The Most Popular Piercings for Men and Women

Body piercings have been around since forever. Anthropologists believe body piercings may have been common even before the advent of the agrarian economy (living by farming, as opposed to hunting). That’s a long time before the goth kids and punk rockers made body piercings a lucrative trade. Piercings are one of those rare fashion trends that can apply to men and women both. Both a man and a woman can have a pierced nose, and be perceived the same way. That’s why body piercings can be so unique: they almost surpass gender.

Nowadays, most people have pierced ears or noses. To understand how certain kinds of piercings have become so popular above others, it’s important to know a bit about the modern history of body piercings. Piercings can be broadly categorized in two parts as facial piercings and body piercings. Facial piercings are more common than in other parts of the body, mostly because of the fact that they tend to be more visible. Some types of facial piercings are even culturally approved and maybe even mandatory.

For example, in South India, it’s a traditional practice for an adult woman to pierce her nostrils and ears. The controversial thing would be not to do so. This is in quite stark contrast to how the same types of piercings were perceived in western societies in the nineties. Nose and earring piercings were popular among teenagers during this time, and was widely considered a sign of teen rebellion. As far as teens are concerned, the more the parents hate it, the more they want to do it.

In the twenty first century, much of the controversy surrounding piercings have dissipated, so it’s more common to see people sporting fashionable eyebrow or lip piercings. In North America, about fourteen percent of the adult population has a piercing. Women are more than two-thirds likely than men to have a piercing.

It’s not that difficult to understand why. Piercings, especially facial ones, are more acceptable for women than for men, who are not as likely to accessorize with body jewelry due to stigma. And yet, interesting enough, the most popular piercings are equally favored by both men and women.

When it comes down to the statistics of most popular piercings, ear piercings, in or around the earlobe, seems to have a head start, at least in western societies. Most piercings in adults are ear piercings, and the numbers are significantly higher in women (almost sixty percent) than in men (a little over twenty percent).

Ear piercings are one of the most visible of piercings and do not necessarily come with any statements (other than fashion). It may explain their massive popularity among both men and women nowadays. After ear piercings, navel piercings are the most popular among women. A little over three percent of women choose to pierce their navels. On the other hand, navel piercings are close to zero among men. Clearly, gender differences play a significant role in which piercings men and women prefer.

After nose and ear piercings, gender continues to eschew the statistics of most popular piercings. About two percent of women choose to pierce their noses, while the less than one percent of men prefer to do the same. Around one percent (rounded percentages) of women and men both get tongue piercings. Men on average get lesser piercings than women, especially facial ones. However, men and women are roughly alike in their preferences for eyebrow piercings. Eyebrow piercings are edgy and bold, and that attracts only a select few to try out this kind of piercing.

Surprisingly enough, the number of men who get nipple piercings are roughly the same as women. Most of these piercings—navel, nipple and tongue—have sexual connotations attached. In the nineties, when piercings really took off, some believed piercings in such places would increase sexual attractiveness and maybe even enhance sexual pleasure. Those ideas largely remain the same as these types of piercings remain popular.

Interestingly enough, lip piercings have taken a tumble as a popular body piercing. Pierced lips were common throughout the eighties and nineties, but nowadays less than one percent of either men or women get one. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that lip piercings affect a person’s ability to pronounce certain sounds, which affects everyday functioning.

Piercings are no longer a teen trend. Most piercings are sported by adults with high functioning social and professional lives. They prefer to have piercings that do not affect everyday life, like lip piercings does with communication.

Genital piercings, too, are now less popular than they were about two decades ago. When it comes to the numbers in percentages, they are minuscule for both men and women. This is mainly due to safety issues. When it comes to bodily piercing of any kind, safety trumps fashion. Few dare to risk the complications of genital piercings not done safely. Also, though it’s very much possible to get a genital piercing done safely, it might cost considerably more than a regular nostril piercing.

Many kinds of piercings suit men and women both. Rather than going with what’s most popular, anyone considering a piercing should think first about whether a certain kind of piercing would be suitable. Some people may have health conditions that prevent them from getting popular types of piercings. Before getting a piercing, think about where you want it and how visible the piercing should be. Do not decide hastily.

Do proper research on safety of the kind of piercing you want and do not hesitate to take two or three days to decide. When you are absolutely sure, carefully select a piercing artist. Think about reputability and safety of the provider foremost. It might be best to go with a temporary piercing rather than a permanent one initially.

This article was submitted by one of our Guest Bloggers:
Mads Phikamphon

Many Thanks, Mads

Piercing Tips You May Not Know

578tHere are some quick and handy piercing and aftercare tips you may not know. All of them will help you maintain a healthy and clean piercing.

Keep in mind: even the little things can make a difference between a successful piercing and a disaster!

Be Mentally Prepared!

