The Lobe Piercing: Everything You Need to Know

Triple ear lobe piercing

There’s no doubt that lobe piercings are the most popular piercings among both men and women. The lobe piercing tends to be an almost universally accepted body modification, so much so that we sometimes forget to mention it when it comes to body piercings.

Since it’s such a common piercing, we often forget that it still needs to be taken care of during aftercare. The lobe is a fairly easy area to heal, and sometimes this means that we get a little lazy when it comes to the earlobe.

Whether you’re getting your first lobe piercing or you’re opting for multiple lobe piercings, it’s a good idea to brush up on lobe healing practices. Here’s everything you need to know about the lobe piercing

How much does the lobe piercing hurt?

The lobe piercing is way low on the pain scale. In fact, in many cultures, it’s common to give children as young as 18 months a lobe piercing. You should feel a slight pressure as the needle goes through, but any pain you feel shouldn’t feel like more than a pinch.

The pain level will depend upon the expertise of the piercer. It’s common for lobe piercings to be pierced with a piercing gun, however, you should opt for a piercer who uses needles. Even in a lobe piercing, a piercing gun can cause trauma and spread bacteria.  

Lobe piercing healing process

The lobe piercing has a relatively quick healing time of 6 - 8 weeks. As with any piercing, healing time will depend upon a number of factors, including your aftercare practices.

Be careful not to forgo healing practices just because the lobe piercing is so common. It’s common to get lazy with a piercing that has a relatively easy healing time. You might be willing to miss a wash or two, which could lead to complications that won’t be easy to deal with. Take the time to conduct proper aftercare.

Aftercare rules

The lobe piercing is relatively easy to heal, but this means that you will have to maintain self control to keep up aftercare practices throughout the entire healing process.

Conduct saline cleanses for the entire healing process. The outside of your lobe piercing will heal before the interior. This means that it will look healed before healing is complete. Make sure that you’re conducting saline cleanses throughout the entire healing process. If you think that your lobe piercing has healed, talk to your piercer before stopping aftercare practices or changing your jewelry.

NEVER rotate your jewelry. If you got your lobe pierced when you were younger, you were probably told to twist the jewelry once or twice a day. This has been found to actually cause more trauma to the healing piercing than good. Throughout healing, don’t even touch your jewelry. If you must touch your jewelry during cleaning, make sure that you wash your hands with antibacterial soap. If you can, opt for saline sprays that allow you to clean the jewelry without touching it. If you develop crusties around the piercing site that you want to clean, soak a cotton swab in saline solution and gently pat the crusties until they dissolve away on their own.

Don’t sleep on your jewelry. Putting pressure on your new piercing can cause issues like jewelry rejection (including pressure from headphones, hats, and anything you put near the piercing site). When you pierce your ears, a common issue is sleep. Many of us sleep on one side or the other, and when you’re trying to heal a piercing, this causes problems. Try to sleep on your back or stomach or switch sides as you sleep. You should also make sure that your pillows and sheets are cleaned daily.

Lobe jewelry styles

The lobe is usually pierced at an incredibly low gauge (20G). If you’re planning on stretching your lobes, you can get pierced with an 18G needle. If you aren’t planning on stretching, however, then 20G will work just fine.

The small gauge means that you usually have to get jewelry made specifically for lobe piercings. Luckily, the lobe piercing is popular enough that there are tons of lobe jewelry styles to choose from.

An earring stud is an incredibly popular jewelry option. You can get a stud with a gemstone, diamond, or a charm. Studs can be easily worn without catching on clothing, like other jewelry types, so they’re a bit of a lobe piercing staple; you can often wear studs even in active situations.

Dangle earrings give you more room for intricate designs. Often, dangle earrings are worn for fancier events or when you want your earrings to pop. Similar to dangle earrings, hoop styles are also quite popular in lobe piercings. Since lobe piercings feature a smaller gauge, you must typically find hoops created specifically for lobe piercings.

Open hoop earrings are a relatively new style. While most earrings hang from the front of the lobe, open hoop earrings feature a charm or ball that peeks from the piercing hole with a half-hoop that curves around the back of the earlobe with a charm or dangle that hangs below the earlobe. It offers a different aesthetic that can bring new life to your lobe piercing.

Screw back stud earrings offer a more secure hold. Screw back stud earrings are a great choice for young children with lobe piercings or those with a more active lifestyle.

Why shouldn’t I get a lobe piercing?

Luckily, there aren’t many reasons why you can’t get a lobe piercing. The lobe offers plenty of space, and it’s an easy piercing to do, so you should be able to get a lobe piercing no matter what.

If you have difficulty maintaining responsible aftercare practices, then you should wait before you get any piercing.

How much will it cost?

The lobe piercing costs anywhere between $40 and $60.

For the lobe piercing, you’ll find places where you can get the piercing for free (you’ll just have to pay for the jewelry). Most of the time, these piercers use unsafe practices (like a piercing gun), so you’ll want to stay away.

Additionally, you might be tempted to do your own lobe piercing, Parent Trap style. Although you’ve probably heard dozens of at-home piercing stories with happy endings, there’s so much that can go wrong. Table those teen rebellion urges and go to a real piercing studio.

You’ll want to spend the extra money on quality starter jewelry. If you choose cheaper metals, the alloys might react with your skin even if you’ve never had issues in the past. If the jewelry is too heavy, it could also contribute to jewelry rejection. Give your piercing the best chance with quality starter jewelry.

Lobe piercing variations

Depending on the size of your lobe, there’s a lot that you can do with your lobe piercings. There aren’t veins or nerve endings that your piercer has to worry about avoiding, so it’s really up to your imagination.

Multiple lobe piercings can be done a variety of ways. Most commonly, many opt for double- or triple-lobe piercings that extend behind the first lobe piercing located in the center of the lobe. You can also align your multiple piercings vertically.

Transverse lobe piercings feature entrance and exit points that extend horizontally through the lobe instead of straight back like a standard lobe piercing. The puncture points are connected with a curved barbell or captive bead ring. The curved barbell creates a double pierced look with small beads peeking through the bottom of your lobe.

Stretched lobes can be made out of any lobe piercing. Slowly increase the gauge of your jewelry to stretch your piercing to whatever size you’d like. Then, you can fill the hole with plugs. If you choose this option, make sure that you are stretching your lobes safely and be aware that they might not go back to their original size on their own; you might need surgery if you decide that you no longer want stretched lobes.