Fighter Jet Liveries
Military Aviation

23 of the Best Fighter Jet Liveries

By Devon Wood
November 14, 20238 minutes
A Turkish F-16 with a tiger print livery flying through the sky.

What’s cooler than a fighter jet? Well, not much… Except a fighter jet with an epic paint job!

While not very common, there are some fighters that take on a very different look than the ordinary gray-ish exterior finish. These select aircraft are transformed into a canvas filled with captivating patterns, graphics, and artwork.

Before writing this article, I was really only familiar with the best commercial airline liveries. Therefore, coming up with this list took a bit of research… Well, I scoured the internet and found some of the coolest military fighter jet designs to exist. Eventually, I compiled 23 of my favorites into this post!

I was genuinely surprised by these liveries, as many of them seemed to be straight out of a videogame or Adobe Photoshop. But I assure you, they are real!

In this article, you’ll see a vast array of liveries from different eras, militaries, and manufacturers. While I undoubtedly missed a few, here’s a list of the top fighter liveries from all across the globe!

1. French Navy Dassault Rafale “White Tiger”

Kicking off the best fighter jet liveries is this Dassault Rafale M from the French Navy’s Flottille 11F squadron. White and black stripes cover the entire outside, with bright red eyes positioned on the rear wings. If you’re lucky enough to catch it in a steep climb or tilted on its side, you can get the full effect of its menacing stare.

As you’ll see, the French love their military liveries! You could argue they have the best-looking aircraft fleet in the world - but keep reading to decide for yourself!

2. Ukrainian Sukhoi SU-27 Flanker

A Ukranian SU-27 Flanker in blue digital camo.

Source: Airwolfhound

This Su-27P1M Flanker sporting a blue pixel camo demonstrated its capabilities during a demo at the 2018 Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT) in the United Kingdom.

Colonel Oleksandr "Grey Wolf" Oksanchenko, who was the Su-27 display pilot from 2013-2018, unfortunately lost his life on February 25, 2022 during the war in Ukraine after his jet was shot down by Russian military. He was posthumously awarded the title of “Hero of Ukraine” by President Zelensky.

3. German Air Force Eurofighter Typhoon “Ghost Tiger”

A German Air Force Ghost Tiger Typhoon taking off from the runway.

Source: Wikimedia

Here is a Eurofighter Typhoon of the 74th Tactical Air Force Wing of the German Air Force.  Registered under 31+00, this "Ghost Tiger" livery could be viewed at the 2018 NATO Tiger Meet.

The NATO Tiger Meet (or NATO Tiger Association) is an annual military exercise and gathering of NATO alliance squadrons with tiger-themed fighter jet liveries. This informal association provides an opportunity for NATO air crew to train together, exchange tactics, and build camaraderie. The origin of the NATO Tiger Association dates back to 1961, when a group of fighter squadrons with tiger mascots decided to participate in joint training exercises.

4. Hellenic Air Force F-16 "Zeus"

A Hellenic Air Force F-16 in a "Zeus" livery, which includes a Greek flag and orange lightning bolts.

Source: Airwolfhound

This is a Lockheed Martin F-16C Fighting Falcon from the Hellenic Air Force Demo Team.

Commonly referred to as “Zeus”, this F-16 (registration 523 | XK-24) was seen at the 2016 RIAT held at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, England. This jet livery exhibits a Greek flag and tons of lightning bolts - which pay tribute to the mythological god of sky and thunder in ancient Greek  religion.

5. Royal Netherlands Air Force F-16 J-015

An F-16 from the Royal Netherlands Air Force in an orange NATO Tiger livery.

Source: Alan Wilson

This Dutch F-16AM formerly belonged to 313 Squadron based at Volkel AB. The NATO tiger unit operated the F-16 Fighting Falcon prior to its temporary disbandment in December 2020. Reactivated in 2022, the squadron now operates with an upgraded fleet of F-35s.

