When you name your album Changes, well, it means some new additions are in order. Justin Bieber’s new neck tattoo has a meaning that’s definitely tied to his latest work—after all, the 25-year-old pop star hasn’t stopped talking about how significant his forthcoming fifth studio album is. Set to release on Valentine’s Day this year, Changes is all about the struggles he’s faced, and his swift return to pop. It only makes sense he’d get some fresh ink now to commemorate that.
Still, Justin surprised us all when he was spotted leaving the gym on Jan. 30, sporting what looked like a brand-new tattoo at the base of his neck. While photographers managed to grab a few flicks, fans weren’t exactly sure of what Justin’s new body ink looked like. Well, the “Yummy” singer headed to Instagram later that day to confirm the suspicions—a photo posted to his Instagram Stories proved he did get a new tattoo. And it’s actually pretty symbolic.
Located at the base of his neck and right above his collarbone, Justin got a set of laurel leaves inked. You’ve probably seen these leaves before—they trace back to Greco-Roman antiquity, and are super symbolic for a series of reasons. If you’ve heard the phrase “resting on one’s laurels,” you already know that these leaves often signify a sense of achievement. But they’re also considered to be a protective and peaceful symbol, as well as a mark of creativity.
All that said: This tattoo seems to be a pretty obvious connection to not only his new album then, but also to his new 10-part docuseries, Justin Bieber: Seasons. The series premiered on YouTube on Jan. 27, and ever since, fans have been binging the episodes for an intimate look at the pop star.
Justin’s latest documentary project covers everything from his recent diagnosis with Lyme disease, to the long-ago challenges he faced as a young pop star growing up in the public eye. When you think of everything laurel leaves represent from peace, achievement, and creativity, it’s not surprising that Justin chose this subject for his latest ink. After all, it took a whole lot of each (and a lot of love from his wife, Hailey Bieber née Baldwin) to get to where he is today.