In order to ensure the best and most comfortable experience at the piercing studio, you need to know yourself. What does it mean? You need to know what kind of company and circumstances will make you the most relaxed. For example, some people feel better and braver when they go with a trusted friend or a family member. Others feel more relaxed when they are alone. These are all individual choices and piercing studios are often happy to allow other people to be there with you. However, you need to know yourself enough to understand what kind of company you really need. Do not feel pressured to go with friends or to go alone if this isn’t what truly makes you relaxed.

The same goes for other arrangements, such as the time of the day, being chatty or being quiet, etc. If you know that some type of environment will be helpful to you, make sure to talk to your chosen piercer. Keep in mind that they might not be able to accommodate all of your wishes and requests: after all, their first and most important responsibility is your safety and proper piercing procedure. Other than that, however, piercers are typically happy to accommodate your needs and requests, so make sure to talk to them and arrange things before hand. In order for this to work, however, you need to know yourself well enough: you need to know what makes you relaxed.

Never Twist the Jewelry!

One of the most persisting misconceptions about new piercings is that the jewelry needs to be turned and twisted in order to prevent tissue to heal on the jewelry and trap it. While this advice may seem logical, it is actually dangerous to do any twisting, turning or any manipulation of your new piercing or jewelry. In fact, the best thing you can do is to simply leave your new piercing alone. The jewelry won’t get jammed inside the new piercing hole, so there is no need to twist it or turn it. However, it is vital to keep your new piercing clean and to apply a saline solution a few times a day. That will keep your new piercing clean and healthy.

But what about the scabbing, you ask? Some new piercings will produce small scabbing but most of it is just a small accumulation of fluid that a new piercing produces. The best policy is to clean your piercing regularly so the scabbing doesn’t form. If it does form, you can remove it carefully by using a cotton swab with a saline solution on the tip. Resist the urge to move and rotate the jewelry in order to break the scabbing! Always try to soften it using a saline solution and clean it that way. If scabbing persists, you should contact your piercer.

Do Not Overclean!

You may think that the best way to go with your new piercing is to clean it often. After all, you do want to keep your new piercing and jewelry clean. You may also think that cleaning often is the best way to prevent scabbing and other problems.

However, too much of a good thing is bad. While it’s important to clean your new piecing properly and to apply appropriate aftercare, a good approach is to know how to do it. Cleaning your piercing 20 times per day, for example, is not the best way to go. Nor is cleaning your piercing with strong, harsh solutions. Both of these approaches will lead to irritation and other problems, so they are not recommended in the long run. Remember: you should never overclean your piercing! Stick to the standard aftercare advice and do not clean your piercing more than a few times per day. Also, make sure to use only gentle solutions (saline solutions are the best).

Be Patient!

There is an important thing to understand about piercings and other body modifications: they are a great way to change your looks and to make a meaningful mark on your body. It is therefore understandable that you want to see the change immediately. However, there is one truth about most body modifications: it takes a bit of time to get to the look you wish to achieve.

What does it mean? In the case of piercings, it means that it takes some time until the piercing is healed. Only healed piercings are finished peircings you can enjoy properly: they look just how you want them to look and you can change jewelry freely. In the case of tattoos, it often takes some time and effort until they are done completely. In the case of other modifications, such as scarification or ball stretching, it takes time to achieve the desired effect.

In other words, body modifications take time before they look exactly how you want them to look. Which means you have to be patient with them. Do not rush things out and do not expect perfect results overnight. In fact, they will look great only if you take a proper care of them during the healing period. This is why you need to just be patient, perform care instructions carefully and wait until your piercing or body modification is ready.

Be Ready for Small Changes

When you get a new piercing, you need to be ready to accept small changes during the healing time. These changes include small discomfort or paying attention to things you usually don’t notice. For example, you may find it difficult to sleep in certain positions so you will need to find a way to keep your new piercing safe during night. Or you may need to wear loose clothing items in order not to put too much pressure on your new piercing. Those with ear piercings will need to make sure to keep their hair out of the way. More than anything, you need to be ready to dedicate some time every day to clean your new piercing properly.

Those are all small changes but they can be frustrating and tedious. It is not unusual for people to do it properly in the first week after getting a piercing but once the first swelling and discomfort is gone, they become lazy. Don’t be that person. Piercings take longer time to heal: weeks, sometimes even months. You need to be responsible and make the appropriate changes to your daily routine in order to accommodate your new piercing. This is the only way for your piercing to heal properly.

Top 5 Simplest Piercings

First PiercingNewbies often wonder about the best first piercing placements for beginners.

If you don’t have any piercings yet, or if you only have a few, you might wonder what is the best piercing type for newbies.

In other words, what is the best first piercing?

Here is a list of top 5 first piercing suggestions. These piercings are simple, relatively painless and typically risk-free, which makes them great choices for newbies.

