Who can forget the original Japanese anime action fantasy series ‘Fullmetal Alchemist ‘ (FMA) and its equally successful second adaptation ‘Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood’ (FMAB)? Both times, the series by the Japanese manga artist ‘Hiromu Arakawa’ became a global hit. Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood is a remarkable remake of the original series. Barring its first few episodes, the remainder of the series takes viewers on a newer, more entertaining path than the original television anime series of 2003-04. Although this more recent series (FMAB) has also completed, the huge popularity of the franchise has resulted in Fullmetal Alchemist tattoos to be among the most craved designs all over the world.
Much like the series and its characters, Fullmetal Alchemist tattoos too, take you on the tale of adventure and journey of life — through purpose, conspiracy, and the congenital goodness of human nature. In this article, I’ve shared 50 of the most stunning Fullmetal Alchemist tattoos on the internet. These remarkable tattoos are fine works by passionate, highly talented tattooists from different countries. I’ve also mentioned the source/artist information so you can explore their work further.
These designs don’t just look pretty, within them are references to mythology, alchemy, religion, and much more. You can tell the works are done in professional studio settings with the best of equipment including illumination. Towards the end of the article, I’ve shared that symbology as well as answered some faqs, so you can explain to onlookers what your special new tattoo signifies.
Fullmetal Alchemist Tattoo Ideas & Designs
Here are some Fullmetal Alchemist tattoo ideas and designs that you’re sure to fall in love with just like you did with the series:
Source: @tattooist_yaza via Instagram
This colorful anime tattoo of Al and the Blood Seal on the upper leg looks incredible.
Source: @marc_toon via Instagram
This tattoo depicts brotherhood in its truest form. Both brothers are set out to search for the Philosopher’s Stone to restore their bodies to their original look. This watercolor-type tattoo looks exceptional on the thigh.
Source: @ink.ray via Instagram
The fine line work showing Edwards gunmetal right arm is nothing short of perfection. The artist has done a splendid job on the forearm of the client.
Source: @ink.ray via Instagram
This is an incredibly detailed grey and black tattoo on the forearm. The focal point is Al’s heavy armor.
This is the perfect location to ink a human transmutation circle logo. The artist has done a flawless job maintaining the measurements, angles, and overall symmetry of the design.
Source: @walex_tt via Instagram
FMA fans looking for a smaller depiction of Al would love to have this compact tattoo inked on their forearm.
Source: @ink.andrew via Instagram
This Blood Seal and brotherhood tattoo is perfectly juxtapositioned to suit the forearm of the man. I like the contrasting colors and the real blood effect.
Source: @otaku.tattooz via Instagram
This tattoo show’s the Dwarf in the Flask and pretty boy Roy Mustang perfectly tattooed on the leg.
Source: @noatattoo via Instagram
Anime Manga art has a special appeal. This black and grey shaded tattoo of Edward’s automail hand looks great on the arm.
Source: @aokunaru via Instagram
The amazing linework and fine shading left me spellbound. This is a must-have tattoo of Al in shining armor.
Source: @ink.ray via Instagram
This is a pretty tattoo of the ‘Dwarf in the Flask.’ The symbol represents a vast amount of knowledge and standard alchemy skills.
If you’re in for a realistic Fullmetal tattoo, none other beats this choice. The brothers look dead serious in their mission, and the human transmutation circle is well placed at the bottom of this sleeve piece.
Source: @vicky_blackbunny via Instagram
Looking for a cool tattoo idea for your calf region? This FMA tattoo is super unique.
Source: @noatattoo via Instagram
This design looks like it’s a scene from the video game. The colors are incredibly vivid and the Flamel logo on Al’s shoulder makes the overall design more complete.
Source: @watsonsith via Instagram
How about the Dwarf in the Flask in grey dotting and shading work this time? Awesomely done by the tattooist!
Source:@stabbyroseink via Instagram
Here we’ve got each brother depicted on either leg. This is a fantastic tattoo idea. The baby Edward and Al look adorable.
Source: @elenaxsakura via Instagram
The Blood Rune (a.k.a Blood Seal) symbol is unconventionally done in finer lines here. It looks great as the original, real blood look is simultaneously maintained by the artist.
Source: @tartine_ttt via Instagram
The image of a mystical flower with the Blood Seal symbol gives this tattoo a distinguished look.
