Nose Piercing 101: Choosing the Right Jewelry

Updated on March 14, 2018
vineliner57 profile image

Having gone through the pain and hassle (more than once) of poorly done piercings that get infected, I am always looking for a better way.

Nose Piercing Tips and Tricks

Nose piercings have become far more widely accepted these days, especially compared to their reputation before. Fewer employers these days completely ban them, although some may ask that workers pick flesh colored nose rings or require them to wear studs of a particular size or shape.

If you work outside of your home, be sure you keep the policies of your workplace in mind when choosing your starter nose rings — or you may be forced to make a painful decision that could result not only in the loss of your piercing but even the loss of your job.

It is very important to select one that suits your lifestyle as well having it adhere to any possible work restrictions since you will need to wear that particular nose ring for a while as the piercing heals over.

This isn't the time to choose a Hello Kitty nose ring, nose bone jewelry, or some other outlandish nose ring that may draw issues at work and/or school.

Read on for a few more things you may not have considered when it comes to getting your nose pierced for the first time.

Nose Stud Piercing
Nose Stud Piercing | Source

Choose Wisely

Start out with a small ring or stud and work your way up. You can't change your nose ring for several weeks while it's healing. A simple stud makes a great starter for most people, and you will be changing it out before too long. You can then change to whatever suits your tastes better when that time comes.

However, there are concerns, aside from fit and ability to wear it, that you should also take into consideration when deciding on the right one for your tastes.

If you have a low pain tolerance threshold, you should consider the smallest kinds — those would be the 20 gauge ones. The lower the number of the gauge, the bigger the hole that's required for the piercing. For example, this means that a 16 gauge piercing is bigger compared to a 20 gauge one.

Hoop Style Nose Ring
Hoop Style Nose Ring | Source

Is Bigger Really Better?

Beyond the actual size of the piercing, there are a few additional factors to keep in mind so you can get the ideal nose ring to suit your needs and tastes.

  • Real diamond ones are the craze in some circles. They are often elegant, and they are stylish in almost any setting. Keep in mind though that they offer some risk of causing damage to your nose should they get caught on something and pulled out or stretched.
  • Corkscrew nose rings, however, can be risky in certain lines of work or if you participate in activities that have you doing a lot of "up close" work where the ring may get caught or pulled on in some way.
  • The same holds true with big nose rings that are giant hoops that hang down, nose bone jewelry, as well as some larger straight nose rings.

Consider these above factors as you explore the large variety of rings available so you can choose the one that fits your lifestyle best.

Large-gauge septum piercing
Large-gauge septum piercing | Source

Proper Piercing Care

Nose ring infections can cause some undesired outcomes. Caring properly for your piercing can make a world of difference in your overall nose ring experience.

Even before you begin to explore where you can buy nose rings, you should think long and hard about where to get the best person to do the actual piercing.

  • Deciding on the best piercer may help you avoid countless infections as well as problems from your piercing that could have negative impacts on your wallet and your health.
  • To start, it's wise to select surgical steel or titanium nose rings that are less likely to irritate your piercing. Some individuals have a sensitivity to certain metals and these two metals are usually safe for sensitive skin.
  • Should you develop a sensitivity to the metal used in your starter nose rings, you may want to remove the ring and begin the process over once the wound heals completely.
  • A lot of people don't like re-piercing due to an infection, so it is a good idea to start with a tamer metal and then make the switch to the 14k gold nose rings or perhaps white gold nose studs after the initial piercing has healed, then it is okay to switch.

Piercing Using Nose Piercing Needle
Piercing Using Nose Piercing Needle | Source

Keeping Your Piercing Clean

A clean nose is a healthy nose.

  • It's very important for the health of your nose piercings to always wash your hands before you touch the area around your piercing or handle your piercings to change, adjust, or remove them. Hygiene and cleanliness are very important for keeping your piercings infection free.
  • To help keep the piercing itself clean and free from infection, clean using a proper sterile saline solution every day to clean the area.
  • The majority of quality piercers will offer cleaning kits to help you care for your infection. Many will supply them with your initial piercing and you can usually return for more when you run out of the solution.

Making the Change

  • Keep your spare nose rings sterile when not in use.
  • When the time comes to change out for different ones, it is important that you put them in a clean container or storage box rather than just leaving them lying around exposed to dirt, dust, and germs.
  • In the event you drop your nose rings or the screws during the process of changing them out, make sure to thoroughly clean them prior to inserting them in your nose or putting them in your storage container where they might contaminate other nose rings that are stored there.

Once you learn how to take care of your nose rings piercings, you have won half the battle for a healthy piercing that you will be able to keep and enjoy for as long as you wish.

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Questions & Answers

  • I just changed my nose stud to a smaller length and it was fine last night but now it is quite sensitive. Is that normal? Or should I remove it and put my other one in?

    Is this a fairly new piercing? If so, you may want to remove it and replace it with the longer one until the pain subsides. If it is an established piercing, it may be that the new nose stud is simply too short. Either way, keep an eye out for any signs of infection. A little pain can happen when changing jewelry, but too much is a sign that something is wrong.

  • I just pierced my nose myself at home. What do I need to do for the inside of my nose?

    If it is swollen, you should determine what is causing the swelling. It may be an infection, a reaction to the material the ring is made of, or just a natural reaction to the piercing. If it is the latter, keep it clean, and ice it down, being careful not to put ice directly on the piercing, as it can cause damage to the skin. If it is infected, use a saline solution on it, and if you can't get the infection under control, you may want to see a healthcare professional.

  • I pierced my nose by myself and put a hoop in, will I be ok?

    Keep it clean with a sterile saline solution and you should be fine.