  1. Earlobe

Earlobe is a logical first step for most people. A regular earlobe piercing is so socially acceptable that it’s popular even among people who dislike other piercings. In fact, it is considered so mainstream and inoffensive that it’s often not even counted as a “real” piercing.

Despite this reaction from the public, earlobe piercings are real piercings just like any others. Therefore, they should be treated as any other piercing, with the same aftercare instructions and approach to procedure. Meaning: it’s important to get pierced at a real piercing studio and it’s vital to be pierced by a professional using a piercing needle. Never allow to be pierced with a piercing gun or by a someone who is not a professional piercer. Keep in mind: earlobe piercings may be relatively simple and painless but they should be treated like real piercings.

That being said, earlobe piercings make an excellent choice for a first piercing because of several reasons. They are simple and quick, so they do not cause much pain or discomfort. They are also very popular and, as stated above, socially acceptable. It means you can try piercings without much risk. If you are interested in piercings it is recommended to start with earlobes even if this is not your most desired piercing type. An earlobe piercing will help you prepare for the whole experience better than going with a more extreme piercing first.

  1. Nostril

Another light and simple piercing you can get without much trouble. While not all nose piercings are painless and easy, a simple nostril piercing is a good choice for newbies. It is not particularly painful so it makes for a relatively easy experience.

Another advantage to nostril piercings is that they tend to be small and discreet. If you wish to have piercings other than those on your earlobes, starting with something small makes sense. Nostril piercings are easy to hide, which is yet another advantage of this piercing type.

  1. Eyebrow

Eyebrow piercings are very stylish and popular. The best thing is that they are not complicated to perform, which makes them a good choice for those who wish to get piercings but want to start with something simple enough.

One thing to remember about eyebrow piercings is that they are actually surface piercings. In fact, they are the most popular surface piercings in the world. It makes for a simple and relatively painless procedure, but it also means these piercings are not permanent. While not all eyebrow piercings will migrate or reject, this is one risk associate with this piercing type, so it’s important to pay attention to that.

  1. Navel

Navel piercings are among the most popular piercings in the world. They make a perfect candidate for a first body piercing. If you wish a piercing that is not on your ears, navel makes a great place for a simple yet very effective piercing. It is therefore not surprising that many newbies choose this piercing type.

Navel piercings are great because they are typically easy to perform and maintain. Another huge advantage is the number of different jewelry styles you can choose to wear in your belly button piercing. Curved barbells are standard jewelry types for navel piercings, and many of them are very richly ornamented. On the other hand, you may choose a different jewelry style, such as a circular barbell or a Captive Bead Ring.

  1. Other Ear Piercing (not cartilage)

Ears make a good placement for beginner piercings. While earlobe is the obvious choice, some other placements are very popular with newbies. You may opt for a helix piercing or for a more unusual placement such as a rook or a daith piercing.

There are some words of warning, though. If choosing an ear piercing that is not located on the earlobe, make sure you are familiar with the exact type of the piercing you want to get. Keep in mind that ear cartilage piercings may be painful, so proceed with caution. That being said, ear piercings, especially when they are done at smaller gauges, are very popular and a good choice for newbies.

The Top 5 Easy to Hide Piercings

Easy to Hide PiercingsAre you looking for some easy to hide piercings and piercing options? There may be many different reasons to hide your piercings, such as job, education and other factors.

Of course, the easiest way to go is to choose a piercing that is normally covered by clothes, such as a navel or a nipple piercing. Also, genital piercings are very easy to hide in everyday situations.

What about piercings located on the face and head, however? They are more difficult to hide. If you really wish to have some discreet facial and oral piercings, here is the list of the top 5 piercings that are easy to hide:

  1. Tongue Web

Tongue web piercings are performed on the thin piece of skin under the tongue. This tissue is also known as tongue frenulum. This is not the most popular piercing out there, mainly because it is hardly visible, unless the person truly wants to show off the piercing. However, the fact this is a difficult to see piercing also helps it with hiding. In other words, this is probably the easiest piercing to hide, if you do not count piercings that are normally covered by clothes.

  1. Smiley

Smiley is another unique oral piercing that is also easy to hide. It is performed on the thin web of skin that connects the upper lip with gums. This tissue is very thin and easy to piece, so it’s considered one of the easiest piercing types out there. The main downside to this piercing is the fact that it’s not really visible – in fact, the only way to see it is if the person smiles widely (hence the name). However, this downside can work to your advantage if you with to have a piercing that is easy to hide. Smiley can be worn without a problem and chances are that nobody will notice it.

