What I wish I knew before getting my nose pierced (and what you should consider!)

Poked and prodded


By Redzhanna Jazmin

Image: Instagram/@fkatwigs
What I wish I knew before getting my nose pierced (and what you should consider!)

Nose rings are all the rage right now, but are they worth it? If you’re thinking about getting pierced, Beauty Editor Red shares what you need to consider beforehand.

I was 17 when I got my nose pierced. Then, around a year later, I got my septum pierced too. Eight years on, I’d say I have no regrets, but there are a few things I wish I’d known before I got poked. For starters, I probably would have gone to a piercing studio with a less ugly starter jewellery range. That, and I’d probably do a little more research into my piercer and the actual piercing.

With that in mind, if you’re thinking of getting your nose pierced too, here are all the things I wish I’d known before getting pierced, and the things you should know too. Let’s get into it!

READ: Piercing guide: Everything you need to know before getting poked


Placement is key

Image: Instagram/@fkatwigs

This should come as no surprise but once you’re poked, the hole isn’t going anywhere. For your nostril placement, you’ll want to make sure that the hole falls where your nostril crease is—this way, should you ever want to take the piercing out, the scar will be concealed by the fold somewhat, thus making it less noticeable. The jewellery you eventually want to wear also matters—your piercer will angle the needle differently depending on whether you’re going to be using a hoop or a stud. So, just make sure that you’ve had that conversation with them beforehand.

It’s also important to check that you like the piercing placement from the side before you get pierced. I got mine done just a millimetre too far forward and it has bugged me ever since. Not enough to let it heal over and get it redone, but enough that I do notice it. What I should have done before confirming the piercing is use faux hoops or gem stickers to check that I liked the placement from all angles. Oh well—you live and learn!

For my septum, my piercing was perfectly placed, and I have absolutely no complaints. For starters, my septum piercing goes only through flesh—no cartilage. This means that not only is it in the most flattering position, but it also means that the piercing process was far less painful than it could have been. It goes without saying—going through a thin flap of skin is always going to suck less than being pierced through cartilage.



Getting your nose pierced feels… weird


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Florence Pugh (@florencepugh)

I’m not going to lie—getting your nose pierced sucks. Hard. I’d say of all my piercings—of which I have 13, most of which go through cartilage—the nose and septum rank at number three of worst piercings to get, in my opinion. Now, this isn’t necessarily because it was extremely painful. Really, it was just the reaction that followed. Because your nose is so close to your tear ducts, the sensation of getting pierced shoots right up your nose and gets you tearing up. It’s not the worst pain I’ve felt getting pierced, but it was the weirdest and my least favourite to endure.


The healing process is a pain

Image: Instagram/@meganfox

When it comes to healing a nose piercing, it typically takes anywhere from two to six months. For me, the healing process of my nostril piercing took well over a year, and it wasn’t pretty. Throughout my gruesome healing process, I experienced every possible complication, from stubborn piercing bumps (AKA hypertrophic scarring) to infections to allergic reactions and more. Mind you, this all happened despite me following my piercer’s aftercare instructions to a T. Unfortunately, my body just didn’t react too well to the piercing. That said, in the end, I did come out okay, but it was hell having to go through the whole process.

My septum ring, on the other hand, pretty much healed up within a week. I have no explanation for this discrepancy—some piercings just heal better than others. Either way, while you’ll probably have a better healing experience than I did, it’s worth keeping in mind that adverse reactions are a possibility.

It should also be mentioned that in the time that your piercing is healing, you should not be changing it out unless you’ve got the help and approval of your piercer. So, make sure that you choose jewellery that you’re happy to sport for months on end so you’re not tempted to swap your jewellery out before it’s fully healed!


Don’t start with a hoop


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by (@willowsmith)

Speaking of wearing the right jewellery, here’s another thing to keep in mind. For the girls who are hoping to sport a hoop right off the bat, I’ve got bad news—it might have to wait ’til your piercing is fully healed. Some piercers prefer not to start their clients off with a hoop purely because there is too much risk of irritation. Think about it this way—with a stud, it can really only rotate in one spot. A hoop, however, can slide around freely and is more likely to get caught on things, increasing your risk of injury and irritation to the area and slowing down the healing process. Also, it can put you at a higher risk of developing piercing bumps.

Ultimately, whether or not you can get pierced with a hoop depends on your piercer. Some do offer hoops as an option for starter jewellery, but in my experience, most would recommend going with a stud.

You also have to consider that when you get pierced, the gauge of the needle and jewellery tends to be pretty big. I got pierced with an 18G needle, which measures in at about 1mm. I’ve since downsized to a 20G hoop (approximately 0.8mm in thickness)—personally, an 18G hoop was just far too thick and bulky for my preferences. So, if you want to get pierced with a hoop right off the bat, consider that it might be a lot thicker and bulkier than you’d initially imagined.


The takeaway

All in all, I still love my nose piercings even after all this time. So, if a nose piercing is something you’re sure you want, I’d definitely recommend just going for it. That said, before you head to your piercer, make sure to do your research, ask your piercer loads of questions to clear up confusion and be smart about your choice of piercing studio and jewellery. Good luck and happy poking!


For more piercings reads like this, click here.

Explore More