Nose Piercing Placement
The majority of nose piercings are done in the supra-alar crease which is where your nostril naturally flares, this can usually be seen when you smile. The tissue in this area is thinner than the rest of the nostril which helps it heal faster and feel a little less painful when being pierced.
The piercing can be placed higher or lower than this depending on personal preference and what look you want to achieve. If you are looking to wear a ring once your piercing has healed it is usually best to pierce slightly lower than this crease to allow for a smaller ring to be worn.
Procedure – What To Expect
When getting your nostril pierced there are many different ways that piercers perform the piercing.
Some prefer to use a large needle receiving tube or forceps to support the tissue from the inside and to stop the chance of the needle hitting the inside of your nose, others prefer to use a clamp to hold the tissue whilst being piercing. Dependent on your piercer they will either use a cannula needle which is sheathed in a plastic tubing which the jewellery is placed into before being inserted into the piercing, or they will use a hollow blade needle where the jewellery is inserted into the hollow end and follows the needle through the piercing. Both of these are perfectly safe.
One thing you will want to look out for is a piercing gun being used on a nostril piercing, this is something you want to stay away from for the following reasons:
a) the implement used to put it in will have restrictions as it is quite large and often cannot reach the position for a good piercing meaning that the piercing are generally lower than the natural dip
b) The sharpened jewellery is basically just forced into the flesh displacing the fibro fatty tissue which can bulk up and case a ring of raised red skin around the jewellery as the skin tries to get back into position but cannot because of the jewellery.
c) For the same reasons bruising, swelling and trauma may occur which in turn increases the likelihood of infection and slows down healing.
d) The jewellery used in piercing guns has butterfly backings which will rub and cause discomfort to the wall of the septum. These butterfly backings also make the jewellery extremely hard to remove.
The actual piercing 9 times out of 10 will make your eyes water, usually the one on the same side as the piercing, so if your piercer has not given you a tissue before the piercing it is always best to request one. A small percentage of nose piercings will bleed, some will only bleed a drop whereas others will bleed for a couple of minutes, everyone is different.
Nose Jewellery & Nose Stud Tail Styles
The great thing about nose piercings is the amount of jewellery available which can help achieve a certain look you are wishing to recreate. The most common styles of jewellery use are nose studs, nose rings/bcrs/semi segment rings and labret studs/Indian nose studs.
The ‘U’ Shaped Tail
Advantages – Very secure, and when made and fitted correctly can be very comfortable.
Disadvantages – Can hang out of the nostril if the piercing is low (does not have a 1cm clearance from the bottom of the nasal cavity) or if you have a high nose peak.
The ‘Half–U’ Shaped Tail
Advantages – Secure, less metal in the nose than the full U, easy to insert in a healed nostril piercing. Can be worn in piercings that have 8mm clearance from the bottom of the nasal cavity.
Disadvantages – Once again if the piercing is too low it may hang out of the nasal cavity, however a lot of the time it can be flipped up and not be visible.
The ‘L’ Shaped Tail
Advantages – Easy to fit, not a lot of metal in the nostril, suited for most noses, not obstructive.
Disadvantages – Not as secure as the U or half U, if the piercing is swollen or at an angle the L may not clear the exit hole and will instead be push into the fatty tissue rather than through it.
The Pin/ Nose Bone Shaped Tail
Advantages – Easy to insert and change regularly and can be worn in other piercings such as the tragus.
Disadvantages – Not very secure, if your skin is not pliable the small ball on the end which holds it in can make insertion and removable harder, cannot be worn in a fresh or healing piercing due to swelling and the risk of tissue growing over the end of the stud.
If you are looking to wear a ring in your piercing there are a few options to choose from a bcr/cbr, a semi segment ring or a smooth segment ring. All of these are safe to wear and all will give the desired look. They come in a variety of sizes and gauges to fit different shaped noses. The only downside to wearing a ring is that they can be quite difficult to fit unless you live by a reputable piercer or are comfortable changing jewellery by yourself.
A bcr/cbr and a smooth segment ring may require a set of ring opening and closing pliers if you are doing it on your own.
Indian Nose Studs
Labret studs/Indian Nose Studs are occasionally used for initial piercings and healed piercings. They are more commonly worn in the Indian Culture. They are secure and can be replaced with different heads without having to take the jewellery out. They also do not need to be bent to the shape of the nose but can however be a little tricky when inserting from the inside.
Nose studs also come in various different gauge sizes such as 0.6mm, 0.8mm and 1mm (Indian Nose Studs come in 1.2mm & 1,6mm).
Piercings that are 0.6mm are usually done with a gun and small earring or if the jewellery has been changed to a thinner nose stud over time. The 0.6mm is the thinnest gauge we offer and is absolutely fine for general wear, however being so thin they are not suitable for diamond sizes over 3pt as they become very fragile.
The 0.8mm thick piercings are relatively easy to insert and is suited for most needle pierced noses and have enough thickness to be able to hold 10pt diamonds without the risk of breaking.
