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The Jestrum (Vertical Medusa) Piercing: Everything You Need to Know

The jestrum piercing, also known as the vertical Medusa, consists of one piercing with an entry point in the philtrum (where the Medusa piercing is located) and an exit point through the upper lip itself. The piercing is filled with a curved barbell, leaving the ball ends to peek out of the piercing points, creating a double pierced look.

This piercing is perfect for those who want something a little more unique that’s still understated. The two dots on your upper lip will allure without overwhelming your natural looks.

Aesthetics are incredibly important with this piercing. It must be centered on the lip in order to achieve its look. Additionally, your lips need to be thick enough in order to accommodate the jewelry. For these reasons, it’s important to do your research before making an appointment with your piercer.

Jestrum piercing


Here’s everything you need to know about the jestrum piercing:  

How much do jestrum piercings hurt?

Even though the actual lip will be pierced, most say that the jestrum piercing only lands about halfway on the pain scale. It will hurt more than getting your lobe pierced, but less than piercing your cartilage.

Finding an experienced piercer will contribute to the level of pain you feel. Expert piercers will know how to perform the procedure in the least painful way possible. If you’re nervous or you have a low pain tolerance, try to find a piercer who can make your experience easier.

Jestrum piercing healing process

The outside of your jestrum piercing will heal before the inside. (This is true of all piercing types, but since this piercing goes through thicker flesh, the interior of the piercing will heal much later than the exterior).

You can expect to spend 6 - 12 weeks healing the exterior of your jestrum piercing, but the interior could take up to 6 months to fully heal. You need to be careful with your jewelry throughout the entire healing period, and be sure to talk to your piercer before stopping aftercare practices.

Aftercare rules

Jestrum piercings are susceptible to the same issues of any lip piercing. The two biggest things that you need to watch out for are your oral hygiene and snagging the new jewelry.

Conduct a sea salt or saline soak 2 - 3 times daily. You can do this by filling a cup with saline solution (or your own homemade salt bath) and dipping the new piercing inside. This helps flush your new piercing of bacteria, and it’s key to avoiding infection.

Keep your mouth clean. Although the jestrum piercing never enters the mouth, its proximity still puts it at risk of infection brought on by mouth-borne bacteria. Make sure to keep your mouth clean, brush your teeth after every meal, and gargle with salt water to clean out any residual microbes. (Don’t use mouthwash, since the alcohol in it can irritate your piercing.)

Be careful with your new jewelry. The placement of the jestrum piercing is alluring, but it’s also a bit in the way. You’ll get used to it eventually, but in the first few weeks, it might be a challenge. Your initial jewelry will need to be large enough to accommodate swelling, which means that it might stick out a little bit. Once the swelling has gone down, you can talk to your piercer about getting fitted with a smaller piece. Until then, stick to soft foods, be careful with your silverware around the jewelry, and try not to move your lips too much. If the jewelry is snagged or tugged, it could lead to piercing migration, which is detrimental to a piercing that depends on precise placement.

Jestrum piercing jewelry styles

Curved barbells are the jewelry of choice for the Jestrum piercing. It’s important to choose this shape because it will feel more natural to your body’s shape, lessening the risk of rejection.

While the jewelry types are limited, there are tons of curved barbell styles to choose from. The jestrum piercing is ideal for curved barbells with a standard ball bead at one end and a charm or gemstone at the other. The charm will sit in your philtrum while the ball end peeks from your lips, accentuating the double pierced look.

Why shouldn’t I get a jestrum piercing?

The jestrum piercing requires thicker lips in order to pierce deeply enough. If you’re unsure, you should have a piercer take a look. Medusa lip piercings are an acceptable substitute, or you can see if your bottom lip is thick enough to pull off a vertical labret piercing.

If you have a hard time with oral hygiene, then you should stay away from lip and mouth piercings in general.

How much will it cost?

You can expect to pay around $30 - $60 for the jestrum piercing. Since placement is so important, you should find a piercer who is experienced in this piercing type.

It’s a good idea to vet your piercer before you make an appointment. Their studio should be clean, their tools should come in sealed packages that they open in front of you, and they should be able to show you examples of past work. If they don’t check off all of these boxes, then you should find another piercer.

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