Category Archives: Healing for piercings

Piercings healing questions.

Help, my piercing has a ‘bump’ on it!

My piercing has a ‘bump/lump’ on it, what should I do?

There are three different kinds of ‘bump’ that can form on or around a piercing.


The first and also the most common type of ‘bump’ is a cyst. Mostly seen on Tragus, Nostril & Eyebrow piercings and more often than not on the upper/outer edge of the piercing

Cysts form a sack like pocket under the outer surface of the skin and tend to hold a small amount of lymph or other fluids. In the case of cysts on piercings, the cause is usually blockage in the glands of ducts in the skin. These blockages are usually caused by soap or shampoo residues left behind after washing, a build up of dead skin cells or even dirt or other pollutants lying on the surface of the skin if the person works in a dusty or dirty environment.

In common with all problems, prevention is better than cure; always make sure that the piercing is kept clean and properly rinsed out after washing / showering and then thoroughly and carefully dried with a clean dry tissue.

There’s no ‘quick fix’ to get rid of cysts. The most common method to break the cyst down is the use of a hot saline compress 5mins morning and evening for a good 2-3 weeks (as we said, no quick solution).


The second type of ‘bump’ is an abscess and is without doubt the most series.

Similar in construction to a cyst, abscesses tend to form behind the piercing and are usually painful and larger in size than a cyst. Often heavily swollen, hot to touch and filled with puss, an abscess holds infectious fluid and can be a major threat to your health and wellbeing.

Do not ignore your problem: if you think you have an abscess it’s best to consult a doctor or physician as soon as possible.


The third type of ‘bump’ is a keloid scar. This is the least common but most mis-diagnosed.

A keloid scar is basically a scar that has overgrown the wound it should have repaired, spreading both outwards and upwards. In some severe cases the scar covers an area 2-3 times larger than the original wound.

Keloids are most commonly caused by friction on the piercing and / or jewelllery and are mostly seen in nipple and navel piercings.

There appears to be a direct correlation between the likelihood of keloid scaring and the amount of melanin (pigment) in an individuals skin. As rule of thumb, people who’s ancestors are of African, Southern India or African Caribbean are much more likely to suffer from this problem than fair skinned people.

In some severe cases keloid scarring may have to be surgically removed although it should be noted that this is extremely rare in keloids resulting from piercings.

Piercing Questions: What are the average piercing healing times?

How long will my piercing take to heal?

Piercing healing times will vary according to the position of the piercing being healed, the jewellery used, what jobs and activities you take part in, your general health, your immune system, and even your diet.  All these play a part in healing time.  If the piercing is well looked after, and a good aftercare routine followed, then these estimates for piercing healing times can be treated as normal (healing times in months).

Piercing Healing Times

Piercing Healing Times

How should I clean my piercing?

From years of experience we have come to the conclusion that a mild salt water solution is probably the best option for cleaning the majority of piercings. This can be bought from a chemist in the form of Saline Contact Lens Cleaner or can be made up with care at home. If making up the salt water solution make sure that it is not too strong as this can burn the skin. Dissolving a 1/4 of a level teaspoon of Sea Salt in a 1/2 pint of boiling water and allowing to cool to a comfortable temperature should work well for most people. After washing your hands thoroughly with an anti-bacterial soap, the piercing should be cleaned with a cotton bud dipped in the saline solution (never dip the buds back into the saline solution, always use a fresh one).  A thorough clean to remove any crust/Lymph followed by a good dry should complete a successful cleaning regime. Most importantly: Be patient!

Check out our exhaustive FAQ section – or send us your Piercing Questions on Twitter @PierceJewellery or on Facebook 


Piercing Questions: I have to remove my piercing jewellery at work, how do I prevent my piercing healing up?

Does your job make you remove your piercing in the work place?

Do you get sent home from school for wearing piercing jewellery?

Do you need to have an medical procedure that means you need to remove your piercing jewellery?

None of these are uncommon questions – but there is a relatively easy answer.

A piercing is a tube of scar tissue that is held open by the jewellery which it contains. Whether the piercing is 1mm (18 gauge) or 5mm (4 gauge) in diameter, the principle is the same. Remove the jewellery and the piercing will tighten up and in many cases, over time, it might close altogether.

If the piercing is well healed and ‘mature’ then it is more likely that the piercing can be left empty for a longer period of time (usually measured in hours not days). If the piercing is relatively new or not completely healed then this may be a serious problem.

Bioplast retainers are the answer!

The best remedy for the problem is a clear Bioplast retainer. These come in a multitude of different forms for all kinds of different piercings. Take a look at our range of clear and black Bioplast jewellery retainers for a discreet solution.

Bioplast retainers for piercingsBioplast is an inert polymer that’s suitable for both short and long term use, in its retainer form it will make almost any piercing far less noticeable, allowing you to replace your regular nose stud, labret, barbell or septum piercing jewellery when you’re free to do so.

Nose Studs, Labrets, Straight and Curved Barbells and U-Shaped Septum Keepers are all available from Piercing Jewellery Shop’s extensive range of retainers.

Do you have a Piercing Question for the Piercing Jewellery Shop Team? Tweet us @PierceJewellery or Like our Facebook page and leave a comment and we’ll answer in depth here on the Piercing Questions blog. 

Piercing Questions: I’ve just had my nose pierced and I’ve pulled out my nose stud by mistake, what should I do?

Nose Piercing

I’ve just had my nose pierced and I’ve pulled out my nose stud by mistake. I’ve tried to refit it but it won’t go in, what should I do?

If your nose piercing is relatively new and hasn’t yet healed this can be a real problem. Firstly apply a small amount of lubricant to both the outside of the piercing and the end of the jewellery to be refitted, place a clean finger up inside the nostril, then gently push the stud firmly through the piercing using the finger as a guide. If this doesn’t work after two or three attempts, it’s probably a good idea to visit your friendly local piercing shop who should be able to do it for you with the aid of a thin insertion pin. If it won’t go back in then the nose will have to be re-pierced once the hole has closed down. Check out our range of Jewellery in a range of materials to suit anyone who has their nose pierced.

For everything you want to know about piercing and piercing jewellery, check out our extensive knowledge area, with FAQ, a A-z of piercing and much more. If you still have questions about anything piercing-related, you can tweet us @PierceJewellery or “like” our Piercing Jewellery Shop Facebook page for regular updates on piercing info, products, offers and more.