For many centuries, various cultures ranging from ancient Greece to tribal Polynesia have celebrated the gecko meaning. Due to the gecko's ability to quickly regrow its own tail when needed, it is said to be magical and will symbolize regrowth and luck.
The gecko tattoo is a popular lizard design which often appears in Polynesian tribal tattoos. It is believed to possess supernatural powers. Polynesians regard the gecko with both awe and fear. It is thought that if you are 'laughed' at by a green gecko it is a dreadful omen of bad fortune and illness.
The history of the gecko tattoo design and the gecko meaning can be credited to the islands of Polynesia that include Hawaii, French Polynesia, Tahiti, the Cook Islands, Tonga, Easter Island and Samoa.
Basically, there are two kinds of traditional tattoos that come from these islands. Which are the 'Enata', which is the natural design symbolizing your island of birth and origin, social level, work and life, and the 'Etua' which possesses a stronger spiritual representation.
Popular designs from Polynesia that have had a symbolic meaning include the shark, dolphin, turtle and gecko.
A tribal gecko tattoo will pay homage to distant ancestors together with the symbolism of the gecko meaning that they held true with their own beliefs. These tattoos are often bold and dark and are somewhat abstract in style, yet appear as a simplified version of an original form.
The tattoo's edges are angular and sharp and will often repeat in patterns that circle around a forearm or bicep, or is symmetrically placed on either side of the back or chest as mirrored reflections.
A gecko tattoo design can be created in brightly vibrant colors but many people still prefer the quirky abstract shapes to be done in boldly black ink.
Despite missionaries trying to eradicate the cultural traditions of this unique art all those years ago, tattoo designs from Polynesia have had a rebirth in the Western world today.