Congratulations on your new piercing! The success of your piercing depends heavily on the aftercare. While we do our part to ensure that your piercing is performed with the utmost care and precision, the client must also carefully follow all suggested aftercare tips to help the piercing recover and settle.
PIERCING AFTERCARE INSTRUCTIONS
The most important focus when caring for your piercing is hygiene. Try your best to keep the area as clean as possible, away from contamination and irritants.
⚠️Wash your hands prior to touching the piercing; leave it alone except when cleaning. If you need to touch the piercing site, only do so with clean hands!!
⚠️You do not need to rotate the jewelry!!
⚠️Showering and washing your hair is ok! Do not bathe your piercing in a bathtub, as bathtubs can harbor bacteria.
⚠️Change your pillow regularly if you are healing piercings on the ear and face. Be mindful of bedding hygiene when healing piercings on the body. Wear clean, comfortable, breathable clothing that protects your piercing while you are sleeping.
⚠️Stay healthy! Your body will do most of the recovery work, so staying healthy is actually the most important! The healthier your lifestyle, the easier it will be for your piercing to heal. Keep up with your vitamins, get enough sleep and eat a nutritious diet. Exercise during healing is fine but listen to your body.
⚠️Because a fresh piercing is basically an open wound, keeping the piercing site clean and free from contamination will prevent bacterial infections.
Leave your piercing alone – don’t touch it unless you are cleaning the piercing!
Specifically tuned for the local smoggy and humid climate of Hong Kong:
I recommend a two-step process of (1) using a mild skin cleanser in the shower to degrease/ clean the general skin around the site, and also (2) use a saline solution to irrigate/flush the actual piercing.
Clients that are experienced with piercings can develop their own aftercare routine best suited for themselves, but generally the idea is to always keep the piercing site clean and free from bacteria.
Do not remove the jewelry during cleaning! Do not rotate the jewelry!
🚿IN THE SHOWER: Use a drop of cleanser with your finger’s gentle touch – lather away surface sebum, dead skin accumulation, dried discharge, make up, etc.
🥛Saline Soak: 2 times per day, Morning + Night 3-5mins each time. This step is very important – Consistency is key!
❗️DRY the piercing using a clean disposable tissue.❗️Do not use your old towel as it can harbor bacteria. Do not let your piercing air dry to prevent saline / discharge build-up.
🦠Saline dehydrates the bacteria’s cell effectively killing it, and the soaking method helps reduce inflammation. The focus is to envelop the entire piercing site into the saline so the solution can penetrate into the piercing channel to flush out irritants. This can also help dissolve away dried matter and help irrigate hard to reach piercings.
SURFACE LEVEL CLEANING:
SPRAY the entire piercing site with NeilMed Piercing Aftercare Spray. Make sure you are blasting the piercing site with the saline mist. Use a clean tissue to dry the area. Make sure to dry the piercing after spraying because moisture is a breeding ground for bacteria!
DRY by gently patting with clean, disposable paper products. Cloth towels can trap bacteria and snag on jewelry causing injury.
NeilMed Piercing Aftercare spray is the only sterile saline spray that is designed to assist in healing fresh piercings. This spray is used by the piercers at Maria Tash and also highly recommended by many APP piercers. Can be purchased for $150 hkd by itself (or +$100 with piercing service).
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 part of your daily hygiene routine, normal but smelly bodily secretions may accumulate.
• A piercing may seem healed before the healing process is complete. This is because tissue heals from the outside in, and although it feels fine, the interior remains fragile. 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, keep jewelry in—do not leave it empty.
WHY YOU SHOULD AVOID TEA TREE OIL
HINTS AND TIPS
You can change the jewelry after the piercing is fully healed. Use good judgement!! While cleaning the piercing, check if the piercing is sore, does it still feel sensitive? If the piercing is sore, or sensitive do not remove the jewelry!!
• Unless there is a problem with the size, style, or material of the initial jewelry, leave it in the place for the entire healing period.
• Leave jewelry in at all times. Even old or well-healed piercing can shrink or close in minutes even 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, simply remove the jewelry (or I can remove it for you) and continue cleaning the piercing until the hole closes. In most cases only a small mark will remain.
• In the event an infection is suspected, quality jewelry or an inert alternative should be left in place to allow for drainage or the infection. If the jewelry is removed, the surface cells can close up, which can seal the infection inside the piercing channel and result in an abscess. Do not remove jewelry unless instructed to by a medical professional.
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 3M® 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.
TROUBLESHOOTING YOUR PIERCING
WHAT CAN I DO IF MY PIERCING IS IRRITATED?
When your piercing is irritated, the best way to soothe that issue is to do a Saline Soak (as explained in our Aftercare Guide). Even piercings that are well healed can sometimes flair up if cleaning has stopped. Depending on location, you can choose to use NeilMed Piercing Aftercare (sold by me) or follow our suggested Saline Soak/ Sea Salt Soak.