Top 10 Most Common Piercings That You Should Know

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Piercings in woman's bally

When the first shop for peiercings opened in 1975 in California, it quickly started an avalanche in the counterculture. At the time many thought body modifications were something new, but they have been around for thousands of years. There is historical evidence, although sometimes debated, that trace the art back to ancient Egypt, native tribes all over the world and Africa.

Modern uses of the art often include artistic expression or to commemorate a significant life event. The art form has moved out of the counterculture into the mainstream. We explore the top ten most popular piercings beyond the basic ear piercing made accessible at the local mall.


​Most Common Piercings : Comparison Table


Product

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Price & Rating

Industrial Piercings

​This is not a single piercing, but instead a set of two or more punctures they make together that showcase a single piece of straight jewelry

Industrial Piercings

Cartilage/Helix Piercings

​The helix is done very similarly to the industrial above, except there is only one hole

​Cartilage/Helix Piercings

Conch Piercings

​The conch is the curve of the ear, so this is a piercing above the earlobe

​Conch Piercings
Rook Piercings

​​A tiny part of the cartilage just outside of the inner ear called the antihelix

Rook Piercings

Belly Button Piercing (Navel)

​​This has become popular with teens, which often means they try to do it at home

​Belly Button Piercing (Navel)

Bite Piercings

​This again is not a single hole but a set of two. They can do it either below the bottom lip or above the upper lip

​Bite Piercings

Labret Piercings

​This is a far more popular lip adornment than the bites above. This is a puncture to the lower lip or right below it.

​Labret Piercings

Nipple Piercings

​They usually do the piercing with a hollow needle and then either a barbell or ring is placed in the hole

​Nipple Piercings

Nose Piercings

​A nose piercing can mean either puncturing the septum or the nostril

​Nose Piercings

Tongue Piercings

​When we talk about body piercing, this is often one of the first things people think about

​Tongue Piercings

Top 10 Most Common Piercings


​Industrial Piercings


Industrial Piercings

Features

​This is not a single piercing, but instead a set of two or more punctures they make together that showcase a single piece of straight jewelry. They also call this a "scaffolding" or "bar" piercing. Many times they do this to the cartilage on the ear. As with all cartilage modifications, there is a longer healing time. With two openings supporting a single barbell, there is also more pain as it tends to "float" and move.

Pros

  • ​One of the more widely accepted non-lobe piercings
  • ​They can do it in a variety of ways give the users more flexibility
  • ​Even during the healing process, a professional can swap out jewelry

Cons

  • ​Takes longer to heal than some other punctures
  • ​Healing not one but two holes
  • ​Aftercare may be painful with two competing wounds sharing one bar

Healing Time

With no complications, this takes about six months to heal.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

BodyJewelryOnline Industrial Piercing Barbell - 3-Pack 14ga Steampunk, Infinity and CZ Styles - 316L...
  • Sold in a pack of 3 - an incredible value!
  • Styles included: steampunk, infinity and CZ
  • Shafts measure 14ga in thickness Steampunk and CZ shaft measure 1.5"(38 mm),...

Cartilage/Helix Piercings


​Cartilage/Helix Piercings

Features

​The helix is done very similarly to the industrial above, except there is only one hole. They can fill this with a hoop, stud or small barbell. It is another cartilage modification, so the healing time is longer. Because there is not a set of holes using the same barbell, it is easier to take care of during the healing process. This modification has become widely accepted in parts of Europe including Paris where it became fashionable.

Pros

  • ​Easier to care for than an industrial
  • ​Modifications to the ear are common
  • ​Can use smaller hoops or even studs

Cons

  • ​Cartilage takes longer to heal
  • ​The ear may be tender for several months

Healing Time

An average healing time without an infection can take up to six months.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

Milacolato 16G Cartilage Tragus Earrings Set for Women Girls Helix Conch Daith Piercing Jewelry 4...
  • AFFORDABLE EARRINGS SET:One Set Include 4 Pairs Stud earrings,one pair Ear Stud...
  • MATERIAL & SIZE:Tips---Both the front part and the back ball can be...
  • GREAT GIFT SET:Good Choice for Any Gift Giving Occasion, Great Gift for...

Conch Piercings


​Conch Piercings

Features

​The conch is the curve of the ear, so this is a piercing above the earlobe. They can do it on the inside or outside of the curved part of the ear. This is another cartilage piercing, so it increases the healing time. They often fill this with a small hoop.

Pros

  • ​Can be viewed as a less harsh body modification
  • ​Piercings on the ears often require less aftercare
  • ​Does not require special rings

Cons

  • ​Extended healing time
  • ​Depending on the location (inner or outer) this ring may be easy to get caught in the hair

Healing Time

Like other ear modifications, this takes about six months to heal.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$

Briana Williams Rook Earrings- 16G CZ Curved Barbell Eyebrow Belly Lip Rings Daith Conch Earring...
  • Package including -- 2pcs gold eyebrow/belly/lip rings CZ top, coming with one...
  • Material -- High quality 316L surgical steel with shiny AAA++ Cubic Zirconia...
  • Size -- Bar Thickness: 16 Gauge (1.2mm), Bar Length: 3/8" (10mm), CZ size: 3mm....

