FACIAL, BODY, & EAR PIERCING AFTERCARE
Congratulations on getting your new piercing, we hope you enjoy it for years!
The time required for your piercing to heal completely varies from piercing to piercing.
In most cases jewelry must be left in for at least the first 3 months.
Your piercing might look healed before this time, but it is important to be patient and wait the entire healing period before changing your jewelry out, or ceasing your aftercare routine.
Please reference your aftercare sheet, or contact one of our Piercers on staff if you are unsure of your piercing’s healing time.
If your piercing must come out sooner for medical reasons, we can help you with this process so you don’t lose your piercing.
If proper cleaning is done, your risk of infection is greatly reduced.
Infection is rare for piercings; however, irritation is a very common occurrence.
For your aftercare routine, we recommend cleaning your piercing at least once a day, in combination with sea salt soaks on the opposite end of the schedule.
Depending on what your schedule is like you may either;
1. Clean your piercing once in the morning (following instructions), and perform a sea salt soak at night (following instructions)
2. Perform a sea salt soak in the morning, and clean your piercing at night.
Optimal frequency will depend on your skin sensitivity, activity level, and environmental factors.
If you follow this aftercare routine for the entirety of your initial healing, you shouldn’t have any issues with your piercing!
We recommend using our in house piercing cleanser PurSan, and water, to help remove debris from your piercings.
PurSan at this time can only be purchased at Piercing or Tattoo studios.
We have never found a product that worked so well to aid in the healing of a piercing!
If you are having trouble with your piercing and didn’t purchase PurSan please consider buying it.
The only other cleansers we would recommend for your piercing would be either a Pure Castile Soap (with no essential oils), or a Doctor Bronnors Baby Soap. We have found that any other soaps (face wash included) may dry out, and irritate your fresh piercings. Do not use soaps that contain Triclosan as the active ingredient, such as Dial.
These soaps are much harsher on new skin cells and can damage your piercing.
As well a mild, non-iodized (no iodine) sea salt soak is recommended to help soothe your piercing, bring blood flow to the area, and soften any crusty material that might have formed on the jewelry.
See cleaning instructions below.
Step 1: Wash your hands thoroughly with liquid antibacterial soap and hot water.
Never touch healing piercings with dirty hands. This is vital for avoiding infections.
Step 2: Prepare the piercing area for cleansing by thoroughly rinsing with running, warm water.
Step 3: Apply a small amount of the cleaning solution to the area with your clean hands. Make sure to be very gentle while cleansing the area and the jewelry.
You do not need to rotate your jewelry during cleaning, or anytime for that matter.
Step 4: Allow the solution to cleanse there for a minute.
Don’t purposely work anything other than the cleanser onto the inside of the piercing.
Step 5: Rinse the area thoroughly under warm running water to completely remove the cleanser from the piercing.
Step 6: Gently pat dry with either sterile, non-woven gauze, or a clean, soft, single use paper towel. Do not use cloth towels, as they can harbor bacteria.
Each body is unique, and healing times can vary considerably. If your piercing is tender, sore to the touch, secreting fluid, or accumulating any crusty material, you should continue the aftercare regimen, even if it is past the stated average healing time range.
Sea Salt Water Soaks:
Sea salt soaks are strongly recommended once a day, on the opposite end of the day to your cleansing routine to help bring blood-flow to the piercing site, reduce swelling, discomfort, and remove any crusty material or blood that may have formed on your jewelry.
Step 1: Wash your hands thoroughly.
Step 2: Dissolve 1/4 teaspoon of non-iodized sea salt into one cup (8 oz.) of distilled or bottled water. – Ensure your measurements are precise!
Step 3: Microwave your solution for 30-60 seconds, until it is warm. – Not scalding hot!
Step 4: Depending on where your piercing is located, you may soak a piece of sterile, non-woven gauze, or clean (soft) paper towel in the sea salt solution until it is saturated.
Hold the soaked dressing on either side of your piercing, applying gentle pressure, for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, discard of the dressing, grab another, and repeat step 4 for a additional 5 minutes; totaling of 10 minutes of soaking.
*If your piercing is located in a place in which a compress is inconvenient to use, you may place your sea salt solution in a (clean) shot glass or shallow dish, and soak (ensuring you envelop all sides of your piercing!) for 10 minutes.
Step 5: Once you have soaked your piercing for a total of 10 minutes, thoroughly rinse your piercing with clean water, and pat it dry with a clean paper towel.
Not rinsing or drying it may cause dryness, itchiness, and irritation.
Congratulations! You completed your first sea salt soak!
Ensure you keep performing these once a day for the duration of your healing, for a happy, healthy piercing!
Sea Salt Soak Tips:
· A stronger solution does not mean a better solution, or a quicker heal! Too much salt can actually cause more harm than good, such as dryness, itchiness, redness and irritation.
· Mix a new sea salt solution with every single cleaning. – Keeping your pre-made sea salt solution in a container for days can harbor bacteria, and is not advised.
· Do your sea salt soaks on opposite ends of the day to your cleaning, so you do not dry out your piercing. As well, ensure you aren’t doing them too few, or too many times a day! Moderation is key!
· It is advisable to soak before you do anything active, as it will prevent crust from being pulled inside the piercing as you move around. Pulling crust into the piercing site can damage it, and it doesn’t feel good!
· Salt water, or sterile saline is the only additional product (other than the cleanser and water) we suggest you use to care for your piercing. – General rule of thumb: If you can’t put it in your eye, don’t put it in your piercing! (No tea tree oil, peroxide, alcohol, etc.)
What To Do:
· Wash your hands prior to contact on, or near the area of your healing piercing.
