How to clean a septum piercing

Although it might seem a little sanity challenging at first, it is very important to keep your brand-new septum piercing clean. No groaning allowed! I mean, come on, you had a needle in there just moments ago, and you survived that, so the upkeep should be a breeze! Besides, a nasty, ugly infection that could destroy your look, your day, and your desire to keep your beautiful new facial accessory (not to mention your lovely nose!) is something you should avoid at all costs.

Cleanliness Affects Septum Piercing Healing Time

Septum piercing healing time changes from one person to another. A quick survey among our Instagram and Facebook followers shows a wide range of healing landmarks: from the super lucky people, whose piercings healed within a couple of weeks or less, to the ultimate survivor, whose took about a year. So, to help you keep it clean and heal it beautifully as fast as possible, I created this guide!

Septum Piercing
Model - stunning Natascha Pedersen

What to Do to Keep Your Septum Piercing Clean

For one month (yes, a whole month, even if you find super cute septum pricing jewelry), do not play with the new piercing at all. You should not try to move it around or flip it up and down, and of course, do not pull out the ring! I know, it sounds like forever, especially for the lucky people whose septum heals in no time. However, it is better to be safe than VERY sorry. Stick to the script on this one, kiddos! Clean the piercing with cold water and Q-Tips. Every day. No exceptions. Be diligent: after the cold-water and studio recommended antiseptic cleansing, carefully clean the pierce from both sides. Skipping the cold-water stage and trying to do both cleaning and disinfecting at once will not get it properly clean. You should never clean your nose with your fingers, either. Always use the Q-Tips. Don’t worry, you will get used to it, we promise!

Also, keep in mind that your general health has an impact on the healing of your septum piercing. You can’t exactly keep fresh holes in your nose clean and free of infection-breeding bacteria if you get sick and your nose is running off your face, right? So, while we cannot always predict the next cold outbreak, remember to stay hydrated, decrease your stress level, eat healthy, get plenty of sleep, and of course, avoid encountering other peoples’ germs. Whenever you touch something that is high-traffic for human contact, wash your hands before you even think about touching your nose. I know, this all seems like boring, common sense practice, but these steps are very important to the healing and care of new piercings, especially one located right in your nose.

Things You Should Not Do When Caring for Your Septum Piercing

The do-nots of septum piercing care are just as important as the do’s. I have added a short list of no-noes to this brief guide:

  • Resist the urge to change out the septum ring. We know how tempting it is to try on your new septum ring jewelry, trust us, but this is a tip that bears repeating. Do not, under any circumstances, take out the piercing ring before the allotted healing period passes. You can injure or damage your sensitive fistula, which means that the pierce will never heal properly. Give the poor thing time to regain its tenacity before subjecting it to a tug-of-war! If you are uncertain whether you are ready to change out the jewelry yourself, consult your piercing professional. He or she will be happy to give you advice about your piercing, and many will even change out the jewelry for you the first couple of times at no cost.
  • Do not do anything that might thin your blood. Piercings tend to bleed a little throughout the healing process because the dry skin and lymph creates a sort of crust that rips open the fresh pierce when torn from the ring. Since bleeding is so common, it is important that a little blood does not turn into a giant waterfall. Try to limit your intake of alcohol and caffeine (sorry, coffee drinkers!) and omit any OTC pain medications with blood thinners, like Aspirin, for the first couple of weeks after getting your septum pierced. We understand your struggle, but it will be so worth the wait!
  • Don't put any balms or ointments on your septum piercing. We all know how soothing the antibiotic creams with pain relief can be on our boo boo’s. However, they are detrimental to your healing septum. They stop up the fresh holes and trap the infectious bacteria that you swore to your piercer that you would avoid. Resist the temptation!

The rules of septum piercing care may seem tedious and annoying, but the risks are too great, and the rewards of a well-tended piercing are too beautiful, to just ignore them!

Old piercing, new septum rings and random infection reasons

If you are a veteran, but for some random reason (poor quality septum jewelry, allergic reaction, a nose-punch special, you get your septum ring stuck in your best friend's best shirt, a baby or an animal tries to pull it off, etc.) your piercing becomes irritated or infected, go back to that twice a day routine. No need to do a whole month in this case, just continue until it is no longer hangry and painful.

Important note: If a poor septum ring or an allergic reaction is the cause, you should change the ring you are wearing at once. If it does not improve, get back to the professional who did the piercing or to a doctor ASAP. Infection is not only ugly, but dangerous, and it can cause long-term damage if not properly treated as quickly as possible. And one more thing: Good luck with the new piercings, lovelies!
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