Rook Piercings


Rook Piercings

Features

This unique little piercing has become popular with females. Mostly they pierce a tiny part of the cartilage just outside of the inner ear called the antihelix. That is located above the tragus. Because this is a small space with no access from the back of the ear, they often do this with a thin wire hoop.

Pros

  • ​Protected spot so it heals almost undisturbed
  • ​Feminine piercing
  • ​Not as visible as more intrusive modifications

Cons

  • ​Not as widely accepted for men
  • ​Longer healing time because of the tissue type
  • ​Can be harder to pierce as it is a tiny area

Healing Time

​Because this is not an area that get's a lot of accidental contact, it may heal within as little as four months.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$

BodyJewelryOnline 3 Pairs of Cartilage Tragus Rook Piercing Studs - 3 mm, 4 mm, 5 mm CZ Gems...
  • Sold in a pack of 3 pairs - an incredible value!
  • Each pack includes 3 mm, 4 mm, and 5 mm clear CZ gems
  • Shafts measure 16ga thick with an overall length of 1/4"(6 mm)

Belly Button Piercing (Navel)


​Belly Button Piercing (Navel)

​​​Features

​In the last few years, this has become popular with teens, which often means they try to do it at home. It is much better to have a professional do this to avoid infection and tearing. The risk of injury is high with this popular modification because it gets a lot of friction from clothing.

Pros

  • ​Fun piercing to show off in warmer months
  • ​Many fashionable belly rings
  • ​More mainstream than ever before

Cons

  • ​Easy to do wrong if teens try this at home
  • ​Harder to get healed because of clothing rubbing on it
  • ​Used to be illegal for anyone under 18 like tattoos in many places, not as much anymore though

Healing Time

​Because if the friction from pants or underwear, this can take over a year to heal.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

Milacolato 10PCS Stainless Steel Belly Button Rings for Womens Girls Navel Rings Barbell Dangle...
  • Affordable Set:One Order includes 10Pcs Belly Button Rings,including 1pc acrylic...
  • Safety Meterial:Made of surgical steel&Quality Acrylic, Highly Resistence to...
  • Gauge&Size: Gauge of Bar: 14 Gauge=1.6mm, Bar Length is 9mm, Top Ball Diameter...

Bite Piercings


​Bite Piercings

Features

This again is not a single hole but a set of two. They can do it either below the bottom lip or above the upper lip. They call the most common place for the bite set the "snake bite" which they make below the bottom lip. 

Either a set of matching studs or full hoops fill the pair of punctures. Because there are two rings or studs needed, the cost is slightly higher for this set.

Pros

  • ​Less healing time than cartilage
  • ​Can be placed above or below lips
  • ​Easier to care for since there is less friction than a navel ring

Cons

  • ​Some employers do not allow facial piercings
  • ​If the jewelry is too heavy, it can damage teeth
  • ​There is a risk of contaminating the new piercing with food due to location

Healing Time

​Mostly, these heal fast after just a few months.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$


Labret Piercings


​Labret Piercings

Features

This is a far more popular lip adornment than the bites above. This is a puncture to the lower lip or right below it. They only apply this specific name to the rings going around the middle of the bottom lip, or a stud placed right below the center of the lip.

Pros

  • ​Single piercing heals faster
  • ​Not a cartilage puncture, so it heals pretty effortlessly
  • ​Can use hoops or studs

Cons

  • ​Takes time getting used to drinking with the new hole under the lip
  • ​Can ship front teeth with the ring or stud
  • ​The healing process is visible since it is on the face

Healing Time

​Faster to heal than most other piercings, this only takes a month of two

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$

Sale
PiercingJ 2-4pcs 16g 316L Stainless Steel 3mm Cubic Zirconia Labret Monroe Lip Ring/ Tragus/ Helix...
  • Material: high quality 316L stainless steel + Cubic Zircon crystals
  • Gauge: 16g =1.2mm; Overall Length:9mm; Bar Length: 6mm; cubic zircon:3mm
  • Quantity: 2pcs

Nipple Piercings


​Nipple Piercings

Features

For some people, this is taboo. Others enjoy that this is becoming more accepted. They usually do the piercing with a hollow needle and then either a barbell or ring is placed in the hole. There can be an extended healing time because of the friction with clothing in both men and women.

There is a cost per nipple, be prepared to pay a price for one piercing with the initial medical grade ring.

Pros

  • ​They can hide this modification as desired
  • ​May increase sensitivity of nipples
  • ​Some customers report enjoying the healing process

Cons

  • ​Can hamper breastfeeding
  • ​Extended healing time
  • ​Some women report a great deal of bleeding after having this done

Healing Time

​This is one of the longer healing times with upwards of a full year.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

Sale
Masedy 2-4 Pairs 14G 316L Stainless Steel Nipplerings Nipple Tongue Rings Barball CZ Body Piercing
  • [AFFORDABLE NIPPLERING SET] Come with 2 types 2 pairs nipple rings in one order,...
  • [PRETTY OUTLOOK] 2 Types pretty nipple rings, 1 pair barbell nipple rings and 1...
  • [SUITABLE SIZE] 2 Pairs nipple ring piercing, size: 14G(1.6mm), 14mm(9/16inch)...

