Septal piercings are very popular and you may want to have one. Ideally, you should go to a professional to have your septum pierced. This is the best way to make sure the piercing is done properly and doesn't get infected. However, if you insist on doing it yourself, it's entirely possible to minimize complications or the risk of infection as long as you keep your piercing sterile.
Method 1 of 3: Preparing the Nose and Necessary Equipment
Step 1. Choose jewelry to put on at the beginning of the piercing
Your first piece of jewelry may be different from the jewelry you put on after the piercing has healed. Usually, a curved barbell or horseshoe-shaped jewelry is the best choice for a septal piercing because it can be "hid" into the nostril during the healing process.
- Look for rings made of 14 karat gold or titanium to avoid skin irritation. If this is not possible, surgical steel can be used instead. After the piercing heals, you can use jewelry made from other materials.
- Make sure the jewelry has been sterilized and packaged separately. Do not remove jewelry from its packaging or touch it directly. Wear disposable gloves when picking up the jewellery.
Step 2. Clean the room where the septum is pierced
You should make sure the room you use is clean and has a mirror so you can see the whole process – the bathroom is the ideal place. Thoroughly clean the sink and countertops, and provide tissue as a base for piercing equipment to keep them sterile.
- If you use the bathroom, don't use it until the piercing is complete. When used, bacteria will enter the room and you will have to clean the room again. If sterile equipment is opened, you should throw it away if it is no longer sterilized.
- While in the bathroom, remove the toilet cover and empty the trash can. If there is a cat litter box, move it to another room before starting work.
If you have a pet, make sure it can't enter a cleaned room, as they can carry bacteria.
Step 3. Wear disposable gloves when touching your piercing or nose
Wear gloves to ensure that no bacteria will stick to the pierced area. It's a good idea to put on two layers of gloves at once. So, if the top layer is accidentally contaminated, you can remove it immediately.
Wash hands and forearms up to the elbows before putting gloves back on. Don't wear loose-fitting clothing that could nudge your arms or hands
Step 4. Prepare equipment ahead of time
You can order sterile piercing kits online at major online stores or specialized piercing websites. Make sure the equipment has been sterilized by autoclaving or packaged separately. Do not remove any appliance from the package until you are ready to use it.
- Arrange your utensils on the table in the order in which they are used and don't touch anything more than once.
- You may need to prepare a small bag or container for disposing of used utensils.
Warning: Do not touch any object that has been sterilized with bare hands. If done, the object is no longer sterile and can carry bacteria into the piercing, causing infection.
Step 5. Trim the long nose hair with a surgical razor
So as not to hurt yourself, do this slowly. Take a deep breath, then shave your nose while exhaling so you don't inhale bits of hair and sneeze. If you sneeze and come into contact with a razor, the object has become contaminated and needs to be replaced.
The shave doesn't have to be perfect, but you should make sure there aren't any nose hairs that could damage or contaminate the piercing
Step 6. Clean the nostrils with an antiseptic solution
Dip a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol, then wipe the inside of your nostrils. After that, change the cotton swab and do the same to the other nostril. Wipe your nostrils as you exhale so you don't inhale the alcohol.
After cleaning both nostrils, prepare a new cotton swab and clean the outside of the nose and any areas that may be touched when piercing the septum
Clean any areas on your face or nose that you might touch when you pierce the septum. If your hands touch an area on your face that hasn't been cleaned, your gloves are no longer sterile.
Step 7. Locate the columella on your nose
While wearing the gloves, gently pinch your septum until you find the "fit area." There is an area that feels tender at the bottom of your nostril. At the top, you will feel the hard cartilage. The area between the two halves is called the columella. This is the area for making the piercing. This process requires you to insert your finger into your nose and feel it so it may feel a bit odd.
- It's easier to find the columella if you pull the thick part down a little. However, not everyone has a columella. If you have an awkward septum or an asymmetrical nose, there may not be room for a septal piercing.
- If you can't find the columella, you run the risk of piercing the cartilage or fat in the area under your nostrils. This can cause excruciating pain. Look for a painless area in the nostril while pinching it with your finger. You shouldn't feel any pain, or you may only feel a slight pressure while doing it.
If a professional piercer tells you that your septum isn't suitable for piercing, don't try to pierce it yourself at home.
Step 8. Mark the area to be pierced with a surgical marker
Once you've found the columella, take out a pen or surgical marker and make a dot in the area. You only need to make a dot on one side of the columella where you want the needle to pierce, but you can mark both sides of the columella to make sure it's straight.
Draw a line across from one side of the septum to be pierced to the other. This will help you make sure your piercing stays straight
If you can't see your nostrils clearly through the mirror in the bathroom, you may need to use a movable mirror or a special magnifying mirror to apply makeup.
