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A guide to all of Drake’s tattoos (that we know of)

I never had you, although I would be glad to / I’d probably go and tattoo your name on my heart

—Drake, “Houstatlantavegas”

More life, more ink. Toronto’s most famous musician is also a human canvas, having accumulated some 25 or so tattoos over the years—including a few, um, more questionable designs (see #1, a new tat Drizzy got last week). Here’s the lowdown on every one we could find.

1. Drakkar Noir bottle
Where: Left shoulder Why: Before he popped the Champagne Papi alias, Drake’s Twitter handle was @drakkarnoir—a play on his own name and the cologne of choice for old-school playboys.

 

2. Sade portrait
Where: Left torso Why: He met the “Smooth Operator” singer earlier this week during his European tour and decided to add this image, along with the sweetest autograph: “With Love Sade X.”

 

3. Flower and bee
Where: Right shoulder Why: In celebration of his More Life playlist, Drake visited Swedish artist Niki Norberg to get this rendering of the pink flower emoji OVO used to promote the project.

 

4. “Unruly” flaming skull
Where: Left shoulder Why: Supposedly inspired by dancehall star and collaborator Popcaan, whose single “Unruly” was debuted by Drake on OVO Sound Radio weeks before the tattoo was revealed on Instagram.

 

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5. Jack-o-lantern
Where: Right forearm Why: Besides the obvious (jack-o-lanterns are awesome), no one knows for certain. The pumpkin could represent Calabassas—the Spanish word for “pumpkin” and California neighbourhood where Drake lives. It’s also a symbol of October, Drake’s birth month.

 

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6. Prayer hands emoji and a 6
Where: Right forearm Why: They’re early incarnations of two of Drake’s common symbols: praying hands and the 6.

7. “Everything happens for a reason sweet thing”
Where: Left forearm Why:  “Words of wisdom,” according to Drake.

 

8. 6 God praying hands
Where: Right forearm Why: If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late–era Drake got all fancy and tatted over his prayer hands emoji (see #6) with a more artistic, intricate rendering. He called it “level[ing] up.”

 

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9. bbk
Where: Left shoulder Why: Short for “Boy Better Know,” the U.K. grime collective headed by Drake’s friend and collaborator Skepta.

 

10. Camouflage shark
Where: Right forearm Why: Drake and sometime-soulmate Rihanna famously went to Ripley’s Aquarium together, and now have matching tattoos. It’s a famous couple thing—you wouldn’t understand.

 

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11. RiRi eating ice cream
Where: Right bicep Why: Because Rihanna and ice cream are both wonderful. It appears to be based on a photo that hangs in Fring’s.

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12. “All kinds”
Where: Right bicep Why: A nod to his circle of friends, who would frequently use the phrase. Another popular saying in that circle: “Take care.”

 

13. 416
Where: Right torso Why: It’s Toronto’s OG area code and the origin of “the 6.”

 

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14. Dad portrait
Where: Right bicep Why: Drake’s musical father, Dennis Graham, flexes a badass ’stache in a mugshot.

 

15. CN Tower
Where: Right bicep Why: “Toronto with me always,” reads the caption, even though...

 

16. Eye of Horus
Where: Left bicep Why: Drake replaced the CN Tower tat with this design, which appears to be a take on the ancient Egyptian Eye of Horus, a symbol of good health, protection and royalty.

 

17. CN Tower, take 2
Where: Left bicep Why: In Drake’s defence, he replaced the old CN Tower with a new one made up of musical symbols.

 

18. East Side compass
Where: Left bicep Why: To express Drake’s love for Toronto’s east side. G-Way, a Scarborough neighbourhood, gets a heavy shoutout on More Life.

 

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19. “Oktober Lejonhjärta” Lion
Where: Left forearm Why: Swedish for “October lionhearted,” a tribute to courage and Drake’s birth month. Maybe. There’s also an unconfirmed Internet tale that Lejonhjärta is the surname of Elizabeth and Victoria, two models who spent the night of December 22, 2015, drinking with our hero. The sisters claim they convinced a drunk Drake to get this one.

 

20. Houston Astros logo
Where: Right shoulder Why: Drake’s adoration for Houston and its music scene (he and Bun B go way back) is well documented. He once rapped, “H-Town my second home like I’m James Harden.”

 

21. Uncle and grandmother
Where: Centre back Why: This large, detailed portrait honours Drake’s grandmother, Evelyn Sher, and his uncle Steve. Both pushed Drake to pursue a career in music.

22. Aaliyah portrait
Where: Left back Why: Drake boldly got the face of the gone-too-soon R&B star tattooed on his back in December 2011. Obsessed with the singer for years, he released a posthumous collaboration, “Talk Is Cheap,” in 2016.

23. Mom portrait
Where: Right back Why: Sandi Graham is the constant female love in Drake’s life. He’s taken her on tour, he’s brought her out on stage and she’s a frequent muse in his lyrics.

24. Songbird and XO 20
Where: Left shoulder blade Why: An early piece that nods to The Weeknd (XO), once dubbed the “Songbird of his Generation.” A small printed “20” is said to be a reference to OVOXO’s crew of 20 friends, which has been referenced in verse.

25. OVO owl
Where: Right shoulder blade Why: The ubiquitous stamp of Drake’s October’s Very Own, used for his friend crew, music collective and brand.

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