Ear Piercing 101: What You Should Know
So you're ready for a new piercing!
Whether it's your first or fifth, it's critical to learn or refresh your knowledge on piercing safety and aftercare. Piercings are a fantastic way to change up your look, highlight your favorite features, and is full of fun accessories to show self-expression!
Before you take that step into the piercing parlor make sure you know what you want! Pinterest is a great tool to use for body modification inspiration, or maybe you have a favorite pierced Instagrammer whose style you love! There are so many piercings to choose from, and while you are able to take many piercings out down the road if you are no longer in love with it, many can leave small scars or marks on your skin, so making sure this piercing is something you are committed too is important.
We always suggest getting your piercings done by a professional piercer who usually work out of piercing parlors. Thankfully, we live in the age of Yelp and Google reviews! Or simply ask the suggestion of a friend, but do your research to find a piercer who is right for you! Once you have, communicate with your piercer about what it is you want, you can even have some inspiration pictures ready so your piercer understands fully what you're looking to get done. We also suggest only getting pierced with hypoallergenic metals to avoid the risk of infection or allergic reaction.
Yay! You got through the needle! Now it's time to share that new piercing selfie and learn about aftercare!
First things first… Hands off!! Despite popular belief, twisting and pulling at a new piercing will only agitate it and disrupt the healing process. While mild inflammation is normal, continuing to touch and twist a new piercing increases the chances of infection.
Listen to your piercers instructions on how to further clean and help the healing process of your new piercing. What is important to remember about a piercing, especially a new piercing, is that it is an open wound. Always wash your hands before cleaning your piercing!! Our hands contain tons of bacteria that we don't even notice! During the healing process you'll be anxious to touch your piercing by rotating it, or touching it, don't. Unless there is an issue with the size, material or style of the first piece of jewelry in your piercing, we recommend that you leave it in during the entire healing process. If you must take it out, please go to a professional piercer for help. Taking out the piercing leaves risk to the skin shrinking or closing up quickly. Putting the jewelry back in later may be difficult or impossible.
Keep your new piercing clean
According to SafePiercing.Org they recommend this way of cleaning your new piercing
- WASH your hands really well before you clean or touch your piercing for any reason.
- SALINE soak for five minutes once or more per day. Seal a cup of warm saline solution over the area. For some piercings it will be easier to use clean gauze or paper towels soaked in saline solution. Rinse after you salt soak because dried salt crystals could hurt you and your piercing.
- SOAP only once or twice a day. While showering, lather up a dime sized drop of the soap to clean the jewelry and the piercing. Leave the soap on the piercing no more than thirty seconds.
- RINSE to remove all of the soap from the piercing. You do not have to rotate your jewelry through the piercing.
- DRY gently with clean, disposable paper products. Cloth towels could snag on jewelry, and they might have bacteria on them.
While on average most piercings take three to six months to heal, it's important to realize everybody is different and will heal in different ways, there is no way to make any wound heal “faster” and yes, you can “over clean” a piercing, which is another disruption of your body’s natural healing process just keep up with consistent cleaning schedule of the suggested twice a day cleanings and you'll be enjoying your piercing to its fullest in no time!
Once it is fully healed it's time to start planning an purchasing new accessories to show off your new look! (check out some ideas here: BodyJ4You.com)
After a piercing, is this normal?
After getting pierced a few common things people experience are as follows
- mild pain
During the healing process you may experience
- oozing whitish yellow fluid that when dried forms crust on the jewelry
After the healing process
- jewelry in the piercing may not move easily (please do not force movement)
- be sure to clean your piercing and make the cleaning part of your daily cleanliness routine. If you do not its normal that a smell can appear due to the secretions build up.
- Be ware that the healing process can take a longer than it may appear on the outside. The skin on the outside will heal faster than the skin on the inside. So continue to clean the area until the end of the healing period.
Tips to keep your piercing healthy and safe from infections.
- During the healing process keep your piercing away from any bodily fluids, like oral contact...etc
- Try and stay away from submerging your new piercing in bodies of water that are unhygienic, like hot tubs, lakes pools, etc. If you must engage in these activities protect your piercing with a waterproof wound-sealant bandage. These are offered at most drugstores.
- Stay away from beauty products on or near your piercing
- examples: lotion, cosmetics, sprays
- Keep your sheets and pillows cleaned at least once a week.
- you can also slip a clean t-shirt onto your pillow and rotate it to a clean side each night.
- Make sure anything that may be in contact with your piercing is cleaned and not pressing on the piercing.
Share your selfie with us by using the hashtag #BodyJ4You and tagging @BodyJ4You in your posts!