Source: @remytatuajes via Instagram
‘Truth’ is articulated perfectly over the ankle. The dotting work is remarkable in this black tattoo having a blank internal figure design.
Source: @dijahtattoos via Instagram
Yellow-haired Edward peeks out of the gate. This 3D tattoo looks out of this world.
Source: @jotapemendezttt via Instagram
Alchemist Alphonse with the cats and a panda. Isn’t that super cute?
Source: @elenaxsakura via Instagram
How about this Ouroboros logo for the thigh? I feel it’s a wise choice for FMA fans. The red logo is visually arresting and incredibly symbolic. Read the symbolism section at the end of this article to learn more about the Ouroboros.
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This tattoo is a creative take on showing both brothers as though they were one. And, they are one, both in vision and mission.
Source: @rikuturso via Instagram
This sleeve tattoo realistically shows the brotherhood. If you have large biceps, this would be a great choice.
Source: @sebrinapham via Instagram
The cutest version of baby Alphonse with cats. This tattoo looks great on a woman’s upper arm.
Source: @lishytattoo via Instagram
This version of the Flamel logo is all black. It looks sharp and vivid on the forearm. The primary meaning of the symbol is being free of volatile and poisonous elements.
Source: @isnardbarbosa via Instagram
The artist has played with the colors well here. This is one of the few tattoos that ensures the elder brother Edward’s petite size is evident through the tattoo.
This is a typical Fullmetal Alchemist tattoo showing the brothers. What sets it apart, however, is the subdued nature of the colors. It won’t hit you in the eye, it’ll always look natural on the skin.
Source: @yesitattoos via Instagram
I love the dark world look of this darkish tattoo. The chrysanthemums almost make Al look romantic here.
If you’re into the black and white anime look, look no further. This tattoo is the perfect pick for your calf.
Source: @tattoo_lusaiyajin via Instagram
This simple yet remarkable tattoo shows Roy Mustang’s Flame transmutation circle as the focal point.
Source: @peko.tattooer via Instagram
The forearm is inked with a design of Edwards Gate of Truth. The design is a representation of Edwards being and God.
Source: @raquelquirosart via Instagram
Baby Alphonse on both forearms? Why not! It’s a super cute idea, especially with the kittens smiling away like that.
Source: @wesleyink via Instagram
This version of the Flamel logo has the detached wings way above the top. It stands out perfectly if you want your tattoo to be apparent from far.
Source: @art4soulink via Instagram
I love this tattoo for its simplicity. Alphonse is depicted as if he’s glaring right into the onlooker. I love the shiny armor that’ll make your tattoo always look fresh.
Source: @ink.ray via Instagram
This is a tattoo that will probably be close to most fans’ hearts. It shows the brothers before the tragedy that ensued after the failure of the human transmutation experiment when the brothers looked normal. It’s super small and super cute.
Source: fermatattoo via Instagram
There’s a dose of abstractness in this visual. It shows pretty boy Roy in action.
Source: @calixtotattooer via Instagram
Flowers can make any tattoo look special. This one of Edwards gunmetal and steel arm is no exception.
Source: @luniechan via Instagram
This is my favorite Flamel logo tattoo. The fine linework, dotting, and shading takes your breath away. Kudos to the artist.
Source: @soho.ink via Instagram
Roy with a big grin. This is a typical anime tattoo done up flawlessly by the tattooist.
Source: @marthajaneiscool via Instagram
What a perfect way to cover the thigh area. This is a perfect tattoo of the Ouroboros symbol.
Source: @bruno_tattooz via Instagram
Linework at its best. The pretty, playful birds resting on Al look too cute to believe.
Source: @yuzumackerel via Instagram
My favorite spot to get inked with a Blood Seal. It looks so real, you’ll feel like wiping it to confirm the matter.
Source @chibi_blacktatts via Instagram
Again, a stunning display of Edward in action. The forearm couldn’t be a better location for such an incredible tattoo of Fullmetal Alchemist himself.
Source: @studiolotustattoo via Instagram
Such incredible detailing proves the artist knows their FMA stuff. This large piece is set perfectly on the man’s shoulder and upper arm region.
Source: @lorekawaiitats via Instagram
This is the work of a highly talented tattoo artist. Truth is shown with so much dignity here. The lettering, shaded backdrop, and blank figure look like a digital print. Overall, a fabulous tattoo idea for Alchemist fans.