  1. Septum

Septum piercing is probably the easiest facial piercing to hide. You may think it’s a very obvious piercing, since it’s placed in the middle of your face, but the placement itself allows for easy hiding. All you really need is an appropriate jewelry. See, the easiest way to hide a septum piercing is to simply turn the jewelry up your nose. Just turn it up so the ends of the jewelry sit inside your nostrils. When done this way, septum jewelry is almost invisible, so this is definitely a good piercing to choose if you need something that is easy to hide. However, make sure to wear a jewelry piece with open ends, such as a circular barbell. Fully closed jewelry pieces, such as Captive Bead Rings, are not good for this purpose.

  1. Tragus

Tragus is probably the easiest ear piercing to hide. It is done on the part of cartilage just in front of the ear opening. There is a little flap that can accommodate small jewelry. It makes tragus piercing very discreet, especially if you wear jewelry that is not too flashy or ornamented. Also, tragus piercing is easy to hide with hair. All you need to do is to cover it with a bit of hair, and the best thing is that it’s so small it can be covered even if your hair is in a ponytail. It makes it a very convenient ear piercing to hide.

  1. Tongue

You may think of a tongue piercing as a very prominent one, but it’s actually pretty well-hidden. It does not really show much when you talk, so it’s easy to miss, especially if you don’t wear large or colorful jewelry. In fact, the main reason this type of piercing is spotted is because people have a slight lisp during the healing time (especially in the first few days). So it’s actually the lisp and not the piercing itself that might give it away. The tongue piercing itself, however, is relatively easy to hide, so this is definitely one of the more popular piercings you might want to get if you need a piercing you can hide easily.

Top 5 Rare but Easy Piercings

Top 5 Rare but Easy PiercingsThere are many different types of rare and unusual piercings. Some of them are very difficult to get and can lead to numerous problems. Many rare piercings are also very extreme, which is one of the reasons why they are rare and unusual in the first place.

However, there are some original piercings that are not too complicated to get. If you wish to have a more effective and original piercing than the simple and common piercing types, check out these 5 rare piercings that are also easy to get.

  1. Madison Piercing

Madison piercing is rare and unusual but not really extreme. It is a surface piercing done one the jugular notch. This is a place on the neck directly above the collar bones. It got its name after a pornstar who made this type of piercing famous.

This piercing is not really complicated and the procedure is easy. As a surface piercing, however, keep in mind that it’s prone to migration and rejection. It is also not a permanent piercing, so you will probably need to retire it at some point.

That being said, Madison is an interesting and unusual piercing you can get if you wish to have a more original piercing that is not too extreme. Just be careful not to get it snagged on clothes since it can lead to tearing and other problems.

  1. Horizontal Lip Piercing

Horizontal lip piercing is one of the rarest lip piercing placements. It’s also a great way to get a rare and unusual piercing without going too far. If you don’t like extreme piercings but would like to have a more original piercing, horizontal lip piercing might be a good way to go.

This is considered a unique lip piercing placement. It goes through the lip horizontally. Typically, lower lip is used for this piercing, though there are some people who choose to have a horizontal piercing through the upper lip.

One potential problem with this piercing is that it goes through a lot of flesh. This is a long piercing so it requires a lot of care. Also, the jewelry for this piercing needs to be long enough. Long straight barbells are the best jewelry types for horizontal lip piercing.

This is a very effective piercing type that will sure draw a lot of attention. One possible drawback is that it may affect the functionability of your lower lip. It will make the lip less flexible, which can interfere with certain functions. However, if your piercer is experienced and knowledgeable most of the problems can easily be avoided.

  1. Finger Piercing

If you wish to have a relatively small piercing that is still very unique and rare. There are many different ways to pierce a finger. Horizontal piercing through the fingertip is one of the more popular variants, but there are many more. Also, you can choose which finger you wish to have it pierced.

As with any other unusual piercing, it is important to find an experienced, knowledgeable piercer who will know how to perform the procedure without a problem. One of the most important things is to avoid hitting the bone in the finger, which is why it’s important to find a piercer who has some experience with this type of piercing.

While you may choose any finger you want, it’s probably for the best to go with a finger you rarely use. Also, it’s better to use your non-dominant hand for a finger piercing. All these things will help you minimize the risk of infections and other problems.

  1. Neck Back Piercing

This is another rare piercing form that is not too extreme, so if you want something unusual, neck back piercing might be the right choice for you. A neck back piercing is another form of a surface piercing and as such, it brings all the usual risks associated with surface piercings. This piercing is prone to migration and rejection, so this is something to think about. Also, as any other surface piercing, neck back piercing is not made to be permanent, so it’s another thing you need to keep in mind.

Neck back piercings can be done alone or in pairs. Some people even choose to do them in groups. Whatever your preference may be, it’s important to find an experienced piercer who is knowledgeable enough with this piercing type. That’s the only way to avoid infections and other problems associated with rare piercings.

