Piercing Aftercare


1.) At the end of your shower, lather soap with water. Apply foam to pierced area.
2.) Wiggle or push jewelry back and forth 5 to 10 times to get soap into piercing. Repeat wiggle 5 to 10 more times under running water to rinse soap back out.


Oral Piercings:

Liquid soap once a day only (on the outside; do not wiggle jewelry) and non-alcoholic mouth wash four to five times a day (depending on if you’re a smoker). Regardless of how many cigarettes you smoke a day or how many times you eat a day.

What is Normal?

Initially: some bleeding, localized swelling, tenderness, or bruising.

– During healing: some discoloration, itching, secretion of a whitish-yellow fluid (not pus) that will form some crust on the jewelry. The tissue may tighten around the jewelry as it heals.
– Once healed: the jewelry may not move freely in the piercing; DO NOT force it. If you fail to include cleaning your piercing as a part of your daily hygiene routine, normal but smelly bodily secretions may accumulate.
– A piercing may seem healed before healing is complete. This is because piercings heal from the outside in, and although it feels healed the tissue remains fragile on the inside. BE PATIENT, and keep cleaning throughout the entire healing period.
– Even healed piercings can shrink or close in minutes after having been there for years! This varies from person to person; if you like your piercing, leave the jewelry in place.

What to do

Wash your hands prior to touching the piercing; leave it alone except when cleaning. It is not necessary to rotate the jewelry while healing except possibly during cleaning.
– Make sure your bedding is kept clean and changed regularly. Wear clean, comfortable breathable clothing that protects your piercing while sleeping.
– Showering is safer than taking a bath, because bathtubs tend to harbor bacteria. If you would like to take a bath, clean the tub well before each use.

What to Avoid

Avoid undue trauma such as friction from clothing, excessive motion of the area, playing with the jewelry and vigorous cleaning. These activities can cause the formation of unsightly and uncomfortable scar tissue, migration, prolonged healing, and other complications.
– Avoid the use of alcohol, sea salt, hydrogen peroxide, Betadine, Hibiclens, ointment or anything with the word “OIL” in it. (These products trap dirt and germs inside a piercing and precent oxygen from reaching the wound. They may work well for cuts and scrapes but are not good for piercings.)
– Avoid over cleaning. This can delay your healing and irritate your piercing.
– Avoid all oral contact, rough play, and contact with others’ bodily fluids on or near your piercing during healing.
-Avoid all beauty and personal care products on or around the piercing including cosmetics, lotions, and sprays, etc.
– Don’t hang charms or any object from your jewelry until the piercing is fully healed.
– Ask your piercer about times good for swimming. Different piercings have different times.

Hints and Jewelry Tips

Unless there is a problem with the size, style, or material of the initial jewelry, leave it in place for the entire healing period. A qualified piercer should perform any necessary jewelry change that occurs during healing. See APP website for “Picking your Piercer” brochure.

– Contact your piercer if your jewelry must be temporarily removed (such as for a medical procedure). There are non-metallic jewelry alternatives.
– Leave jewelry in at all times. Even old, well-healed piercings can shrink or close in minutes after having been there for years! If removed re-insertion can be difficult or impossible.
– With clean hands or paper product, be sure to regularly check threaded ends on your jewelry for tightness. (“Righty-tighty, lefty-loosey”).
– Carry a clean spare ball in case of loss or breakage.
– Should you decide you no longer want the piercing, seek professional help in the removal of the jewelry and continue cleaning the piercing until the hole closes. In most cases only a small indentation will remain.

For Particular Areas


– A hard, vented eye patch (sold at pharmacies) can be applied under tight clothing (such as nylon stockings) or secured using a length of ace bandage around the body (to avoid irritation from adhesive). This can protect the area from restrictive clothing, excess irritation, and impact during physical activities such as contact sports.

Ear/Ear Cartilage and Facial

– Use the t-shirt trick: dress your pillow in a large, clean t-shirt and turn it nightly; one clean t-shirt provides four clean surfaces for sleeping.
– Maintain cleanliness of telephones, headphones, eyeglasses, helmets, hats and anything that contacts the pierced area.
– Use caution when styling your hair and advise your stylist of a new or healing piercing.


– The support of a tight cotton shirt or sports bra may provide protection and feel comfortable, especially for sleeping.


– In most cases you can engage in sexual activity as soon as you feel ready. Comfort and hygiene are vital.
– During healing all sexual activities must be gentle. To increase comfort and decrease trauma, soak in warm saline solution or plain water to remove any crusty matter, prior to sexual activity. – Use barriers such as condoms, dental dams, and Tegaderm, etc.* to avoid contact with a partner’s bodily fluids, even in long-term relationships.
– Use clean, disposable barriers on sex toys.
– Wash hands before touching on or near the piercing.
– Use a new container of water based lubricant.* Do not use your own saliva as a lubricant. – After sex, an additional saline soak or clean water rinse is suggested.
– Prince Albert and Apadravya piercings can bleed freely for the first few days.
– If using soap, urinate after cleaning any piercing that is near the urethra. Each body is unique and healing times vary considerably. If you have any questions, please contact your piercer.

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