February 28th, 2013
I received a message from someone who got a lip piercing and was concerned about how it was healing:
Hi! 8 days ago I got my lip pierced professionally. I was pierced with the standard gauge at 16g stud. My cleaning regimen goes like this: Every morning after my first smoke and breakfast, I brush my teeth, do a 50/50 mouthwash with water and Listerine, and clean the outside with antibacterial soap. When I get out of the shower I do a sea-salt soak for 3-5 minutes depending on how it feels. These actions are per my piercer. After I eat or smoke I swish sea-salt water. I do the morning regimen before bed, skipping the last sea-salt soak. My problem resides on the inside of my lip where the back of the stud sits against my lip. I'm trying not to panic, but I am known to overcook things when I notice something weird going on on/in my body. What I SEE looks like a small mound of scar tissue; it's not very red and there is no leakage other than small amounts of lymph. I should tell you that this scar tissue (or whatever it might be) is aiding in the back of the stud leaving a mark where it sits. What I FEEL is a small lump under the skin just next to my piercing. If I show anyone what I am feeling, they would not see it as it is impossible to see under the scar tissue. It worries me because I don't want to take it out or get rid of it. It looks pretty and I love it. I wouldn't think it is because my long stud is too short because it sticks out a ways in front.
February 26th, 2013
I received a message from a piercee who was concerned about her severely troubled navel piercing:
I've had a belly piercing since sept 2011 and it has refused to heal. At first, I thought it was because I hadnt changed the ring, but then I did n it became worse. I dont know what 2 do, n I dont want 2 take it off cos I've grown accustomed to it. Bt now it brings out yellow pus, n it itches n looks like its about to fall off. Please what do I do? And if push comes to shove and I have to take it off, when it heals, can I get another piercing? Thanks a lot And I also want to know if I cn repierce it after it heals if I unfortunately have to take it off. Thank you very much.
You're having a serious problem there. I believe part of it is from poor quality jewelry, and part of it is that your piercing is too shallow. It is clearly on its way out.
I HIGHLY suggest you do some saline soaks to foster drainage. You don't want to trap any infection inside when you abandon the piercing.
Information on saline soaks is here: http://piercingbible.com/saline-soaks
February 24th, 2013
I received a message from a piercee who was concerned about her nipple piercing, which appeared to be migrating:
I had both nipples done back in August. The one had to be removed about 3 months later because of rejection and now I think the other is doing the same.
I have been under a lot of stress but I'm just not sure. It's not in the same place anymore.
Yes, sorry-that does appear to be migration.
Did you use the same jewelry the first time?
I noticed your jewelry appears to have a matte finish and that can cause problems, especially in a new/healing piercing. Initial jewelry should have a super-smooth, high polish mirror finish for safety. It is unclear whether the ring would have been wide enough for optimal safety when the piercing was new. The part of a ring that passes through the tissue should be relatively straight.
You should probably go ahead and remove that ring now to avoid further tissue damage.
February 21st, 2013
I received a message from a woman who was considering the possibility of having multiple nipple piercings:
So I got both my nipples pierced quite a while back. Because of my profession I can't get any visible piercings and I'm not quite ready yet to go into genital ones. So that's why I was thinking of getting my nipples pierced again
What are some of the perks and risks of getting additional nipple piercings? My piercings are also not horizontal, but diagonal. I let my piercer do this on purpose, for aesthetic reasons. Is it possible to put the second pair straight on there, so it makes a diagonal cross?
To some extent your anatomy will determine appropriate (or possible) locations for added jewelry. If the second piercing would end up too close to the surface, or too far into the areola, those are potential issues. Also there's another consideration, depending on how much space you have, and therefore how much tissue is in between the jewelry: it can pinch on the interior. And, if the jewelry is quite close together, it is not uncommon that due to pressure, the skin in between thins and dissipates, and the jewelry rests metal to metal inside. This is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you experience discomfort from interior pinching.
The drawing from my book, The Piercing Bible, shows the appearance of a double nipple piercing in an "iron cross" formation.