  1. Eyelid Piercing

This is a very unusual piercing and some people consider it more extreme than others presented on this list. Luckily, it is not really complex but it’s vital to find a knowledgeable piercer who knows how to perform this piercer properly.

Since the piercing is done so close to the eye it is a risky procedure that can lead to numerous problems. In order to stay safe you need to get pierced by an experienced piercer.

One good thing about this piercing is that it’s actually relatively easy and painless. The eyelid piercing is thus not really extreme in the true sense of the word. The skin is thin and it doesn’t require a lot of time to get pierced. In that sense, eyelid piercing is not the most extreme piercing type you can get.

However, there is a reason why this is a very rare piercing. The jewelry will sit next to the eye and rub on it, which can pose a problem when blinking or sleeping. The jewelry can rub against the eye, which can be uncomfortable and risky. For these reasons, eyelid piercing is not for everyone. If you want to get this piercing it’s important to be informed about all the potential dangers and drawbacks.

Common Questions about Surface Piercings

2005pSurface piercings are very popular and varied.

The most common surface piercing type is eyebrow piercing.

But there are many other surface piercing choices, such as corset piercings, nape piercings, and more.

Here are some common questions you might have before you get a surface piercing:

What’s the main difference between surface and regular piercings?

The main difference is that surface piercings are made on a flat surface of the skin, so both the entry and exit hole are located on this same flat surface. Regular piercings, on the other hand, are made on a fold of a skin: they enter the skin on one side and exit on the other. This makes regular piercings more stable and long-lasting. Surface piercings, on the other hand, are temporary. This is a very important think you should keep in mind.

How long will a surface piercing last?

It is never possible to tell for sure. Some surface piercings are made to be very temporary: some are removed after only a few hours, for example. This is often the case with decorative piercings such as corset piercings. These are often used for photographs and art, so they are removed as soon as the photographs and videos are made.

Other surface piercings are more long-lasting. Eyebrow piercing, for example, can last for years. In this sense, they can be almost as long lasting as regular piercings. However, it will all depend on various factors. In order to prolong the life of your piercing you need to take a good care of it, especially during the healing time. It means proper aftercare and cleaning. That being said, keep in mind that surface piercings are just not made to be permanent.

How to prevent rejection?

As you probably know, one of the main problems about surface piercings is a high rate of rejection. Since these piercings are placed directly under the skin, it is very easy for your body to push the jewelry out. Think about a splinter: the jewelry is moved up the skin until it’s out.

One thing you need to understand about surface piercings is that they are not as long-lasting as other piercing types. This simply goes with the territory. Sometimes there is nothing you can do to prevent migration and rejection so do not be too sad if it happens.

The only thing you can do is to monitor your piercing carefully. Make it into a habit to inspect it regularly to notice any potential changes. Usually, the rejection starts from the edges and it moves to the center of the jewelry piece. Another telling sing of impeding rejection is redness, tenderness and swelling.

The best thing you can do to prevent rejection of your surface piercing during the healing process is to perform adequate aftercare on a regular basis. While it is not a guarantee that rejection or migration won’t happen this is your best chance to prevent it from happening.

It is rejecting! Now what?

Take the jewelry out. This is the best course of action for any piercing that’s rejecting. Once the process starts there is very little you can do to stop it, so it’s best to simply retire your piercing. Failing to do so can result in scarring and infection, which is something you definitely want to prevent.

So, simply take the jewelry out and let the piercing heal.

Do surface piercings leave scars?

Surface piercings are shallow so they do not leave scars if you don’t let them reject or get infected. Marks and potential scars depend on the type of the surface piercing, though: an eyebrow piercing will leave a different type of a scar than multiple corset piercings across your back. So this is definitely one factor to take into account.

However, if you are careful and take a good care of your surface piercings they should not leave huge or noticeable scars. Typically, these piercings are retired without a problem, but you need to treat them for what they are: temporary (or semi-temporary) tattoos.

Can I get repierced multiple times?

As long as you retire your surface piercings properly so they don’t leave notable scar tissue yes, you can get repierced. This is exactly what many people do. However, keep in mind that you have to let your piercings heal properly before you attempt to repierced or else you’re at risk to develop infections and other problems.

Surface piercings have a high rate of rejection. Your body can see the jewelry as a foreign object and slowly pushes it out of your skin as it would a splinter. These piercings can slowly migrate to the surface of the skin. Surface piercings will start to grow out, or reject, from the outer edges slowly in towards the center of the jewelry. Key signs of rejection are redness, swelling, tenderness, and gooey discharge. Following the correct aftercare will give you the best chance of your piercing being a part of your body for years.

5 Surprisingly Painless Piercings

1729pThere are some piercings that are known to be relatively painless.

Earlobe, for example, is known as probably the least painful piercings of them all.

However, there are some other piercings that are relatively painless or definitely much less painful than they look.

