She might have jumped headfirst into 2019 after a horror year prior (her NYE Instagram post caption starting “farewell 2018, you f**k” said it all), but Ariane Grande’s carrying something unforgettable with her into the new year: her 29th tattoo.
Small and cryptic, the ink was done by Brooklyn-based artist Mira Mariah, who’s apparently the woman Grande turns to for tattoos that have particularly poigniant meaning. (She tattooed Pete Davidson too when he and Grande were engaged, prior to the high-profile relationship implosion that he joked about on stage earlier this week.)
Twenty-six-year-old Mariah specialises in delicate line-art tattoo and designed the small bee insignia the singer got behind her left ear to remember the victims of the 2017 bombing of her concert in Manchester (the worker bee is the city’s symbol).
She also created the out-there celestial design now on the back of Grande’s hand, chosen by the singer to celebrate being named Billboard’s 2018 Woman of the Year, along with a portrait of the lead female character from popular Japanese anime film Spirited Away.
Ari’s latest momento, however, was a much more straightforward job. Translated from Japanese, the inking simply reads “let’s sing”.
Perhaps it’s a sign she’s focused on making music over gossip headlines this year, or maybe just a tribute to what makes her heart happiest. Given the annus horribilis filled with grief and heartbreak that was 2018 for Grande, we hope for her sake it’s so.