February 21st, 2013
I recieved a message from a woman whose new navel piercing didn't look the way she had hoped it would:
I had this done yesterday and was wondering if it looks this way because im too fat or did the guy mess up and should of pierced me further OUT of my belly button. I got this in hopes that it would help me feel more confident about myself but instead I feel so much worse. I mean my belly button ate the whole bottom part.
Thanks for your message. Did the piercer stand you up to mark the placement? That usually helps a skilled piercer to mark a piercing that will show better when you're standing as the baseline. Naturally, it looks different when your body is in different positions….
If you're not happy with your new piercing, you should consider removing it. You may want to talk to the piercer first about a possible repiercing in a more forward placement for the underside, and the top commensurately further from the edge of the lip (like I marked on your photo).
Another option is to change the jewelry to a j-curve.
You can get them here if your piercer doesn't stock them:
February 19th, 2013
I got a message from a piercee who was concerned about his new navel piercing:
Hi! I got my navel pierced ten days ago and it's still really red and tender. I bumped it pretty hard about a week ago and then again just last night. I came home from work last night and there was blood crusted on the bottom and I was really concerned, so on my way home I bought an eye patch and did my salt soak and then slept with the eyepatch on it (I'm a stomach sleeper and the eye patch prevents me from rolling over for some reason) and it felt a little less tender today, but when I came home from work tonight, I sat down to look at my piercing, and there was blood and pus! The lighting in my bathroom is really yellow so I couldn't tell how yellow it was (but it was definitely not green or dark yellow). The top hole is especially tender to the touch. I'm just paranoid about the possibility of it being infected, migrating, or possibly even rejecting! I would love for you to take a look at these pictures (I had just done my salt soak so there's a big ring and it's a little flush from the warm water) and tell me if it looks overly inflamed for being so new, if I should go to the doctor, or if I should just keep doing what I'm doing because it's normal. Thank you so much!
Also, I got it pierced at Club Tattoo and the guy who did it had a really nice portfolio. And is it ok to sleep with the eye patch on or will that hinder the airing out? Thank you!
Given the recent trauma, and how new the piercing is, I'd say it is looking pretty normal.
February 17th, 2013
This piercer had thoughtful questions about piercing babies ears:
I have your book, The Piercing Bible, and I consult it before I perform any piercings. I appreciate your cautious yet sensible attitude.
At the moment I'm looking for some information about piercing a baby's ears and I can't seem to find it in the book. Would you mind answering a couple of questions?
Is there a minimum age that you recommend the piercee should be? What gauge needle is optimal and is there a particular jewellery style which is preferable? Also, do you have any tips on how to hold the baby?
Thanks for the positive feedback about my book; I appreciate it! Perhaps you'd be willing to post a review somewhere, or some comments on my guest book? If so, the entry form for a new posting is at the bottom of this page:
I've never pierced an infant or anyone too young to consent. If you plan to do it, I would suggest looking for some online forums to get input from piercers who do pierce infants.
If you check in The Piercing Bible on page 251, you will find my perspectives clarified (though directed to parents rather than piercers):
Infant and Child Ear Piercing
February 15th, 2013
I received a message from a woman who was concerned about her new Vertical Clit Hood piercing, which was still bleeding several days later:
Hi! I got my VCH piercing done and a day later got my period (great right) i take midol and aleve for menstrual cramps. My piercing is fine, the only thing im worried about is that its still bleeding slightly 4 days later. Im not sure if its bc of the medicine or if i should be worried or not. What should i do?! Please help! Thank you (:
Bleeding for that time frame is not necessarily abnormal, especially with a genital piercing, as that is an area with good vascularity (blood supply). And menstruation can increase likelihood of bleeding, as can taking those medications.
If you are doing any saline soaks, STOP until the piercing has not bled for a few days. Also, you may need to leave a little bit of clotted blood around the piercing and jewelry for 12-24 hours or so, as thoroughly cleaning it off could result in ongoing bleeding. Don't worry--because the blood is your own bodily fluid, there are no issues with increased risk of infection. It is the bodily fluids of others that you must avoid during healing.
Feel free to send a clear close up photo or two if you want me to check the placement and jewelry fit.