Britney Spears is an iconic pop star and soon-to-be author with the release of her upcoming memoir, The Woman in Me. But what many people may not know about the legendary singer is that she also has several meaningful tattoos.
Over the years, the “Toxic” singer has gotten ink to symbolise pivotal moments in her life. Her most recent tattoo, a large snake tattoo on her lower back, came just weeks after announcing her divorce from ex-husband Sam Asghari.
The “Gimme More” songstress has often put her tattoos on display, whether it’s on Instagram or walking the red carpet. Spears’ upcoming memoir, The Woman in Me - which is due for release on 24 October - is sure to dive into many details of the singer’s life, including her 13-year long battle to end her conservatorship.
The Woman in Me is “a brave and astonishingly moving story about freedom, fame, motherhood, survival, faith, and hope,” a press release for the memoir reads. In true Spears fashion, many of her tattoos are also symbols of freedom, faith, and hope.
Here’s a closer look at all of her tattoos and their meanings.
In early September, Spears debuted her new red snake tattoo on her lower back in an Instagram video. “My new snake tattoo, guys. I’m so excited!” she said in the since-deleted clip, per People, and captioned her post with a single snake emoji.
One day later, the “Lucky” singer revealed that she got two more tattoos. In a video posted to Instagram, Spears was seen sitting down while a tattoo artist dotted black ink on her right ring finger. The video then panned up to reveal another tattoo, a pink star on the inside of her right arm.
Britney Spears got a new snake tattoo 😍 pic.twitter.com/jFTpZHBeuW
— Promo Spears (@PromoSpears) September 1, 2023
The last time Spears had shown off her tattoos to the public was earlier this year, when she posted an Instagram Story video on 17 January of herself getting a tattoo on her arm in what appeared to be a hotel room. However, it seemed that Spears quickly expressed tattoo regret after getting the new ink.
“Tattoo time! Tattoo time!” Spears said in the since-deleted video. The post showed the tattoo artist inking her arm with a tattoo needle. She shared in the caption that she got the tattoo in Maui three days prior, but didn’t show the art because “it sucks”.
“Tattoo in Maui three days ago!!!” Spears captioned the clip. “Can’t show it because it sucks!!! Like really really sucks!!! S***. I have to fix it!!!”
One of Spears’ most notable tattoos includes the Hebrew phrase “mem hay shin” on her neck, which translates to “healing”. She explained the meaning behind the tattoo in a June 2021 Instagram post.
“Have you seen the tattoo on the back of my neck before???? It’s Hebrew, it’s a language written backwards!!!! It says Mem Hey Shin and means healing!!!!” she wrote. “It’s my favourite tattoo but ironically you never see it!!!!!”
Just one month later, she shared a nude photo of herself from behind with the Hebrew neck tattoo edited out of the post. In the caption, the “Circus” singer explained that she had edited it out of the photo because she wanted to see what it would look like if she decided to get the tattoo removed.
“Ok so… I edited out my tattoo on my neck cause I wanted to see what it would look like clean… and yea I like it better so while you guys are talking behind my back go ahead and kiss my a** haters!!!!!!” she said on Instagram at the time.
Not only does Spears have a tattoo written in Hebrew, but she also has a small tattoo of a Chinese character on the right side of her hip, near her bikini line. In 2006, the New York Times reported that Spears got the tattoo thinking it meant “mysterious”, but the symbol actually translates to “strange”. Meanwhile on the left side of her hip is a tattoo of a cross.
Spears’ tattoo of rolling dice on her left wrist holds some significance, since she got the design with her ex-husband Kevin Federline, who she was married to from 2004 to 2007. In March 2020, the “...Baby One More Time” singer revealed that she was contemplating removing the pink dice tattoo.
“Albert Einstein once said: ‘God does not play dice with the universe’... so maybe I shouldn’t have gotten the pink dice 7 on my left arm!!!!!,” she wrote on Instagram, as she showed photos of the pink tattoo in another deleted post. “I don’t even like ink… guess I should remove it ?!?!!!!”
According to Billboard, Spears and Federline - who has a blue version of the dice tattoo on his right wrist - got the ink together during the European leg of Spears’ Onyx Hotel Tour in May 2004. On her right wrist is a tattoo of pink, puckered lips.
One of Spears’ first, and most famous, tattoos includes a design of a fairy on her lower back. She reportedly got the tattoo, which depicts a pink and yellow fairy, in 2000 at age 18. The tattoo shows a fairy with blonde hair, much like Spears herself, wearing a yellow dress and pink, green, and purple wings.
In August 2020, Spears shared some details behind her tiny, triangle tattoo on her right hand, which is placed in between her thumb and index finger. Spears got the design in 2009, though she explained in an Instagram post that she doesn’t know why she opted for the particular tattoo.
“I have no idea what I was thinking when I got a freaking black ink triangle on my right hand,” she captioned an Instagram post, which showed Spears holding a daisy with her triangle tattoo on display.
She also has a number of tattoos on her feet, including a flower and a vine, though she has not shared the meanings behind the ink.
Spears’ highly-anticipated memoir, The Woman in Me, hits shelves on 24 October.