© 2012 Hal Gall

Reeder Feedback - What do you think?

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    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      7 days ago from Bloomington, IN

      That's a tough one. I don't recall hearing anything about raising the age of consent to 70!

    • profile image

      Sherri 

      8 days ago

      I’m going to be 70 and want to get my nose pierced. My family say NO! The only piercing I have is my ears. Comments..

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      3 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      It's my understanding that stainless steel and titanium are a much better than gold as far as safety. Gold and silver are softer meals and more prone to irritation or infection. You also need to watch out for some of the fake gold out there, as it can cause a lot of problems, especially with new piercings.

    • profile image

      Mouli Rana 

      3 months ago

      I have worn silver bangles, earrings previously, but usually it irritates my skin. No problem with gold though. Will stainless steel and titanium be safe for me? Or gold will be better?

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      4 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      Since it has been a few hours since you wrote this, you probably know better than me if it worked. If you don't have much more than some minor discomfort, I would say you are okay.

      What is a "hippie store"? Is that anything like a "head shop" where you can buy things like incense, lava lamps, crystals, black lights, smoking accessories, etc.

      :)

    • profile image

      A person 

      4 months ago

      I got a fresh nose ring about 2 and a half weeks ago and I've changed it today with a new ring that's rainbow I got from a hippie store... Is that good? Or dangerous to already change it?

    • profile image

      jae 

      9 months ago

      always get it done by a professional !! you want to avoid any nasty scar tissue or misplacing the piercing!! do your research before hand and call up your piercer to make sure you are good to go! always keep the piercing clean and keep the jewelry you have sterile even if not in use

    • profile image

      keviyonne Harrison 

      11 months ago

      I pierced my own nose about 2 months ago . when I first did it , it felt sore , leaked clear liquids , and was red . I changed the ring several times (including losing them, requiring me to put "foreign" earrings in ). Currently , it is at the most strongest point of healing . I can go a week without an earring in , and it rarely hurts . but my question is , I really like horseshoe piercings , but my parents won't let me get a septum ring . so can I use a horseshoe piercing in my nostril ?

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      13 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      Depending on your level of sensitivity, I would say yes, but I would make sure any infections are cleared up. Not to the point of the hole healing completely over, or you will have to pierce it again.

    • profile image

      Tana 

      13 months ago

      I pierced my own nose yesterday, i currently have a small stud in but I don't know what's it's made of or how big (I bought it out of a jewelry case in a peddlers mall lol). I think it's Sterling silver. If it starts getting infected can I just buy a more quality ring, clean my nose, and put the new ring in?

    • profile image

      Ellah 

      14 months ago

      I pierced my nose two months back but the pin am using has a stopper but when tried changing it I realised that there was some new fresh developing inform of a scar,,, should I remove the pin am worried

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      15 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      I would think so. Wiggle or twist it a little to make sure it isn't all crusty and stuck to your nose.

    • profile image

      Msdome 

      15 months ago

      will it be alright to change my nose ring after two month

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      15 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      What material is the hoop made from? Is it different than what you had in before? Are you using a different cleaning solution? Something is causing the irritation. Try letting it heal a bit and put in one of your old studs and see what happens.

    • profile image

      Madeline Gonzalez 

      15 months ago

      Is it normal for a nose piercing to burn after changing from a stud to a hoop for the first time? I've had my piercing for close-ish to a year and I've changed between studs multiple times, but this is the first time I've put in a hoop.

    • profile image

      Christina 

      15 months ago

      I have had my nose ring for two weeks now and I am very happy with it. The only concern that I have is how to swap it out once it is healed. I have the corkscrew one and I am sure I will figure it out after it is completely healed. I clean mine 3 times a day with soap and water. I do not touch it, otherwise, and it is healing nicely. I have the small one and my work allows it because they said it is simple. I will most likely leave it in until my birthday to ensure it is completely healed. That will be about 6 months. I just want to be safe, rather than sorry.

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      21 months ago from Bloomington, IN

      @shyteria: some pain is normal, but I would keep an eye out for any possible infections.

    • profile image

      shyteria 

      21 months ago

      how can i get my nose piercing to stop hurting because i just got it 2 days ago

    • profile image

      conord16 

      2 years ago

      Is there a size difference for studs and rings as I'm concidering getting a nose ring but would also like to be able to put in a stud

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      3 years ago from Bloomington, IN

      If you tend to be on the sensitive side as far as piercings and the like, then titanium is definitely the way to go. There are a lot of folks who do fine with surgical steel on their first piercings, but if there is any doubt, stick with titanium.

    • profile image

      Pierced 

      3 years ago

      "it's wise to select surgical steel or titanium nose rings that are less likely to irritate your piercing" - false. Surgical steel is not good choice in the beginning because it includes nickel and can cause allergic reaction because of it. Titanium is the only good choice. After the piercing is healed surgical steel can be considered as an option.

    • vineliner57 profile imageAUTHOR

      Hal Gall 

      4 years ago from Bloomington, IN

      @Coffee-Break: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, as they say!

    • Coffee-Break profile image

      Dorian Bodnariuc 

      4 years ago from Ottawa, Ontario Canada

      Piercing, like tattooing, is a nice way to express yourself. Nose piercing can be very beautiful, if done with taste.

    • profile image

      miaponzo 

      5 years ago

      I have had a nose piercing for over 30 years.. and I love it! (Even before it was fashionable!!!!

    • FallenAngel 483 profile image

      FallenAngel 483 

      5 years ago

      Excellent advice for anyone considering a piercing, well done.

    • JoolsObsidian LM profile image

      JoolsObsidian LM 

      5 years ago

      Cheers for the information - really useful!

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