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Nose piercings rank among the most popular mainstream piercings there are. While global stats aren’t readily available, recent research suggests that around 19% of the female population has them. That’s not to say men can’t also sport these fun piercings, they just happen to be more popular among the female demographic.

Ready to get your own nose piercing? Before hopping into the chair at your local piercing shop, you should first find out all you can about your soon to be body accessory.

For example, did you know that there are a multitude of differing nose piercings you can get? Do you know what to expect throughout the process? What types of jewellery options there are? How to care for your pierced nose afterwards?

Don’t’ worry, all those questions and more will be covered in this guide. Read on to learn everything you need to know before getting your nose pierced.

Why are Nose Piercings so Popular?

There are a number of reasons why nose piercings have been a popular choice through the ages. That’s right, the history of nose piercings dates back for centuries.

  1. Cultural and/or Religious Reasons In India, for example, females often get their nose pierced at the time of marriage as a sign of honour to the Goddess Parvathi and to symbolize and denote that they are no longer a single woman. Other cultures such as those of Pakistan, Nepal and Australia have also incorporated nose piercings into their culture.
  2. Fashion / Style A more mainstream reason for a nose piercing is as an aesthetic enhancement or accessory. Given the range of jewellery and styles available, nose piercings can complement and enhance just about any look.
  3. Individual / Self-Expression For some, piercings represent an outward symbol of self-expression and individuality.
  4. Scientific / Medical Reasons While studies in traditional Western medicine are scarce, there are disciplines of Eastern alternative and holistic medicine that claim certain pressure points in the nose can be triggered by a piercing for certain health benefits.

Nose Piering Locations – what options are there?

There are different places on the nose that can be pierced. In some countries these locations hold meaning. In India, for example, women are more likely to pierce the left nostril. They believe that this will make childbirth easier. It’s also a symbolic gesture of social standing and beauty.

In the end, placement comes down to personal preference. You may already have an idea of where on your nose you want your piercing. If you don’t, below are some different locations to consider discussing with your piercer.

Nostril

Some choose the left, others the right. This is one of the most commonly pierced locations on the nose. The exact position on the nostril is a matter of your nose shape and nerve structure. Once your piercing has healed you will have a variety of styles and designs of piercings to choose from with this placement.

Healing time: 4-6 months

Nostril Piercing

High Nostril

This style is common when you are considering the option to layer piercings. The piercing will be placed a little higher than a normal nostril piercing. It is good to keep in mind that this location does limit your jewellery choices. You will not be able to use hoops or rings, limiting yourself to L-shaped pins, screws, or studs. This can be a challenging place to pierce. Make sure the person doing the piercing is experienced with this location.

Healing time: 4-6 months

High Nostril Piercing

Septum

The septum piercing is quite popular. You will want to make sure the person you have doing this piercing is experienced. This is a cartilage piercing, adorning the flap between your nostrils. The septum allows for the use of horseshoe jewellery, hoops, barbells, rings, and even gauges. This is a versatile piercing, moving from dainty to fashion statement with a swap of jewellery.

Healing time: 6-8 weeks

Septum Piercing

Vertical Nose Tip

This type of piercing is not as popular due to its requirements. In order to get it, you have to have the right kind of nose structure and vain placement. The piercing begins directly above the top of the nose and ends under the nose. Make sure this piercing is right for you. The procedure is lengthy and should only be done by someone with experience. The jewellery recommended for this piercing is the curved barbell.

Healing time: 9+ months

Nasallang

Once finished, this piercing will look like you have both nostrils pierced. In reality, you will have a single piercing that goes through the whole nose. It will start at one nostril, go through the cartilage, and out the other nostril. The procedure is complicated and you will want someone with experience. The piercing should be done in one swift movement. Once it’s done, you will be able to use post and barbell jewellery. There are many different styles so you will not be too limited by the placement.

Healing time: 4-6 months

Bridge

There is a fear that some people have about this piercing. They like the look, but the amount of cartilage and bone in this location causes some to discount it as an option. This piercing doesn’t actually go through any bone or cartilage. Due to this, it is more likely to heal faster than the other piercings. The needle used to pierce goes through the skin at the top of the nose.

There is a higher risk of migration with this piercing. Migration happens when your body rejects the piercing and starts pushing it out of the skin. If this happens you will have to remove the piercing. Your piercer may recommend using a curved barbell to lessen the chances of migration.

Healing time: 8-12 weeks

What to Expect when Getting your Nose Pierced

Once you have chosen where you want your piercing, it’s time to put some thought into where you’re going to get it done. You will want to find a shop that offers high-quality service with experienced employees.

Sterilize – Wherever you get it done, you will want to make sure it is a clean and sterilized location. The person doing the piercing should put on sterile gloves before touching anything. If they don’t do this, make sure you remind them. You will not want an infection after getting your piercing. They will also sterilize your skin or cartilage area before piercing.

Marking – It’s very important that your piercer mark your skin to know exactly where to put the piercing. Make sure and speak up about where they are marking, once it’s done there’s no going back. Your piercer should allow you to see where they have marked before piercing.

Tools – A nose piercing should only be done using a needle. If you get to the actual piercing stage and they pull out a piercing gun, get up and leave. A gun is not an easily cleaned tool and can spread infection. There is also a risk of tissue damage when using a gun. It may cause complications and health problems down the road. A new hollow needle is more sanitary and safer than a gun.

Piercing – The actual procedure takes only a few minutes. After it’s done, the area around the piercing will be cleaned. Pay attention to the aftercare instructions, they are very important. Piercings can result in complications. Ask for your piercer’s contact information in case you have aftercare questions.

Nostril & Septum Piercing

How Much will Getting your Nose Pierced Hurt?

It’s difficult to say if you will go through a lot of pain or feel nothing at all. It’s easy to work yourself up for a process only to find it wasn’t that bad at all. Some people have a high pain tolerance while others do not. The location of the piercing will figure into the amount of pain, some places are going to hurt more than others. Making sure you have an experienced piercer will also make a difference in the pain you have. If your piercing isn’t healing, or it hurts longer than it should, you will want to contact your piercer.

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What Else Should You Know About Getting your Nose Pierced?

No matter what kind of piercing you get, make sure and keep it clean. The level of attention you give your piercing once it’s done will make a difference in the healing process. You won’t want to remove your piercing until it’s healed. Try not to play with it, this can lengthen the time it takes to heal. There is always a risk of your piercing falling out. If this happens, sterilize it and put it back in as soon as possible.

If you’re located in the Toronto, Markham, Newmarket or Mississauga areas, stop into Chronic Ink Tattoo for a free consultation. We can answer any questions you have and help you decide what piercing will work for you. Our expert team will walk you through the process and make sure you leave our shop happy with your new look.

Piercing Locations

Downtown Toronto

378 Yonge Street,
2nd Floor,
Toronto & Vancouver, Ontario
M5B 1S6

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Midtown Toronto

252 Eglinton Ave East,
2nd Floor,
Toronto & Vancouver, Ontario
M4P 1K2

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Markham

7381 Kennedy Road,
Unit #105,
Markham, Ontario
L3R 5B5

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Newmarket

Upper Canada Mall
17600 Yonge Street,
Newmarket, ON
L3Y 4Z1

Directions

Ready to get your new piercing?

We welcome walk-ins for piercings at our Downtown Toronto, Midtown Toronto, Markham, Mississauga and Newmarket locations. No appointment necessary.

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