Source: @galvaorv via Instagram
It takes guts to get tattooed right on the top of the hand. And this logo justifies the decision to do so 100%. The pain will be well worth it.
Source: @xanthianmoon via Instagram
This subtle-looking tattoo of Alphonse with a flowery outline takes your breath away. The colors are pretty and the overall design is flawless.
Source: @skeleto.regnare via Instagram
The date represents the day that Ed and Al joined the military so they could get their original bodies back. You can see the ambitious look on their faces in this tattoo. The artist knew their stuff.
Source: @mikesgarbageart via Instagram
Here’s a pretty version of the all-important date the brothers went on their mission.
Fullmetal Alchemist Symbolism
The bearers of the Ouroboros symbol are the Homunculi. A Homunculus means “little human” in Latin, and “Artificial Human” in Japanese. In Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, this symbol is visible on the characters Greed, Gluttony, and Wrath. Greed bears an Ouroboros on the back of his left hand, Gluttony has it on the tongue, and Wrath has it on the left eye. The medieval symbol represents artificially created humans brought about employing alchemy. As can be seen, the symbol has a creature eating its own tail. Hence, an infinite loop is created, which is representative of immortality and eternity. A Homunculus isn’t immortal, yet outlives humans.
An Ouroboros logo tattoo is a wise choice for Fullmetal Alchemist fans since it’s a visually arresting design that’s symbolic and simple to ink.
Truth is the anti-villain in the series, or the closest idea to the concept of ‘God.’ Truth, thus, ensures the performance of alchemy is in line with all the rules and laws governing the process. As the supreme most universal being, Truth is also referred to as the ‘World’, or the ‘Universe.’ So, what makes Truth an excellent tattoo choice among all the symbolic Fullmetal Alchemist designs? The answer lies in the overall simplicity of the blackness around the central blank space image. It’s an abstract image of Truth that makes for an incredible tattoo idea.
Blood Rune (or Blood Seal)
A Blood Rune (a.k.a Blood Seal) is a transmutation circle that represents the real-life philosophy that there are two unique parts of every human life — the mind and body. In the series, Alphonse Elric takes great care to protect the transmutation circle. The blood seal is written by a young Edward Elric with his own blood. Though it was formed as a consequence of his desperation, Edward’s decision to write the blood seal triggered Alphonse’s soul to armor with advanced alchemy. Hence, Alphonse is an apt metaphor for the belief that being physically dead doesn’t kill the mind.
The Blood Rune acts as the sacred symbol that binds the soul to a lifeless metal object. Regarding the Fullmetal Alchemist series, the metal object is Alphonse’s armor. As a result, a symbiosis is formed due to the interaction of the iron within the blood and the metal it’s on. In terms of getting a Blood Rune tattoo, it’s a fabulous idea since the design looks like real blood and the significance, as just explained, is larger than life.
The Flamel symbol represents the relationship of the real-life French scribe ‘Nicholas Flamel’ to alchemy. This symbol also has a resemblance to the Staff of Aesculapius (a serpent-entwined rod) in Greek mythology. In the Fullmetal Alchemist, the Flamel symbol is visible on the backside of Edward Elric’s classic red coat and on Alphonse’s shoulder. It is also tattooed on Izumi Curtis’ left breast (Elric brothers’ teacher) in the series. The brothers having the Flamel symbol on them is suggestive of their tutelage under Izumi Curtis.
In the series, the symbol has a snake draped on the cross, detached wings, and a crown. It makes for a splendid tattoo as this old alchemical symbol represents being free of volatile and poisonous elements.
Edwards Gate Of Truth
The gate represents Kabbalah — an esoteric method; the mystical branch of Judaism, with a basis on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life (also known as World Tree). The roots of this ‘Tree of Life’ represent trying to achieve Godhood, while the top section is symbolic of the divine. If you’re wondering what all the circles represent, they’re a representation of Edward’s being and El Pater or “God.” Why do FMA fans love to have a tattoo along these lines? Well, they’re familiar with the Gate of Truth through Edward coming face to face with, during him performing the human alchemy as a child, and while he escapes the stomach realm of Gluttony. In both these instances, he’s found in a white void featuring the gate.