But let’s start with the easiest one:

Earlobe Piercing

Everyone knows this one is relatively easy to go through. Earlobe tissue is soft and not particularly thick, so it’s easy for a needle to go through. However, it’s always important to use a proper piercing needle for this procedure.

Never agree to be pierced with a gun! Guns are dangerous, unsanitary and can make the whole procedure much painful than what it’s supposed to be. Plus, no knowledgeable professional will want to use a piercing gun so if your piercer uses it, there is a good chance they are not a reliable professional. Find a studio and a good piercer who will perform this piercing properly.

Septum Piercing

When done right, nose septum piercing does not hurt much. It’s because the piercing itself doesn’t go through nose cartilage at all. Instead, the piercing is done on the thin skin just in front of the cartilage. If you pinch your nose on this spot you will feel how thin the tissue actually is.

For a septum piercing to be positioned correctly, your piercer has to go through that tissue alone. If done correctly, it doesn’t bring much pain. It is actually one of the least painful piercings out there.

However, many people say that they experienced significant pain during the procedure. The reasons is that some piercers are not experienced or knowledgeable enough to hit the right spot. If the needle goes through the cartilage or if the piercing is positioned too low, it might end up being painful. To avoid this problem, always seek an experienced piercer who knows how to perform septum piercings correctly. Chances are that it will be one of the least painful piercings you’ll get!

Tongue Piercing

It may surprise many people, but classic tongue piercings are not particularly painful. They may seem painful because tongue is thick and there is a lot of tissue for needle to go through, but fear not: it is actually one of the least painful places you can get pierced.

However, please note that this is only true for a typical central tongue piercing. Other tongue piercing types may prove to be more painful. Also, it’s important to find a knowledgeable piercer who is experienced with tongue piercings to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Bridge Piercing

Surprisingly enough, but piercing the bridge of your nose is not particularly painful. Bridge piercing, also known as Erl piercing, is not as popular as some other piercing types, but there are many people who choose to get it.

It may seem like a sensitive spot, but bridge piercings are relatively quick to perform and they don’t hurt much. They definitely look more painful than they actually are, so if you are thinking about getting this piercing, there is no need to fear pain.

Prince Albert

Now, this one is a bit different. PA is a genital piercing and as such, it is more painful than some other piercing types. At the same time, Prince Albert is surprisingly painless compared to most other piercings. It is one of the least painful genital piercings for sure, but it’s also less painful than many “regular” piercings.

The thing is that only a little bit of a very thin tissue is pierced during this procedure. Most of the piercing uses the natural hole – urethra, so all the piercer needs to perform is a slight cut on the underside of the penis. The skin on that spot is thin and the procedure is done quickly. Most men describe the pain as a pinch and claim that PA piercing was much less painful than some “ordinary” piercings, such as ear cartilage piercings or nose piercings.

In other words, if you want to have a genital piercing but you’re scared of the pain, Prince Albert may be the perfect solution for you!

Tips for New Piercings: What to Do If…

how-to-clean-your-nose-piercingFirst hours and days after getting your piercing done are crucial. This is when you should take special care of your new piercing so it can heal properly. Many people are unsure what to expect during this time, because even the normal, healthy piercings will show some warning signs during this period.

Here are some handy tips on what to do during this time.

Keep in mind that the healing time is long so you’re definitely not off the hook after the first few days. However, these first days are crucial for ensuring success with your piercings.

What To Do if…

… You don’t know how to clean properly

Many newbies do not know how to clean their piercings properly or how to perform adequate aftercare. This can be very detrimental to the health, so it’s important that you know how to care for your new piercing at all times. This is the job for your piercer, so if there is something you don’t understand, do not hesitate to ask them, even if it means going back to the studio to clarify.

The good news is that cleaning and aftercare are not complicated: the most complex thing about aftercare is that it has to be done consistently! Since many piercings take months to heal, many people may skip cleanings or do them sloppily. This is where things get nasty. However, as long as you stick to the recommended aftercare you don’t have to have any special technique for cleaning. In other words, it’s not difficult to clean properly.

There are only a few things you need to keep in mind when it comes to cleaning:

  • Clean as many times per day as recommended (no more, no less)
  • Use only gentle cleaners (saline solution works wonders)
  • Try to disturb your new piercing as little as possible while cleaning. No turning or twisting the jewelry!
  • If you touch your new piercing or jewelry, make sure your hands are absolutely clean

…You notice fluid coming out of your piercing

Some secretion is not uncommon for new piercings. You may notice some fluid coming out of the piercing in the first days after the procedure. This fluid should be liquid, almost clear (or just a bit yellow). It will typically form a crust around the hole and on the jewelry. This is a perfectly normal thing and it’s actually a sign that your piercing is healing properly. All you need to do is to clean your piercing as instructed. It should remove the crusts from the skin and jewelry. However, never scrub hard or try to remove the crusts with force. Just clean the piercing as you always do and leave it alone.

