Riley Reid Chinese Tattoo

Riley Reid is a popular adult film star from Florida. This 20-something petite porn star is well known in the industry and has won several AVN awards. She also looks strikingly like Miley Cyrus. Riley Reid has a long, vertical Chinese phrase tattooed on her back.

Riley Reid’s Vertical Chinese Tattoo

If you are a fan of this site, you’d know that Chinese can read in almost any direction. There is no question that this adult entertainer went for the top down option.

In horizontal view, it is much easier digest and take in whole:

It’s a freaking long tattoo. Let’s analyze it, shall we?

Riley Reid’s Chinese Tattoo Translation

At the first glance, this adult actress obviously wanted to express the old saying “when life gives you a lemon, make lemonade“. However, the literal translation doesn’t quite match the English saying. We broke down the literal component of this long Chinese sentence:

Riley Reid Chinese Tattoo Translation


Lemon water? Actually, that is the least of her problems…

Mistakes in Riley Reid’s Chinese Tattoo

First of all, Riley Reid should have hired an artist who understands what they are actually writing. While the tattoo artist did an okay job writing the characters, the characters look way too much like newspaper font. He or she clearly copied off Google without much artistry or calligraphy skills. But let’s dig into the real sins of this crappy translation.

1 . The biggest error in this tattoo is the character “when” or  . Even though the English version of the saying has a “when” in it, not only is the “when” character in Chinese this sentence completely not necessary, it is misplaced in the middle of the sentence, resulting in a non-sensible pause when you say it out loud in Chinese.

2 . The leading phrase 生活 does technically translates into “life”. However, that phrase commonly refers to sort of everyday life, such as getting your groceries and paying your bills. It it neither poetic nor fitting in this Chinese Tattoo. A more appropriate phrase the characters 人生, which carries the meaning of a person’s entire life. This is a far better choice for “life”, especially it is tattooed on your back for millions of viewers to see.

3 . The third error is much of a minor offense. In our culture, lemonade is a delicious drink we make from lemon juice, sugar, and water. In the Chinese language, the phrase of lemon juice and lemonade is the same. When you ask for a glass of “lemon juice” in Chinese, no waiter in his right mind would actually serve you a glass of lemon juice, unless he hates you and wants to see you suffer. 檸檬汁 is lemon juice or lemonade in Chinese, which simply combines the phrase “lemon” 檸檬 with “juice” 汁. Riley Reid’s tattoo says “lemon water” 檸檬, which means water spiked with some lemon wedges in both English and Chinese. Haha.

It’s a good thing that Riley’s tattoo is only in full-on display when she is filming. The selfie below shows that she can still just be a regular cute girl: