After months of meticulous aftercare, the last thing you want is for your nipple piercing to close. Although each nipple is unique, there are some general guidelines to consider when removing your piercing – the most important being how long it takes for your nipple piercing to close.
A newly pierced nipple can close within 24 hours after removing the jewelry. Therefore, you should avoid taking the piercing out if possible. Although fully healed nipple piercings are less at risk of closing, they may still close in merely a week if the jewelry is removed.
As exciting as getting your nipples pierced may be, there is a lot of responsibility that comes with having this kind of body jewelry. Ultimately, the wound healing process determines how quickly the opening will close once you remove the piercing. Various factors influence the healing process, from your skin type to the piercing material and the products you use to care for your piercing.
How Fast Do Nipple Piercings Close?
How quickly nipple piercings close is mainly individual. Some people won’t have to worry about their holes closing immediately, while others may need to take greater precautions to keep their piercings open. The rate at which piercings close after the jewelry is removed depends on how long the piercing has been in place, how skillfully it was done, and how healthy your skin is.
Freshly pierced nipples can close quickly. If you remove the piercing during the first year of healing, there is a greater risk that the opening will close after 24 hours. The jewelry serves as a barrier to retain the skin in place as new tissue regenerates throughout the healing process. That tissue will regrow over the piercing if it is removed.
A fully healed nipple piercing should often remain open even if the jewelry is taken off; however, even after a few years, nipple piercings can close within a week without jewelry.
Similarly, your skin condition contributes to how quickly your piercing will close after removing the jewelry. Your skin requires moisture to heal wounds, such as piercing openings. Without adequate moisture, the cells take longer to seal the wound edges. This delay prolongs the healing process and lengthens the waiting time until you can remove or change your jewelry.
Furthermore, delayed healing due to dry skin might make you more susceptible to infections. Unhealed wound edges create an opportunity for bacteria to enter the opening. Infection raises the risk of piercing rejection and permanent scarring.
The skill with which your piercing was first inserted influences how your nipple will heal and how quickly they will close after being pierced. Although nipple piercings can make you feel like a wildly exciting experience, it is not a decision that should be made spontaneously. Don’t be enticed by the first parlor you see with a flashy neon ‘piercings’ sign.
Read Yelp reviews and speak to friends who have already had theirs done. It’s crucial to select a piercer you are comfortable with – you shouldn’t get a piercing if the store or your piercer makes you feel uneasy. Choosing the right piercer based on your needs and expectations is essential, as they will be making a semi-permanent alteration to your body.
Once your appointment begins, do not feel afraid to speak up if you feel unsure at any point in the process. It is essential to be aware of the steps that the piercer takes – your piercer should open and pre-sterilize every item they use in front of you. Furthermore, the piercer should prepare sterile supplies, wash up, put on gloves, and prepare.
Any professional piercer will also behave somewhat like a meditation teacher, encouraging you to maintain your composure and giving you breathing instructions as they pierce you. However, don’t let these precautions deter you from following through with an exciting addition to your appearance.
Can You Reopen A Closed Nipple Piercing?
There is no way to reopen a hole that looks completely closed on your own; pushing jewelry through will result in a bleeding, open wound that might get infected. A closed hole could, however, just be partially covered. A small layer of skin may have grown over the piercing hole, hiding it just below its surface.
Even though your piercing hole closes, the tissue that returns is the same as before but scarred. Depending on how traumatized your body was by the initial piercing, you may be able to re-pierce the hole. However, doing so requires you to pierce the skin through scar tissue. The tissue is readily punctured again since it regenerates, although scarred. Before inserting another needle, it’s crucial to make sure the region has finished healing completely.
The first step to safely inserting jewelry into a partially closed piercing is to ensure that your jewelry is correctly cleaned and sanitized. Warm water and mild dish soap are the typical recommendations for washing any type of jewelry. Use a clean toothbrush or jewelry cleaning brush to get into all the crevices and crevices of the object to remove dirt and sticky filth like moisturizer, sunscreen, and soap scum buildup.
You will likely need to repeat the cleaning process to remove all dirt and ensure the jewelry is cleaned correctly. You may also boil your rings in water that has been slightly diluted with alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or bleach. Because retained moisture is a significant cause of skin irritation, it is vital to ensure that jewelry is completely dry.
After sanitizing your jewelry, thoroughly clean your nipples. However, washing the area with soap can irritate the skin and cause it to become dry. Instead, you can use a sea salt soaking solution. You may prepare a sea salt solution at home or use a store-bought saline wash to fill a small container.
Combine 250ml of boiling water with a quarter teaspoon of sea salt to create your own solution. A drop of tea tree oil can be added to the mixture if you tend to have dry skin. Tea tree oil is an excellent additive whether you’re using homemade saline wash or store-bought saline wash since it helps protect your nipple piercings from any bacteria that can enter the wound when you insert your jewelry.
Lean forward and tightly cover one of your nipples with the container filled with the saline wash or a sea salt solution infused with tea tree oil. Reposition yourself upright and hold the cup firmly to your breast. After soaking your nipple in the solution for five minutes, empty the cup, rinse it, and then refill it. Repeat the procedure with your other nipple.
Put on sterile gloves or thoroughly wash your hands with antibacterial soap after washing your nipples. Set out any equipment you plan to use, such as your lubrication and sterilized body jewelry.
Before attempting to reinsert your jewelry, gently massage a small amount of moisturizer into the nipple. It is best to opt for a high ointment, such as Vaseline or Aquaphor since it won’t clog your healing fistulas. Additionally, it will increase your skin’s natural suppleness, making your fistulas more flexible and looser when it’s time to pierce a partially closed opening.
