Belly button piercings may show up totally cool and effortless from an outside perspective, yet they actually call for serious commitment if you desire them to look an excellent in the long run. Lock heal slow than numerous other varieties of human body piercings, and also they call for a far-ranging amount of aftercare.

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This overview will take you v the piercing process and show you how to avoid potential problems as you heal. If you follow this advice, you"ll be mirroring off a piercing the is both stylish and healthy in no time!

Feature image: Spookygonk/Flickr, offered under CC 2.0

Can You get a Belly switch Piercing?

Some people are disqualified from gaining a belly button piercing.

Typically, belly button piercings go through the “lip” that skin over the ship button. although most civilization can technically acquire these species of piercings, it"s finest to have a great flap that skin above the belly switch for the piercer to put the jewelry with if you desire it to cure properly. The piercing additionally needs room below and also behind the flap so that the area doesn’t become irritated in the heal process. If girlfriend don’t have a hard flap the skin ~ above the optimal of the ship button, occasionally piercers deserve to go because that the lower lip the the belly switch instead (though this is a rare option).

Here’s an instance of what a typical belly switch piercing looks like:


She go it/used under CC by 2.0

Unfortunately, if you have actually an outie belly button, friend most most likely won’t be able to get that pierced. some people believe that outie belly button piercings are the only "true" belly button piercings since they actually involve piercing the inner component of the navel.

However, infections in outie belly button piercings have the right to travel to your interior organs and become extremely dangerous. Many reputable piercers will not take this risk. In situation you"re unsure that which kind of belly button you have actually going on, here"s what an outie looks like:


Belly Button-3/used under CC 2.0

The piercer will constantly examine her belly switch carefully before starting the procedure to view if her anatomical setup will allow for the piercing to cure safely.

What are the Risks linked With Belly button Piercings?

Even if you think that your belly button is the appropriate candidate because that a snazzy new piece the jewelry, friend should recognize that some health threats come hand-in-hand with getting this kind of body piercing. These threats include:

Allergic reaction to the jewelryExcessive bleedingJewelry denial or hike (migration is when the piercing moves internally to a slightly different spot, and rejection is as soon as your body starts to press the jewelry out and also you see an ext and an ext of the barbell)Bacterial infectionsPermanent scarring (this can take place if you don’t stroked nerves to remove the jewel after your body has made decision to refuse it)

You deserve to minimize these threats by finding a reputable piercer and caring for her piercing appropriately throughout the healing process (discussed in the next couple of sections).

Does a Belly button Piercing ache a Lot?

Good news: most human being say the belly switch piercings don’t hurt that much. They’re comparable to ear lobe piercings in regards to pain. If you’ve gotten your ear or nose cartilage pierced before, that kind of piercing generally hurts much more than a belly switch piercing. You may experience some soreness and also throbbing in the first couple of days, yet it shouldn"t interfere through your life significantly.

One downside to belly switch piercings is that they carry out take substantially longer than other piercings to heal. While ear piercings frequently heal in 6 come 8 weeks, a belly switch piercing is commonly not totally healed for 6 months come a year (which is why many human being suggest acquiring your piercing in the winter so you can present off the totally healed last product come beach season).


If you"ve ever gotten this form of piercing on your top ear, opportunities are that it hurt a lot an ext than most belly button piercings. (left ear, used under CC 2.0)

How to obtain Your Belly switch Pierced

Here"s a overview of the steps you should go with to for sure the finest piercing experience. Acquisition the process seriously and also finding a dependable piercer deserve to make every the difference in the speed of her healing and satisfaction through your piercing overall.

Step 1: understand the Laws and Regulations

If you’re end 18, make certain you carry an official kind of photograph ID prefer a driver’s license or passport. If she under 18, friend must have actually a parental or guardian present to sign off on her piercing. This article has a perform of piercing regulations for every the various US says if you"d prefer to verify her state"s specific policies.

Piercing locations sometimes take these rules further and also say they won’t do certain varieties of piercings on minors or won’t pierce anyone under the age of 16 even with the consent the a parental or guardian. In enhancement to check the laws in your state, research the regulation at the certain place whereby you arrangement on obtaining pierced to see if they have any special stipulations.

Step 2: find a an excellent Piercing Place

The high quality of the piercing place makes a large difference in the likelihood the your piercing will heal properly. Look for places near you the have good Yelp reviews and appropriate credentials (check to watch if the piercer is a member the the combination of experienced Piercers). Most piercing places additionally have websites where you can inspect out the portfolios of their piercers and read evaluate from other customers.

Avoid going to sketchy booths in the middle of the shopping mall or really any type of place the doesn’t look like a doctor’s office when you acquire into the piercing room. The piercing need to be done through sterile equipment in a squeaky clean environment come ensure the lowest threat of infection.

Don’t ever before let everyone pierce you v a piercing gun! They reason too much trauma to the area and can’t be properly sterilized.