6. USAF F-15C Fighting Eagle 85-113

An F-15 assigned to California Air National Guard's 144th Fighter Wing features a very patriotic livery from nose to tail. The Heritage fighter jet debuted its American flag themed paint scheme during a test flight on October 21st, 2022. 

7. Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 “Canada 150”

A red Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18  in the “Canada 150” livery.

Source: Wilson Hui

Another national pride symbol is this Canada 150 F-18, celebrating the 150th anniversary of the country’s Confederation. The unveiling took place in April of 2017 at 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alberta.

The livery uses a bright red paint and showcases three Canada 150 maple leaf symbols - one across the wings and two on the vertical stabilizers.

8. French Air Force Dassault Mirage 2000 118-EQ 

Another NATO Tiger Meet jet, this Dassault Mirage livery was showcased back in 2011 at the Cambrai base in France.

You can observe the Nato Tiger Meet patch on the tail, and of course the giant tiger running down the fuselage. The paws painted on the drop tanks are a pretty clever touch!

9. US Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet VX-9 Vampire

The VX-9 Vampires F-18 sitting on the runway, facing away from the camera.

Source: bt.aviation

Nicknamed “Vampires”, VX-9 is an air test and evaluation squadron stationed at NAWS China Lake, California. They use these F/A-18s for operational testing and evaluation of weapons and electronic systems prior to fleet implementation. Here, you can see the black accents, white stars, and the VX-9 bat on the tailfin.

10. French Air Force Dassault Rafale C 130; 4-GI; cn130

A French Dassault Rafale painted in black with red accents.

Source: Dave Smith

This French Armee de l'air Dassault Rafale C was displayed during RIAT 2018 at RAF Fairford. The top and undercarriage are coated in black with fiery red accents. While it is not the most intricate livery, it’s still very eye-catching.

11. Belgian Armed Forces F-16 FA-87 “Dream Viper”

A Belgian Armed Forces F-16 FA-87 in the “Dream Viper” livery.

Source: Jakub Hałun

Belgium’s “Dream Viper” F-16 was captured at the Radom Air Show 2023, featuring a large snake’s head and scale underbelly. This livery tours across Europe with the Belgian Air Force F-16 Solo Display Team. The reptile-inspired design was created by Aviation Commander Steven De Vries with graphic contribution from Nicolas Deboeck.

12. German Air Force Tornado TLG 51 Tiger

Here’s a Panavia Tornado IDS (interdictor/strike) of the Taktisches Luftwaffengeschwader 51. Introduced in 1979, this twin engine fighter-bomber was a joint project between Germany, Italy, and the UK. Registration 4451 has a black panther on its tail, and an orange tiger across the top of its wings.

13. Italian AMX “75th Anniversary”

An Italian AMX International AMX painted in the black and gold “75th Anniversary” livery.

Source: Wikimedia

This AMX celebrates 75 years of the 2 Stormo and 20,000 flying hours for the 14 Gruppo (both are wings of the Italian Air Force. You can see the large 75 below the cockpit window, and the 20,000 written at the top of the tail. The knight on the tailfin is from the emblem of the 8 Gruppo, which was formerly a part of 2 Stormo. Moreover, the symbol is derived from the poem 'Breus', by Giovanni Pascoli, which tells the story of a wandering knight.

14. US Navy Blue Angels F/A-18 Super Hornets

4 Blue Angels flying in formation on a 90 degree bank angle.

Source: bt.aviation

The Blue Angels, the United States Navy's flight demonstration squadron, adopted their iconic blue and gold paint scheme in 1946. The blue represents the sky and the Navy's primary color, while the gold signifies excellence and professionalism. 

Originally flying Grumman F6F Hellcats, the team transitioned to the sleeker and faster F8F Bearcats in 1949. Over the years, the Blue Angels flew various aircraft including the F-4 Phantom and A-4 Skyhawk. Nowadays, the Blue Angels continue to showcase their dazzling maneuvers in the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet. 