Fluid coming out of the piercing can be a sign of an infection, but it’s usually easy to tell when there’s a problem. You will notice swelling and increased tenderness if that happens. Also, the secretion will be darker in color (darker yellow, white, or another color). This is pus and it’s typically not as liquid as the normal secretion. If in doubt, it’s best to seek medical advice.

… Your New Piercing is Swollen

Tongue_piercingAfter you get pierced, you can expect some swelling. Most piercings will swell right after the procedure and in the following days. This swelling is normal and it’s just a body’s reaction to what happened.

Keep in mind, however, that this swelling should be temporary. It should not hurt much and it should go away on its own within a few days. You should definitely see it getting better every day. This is a good sign of healing.

If, on the other hand, the swelling becomes worse or if you experience pain and discomfort, it is a sign that something is wrong. Your new piercing may be infected. The best course of action in these situations is to consult your doctor, not your piercer. Keep in mind that piercers are not medical professionals. Most of the time, these infections and problems are not serious, but only if you get medical help straight away. Never wait for too long to seek help if you experience any prolonged swelling or other signs of infection.

… Your New Piercing Hurts

Your new piercing will definitely be sensitive in the first hours, if not days, after the procedure. This is normal and you should not worry about it. You may take painkillers to ease the pain, but other than that, it’s not a sign that something is wrong.

However, keep in mind that your piercing should get better quickly. The pain should be gone within a day or a few days. The exact time needed for a piercing to stop hurting will depend on numerous factors, first and foremost, the body part and the type of piercing you have. Make sure to ask your piercer about the normal time in which you can expect your new piercing to be painful. This way, you will know if everything is healing normally or if there is a reason to be concerned.

If the pain persists for longer than normal or if it gets worse, it’s important to seek medical help immediately, because it can be a sign of an infection or another problem. It’s vital to react quickly because piercing infections can progress quickly.

… Your jewelry cuts into the skin

The initial swelling after the procedure can make the jewelry become “tight” so it might cut into the skin. If the swelling is barely noticeable this should not cause any problems. However, it can become an issue if the swelling is more pronounced. It can also be a sign of an inexperienced piercer, because knowledgeable piercers know they need to use longer jewelry to account for swelling.

This is the reason many initial jewelry pieces are longer than the regular ones. The longer ones are used for swelling and the jewelry is changed once the swelling is gone. If you feel you didn’t get proper jewelry and if you feel the jewelry is too short, go back to the studio and demand a longer jewelry piece.

What if you have a healed piercing and the jewelry still cuts into the skin? This should never happen with healed piercings so it’s either a sign of improperly fitted jewelry or a swelling. If your piercing is healthy (no swelling or other signs of infection), you will need to get new jewelry. It is vital for your body jewelry to be long enough to sit comfortably: it should never cut into your skin.

The Labret vs Lip Piercing: The Differences

vertical-labretThere is some confusion about labret and lip piercings. These two words are often considered to be synonyms describing any piercing through the lip. However, there is a difference.

The Labret is, simply put, just one of the many possible lip piercings. There are many other lip piercing placements that are not considered “labret” placement.

The confusion comes from the name itself. “Labret” comes from the Latin name for the lip (labrum). However, not all lip piercings are considered to be Labrets, since many of them have their unique names.

To make the confusion even further, “labret” is often a word used to describe a particular type of a jewelry, a labret stud. This type of jewelry is often used for lip piercings (not just for the Labret piercing), and it can also be used for some other piercing types.

What is the Labret?

The Labret, as a piercing name and placement, describes one particular type of a lip piercing. Namely, this is a piercing done through the lower lip, typically placed at the center and not to the side.

It’s important to note that with this placement, the piercing is not actually attached to the lip and do not go through the lip itself. It’s actually done just above the chin, under the lip and when your lower lip meets the chin. This is the most common placement for the Labret. Some people consider only this placement to be the “true” Labret piercing. Other lip piercings may be known under other names but they are not considered Labret in the true sense of the word.

Of course, some opinions differ. Some people consider several different types of lip piercings to be labrets. For example, a lip piercing that is not done centrally on the lower lip but to the sides. Another popular variation is a vertical labret, the one that goes from the lip itself to the chin and has both holes on the outside.

What is important to know, however, is that “labret” is not a synonym for a lip piercing: while all labret piercings are lip piercings, not all lip piercings are labrets.

The Labret piercing has a long history among Native Americans and in some parts of Africa. It is a very ancient type of body modification. It gained more prominence on the West in late 20th century. Some of the newer forms of lip piercings are a product of contemporary interest in body modifications but the Labret itself is very old in origin.