1mm is the thickest out of the three options BMG offer. If your nose was piercing with a needle this is generally the size that it will be unless you have changed your nose stud to a thinner gauge. The 1mm gauge nose stud cannot be used with a 1pt diamond due to it being nearly the same width, which would cause it to sink into and through the piercing.
In 2002 the European Union restricted the amount of nickel which can be used in the makeup of gold. This means that gold body jewellery made particularly in the Far East and the USA often still mix nickel into gold – nickel is an intolerable metal to approx. 14% of western ladies and 7 % of western men. Eastern cultures seem to be more tolerant.
White gold, even if it is nickel free is usually rhodium plated to make it white the plating contains some nickel. Suitable materials for cheap jewellery are titanium which can be coloured via an electrical charge being passed through it. Niobium, PVD coated metals, PTFE and high grade implantation surgical steel which can contain a trace element of nickel.
Plated gold jewellery, like all other jewellery varies in quality. Some higher quality pieces can work in piercings others cannot. For your own personal safety it is recommended to stay away from wearing plated metals in any piercing. The gold has a tendency to break and peel off which can then expose the base metal beneath and release toxins and adhesives directly into the bloodstream.
Silver (of any description and quality)
Pure silver is a metal that contains some harmful alloys that can cause contamination, irritation, discolouration and excess swelling in fresh, healing and healed piercings. Some piercings with low blood supply, such as the ear lobe are able to tolerate wearing silver but in a nose piercing it is recommended to avoid it completely.
9ct or 10ct Gold
Both 9ct Gold and 10ct Gold are the two most common golds used in the USA and Europe. With 9ct being the EU standard and 10ct being the US standard.
9ct and 10ct golds are only 37.5%/40% pure with the rest being alloyed with mostly impure metals. Low gold alloys have a tendency to corrode, and much like plated gold release metallic ions directly into the blood stream which can contaminate the wearer. Once again it is not recommended to wear this metal in a nose piercing.
14ct Yellow Gold
14ct Gold is 58.5% pure gold with the rest alloy. 14ct has been proven to safe to wear in healthy piercings especially when nickel free (like all BMG metals). The threading on 14ct gold jewellery (like on BMG’s Indian Nose studs and labret studs) is able to be maintained due to the hardening properties in the mixed alloys.
14ct Gold is a fantastic metal to be worn in healing and healed piercing provided that it is mixed nickel free. At BMG we mix our gold nickel free whilst maintaining a hard, smooth and durable metal to be worn in body piercings.
BMG’s 14ct White Gold
This is a very unusual mix of 58.5% pure with an extremely high percentage of the remaining make up being palladium.
Palladium is the sister metal of platinum and has a high tolerance for blood spore.
The metal is white so unlike normal white gold it does not need plating to bring out the luster.
Having been tried and tested by BMG for over 9 years we have not as yet had any reports of any allergic reaction. Palladium is also hard and gives the gold additional strength required for both tapped ended products, and tension clamped jewellery. It is also a cheaper alternative to platinum for nose studs.
18ct Yellow Gold
18ct gold is 75% pure and 25% alloy. It is proven to be pure when produced nickel free. Providing the gold is mixed nickel free this metal would be a great choice to wear in a nostril piercing.
18ct White Gold
Containing 17.3% nickel or palladium, 5.5% zinc and 2.2% copper is silver in appearance. Due to it containing nickel it can be toxic and its release from nickel white gold is controlled by legislation in Europe.
Alternative white gold alloys are available based on palladium, silver and other white metals, but the palladium alloys are more expensive than those using nickel. High-carat white gold alloys are far more resistant to corrosion and absolutely fine to wear in piercings.
The purest and most elite of all precious metals. A hypoallergenic metal with the lowest risk of allergic reaction.
Platinum is used in medicine particularly in the treatment of cancer.
Platinum is the perfect metal to wear in piercing so if you can afford the little extra it is highly recommended!
Concealment and Jewellery Changing
With some employers and schools not allowing nose piercings – there are various ways to conceal them. A lot of people opt to wear a retainer which will either be glass, ptfe or bioplast. These are clear materials which will have a small ball or disc which either screw on or press into the plastic. The discs and balls are available in a variety of colours to match various skin tones.
Find out more about jewellery changing here.
Changing a nose stud can be a tricky process the first few times you do it and changes with the different tail shapes. To remove your nose stud you will need to pull and twist to nose stud away from your nose following the curve of the tail (if it is a pin shaped nose stud all you will need to do is pull it out). With nose studs being so small it may be tricky handling them. To re-insert your nose stud the tail of your nose stud will need to be inserted into the piercing channel a swift twisting motion is needed to get the shaft into the piercing. If you do have trouble doing this – we have made a video to help…
Here at Body Matters Gold have a very popular piercing studio called Real in Burgess Hill (UK), and two friendly, professional & knowledgeable body piercers. If you want to book in for your nose piercing call us or email us for your appointment. Also, why not get a custom handmade diamond nose stud? Take a browse at our hand-crafted nose jewellery.