The Meaning Behind An Ace Of Spades Tattoo, Explained

Since the very beginning, tattoos have always been steeped in meaning. Whether meant to protect, adorn, or be a symbol of status or allegiance, most people don't get a tattoo without having a specific reason to do so. While the popularity rate of tattoos has steadily increased — everyone and their mother is sporting a flash tattoo — it may seem like deep meaning has been lost in the ancient practice. But that's not entirely true. While there are certainly folks who prefer spontaneous ink, for many others, everything they have inked on their body means something to them and they wouldn't have it any other way.


One symbol with quite a bit of meaning — and more than one meaning to boot — is the ace of spades. As the highest ranking of all the cards in a deck, the ace of spades immediately became a sign of power when it was first printed in the 15th century. By the time WWI and WWII rolled around, the ace of spades was used as a sign of luck, before taking a dark turn during the Vietnam War when it became a symbol of death, used to put fear in the Viet Cong.

But war-mongering aside, there are less macabre meanings behind the ace of spade. If you're someone with an attraction to this particular card and want to make your love for it legit with a tattoo, here are other meanings to consider.

Good fortune and luck

Whether you feel lucky wherever you go or you want to inject some luck into your life, the ace of spades tattoo might be the one for you. It was, after all, associated with luck during both World Wars and in the world of casinos. It still has that connotation — especially regarding wealth. In fact, if you've ever been to Las Vegas, you've probably seen the symbol all over the place.


Because the spade resembles a spear, it can also symbolize strength and the ability to control a situation, as in taking power back or asserting it. Harnessing power naturally leads to new beginnings and overcoming adversity, making the ace of spades the perfect tattoo for those who have been put through the wringer and come out the other side in one piece. It's also a nod to the fact that you'll do it again if you have to; no one can keep you down.


On the flip side, the ace of spades could represent individuality. According to Auoxx, it means that you're a "formidable force or a wild card," you're a rebel who won't be kept down by cultural restraints and societal expectations. You're also not afraid to take chances and do things that might make the majority clutch their pearls. This meaning makes the ace of spades tattoo perfect for outsiders and people who prefer to live on the fringes of society, like those in biker gangs.


However, as much as the ace of spades has relatively positive and harmless meanings, in some circles, it can be linked to BDSM interests or fetishes for people of color, according to AlloHealth. Especially when the ace is swapped out for a queen, as per this video on TikTok. While what your ace of spades tattoo means to you is your call, because you share the world with oh, eight billion people or so, it's worth noting that what it might represent to others could be totally different. So, you know, keep that in mind.