Basic Piercing Care



Facial / Body Aftercare

Healing time for the following piercing(s):
(Please keep in mind everyone heals differently.
The amount of time your piercing(s) takes to heal may differ from others.
No two people heal the same. These are suggested times.)

Ear Lobe(s): 6wks-8wks
Ear / Helix(s): 6mo-1yr
Nostril: 6mo-1yr
Septum: 6wks-8wks
Eyebrow: 6wks-8wks
Navel: 6mo-1yr
Nipple(s): 6mo-1yr
Surface / Anchor: 1yr or longer
Male Genital(s): 6mo-1yr
Female Genital(s): 6mo-1yr

What to AVOID during the healing process of your piercing(s):

  • NO rubbing alcohol, peroxide, Neosporin, Bactine, or ear care solution. !!!EVER!!!
  • NO hot tubs, Jacuzzis, lakes, oceans, swimming pools, bathtubs, or any standing pools of water. This also includes the use of tanning beds, and spray tanner. (FOR AT LEAST 31 DAYS)
  • NO pets on the bed for 31 days
  • NO bodily fluids on the area of the piercing(s) as well
  • That means NO one is allowed to touch your piercing(s) but you, and the only time you are allowed to touch it is with clean hands while cleaning your piercing(s).

What is "NORMAL" during the healing process of your piercing(s)?

  • Redness, soreness, bruising, and swelling is NORMAL. You may use a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory such as Ibuprofin (Advil, Motrin, etc.) to help minimize swelling and reduce discomfort.
  • There may be a yellowish-white discharge from the entrance and exit point of the piercing(s). This is what we call "the crusties" - a by-product of skin cell development. This is NORMAL. DO NOT PICK AT IT!! It will come off when you clean your piercing(s).
  • Keep tight clothing off your piercing(s) for 31 days. It will slow your healing process.
  • Change all bedding every 5 to 7 days, for the firs 31 days of your piercing(s). You do not want that bacteria to get into your piercing(s) and cause problems.
  • Do not sleep, lean, or put pressure on your piercing(s) for 31 days or as much as possible.

How to clean your piercing(s):

  • Water (from a running tap, or in the shower)
  • Soap (liquid anti-microbial or anti-bacterial (color free, fragrance free) soap.)
  • Your hands (NO cotton balls, Q-tips, gauze pad, wash cloths or sponges)
    • Thoroughly wash your hands with your soap (if you are showering, do all your shower washing first) before touching your piercing. Do not be concerned if your wash / shampoo runs into your piercing(s). You are cleaning your piercing after your shower.
    • Pour a small amount of your soap (liquid anti-microbial or anti-bacterial) into your hands, and make into a lather.
    • Place lathered soap around piercing(s), the entrance and exit points. Please do not force it to move.
    • Rinse the area thoroughly under running water to remove all soap and residue, then pat dry with a clean paper towel. Avoid hand towels, and bath towels. They can harbor bacteria.
    • You will need to clean your piercing(s) twice a day for the next 31 days to optimize healing results. After 31 days you can start to cut down how often you clean your piercing(s).
    • Also, if you are cleaning your piercing(s) in the sink, you must pull water from the faucet's head, not from the sink's basin.

Other things to help your piercing(s) to heal:

  • Sea salt soaks
    Take 1/4 teaspoon of uniodized sea salt, with distilled water. Mix items into shot glass or relish cup. Place the cup in the microwave for 10 to 20 seconds, or until warm to the touch (not boiling hot). Place cup up-side down, or place cup on to piercing(s) and soak for 5-10 minutes. Remove cup and let piercing(s) air dry. You will only need to do this one a day.
  • H2Ocean Aftercare Spray
    Follow directions as indicated on the side of the can for best results.

Some extra tips for particular area:

  • Navel Piercing(s): Avoid tight, cinching belts, waistbands, and inflexible clothing on the area during healing. When getting up from a table, push away first before standing. Also try not to sleep on your stomach.
  • Ear / Helix / Cartilage and Facial Piercing(s): Avoid getting lotion, makeup, and other foreign substances on your piercing(s). Avoid contact with your piercing(s) with phones, headsets and ear buds. Clean them first, use the other side, or not at all.
  • Nipple(s) Piercing: It is advisable to sleep in a tank top, t-shirt or for ladies a sport's bra. Mothers with newborns will still be able to breastfeed without any problem after the piercing(s) are healed.
  • Genital Piercing(s): Sexual activity is not prohibited, but must be gentle and hygienic. LISTEN to your body! If it feels good, ok. If it hurts, stop. You may need to ease up or stop for a time. Use condoms and dental dams for all sexual contact during healing to prevent sharing bodily fluids. This is required even if you are in a monogamous relationship.
  • It is mandatory for your health and safety during the entire minimum initial healing time. Avoid condoms and lubricants contianing Nonoxynol 9 as it is very strong and can irritate healing piercing. Use water-based lubricants like water-based KY Jelly.
  • General Information: Always be patient with your new piercing(s). No two piercing(s) heal the same.