15. USAF T-38C Talon Blue Camo

A T-38C Talon painted in a blue camo parked at an airport.

Source: bt.aviation

This NorthropT-38 Talon has been repainted to an earlier style camouflage from a trio of special schemes for the supersonic jet trainer. The blue camouflage version consists of a combination of light and dark bluish tones that help the aircraft blend into the sky and reduce its visibility from the ground.

16. Royal Air Force Typhoon “Union Jack”

The UK Royal Air Force Typhoon “Union Jack” livery flying in a cloudy sky.

Source: Wikimedia

The RAF Typhoon Display team operates a patriotic Eurofighter that flies with the UK flag. 

In September of 2021, this very Typhoon (callsign “Blackjack”) paid tribute to the heroic Battle of Britain - a pivotal military campaign during World War 2. The Union Fag jet flew over the White Cliffs of the southern British coastline, the location where the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy defended against large-scale attacks by Nazi Germany.

17. French Air Force Rafale “Thunder Tiger”

The French Air Force Rafale “Thunder Tiger”.

Source: Wikimedia

Another spectacle from the French military is the Dassault Rafale Tiger livery. This shot was taken at the Spanish A Coruña Air Show in the summer of 2014. This design was extremely rare to spot, as it was only on display for one season. 

18. Russian SU-57 Stealth

A Sukhoi SU-57 stealth fighter jet in a blue and gray digital camo livery.

Source: Anna Zvereva

The Sukhoi SU-57 is a fifth generation stealth jet primarily operated by Russia. This model is suited in a pixel camouflage, which is useful for a number of reasons. Some research shows that a digital pattern like the one on this SU-57 breaks up the outline of the aircraft, making it much harder to recognise and trace.

19. USAF Northrop T-38C Talon 69-7073

A parked T-38C Talon in a black camo with an orange sunset sky in the backdrop.

Source: bt.aviation

This T-38 Talon wears a black splinter camo and has a skull and bones emblem on the tail. Originally introduced in the early 1960s, the T-38 Talon remains one of the oldest operational aircraft in the U.S. Air Force inventory, highlighting its durability and adaptability. What makes this livery especially cool is the red light that perfectly aligns with the left eye of the skull. 

20. French Air Force Dassault Rafale “627 / 30-JO”

An olive-colored Rafale with two white tigers carrying yellow and red ribbons.

Source: Alan Wilson

Here’s yet another French Air Force livery, this one also from the NATO Tiger Meets. Operated by ECE 01/30 squadron, the olive-colored Rafale depicts 2 white tigers carrying yellow and red ribbons in their mouths.

21. US Air Force F-16 “Venom”

A USAF F-16 painted in the "Venom" livery which features black scales and yellow accents.

Source: bt.aviation

The F-16 Viper Demo Team got a fresh new paint job on their primary demonstration aircraft back in 2020. It’s marked with black scales across the fuselage, wings, and tail. If you look closely at the head of the snake, you can see its intimidating yellow eyes.The signature yellow color is also used for the tail number and other small markings. 

22. Slovak Air Force MiG-29 Digicamo

The Slovakian MiG debuted the HyperStealth Cloudcam Pattern, which was originally developed to reduce the visibility of cellular towers in the United States. On this fighter jet, the digital camouflage pattern effectively conceals from ground, sea, overcast, as well as blue sky backgrounds. The paint scheme also features a false canopy underneath, which is meant to deceive enemies during dogfights. 

23. USAF F-16 Thunderbirds

An Air Force Thunderbird flying into blue skies.

Source: bt.aviation

Lastly, we have the US Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron - the Thunderbirds. These F-16s are recognizable by their red, white, and blue color scheme. This patriotic livery was chosen back in 1953 to represent excellence in the form of public service and demonstrate unity as the jets toured around the world. Each Thunderbirds aircraft is numbered from 1 to 6, with the number being displayed towards the front of the fuselage.

2023 WebFlite. All rights reserved.