, some incredible Hannya Mask tattoos of all different styles.  We love seeing traditional Japanese work, but it's also great to see Hannya Masks portrayed in various other ways.  If you love these Hannya Mask tattoos, why not leave us a comment below and let us know which one is your favourite?  If you're going to be creating some Japanese-inspired tattoos, then why not check out the Radiant Harajuku outlining and shading tattoo ink, available on our website.

Love Toni



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  • Antonia McLoughlin