Oral Aftercare

Healing time for the following piercing(s):
(Please note that everyone heals differently so your time may differ than others.)

Tongue: 4wks-6mo
Lip / Multiples: 6wks-6mo
Cheek(s): 6mo-1yr
Smiley / Webbing: 6wks-6mo

For all the following piercings, with the exception of a tongue, smiley, and webby piercing(s), you are going to need to follow the Facial Aftercare as well (see above). Not only are you taking care of the inside of your mouth, but you will also need to take care of the outside as well.

What to AVOID with your piercing(s):

  • NO alcohol mouthwash for the next 31 days
  • NO kissing or other thing that will require your mouth for the next 31 days
  • NO sharing drinks, food, utensils with anyone for the next 31 days
  • We would like for you not to drink alcohol for the next 31 days. If you do, please keep in mind you will have to swish after your drinks.
  • We would like for you not to smoke or use smoking products (ALL smoking products) for the next 31 days.

What is NORMAL with your piercing(s)?

  • Redness, soreness, bruising, bleeding and swelling.
  • Sometimes a yellowish-white discharge from the entrance and the exit of the piercing(s) can happen. It is residue from leftover mouthwash, food, and bacteria that can push its way out of the holes.

How to take care of your piercing(s):

  • Alcohol-Free Mouthwash (Crest Pro Health, Tom's of Maine, Biotene or Act)
    • With NO peroxide or whitening agent
  • New Toothbrush
  • Ibuprofen (any anti-inflammatory medication)
  • Ice Chips, or Ice Cubes

You will rinse your mouth out whenever you eat a big meal or when you feel that you need to. You do not have to rinse your mouth after drinking water.

Buy a new toothbrush. You do not want to introduce old bacteria to new piercing.

Take Ibuprofen or some kind of anti-inflammatory medications. Please read instructions on how they are used. We (piercer) are not doctors; we just recommend that it may help with the swelling and soreness of the piercing(s).

Ice cubes, ice chips, or really cold water can also help to take down some of the swelling. Just do not suck on the ice or suck through a straw. It could make the swelling worse.

Other things that could help heal your piercing(s):

  • Unionized Sea Salt
    Take 1/4 teaspoon of unionized sea salt, and mix it with distilled water, and pour into shot glass or relish cup. Place the cup in the microwave for 10 to 20 seconds, or until warm to the touch (not boiling hot). Gargle it for 30 seconds then spit it out. You only need to do this 1-2 times a day.
  • H2Ocean Aftercare Spray
    Follow directions as indicated on the side of the can for best results.

Some extra tips:

  • It is going to swell. It depends on you how long that swelling will be. If you remove your jewelry too soon, that could hinder the healing of your piercing(s). Always leave your jewelry in unless told otherwise by your piercer.
  • Be careful when eating, drinking or talking. You may bite down on your jewelry and break or chip your teeth. Also, you could rip or tear your tongue. Please be careful with pasta noodles, they could choke you, so cut them up before eating. Chew slowly and take your time when eating. You may eat what you like just be cautious.
  • Make sure you can feel the back, front, top or the bottom of your jewelry. It can embed into your lip, cheek or tongue.
  • Sometimes the jewelry may sit awkward, but after the jewelry is changed it will sit like it should. Either close or flat to the surface of the piercing(s).
  • Keep all make-up, lotion, facial cleanser, or lip products off your piercing(s).
  • Clean all phones before putting up to your mouth.
  • Keep your hands off your piercing(s), unless you are cleaning it.
  • Swelling may last for 31 days. Some people have swelling the whole month, whereas others may have swelling for a few days or even longer than 31 days. May have uneven healing time too. It will depend on your healing process when you can change your jewelry.
  • If you like your piercing(s) leave it alone and only touch it if you need to clean or change the jewelry.


These guidelines are based on a combination of past professional experience, common sense, research and extensive clinical practice. This is not to be considered a substitute for medical advice from a doctor. Beware, however that many doctors and dentists have no specific training or experience with regards to healing patterns of body piercings and may not be educated on how best to assist you. For a happy and healthy piercing, please keep in mind you need to be healthy as well. Proper diet, staying hydrated and getting enough rest will actually help aid the healing process. Also please DO NOT remove piercing until told to, or unless you have seen your piercer. If you have any other questions please come see us, or you may also call. If you have any other questions please contact us, or you may also contact:
Cincinnati Board of Health
3103 Burnet Ave.
Cincinnati OH 45229


While we strive to suggest how best to take care of your new piercing, we are not medical doctors. You must be responsive and responsible for your body. If at any point you have any problems or questions, please feel free to stop in to the shop or give us a call. And most importantly, enjoy your new piercing.

Beelistic Tattoo & Piercing 2510 W. Clifton Ave. Cincinnati, OH 45219

City of Cincinnati Board of Health Communicable Disease Division – (513)357-7392

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