Holey Show: a piercing guide

I’ve written about my tattoos before, but long before I had ink on my body I was adorned with another altercation- metal.

Since I was 18, I’ve gotten piercings pretty regularly, usually on my birthday. It’s a strange little ritual that I’ve come to grow with every year, and this year was no different.

Jesus my mother is going to kill me. So someone make sure she doesn’t read this one.

I’ve decided to answer a few FAQs on piercings, based on the ones I’ve already had.

Ear lobes

I first had my ears done when I was five, and then had double lobes put in when I was 22. My first set was a terror- I kept playing with them, so it’s no wonder they got infected.

Does it hurt?

It’s a pinch, and it’s uncomfortable for a few seconds, but it wasn’t the worst piercing I’ve had done.

How long does it take to heal?

Lobe piercings take a very short time to heal- between four to six weeks. Keep cleaning them every day to avoid infection.

Belly button

My first piercing apart from my ears was done around my 18th birthday, and I thought I was GREAT for having it. Unfortunately, I couldn’t hold a belly button piercing, and have had to retire it since. And no, after three attempts, I don’t think I’ll do it again.

Does it hurt?

Yes, it’s a little more uncomfortable than ear lobes were to get done. Some piercers use a clamp when doing this piercing to hold it in place, which can be a little more painful than the piercing itself as it is very tight against your skin.

How long does it take to heal?

Navel piercings take quite a while to heal- about six to nine months. Daily cleaning during the healing period is essential, and be sure to wear loose fitting, natural fibre clothes such as a cotton T shirt so your new piercing can breathe.


Where is my tragus? 

If you put your finger in your ear hole, you can feel a small bump just in front of it. That’s your tragus.

Does it hurt?

The difference between a tragus piercing and the ones mentioned above is your tragus is made of cartilage- the same material as your nose. No, that’s not a bone you can feel in there. Because it’s made of tougher material, it can feel like there’s slightly more pressure when the needle goes through.

How long does it take to heal?

Like a navel piercing, tragus piercings take quite a while to heal- about six months. If you sleep on the side you got your piercing done, change your pillow every day to avoid infection.


Where is my rook

Just above your tragus the ear starts to curve. On the inside, there’s a tiny ridge. That’s your rook.

Does it hurt?

Like your tragus, the rook is made of cartilage. It wasn’t unbearable, but I found this to be my most painful piercing of all of them.

How long does it take to heal?

Rook piercings heal quite quickly- they’re usually fine after about 12 weeks. Like your tragus, change your pillow regularly to avoid infection.

General FAQS

How should I clean my piercings? 

The best way to clean a piercing is a saline solution. You can easily make this at home by mixing a quarter teaspoon of sea salt with 200ml of warm water. Immerse the piercing in the water for about five to ten minutes- you can even FEEL it cleaning itself.

Make sure, though, that the salt you use is non iodised sea salt. Table salt will only dry out your piercing, as the chemicals in it are way too harsh for a fresh wound. Don’t use alcohol on the piercing either.

Oh, but please. Don’t take this as medical advice. Maya would not approve.




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