The Septum Piercing: Everything You Need to Know
Of all the alternative facial piercings, the septum piercing is one that’s gaining momentum more than others. The piercing allows for many different jewelry types, making it a versatile option. Additionally, its location allows the pierced person to easily flip the jewelry inside the nose to hide it in professional settings or at more conservative events.
The septum piercing punctures the skin between your nostrils allowing the jewelry to dangle in between. The specific location of the puncture will depend on the location of what piercers commonly refer to as your “sweet spot.” If you pinch your septum, you should feel an area where the skin becomes thinner. This is called the columella. Typically, the columella is found toward the tip of the nose, but it varies from person to person.
In terms of piercings, the septum is a relatively easy one to undergo. As with all piercings, however, there are challenges that you need to keep in mind before visiting your piercer. Here’s all you need to know about the septum piercing.
How much does the septum piercing hurt?
The vast majority of people who get the septum piercing say that this piercing is very low on the pain scale. Most likely, you will feel a bit of a tug as the jewelry is pulled through, but you shouldn’t feel much more pain beyond that.
Sometimes, people don’t have a columella. If this is the case, the cartilage will need to be pierced, which will cause a bit more pain and will be a more difficult piercing process. If you don’t have a columella, it’s a good idea to talk to your piercer about your options.
Although the septum piercing process is fairly easy for the piercee, the location of the piercing inside of the nose can be a challenge to piercers. Depending on where your “sweet spot” is located, the piercer might have to try a couple of times to get the piercing straight. Be sure to choose an experienced piercer and understand that you might need to come back to get it re-pierced if the piercing isn’t straight. Even the most expert piercers can struggle with this piercing.
Septum piercing healing process
The average healing time for the septum piercing is 6 - 8 weeks, but it could take a few months. Since piercings heal from the outside in, it’s a good idea to consult your piercer to make sure that your septum piercing is fully healed before stopping aftercare practices.
Since the septum piercing is inside your nose, you need to be extra attentive to keeping your piercing clean. Additionally, your jewelry will move in your nose, causing you to want to touch and adjust it, which is typically a big aftercare no-no, but the septum piercing is a little more flexible with this rule.
The location of the piercing in the nose presents unique healing challenges. Here are some septum piercing aftercare tips:
Do a sea salt soak 2 - 3 times a day. Simply dissolve ¼ teaspoon of sea salt in 1 cup of warm water. Find a cup or mug that’s big enough to fit your nose, and dip your entire nose into the soak for 3 - 5 minutes. This will disinfect your piercing and wash away crusties that may have formed around the piercing site. Do not do a sea salt bath more than 3 times a day to avoid skin irritation.
You can adjust your jewelry, but do so with caution. A major piercing aftercare rule is to leave your jewelry alone as the piercing heals. Twisting or moving the jewelry can damage the fragile skin around the new piercing. However, the location of the septum piercing combined with the jewelry styles causes septum jewelry to become crooked more easily than jewelry in other piercings. You will want to adjust your jewelry, but be careful when you do. Try not to move the jewelry more than once or twice a day, and make sure that your hands have been fully sanitized every time you touch your jewelry.
Septum stench is a thing. Dead skin cells and bacteria easily build up around the septum piercing because of its location inside the nose. This is why it’s especially important to keep your piercing clean. If you start to notice an odor, supplement your sea salt soaks by dabbing a cotton ball or clean paper towel soaked in saline solution to the pierced area to help clean the buildup.
Septum jewelry styles
The septum piercing allows for tons of different hoop styles. Fans of the septum piercing enjoy anything from large clickers with intricate designs to a subtle seamless ring. Unlike the nostril piercing, you won’t have to choose which style you prefer; the septum piercing accommodates all types of hoops, allowing its wearer to get creative.
Circular barbells hang from a septum piercing almost like a horseshoe hangs above a door for good luck. The variety of bead options, such as diamond-paved beads or Baltic amber beads, can add a splash of color to your nostril piercing. Circular barbells are popular as the first jewelry used in the septum piercing since they are easy to insert and remove. Additionally, circular barbells can be flipped upward into the nose to easily hide the jewelry in situations where it might not be accepted.
Captive bead rings are also a popular starter jewelry option. The captive bead makes for ease of use, and the bead adds extra flair to a standard hoop style.
Once you’re ready to change your jewelry, seamless hoops make for a subtle look. The seamless hoop is a little more difficult to navigate than the CBD or circular barbell options, but once inserted, it creates a classic aesthetic that goes with any style.
Clicker hoops are an incredibly popular style for healed septum piercings. They consist of a hinged piece that you insert into the piercing and then click firmly in place, closing the hoop. The clicker mechanism allows for bolder designs, so if you’re a fan of jewelry that stands out, then clickers are for you.
Why shouldn’t I get a septum piercing?
Because the septum is located in the middle of your nose, septum jewelry tends to draw attention to any asymmetry in the nose or face. It all comes down to personal preference, but if you’re self-conscious about a crooked nose, then you might want to rethink this piercing.
It is possible to get your septum pierced even if you suffer from a deviated septum. However, as mentioned above, the piercing can draw attention to any irregularities. Have a piercer look at your septum to see if they can work around any irregularities for a straight pierce, or try out a faux septum hoop to see how it looks.
As with any nose piercing, the septum piercing will make blowing your nose more difficult. If you’re prone to sinus issues, suffer from allergies, or have other nasal challenges, you might want to stay away from nose piercings in general.
One of the best things about the septum piercing is that faux septum hoops are almost indistinguishable from an actual septum piercing. While there are certainly more jewelry options for those who are pierced, a faux hoop can be an excellent option for those who are worried about complications.
On the flip side, it’s very easy to change your mind if you get the septum piercing and decide it’s not for you. Since the puncture sits inside the nose, you’ll never have to worry about having a piercing scar. Of all the piercings you can get, the septum piercing is a fairly low-risk option.
How much will it cost?
Septum piercings cost between $40 - $90, and this may or may not include the jewelry. When choosing jewelry, you want to choose high-quality metals like 14k gold or surgical steel to avoid skin irritation. Although the septum piercing doesn’t usually reject jewelry like other piercings might, it is possible to develop skin sensitivities if you use lower quality metals, so it’s best to play it safe with high-quality jewelry.
The septum piercing is particularly difficult to navigate, even for experienced piercers. Choose a piercer that you trust and who has a proven track record of successful septum piercings. Even when you opt for an expert piercer, the septum piercing is difficult to get straight, and you might have to get it re-pierced. Do yourself a favor and choose the piercer who is most likely to get it right with the fewest attempts.
You should never see a piercer who uses a piercing gun. Besides the usual issues with piercing guns (such as the blunt force it uses and the bacteria it harbors), the septum piercing requires accuracy that a piercing gun can’t accomplish. If you visit your piercer, and they pull out a piercing gun, run away.