One work We will certainly All Die, offered under CC 2.0

Step 3: Prepare to get Pierced

First off, take a shower beforehand. It’s simply polite not to be smelly as soon as a stranger needs to touch your ship button. Also, make certain you’re totally hydrated and also have eaten at the very least a little something in ~ the hour so friend don’t feel woozy throughout the process.

Above all, do NOT gain drunk prior to you acquire your belly button pierced. Any piercing ar worth its salt will rotate away one intoxicated person, both since you don’t have the capacity to make great decisions after drinking and because drinking can reason excessive bleeding at the piercing site. Try to live a healthy, responsible lifestyle at least for the 24 hour period before her piercing.

Step 4: select Your Jewelry

The materials that are the very least likely to irritate the piercing site encompass surgical stainless steel, surgical titanium, Tygon plastic, and also solid 14K gold. You should try to avoid jewel made of nickel or sterling silver because these metals are the most most likely to cause allergic reactions in civilization with perceptible skin. If you’ve gotten other piercings in the past, be responsibility of exactly how your body has reacted.

Also, select a piece of jewelry the you i will not ~ get exhausted of seeing. Remember, you won"t have the ability to take it the end for another six month to a year. Go v a barbell fairly than a ring due to the fact that there’s much less risk the the barbell getting captured on stuff in the heal process.

Belly buttons are commonly pierced with 12 gauge jewelry, i m sorry is around 2 mm in diameter. This is much larger than the jewelry provided in a usual ear piercing, which is 1 mm or less in diameter. It’s much better to have a thicker piece of jewelry since it will make the piercing sturdier and more resistant come tearing and migration.


Triforce de Awesome!, supplied under CC 2.0

Step 5: Pay her Piercer

Navel piercings can range in cost, however they’re $40-$60 at most piercing places. This contains both the procedure and also the expense of the jewelry. If you’re happy through the way things go, it’s considered good type to offer your piercer a 10-20% tip on top of the regular price.

That"s it! You"ll have actually a brand brand-new navel piercing. Currently comes the long and also hard component - caring for your new piercing.

Caring for your Belly switch Piercing

First off, DON’T ever before touch or clean the piercing without washing your hands first! If you ignore this rule, you’re asking for an infection. Just leave that alone and also let that heal except for once you require to move it roughly a little bit come clean it. Similarly, you must wear loosened clothing that won’t irritate the piercing area in the healing process. Shot to sleep top top your earlier and stop tanning beds at the very least for the first couple months the healing. The focused UV beam can set back your body"s natural healing process.

It’s additionally not a good idea to go in public pools or hot tubs because the piercing could get infected from everything gross varieties of bacteria may be lurking in the water. If friend really feeling the need to go in a swimming pool or hot bath tub while her piercing is tho young, you should clean it automatically afterward.

You have the right to still execute sit-ups and also other exercises when your piercing is healing as long as friend don’t suffer too much discomfort native the movement.


Like you, this cat is gonna acquire his beach body no matter what the takes. (sit-ups, supplied under CC 2.0)

The best way to treatment for the piercing is come wash it v saline solution two time a day for at the very least the an initial month that healing. You can make your own saline solution by mixing a tespoon of sea salt with five ounces the water, or you have the right to buy the plain saline solution that is offered at pharmacies.

Put the saline solution in a tiny cup. Then, push the in salt of the cup versus your stomach approximately the piercing, and lean back to fully submerge the piercing for two minutes. Afterward, take it a q-tip, dip the in the solution, and also gently rub it about the locations where the piercing goes through your skin.


Be sure to usage sea salt to make your solution, no table salt! (Salt-(sea)_B130623, provided under CC 2.0)

You may see your piercing oozing clear fluid that creates a crust around the hole. This is normal early on in the healing process. There may likewise be part swelling, redness, and discoloration, but these concerns should dissipate relatively soon ~ you get the piercing. Don’t clean your piercing more than the recommended 2 to 3 times a day. extreme cleaning can cause skin irritation and also dry the end the area.

If it"s been at least a month due to the fact that the piercing and everything watch good, you can stop doing these daily cleanings. You may clean the piercing sporadically ~ this suggest if you proceed to see proof that the isn"t completely healed. You must still minimize the activities detailed at the start of this section until you reach at the very least the 6 month mark.

Potential troubles (and What to Do about Them)

In this section, I"ll talk about how come spot signs of trouble v your piercing. It"s necessary to take action on this issues instantly so you deserve to avoid significant health consequences and permanent scarring down the road.

It"s important to know what"s normal and what"s not. We"ll cover the most important worries below.

Allergic Reaction

Sometimes, if you gain the wrong kind of jewelry, friend can end up through a nasty allergy reaction about your piercing. Signs the an allergy reaction include:

An itchy rash roughly the piercing areaIntermittent tenderness approximately the piercing

If friend think you may have an allergic reaction, go earlier to the piercer, and ask come switch your jewelry the end for a different kind of material. i list some suggestions for human being with sensitive skin in the “choosing your jewelry” advice in the vault section.