Start finessing the metal bar through the piercing by pinching the end of it between your two fingers. Unless the bar slips through the perforation, proceed gently and deliberately. If the jewelry doesn’t fit, try inserting it slowly and carefully. However, don’t force anything in since you don’t want to harm your nipple.
Screwing the second metal ball to the end of the bar will fix the piercing in place. Turn the ball clockwise while holding the metal piece in place with your clenched fingers. Hold onto the metal ball until you are confident it is fastened to the other jewelry pieces.
You should do another sea salt solution or saline wash soak after you have inserted your nipple jewelry. Repeat the cleaning process twice daily for the first several days to a week after changing your jewelry. Spray an aftercare spray on your nipple piercings a couple of times each day in between soaks.
In essence, you want to intensify your aftercare routine to a level comparable to the nipple piercing aftercare you through immediately following your nipples being pierced. The sensitive tissue requires adequate soothed so your body can heal and adapt to your nipple jewelry. If you feel resistance when trying to get your jewelry back in, don’t push it; instead, consult a professional piercer.
What Does It Mean When Your Nipple Piercing Rejects?
Nipple piercings generally take six months to a year to heal. However, some nipples reject the piercing and fail to heal altogether. No matter the precautions you take, some individuals are more susceptible to piercing rejection than others.
What leads to further frustration is that there is no particular cause as to why you may experience piercing rejection. Instead, it occurs due to genetics, the tautness of the pierced area, the kind of piercing jewelry you’re wearing, and stress.
When your soft tissue experiences trauma, such as a piercing, it begins a complex healing process. During the piercing process, you likely experience bleeding caused by the needle piercing the tissue rich in capillaries. After your body forms a clot to stop any further bleeding, your tissues enter a phase of healing where immune cells cause your nipple to feel tender and swollen.
During this inflammatory healing phase, genetic differences create the potential for piercing rejection. Some people have a more aggressive response to the piercing, and their body treats it like any invading foreign body, such as bacteria. During rejection, the inflammation surrounding your piercing develops to such an extent that your body attempts to push the piercing out altogether.
During rejection, you may notice that the jewelry moves or start to hang differently from when it was first inserted. Furthermore, the skin surrounding the piercing openings thins and may appear flaky, red, or hardened.
Although rejection usually occurs during the first few weeks after the skin is pierced, it is not impossible to experience rejection months after your piercing has fully healed. Delayed rejection may occur due to poorly fitting or irritable jewelry. Some materials, like titanium, lower the risk of rejection. The golden rule is to follow your piercer’s advice, as they will know the ideal jewelry and piercing placement for you.
Similarly, pressure on the pierced area causes the skin to become taut and flattened. This pressure irritates the piercing and moves the jewelry to the skin’s surface. Pressure can be created by poor piercing placement or weight increases.
Piercing rejection may be excruciatingly painful and leave permanent scars. Preventing the jewelry from penetrating the skin’s surface is the best course of action, as this limits scar tissue formation, making re-piercing challenging. To avoid further damage, removing the jewelry and applying vitamin E oil to heal the scarring is best.
Furthermore, if your piercer okays you reinserting jewelry, you should opt for a larger, straight barbell. Nipple rings tend to move around, irritating the skin and impeding the healing process. Remember, the golden rule is that the better your piercing heals, the less likely it is to close when removing or changing the jewelry.
However, your nipple shape determines the jewelry most appropriate for your healing process. For people with inverted nipples, a curved barbell may be more suitable. Furthermore, a more extended bar might be a safer option when reinserting nipple jewelry, as it accounts for any potential swelling.
When reinserting your jewelry, the piercing’s material is an essential factor. Implant-grade metals, such as titanium, pure steel, and gold are less likely to trigger an allergic reaction than a metal containing nickel.
If you are especially susceptible to allergic reactions, opt for titanium or steel since gold causes skin irritation in rare circumstances. Furthermore, titanium and steel jewelry are popular options since they tend to be less expensive than gold piercings.
Whether you remove your jewelry to take a break from your piercing or to change up the hardware, you will need to take special precautions to ensure the opening doesn’t close. By following the correct method, you might be able to reinsert the jewelry once the piercing has partially closed. However, never use force to re-pierce your nipple.
No matter how long since you removed the jewelry, consult a professional piercer to decide on a way forward that works for you.
Some of my favorite designs, tattoo books, and aftercare products, selected for you
Thank you for reading my article, I hope that you have found it helpful. If you would have trouble finding ideas for your tattoo, wonder what is meaning of design that you have found or what to buy for aftercare, to make sure that your tattoo will be healing quickly and easily, here are some of my favorite products in one place, hope that this will also help.
Design and tattoo ideas
For some ideas you can have a look at those 3 books with hundreds of designs that I use with my clients, they are available on Amazon for Kindle or in classic, paper version (links below):
- Great Book of Tattoo Designs, Revised Edition: More than 500 Body Art Designs (Fox Chapel Publishing) Fantasy, Celtic, Floral, Wildlife, and Symbol Designs for the Skin by Lora Irish
- The Big Book of Small Tattoos – Vol.1: 400 small original tattoos for women and men by Roberto Gemori
- Tiny Tattoos: Over 1,000 Small Inspirational Artworks by Rebecca Vincent.
If you would like to read more about the meaning of different tattoo styles and designs before you will decide what you would like to have, I can recommend a book that was really useful for me when I was starting my tattoo adventure – it’s “Conscious Ink: The Hidden Meaning of Tattoos” by Lisa Barretta (through the link you can find it on Amazon for around $10).
The skin at the tattoo site often dries out. To prevent it and speed up healing for my clients, I usually recommend one of those tattoo aftercare balms (you can find them on Amazon):