· Leave the piercing alone, except for when you are cleaning it.
· Leave the starter jewelry in during the entire minimum initial healing time.
(Assuming your initial jewelry is appropriate in terms of metal content, style, and size. Inappropriate jewelry should be changed out by a professional.)
· You may change only the beads on your jewelry at any time. This includes beads on the ends of barbells (circular, curved or straight), captive bead rings, as well as any threadless ends.
· Check the tension on your ends every other day. – “Righty tighty, lefty loosey.”
· Keep your jewelry in. – Even old, well-healed piercings can shrink in minutes after having been there for years!
*This varies from person to person, and even if your ear lobe piercings stay open without jewelry your body piercing may not!
· If you remove your jewelry and are unable to re-insert it yourself , please bring your jewelry in to the studio in a plastic baggy or small plastic cup, for sanitary reasons. (Un-bagged jewelry is a risk for cross-contamination!) and we will see if we are able to reinsert it for you.
· If your piercing must be temporarily removed (such as for a medical procedure), we can insert a retainer, made of either glass or plastic material that is ISO 10993-6/10 or 10993-11 compliant.
* Materials such as PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) or Tygon® Medical Surgical Tubing are the only appropriate piercing retainers, aside from glass that are body safe.
Please note that these materials are meant for temporary wear only, and must be replaced with properly sized, quality jewelry as soon as possible.
· Make sure your bedding is clean and changed frequently while you are healing.
· Wear clean, comfortable, breathable fabric clothing in the area of a body piercing.
· Get enough sleep, eat a nutritious diet, avoid undue stress, recreational drugs, and alcohol consumption. The healthier your lifestyle, the easier it will be for your piercing to heal!
What Not To Do:
· Do not clean your piercing more often than twice a day, as this can irritate your piercing, and prolong your healing.
· Do not dry your piercing with material that isn’t meant for single use (such as a face cloth) as these can harbor bacteria.
· Do not use materials with fibers that can get caught or stuck on the piercing site, such as q-tips, cotton balls, tissues and the like.
· Do not rotate your jewelry, this is outdated aftercare and is not necessary if you are wearing quality material.
· Do not use soaps that contain Triclosan as the active ingredient, such as Dial.
· Do not use moisturizers, makeup, emollients or the like, on or around your new piercing.
Common Sources of Irritation Are:
· Sleeping on your new piercing – this may cause nasty “irritation bumps” – Often referred to as “keloids” – (This is a misnomer, and incorrect: keloids are a more serious skin condition which need to be diagnosed by a physician.) Sleeping on your new piercing may cause more serious issues such as: migration and rejection.
Please ensure you do not sleep on your piercing.
*Irritation bumps are not neccesarily keloids, nor are they typically infected. Please visit us if you are having any sort of lump or bump form on either side of your piercing.
We are more than happy to inspect, and give you advice on how to get rid of it!
· Not having the piercing done in a sterile environment – Our Piercers ensure to use the most up to date aseptic technique to ensure our Client’s safety!
· Dirty hands, or saliva touching your piercing before it is healed.
· Using a cleaning agent that can damage your piercing, such an an antibacterial soap, alcohol, peroxide, and the like.
· Improper aftercare routine such as stopping your aftercare routine before you are finished healing.
· Wearing makeup, moisturizers, or emollients on or around your healing piercing may cause irritation.
· “Playing” with jewelry before the piercing is healed.
· Wearing inferior quality jewelry or metals (i.e. materials which are not up to industry standard such as acrylic, or “surgical” steel.)
The only metal material which you should be inserting in your body should be:
Certified metals such as Titanium (ASTM F136, and the like), Stainless Steel (ASTM F138, and the like), Solid 14 or 18 karat White, Yellow or Rose Gold, Solid nickel-free platinum alloy, and Niobium. Any metal material of lower quality may cause irritation and is not safe to be worn in the body.
If you have any problem with healing we will be happy to help! We understand that since opening up in Columbus in 1994, people see us as the experts. We will help with piercings that we didn’t perform, however, understand we can only make suggestions, we are not physicians.
A physician must be contacted as soon as possible if a problem persists.
Is This Normal?
Bleeding, bruising, discoloration and/or swelling is not uncommon with new piercings. These are not indications of any complication.
Reduce intake of aspirin, alcohol, and caffeine. For above-the-neck piercings try sleeping with your head elevated above your heart (prop up on some pillows) to limit overnight swelling. Studies show non-steroidal anti-inflammatory products such as Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, etc.) can help minimize swelling.
Some tenderness, soreness or discomfort in the area of a new piercing is not unusual. You may feel stinging, burning, or aching on and off for several days or longer. During healing there may be some itching.
Secretion of a fluid which contains blood plasma, lymph and dead cells is perfectly normal.
This fluid is fairly liquid, and typically a whitish-yellow color, and forms a crust on the jewelry at the openings of the piercing. This is not pus, but indicates a healing piercing.
Once healed, your piercing may secrete a semi-solid white malodorous substance from the oil glands called sebum. This also is not pus, but indicates a healed piercing.
Piercings may have a tendency to have a series of “ups and downs” during healing by seeming healed, and then regressing. Try to be patient, and keep cleaning during the entire initial healing time, even if the piercing seems healed sooner.
Tightness is normal. Do not expect jewelry to swing freely in most body piercings, even after they are thoroughly healed.
In the event that the piercing drains a thick pus discharge instead of the normal liquid secretion, you may wish to see a physician for evaluation, and possible antibiotic treatment.
If you do have an infection, the jewelry should be left in the piercing to allow for drainage of pus. If the jewelry is removed, the holes can close up, resulting in an abscess.
LEAVE YOUR JEWELRY IN !