You may be aware that each of the islands of Polynesia has its own style of body art, and the 3 most popular Polynesian tattoo designs in the world include Samoan, Hawaiian and Maori. Among these 3, the Maori tats are the most famous and also most different. Being the cultural minority group of New Zealand, the Maori people are said to have taken the tattooing idea from the Eastern Polynesian islands.
The intricate patterns that are made of spirals and curved shapes is one of the amazing features of Maori tat designs that make them more attractive and highly-distinguished from other kinds of Polynesian tats. The Maoris engraved their tats with the use of a chisel formed by the male tat specialist. The tattooing process was performed with chanting, music, fasting and sacred rituals.
This kind of Polynesian tattoo designs were engraved on the entire faces of men, as well as on the buttocks and legs, while in the case of women, they had their tats on their chin, back, neck and lips. Among other Polynesian tat designs, the biggest and the most significant tattoos are the Hawaiian tat designs.
They were formed by sharp and pointed parts of animals such as bird’s beaks and claws, and they were usually done in full black color. However, the Hawaiian tats do not possess any religious significance, but only for personal identification purposes. They were used for mourning of a love one, but most often, they were only utilized for ornamental reasons.
Among the various kinds of Hawaiian tats that have traces of Polynesian tattoo designs, the most popular images are the floral tattoos. While most of Hawaiian women prefer to have flower tats on their skins due to their feminine appeal, these designs were also worn by men. One of the most Hawaiian flower tats is hibiscus which also happens to be the State flower.
They are created in different colors such as white, pink purple, yellow and red. Orchid flowers are also very popular Hawaiian floral tat designs. You can also select from other well-known Hawaiian floral tat designs bearing the images of lizards, sea turtle, dolphins and arrows, among others. The best description of Samoan tat designs is the intricate and detailed designs that they possess.
It is amazing to know that the more complex this type of Polynesian tattoo designs are, their meaning becomes more complicated. One important thing that you should know how these tats were crafted in the past is that the tattooist used a pig or a shark’s tooth to engrave the tattoo, and the tattooing process was extremely painful.
Because of this, the Samoan tats were recognized as status symbol, and people who had incomplete tats on their skins due to their failure to endure the painful process, were looked down with disgrace. The Samoan’s called their tats for men as “pe’a”, while the tats inked on women were called “malu”. What makes Polynesian tattoo designs very famous even today is their traditional and cultural significance.
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