Bacterial Infection

Infections are very common v belly button piercings since they’re in such a breakable area. Signs of infection include:

Yellowish-green discharge v a foul odor an extensive redness approximately the piercing, especially if it gets worse end timeSkin approximately the piercing is warm to the touchYou feel a burn sensation in the areaProlonged swelling about the piercingAbdominal pain (in really serious cases, the infection can come to be internal)Red lines radiating native the piercingConsistent acute pain (although slim bruising and also occasional spicy pain from motion are normal)

Here"s what an infection can look like:


See how the area roughly the piercing is red and swollen? This will certainly probably additionally be hot and painful come the touch.

It can also look worse 보다 this, v leaking pus around the piercing.


(Sorry, I recognize it"s a tiny gross, however it"s necessary to know what something negative looks like.)

If girlfriend think you have an infection, first of all, contradictory to what you might think, girlfriend should leaving the jewel in your belly button. acquisition it the end could cause further complications, consisting of the development of abscesses in the area. Use the same cleaning procedure detailed in the ahead section, but soak the piercing because that ten minute in the saline solution. You may have the ability to rub a small bit the antibacterial cream approximately the piercing come soothe the infection, however use the sparingly.

If the epidemic doesn’t walk away within a week or two, walk to a doctor to check if you need to take more drastic steps to prevent it from arising further (i.e. Taking dental antibiotics). You may need to go back to the piercer to acquire the jewel taken out if the epidemic has come to be too severe.

Lean on the side of mindful - it"s always much better to gain something confirm out and have nothing wrong, than to shot to challenging it out and make a difficulty worse.

Migration and Rejection

Another problem that is usual with belly switch piercings is migration and rejection that the jewelry. Signs that migration and rejection include:

You have the right to see means more the the barbell than you can when the was initially pierced (because it’s getting pushed the end of her body)Noticeable movement of the holes of the piercing marked by a trail of redness Redness and scarring in the areaHole shows up larger than it was initially The skin in between the holes is translucent and also thin

If you an alert this continue to your piercing, girlfriend will have to go to your piercer to acquire the jewel removed, let whatever heal, and also eventually try piercing it again. There’s no method to solve the concern without taking out the piercing and beginning over.

Migration and also rejection don’t typical the piercing is infected, for this reason they aren’t overall health risks, yet they come with more aesthetic problems when they’re no addressed. Piercings that the body rejects but that room not eliminated promptly often cause serious scarring.


Rejection happens v a lot of body piercings. You can faintly watch the rejection scar from my eyebrow piercing in this picture (I waited too lengthy to take it it out because I preferred it for this reason much). (Sam Lindsay/All legal rights reserved.)

How carry out You understand When You’re done Healing?

As stated above, that takes about six month to a year because that a belly button piercing to heal to the allude where you have the right to take it the end and readjust it. If you with the six to nine month mark and aren’t experiencing any kind of of the issues detailed in the vault section, you can inspect the piercing to check out if it’s totally healed.

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Wash your hands, and try sliding it ago and forth a little bit to make certain it moves openly without pain. If whatever feels and also looks good, I’d recommend going ago to your piercer so they can verify that you’re totally healed. They will have the ability to take the end the piercing and replace the jewelry because that you.

If you adjust your piercing on your own, be sure to sanitize both the brand-new jewelry and the piercing site prior to insertion. Infections space a risk even in piercings that room essentially completely healed, so don’t lose all respect because that hygiene after months of vigilance.

Summary: key Tips for gaining a Belly button Piercing

Here"s a quick rundown the most necessary things come remember when getting a belly switch piercing. Before you obtain pierced, girlfriend should:

Check come make sure your belly button is a an excellent candidate because that piercingUnderstand the threats involved and be ready to take on the responsibility of maintaining the piercing cleanBe mindful of the regulations for your state (may entail asking your mother or dad to go v you)Find a trusted piercer

When you"re in ~ the piercing studio, girlfriend will need to:

Choose jewelry that is least likely to irritate her skinVerify the everything appears sterile and also professional in the piercing roomBe prepared to endure a bit of ache (about the same as obtaining your ear lobe pierced)Pay (and tip) the piercer

After you gain your belly switch pierced, you should:

Never touch it without washing your hands firstClean it two to 3 times a day v saline systems for at least the an initial monthAvoid tight clothing roughly your midsection, demorphs beds, hot tubs, public pools, and also sleeping on her stomach till the piercing is at least mainly healedMonitor the piercing site to make sure there space no problems with allergic reactions, infections, or refusal of the jewelryDon"t adjust your jewel until six to twelve months right into the healing procedure when you can slide the jewelry back and forth without pains or resistance

If girlfriend have an ext questions around any particular problems you"re suffering with your piercing, you should talk to her piercer to obtain an expert"s opinion. Otherwise, just continue to enjoy your awesome new belly bling!