Interesting fact: “Labret” can be pronounced in two different ways, as “lay-bret”, not “luh-bray”. There is no clear consensus about which one is the correct way to pronounce it, though some experts are more favorable of the “luh-bray” pronunciation. That being said, “lay-bret” pronunciation tends to be more common among general population.

What is a Lip Piercing?

A lip piercing is any piercing done on the lip (upper or lower lip), regardless of the placement. Some lip piercings are Labrets, but others have different names. Since there are so many possible placements for a lip piercing, there are many different types of lip piercings performed today. Many of these piercings have their unique names and Labret is just one of them.

In this sense, the Labret is a lip piercing done centrally on the bottom lip. Another type of a lip piercing (as defined by a different placement) will have its unique name. The most popular forms of lip piercings other than the Labret are: Monroe, Madonna, Medusa, Philtrum, Jestrum and various types of the so-called “Bites” piercings.

What is a Labret Stud?

A labret stud (also known as simply “labret”, to confuse matters even more) is a jewelry type usually used for lip piercings. It’s a stud with a bead or another decoration on one end and a flat base on the other. These studs resemble nostril studs (also known as “nose bones”) a lot.

The decorated part of the jewelry is placed outside of the mouth while the flat base is located inside the mouth. Labret studs are often lightweight and discreet, though they can be very pretty and nicely ornamented.

It’s also important to note that most types of lip piercings use labret studs – they are not reserved for the Labret piercing only! Also, it’s possible to use labret studs for other types of piercings (not just lip piercings). It all depends on comfort and the person’s individual preferences.

Unusual Piercings

Unusual PiercingsWe all know about the most popular body piercings in the world. Regular earlobe piercing is so common it’s often not really considered a “true” piercing at all, even though, technically, it’s no different than any other piercing.

Some of the more popular piercings include navel piercing, nostril piercing, eyebrow piercings, lip piercing and tongue piercing. Many people have those and they are very stylish and popular.

You may think that some more extreme piercings, such as nipple piercing or genital piercings are rare. While they may be less common that the most popular piercings, they are not truly rare: there are many people who choose them.

So, what is considered a rare or unusual body piercing?

Rare Piercings

A “rare” piercing is the one performed on a body part that is not so popular to pierce. This may seem a bit vague to define. It’s important to understand that, technically, any body part (or almost any) can be pierced. In this sense, it’s possible to have numerous rare piercings performed on unusual body parts. Here, “unusual” means “a body part not typically pierced”.

Some people enjoy these unusual piercings because, let’s face it: they are very original. Who wants an ordinary belly piercing or a nostril piercing when you can have a very unusual place pierced? Indeed, these rare piercings often attract a lot of attention.

However, it’s important to understand that some piercings are rare for a reason. Some body parts are not really suitable for piercings, so while you can technically perform a piercing it will not last for long or it will bring a lot of problems.

This is why many unusual body parts are often pierced temporarily. This is particularly true for surface piercings. They can be performed almost anywhere, but they are prone to migration and rejection, so they are only temporary.

That being said, there are many creative places to pierce. Many of these unusual piercings are also very extreme and therefore not everybody’s cup of tea.

Examples of Unusual Piercings

Here are some examples of more unusual piercings:

  • Web Piercings. There are many different types of web piercings because there are many delicate webs of skin on our body. Some of them are located in the mouth, for example, in between our lips and gums. Some of the most popular oral web piercings are Smiley piercing and Frowny Piercing. You can also find these webs of skin between our fingers and our toes, or wherever you have a connective tissue. A web of skin of this kind is known as “frenulum”, though this term usually means a specific web of skin, the one that connects foreskin to the penis (and yes, it can be pierced, too).
  • Uvula Piercing. This is a piercing done on the soft tissue that hangs down at the back of your throat. It is very sensitive and can provoke a gag reflex when touched. Despite this problem there are people who like to have their uvula pierced. This piercing is very unique but it’s difficult to see unless you open your mouth really wide. Typical jewelry for this piercing type are Captive Bead Rings and circular barbells.
  • Achilles Piercing. This is an extreme piercing done on the spot in between the Achilles tendon, the ankle and the leg bones. It is a very deep piercing and can cause numerous problems. It also takes a long time to heal properly. Keep in mind that it has to be done by an experienced piercer because you don’t want any mistakes with this one. If done incorrectly, it can limit your movements or even prevent you from walking properly. This is a rare and extreme piercing and it’s not for everybody.
  • Corset Piercings. Corset Piercing and other forms of surface piercings are done temporarily. They can be performed on almost any surface of the skin, but the most popular spots include: the back, on the calves, and on the front of the neck. In fact, they can be placed anywhere where there’s enough soft tissue to pierce. It’s important that the chosen area is relatively large because these piercings are done in decorative patterns so they are typically performed in pairs and groups.