The Medusa Piercing: Everything You Need to Know
If you’re into alternative styles, then you’ve probably noticed the growing popularity of the Medusa piercing (also known as the philtrum piercing).
Located below the septum and right above the lip, the Medusa piercing can take on a sleek and subtle look with a simple lip stud, or you can opt for a more extravagant style with bold and beautiful jewelry. Additionally, many who choose this piercing pair it with other styles, like a labret piercing, to create an alluring cluster of lip jewelry.
Like all piercings, you need to adhere to proper aftercare practices, be aware of healing times and know any potential health risks associated with the piercing. Oral piercings require special attention during and even after healing since the mouth harbors bacteria that can be harmful to your piercing.
If you’re considering a Medusa, or simply curious about the piercing process, you’ve come to the right place! Here’s a quick and easy guide to get you started on your Medusa piercing journey.
How much does the Medusa piercing hurt?
Since the lips and the area around the lips have more nerve endings than other body parts, you can expect a bit of pain during the piercing process, but it will be quick. Since the Medusa consists of only one puncture that your piercer will complete in one fluid motion, the pinch will last only a moment, followed by some throbbing associated with any piercing.
For a few days after you receive your piercing, it’s likely that you’ll experience some continuing pain and swelling. Don’t be alarmed; this is quite normal. If, however, your piercing continues to hurt after a week, it starts smelling or excreting green or white puss, or if you experience excessive bleeding, you’ll want to consult a doctor.
Medusa Piercing Healing Process
Depending on the size of your lips, your body’s immune system, and how well you take care of your piercing during healing, the Medusa will take 6 -12 weeks to fully heal. It’s important to note that while the outside of the piercing may heal quickly, it will take longer for the piercing to heal internally, so we recommend following healing practices for at least 6 weeks. After 6 weeks, consult your piercer to confirm whether it’s time to stop aftercare practices.
For the most part, Medusa piercing aftercare doesn’t differ too much from standard aftercare practices. However, due to its location on the mouth, there are several additional things to keep in mind while your Lip piercings heals.
Firstly, you’ll want to ensure that the initial jewelry that you choose is large enough to allow for swelling during the healing process. Jewelry that’s too small can press against the piercing, increasing your risk of infection, limiting blood flow, and potentially becoming embedded in the skin. Additionally, your first jewelry should be of higher quality, especially if you have sensitive skin. Lower quality metals can irritate your skin and slow down the healing process.
Here are some quick tips on how to ensure a smooth healing process:
Don’t touch your jewelry more than you have to. Tugging or twisting the jewelry can irritate the surrounding skin.
Clean the piercing and jewelry regularly. Special aftercare products can be used to disinfect without irritating the skin, or you can make your own salt bath at home. When you clean the area, make sure that your hands are clean and you use a clean paper towel.
Keep the piercing dry. Don’t take baths, and when you shower, try to keep the piercing out of the water as much as possible. To dry, dab the piercing with a paper towel to avoid snagging.
Keep foreign objects away from the piercing, such as scarves, petroleum jelly, chapstick, and anything else that you might wear near the pierced area. Cover your pillow with a clean t-shirt each night to keep your piercing safe from the bacteria that gathers in your pillowcase.
Take care when you eat. Getting used to the new piercing will present a bit of a learning curve, and you don’t want to chomp on your jewelry and break your teeth.
Brush your teeth regularly (and take care when brushing around your piercing). Hopefully, oral hygiene is already a priority, but take special care while your lip is healing to keep harmful bacteria at bay.
Stay away from alcohol and cigarettes. Alcohol can lower your immune system’s functionality, and cigarettes contain harmful chemicals that can have an adverse effect on your healing piercing.
Medusa jewelry styles
Now that we’ve covered the scary parts about this super cute piercing, it’s time to get to the fun part: the jewelry.
By far, the most popular jewelry seen in a Medusa is a lip stud. A lip stud consists of a flat disc back, a barbell, and a bead or charm screwed to the front. You’ll want to opt for internally threaded jewelry to avoid snags or tears, and especially during healing, higher quality jewelry made from 14k gold or platinum will ensure that you avoid any skin irritation.
Most Medusa piercings take either a 14G or 16G lip stud. When you choose the length of the lip stud’s barbell, make sure that the stud doesn’t extend too far or pinch too tightly. Jewelry that’s too small can embed in the skin, and larger jewelry might scrape against your gums and contribute to a receding gum line.
Why shouldn’t I get a Medusa?
The location of the Medusa piercing helps accentuate the shape of your lips and draws attention to the lower half of your face. Because it typically hosts smaller jewelry, people with many different face shapes can rock this piercing to its fullest.
However, its location also makes it a prominent piercing, so you want to make sure that you are 100% positive that this is a piercing that you want before taking the plunge.
If you’re susceptible to receding gumlines or other oral issues, you might want to think twice about this piercing. Healing time will depend on your oral hygiene, and the jewelry can rub against your gums, causing issues.
How much will it cost?
Although prices vary, this piercing will cost you somewhere between $40 and $80. Since the piercing is located near many nerve endings, needs to be centrally located, and is extra susceptible to bacterial infection because of its location in the mouth, you won’t want to skimp on the quality of your piercer. Don’t be afraid to spend a little more so that you can be sure that you’re happy with your piercing.
Medusa Piercing Variations
We love body jewelry for its ability to help us show our individual personalities, so we love when we can take advantage of unique takes on standard piercings!
The double Medusa piercing consists of two vertical punctures beneath the septum. This style looks adorable with two dainty lip studs stacked on top of each other. Since two piercings are required for this style, often piercers recommend that you receive them one at a time for less pain and easier healing.
The Medusa piercing also pairs well with a septum piercing or nostril piercing due to its proximity.