Nose Piercings


​Nose Piercings

Features

​A nose piercing can mean either puncturing the septum or the nostril. This body modification has become mainstream over the last few decades. It is not unusual to see the average person wearing a simple stud or even an enclosed hoop in the septum.

While the nostril is very easy to heal, the thicker septum takes a more significant window of time to heal over.

The price range will differ depending on whether you need a small stud in the nostril or a septum.

Pros

  • ​Mainstream facial piercing
  • ​Nostril stud easy to care for
  • ​Little to no friction in the location, so healing is faster

Cons

  • ​The septum is harder to care for
  • ​This is a cartilage area, so there will be long-term healing needed

Healing Time

​While there is little care needed here, the healing time can run upwards of four months.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

Sale
Masedy 16Pcs 20G 316L Stainless Steel Nose Rings Hoop Tragus Cartilage Helix Ring Lip Septum...
  • [AFFORDABLE NOSE RING SET] Come with 16Pcs=8 types*2 nose rings, 16pcs...
  • [PRETTY OUTLOOK] 8 Styles pretty nose piercing, simple and elegant piercings for...
  • [SUITABLE SIZE] 20 Gauge=0.8mm diameter, 4pairs c shape nose ring, 4 pairs hoop...

Tongue Piercings


​Tongue Piercings

Features

​When we talk about body piercing, this is often one of the first things people think about. A barbell all the way through the tongue is popular with a wide range of people. This is not something most people will try to do at home. It swells quickly, and this can be one of the more annoying parts of the healing process.

When first pierced, there is a need for a longer barbell due to swelling. This increases the cost since there are two barbells required.

Pros

  • ​Pain is minimal during healing
  • ​Some people enjoy playing with the bar in their mouth

Cons

  • ​Long barbell needed for healing may chip teeth as the swelling goes down
  • ​Swelling makes talking difficult
  • ​Some workplaces do not allow employees to wear this to work

Healing Time

​Beyond the first few days of a special gargle, the aftercare is easy. It will heal within about a month.

RATING

PRICE

REVIEW

$$

Mudder 4 Pairs Barbell Ring 316L Stainless Steel Cubic Zirconia Tongue Rings Body Piercing, 14 Gauge...
  • Barbell ring measurement: barbell ring bar is 14 Gauge (1.6 mm) and 16 mm in...
  • 4 Different styles: 4 fashion styles of piercing rings are included, stainless...
  • Comfortable to wear: both ends of balls can be screwed on and off, convenient to...

Product FAQ's


What Are Piercings?

A piercing is a way to either puncture the skin or remove a small circle of skin to prepare for the insertion of jewelry. While many people associate a piercing gun with things like earrings, for most other forms of body modification they do not use the gun.

What's Their Purpose?

​A piercing becomes a semi-permanent way to display jewelry on the face or other parts of the body.

How Does it Work?

Mostly a licensed piercing artist will use a unique tool first to make the hole and then insert the space holder. They usually make the space holder of metal. To make space for the jewelry, the professional will use a solid needle, a needle with a hollow tip, punch, clamp or other tools to open the skin. The jewelry is inserted immediately after they make the puncture so the wound can heal around it.

​Wound care is a huge part of the experience. This is one reason they usually use something like stainless steel for the space holders, to avoid infection. A new piercing can heal in a month while others take a year or more to repair all the way. The aftercare and location on the body seem to have the most significant impact on how long a new piercing takes to heal.

Where Can I Get Piercings?

While we found stand-alone piercing shops, many times they share space with tattoo artists. Making sure whoever is doing the piercing is state licensed and using sterile procedures is very important. This is the best way to avoid infection and the spread of disease.

Price Range

Because things like nose piercings have become so common, they are among the least expensive body piercings. Price will differ depending on where in the country it is being done or how sensitive it is and with space holders.

​All the prices listed come from licensed shops. While it is possible to find cheaper places, they may not be safe. It is also possible to get a piercing at home, but the risks of injury or infection are not worth it.


How We Reviewed


​We reviewed these piercings based on the Features, Pros & Cons, Cost and Healing Time. While prices may vary from area to area, this list gives you a way to compare each procedure to others on the list. This is also true for things like the amount of care needed or healing time.


Overall Price Range


​Pricing for each of these items can range from the simple tiny stud in the nostril to a pair of nipple rings. Many of these procedures were more costly because they require more than one piercing or unique jewelry.


The Verdict


There are several things to consider when trying to decide on a piercing. The first is the location of the modification because some may not be safe for work. Taking the time to check with the boss at work to verify what is acceptable avoids having to take something out later. While it is possible to take out a piercing during work time, this is not something you can do until after it heals. Here it might be safer to start with some less apparent ear modifications like the conch or rook. To avoid problems altogether, you can also go all the way to the other end of the spectrum and consider getting a nipple ring since these may not show.

Pricing and healing time are two other huge factors to consider. It seems to make the most sense to start with a smaller piercing like the rook and work up to bigger things.

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