Method 2 of 3: Finishing the Piercing
Step 1. Place clamps on both points to be pierced
Open the clamp and position it in the area that has been marked for piercing. Make sure you can see the point clearly. Keep the handle straight with the drawn line so that you can direct the needle properly.
Observe the mirror carefully to straighten the clamps. Keep in mind that this process requires you to understand the inside of your nose yourself
Step 2. Tighten the clamps to hold them in place
Once the clamps are in place, you can secure them in place so you don't have to keep pressing them down. However, be sure not to remove it until it is completely immobile. If it slips, it can damage your piercing.
If the clamp feels too tight, you can hold it in place while making the piercing. Just make sure you don't take it off
Step 3. Straighten the needle and press it through the septum
Take the needle out of the package, then align it with the point marked as the “fit area” to make the piercing. Watch the mirror to point the needle straight at the point instead of stabbing it at an angle. Take a deep breath, then press the needle while exhaling.
- Pull the needle slightly so it doesn't puncture the wall of the other nostril.
- If directed properly, you won't feel too much pain. You will of course still feel a little sore. However, your eyes must be watering. Take care that tears do not drip onto the gloves you are wearing.
A septal piercing usually doesn't hurt too much, but try not to focus on the pain so you don't have any doubts. Take a deep breath and relax your body as much as possible by thinking about a calm and happy atmosphere. After that, press the needle until it penetrates the septum.
Step 4. Hook the sterilized jewelry to the end of the needle, then pull it out
The needle should form a straight line across the bottom of the nose. Place the jewelry on the tip of the needle, then pull it through the hole you just made.
After pulling the needle out, secure the attached jewelry. If there are balls at the ends, attach them tightly. At this point, you have successfully pierced the septum
Method 3 of 3: Keeping Piercing Clean
Step 1. Soak your piercing in a mixture of sea salt and water twice a day
Mix 1.2 ml of sea salt with 240 ml of clean water. Dip a cotton ball into it, then wipe the piercing in both nostrils. If there is any residue from the solution, seal it tightly and save it for another day's use.
- Make sure you clean the entire area of the piercing. Use this mixture while exhaling so as not to inhale the salt water.
- Do not increase the dose of the solution above. The result will not be more effective and can actually make the skin dry.
Step 2. Use an aftercare spray to remove bacteria
These sprays can be purchased online from major stores or from specialized piercing websites. Spray the pierced area 2 to 3 times a day to prevent bacteria from entering the piercing while it is healing.
Use this spray as a complement to the salt water treatment method mentioned above
Step 3. Wash your hands before touching the piercing area
Naturally, when you have a new piercing, you may want to play with it. However, due to dirty hands, you are at risk of delivering infection-causing bacteria.
Some types of piercing need to be rotated daily. However, it is not recommended for septal piercings. Do not twist the mounted jewellery. Let stand and do not touch it with unwashed hands
Step 4. Stay away from swimming pools and hot tubs for at least 2 weeks
When a septal piercing is healing, exposure to water from swimming pools and hot tubs can hinder the healing process. The chlorine in the water will dry out the skin and cause bleeding. Water can also carry bacteria.
After 2 weeks, you can shower or sit in a hot tub. However, you should not soak your head. If you want to do this, first cover the piercing with a waterproof bandage. You can find these products online or buy them at drugstores
Step 5. Wait at least 2 months before changing jewelry
When the piercing begins to heal, you will need to determine if the jewelry you are wearing is replaced. However, it usually takes up to 6 weeks for the piercing to heal completely. Even if you don't feel pain or irritation, you should wait 2 months before changing your jewelry.
Use this time to search for jewelry you like based on your mood. Once your piercing has healed, you can change your jewelry whenever you want
Step 6. Seek professional help if there are signs of infection
As long as you maintain a sterile environment when pierced the septum and keep it clean, the piercing should heal without problems. However, if you have yellow or green pus that smells bad, you should contact your doctor immediately.
- It is normal to have swelling and inflammation for a few days after the piercing. However, if the symptoms do not improve or worsen, the piercing may become infected.
- If you start to have a fever, seek professional help as soon as possible. You may need antibiotics to cure the infection.
- Don't take off your jewelry if you think your piercing is infected. The hole may close so the infection can't drain.
If you are in doubt or are reluctant to consult a medical professional, a professional piercer can check to see if your piercing has an infection.
You can still have your septum pierced even if it's forbidden at work or school, but you'll have to learn to hide it
- Piercing the septum requires you to understand the structure of the inside of the nose. If you feel uncomfortable, you should see a professional.
- When wearing gloves, don't touch clothing, body parts, or any object that has not been sterilized. Otherwise, your gloves will become contaminated and must be replaced.
- Do not pierce the septum in allergy season if you have certain allergies.
- Doing your own body piercing at home is a dangerous activity that is not recommended. Leaving the piercing to the experts is the best option. Even though they are more expensive, the risk of infection and other health complications is much lower.