Human Transmutation Circle
The practice of human transmutation plays a significant role in the Fullmetal Alchemist series. In the series, this concept has to do with using several experimental methods to try to resurrect human beings back to life. Yet, these attempts by manga and anime led to failures. The methods contradict the very essence of the permissible, natural flow of alchemy and the universe itself. A soul that departs the mortal coil transcends into an afterlife, hence, it cannot be brought back to life by human efforts. With reference to tattooing the symbol, artists must do very fine line work to get the geometric symbol precise. All in all, the design of this tattoo is quite popular and closely associated with the series.
Roy Mustang’s Flame Transmutation Circle
The Roy Mustang flame transmutation circle is a unique circle that depicts triangles, a salamander, and a stylized flame. With reference to the series, this active alchemy symbol is imprinted on Colonel Roy Mustang’s glove. He’s a distinguished alchemist, who uses the transmutation circle to generate flames and incredible heat at the snap of his fingers. The fictional concept of salamanders and their linkage with fire dates back to medieval European times. Another example is the Pokemon character Charmander (a fire reptilian). The flame transmutation tattoo is catchy and prominent; best suited for visible body areas like the forearm, hand, ankle, or anywhere similar.
A majority of popular Fullmetal Alchemist tattoo ideas consist of either of two central characters: The protagonists, Alphonse Elric and his brother Edward Elric. Both of them intrigued fans through the original series as well as the Brotherhood adaptation. Alphonse Elric (a.k.a. Al) is Edward’s younger brother, and the victim of the human transmutation experiment that failed and had cost Edward his left leg and right arm. Due to the tragedy, Al exists solely as a soul that is alchemically bound to his gunmetal-colored steel and metal armor. Going forward, both the brothers traveled on the lookout for the Philosopher’s Stone, to help restore their bodies to normality.
A tattoo of Alphonse Elric not only looks cool but also symbolizes his great personality. Alphonse is characterized as a kindhearted, compassionate, patient, flawless, protective, and selfless being, not only to his loved ones but at times towards his enemies as well.
Edward Elric is the Fullmetal Alchemist himself. He’s the titular protagonist of the series, who at the age of just fifteen sets out to find the legendary Philosopher’s Stone. The stone would help restore his younger brother Al’s body. Why get a tattoo of him? Well, he’s the protagonist of a hugely popular worldwide anime hit. Secondly, through his endeavors in the storyline, he symbolizes someone of an obstinate disposition. Yet, at the same time, he’s strong-willed, selfless, loyal, and compassionate, particularly towards those that have made an impact on him. Furthermore, his strong, significant relationship with his brother indicates his strong protective nature towards his family.
What Does Alchemy Mean?
Alchemy is an area of study, while an alchemist is a person who practices Alchemy. An alchemist studies a science or a branch of philosophy. Since the time of its origination, Alchemy was first practiced in the three continents Asia, Africa, and Europe. Later, it ultimately spread to England, China, and India in the 12th century. The three broad goals of alchemists are: creating the Philosopher’s Stone, Creating an elixir of health and eternal youth, and transmuting metals into gold. The Philosopher’s Stone would help in providing the user eternal life.
Why Get A Fullmetal Alchemist Tattoo?
Popularity and symbology are the two main reasons to go for them. The original Fullmetal Alchemist anime series was so good that the abrupt ending had fans craving for more. Thus, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood was released in 2009, offering a better completion on the storyline of all the amazing characters. The characters and storyline were brimming with real-world symbolism. What you’ll further appreciate is that the logos from the series also make for wonderful tattoo ideas as well.
Which Alchemist Characters And Symbols Make For The Best Tattoo Ideas?
Tattoos featuring the protagonists Edward Elric and Alphonse Elric are the most popular. Also popular are tattoos of the pretty boy Roy Mustang. The logos and symbols of the Transmutations, Ouroboros, Truth, Blood Seal, Edward’s Gate of Truth, and the Flamel are other incredibly worthwhile tattoo ideas rolled out of the series franchise.
Those were some of the most remarkable Fullmetal Alchemist tattoos selected after extensive deliberation. All of them are super cool, trendy, and admirable. When choosing an FMA tattoo, you have a variety of choices to select from. These include black and grey, colored, anime, and even realistic tattoos inspired by the franchise. In my picks, I’ve loved the compositions, effort, detail, and perfection by the artists. When going for one of these tattoos, it helps if the artist has the best machines and experience to grant you a safe tattoo experience.