Vol.2, No.4

How to care for an eyebrow piercing

Caring for eyebrow piercing is much like caring for pierced ears. The following steps will speed the healing process and make for a prettier brow.

An eyebrow piercing
Photo Credit: Dawn Hudson
Caring for eyebrow piercing is much like caring for pierced ears, but it does take some work. The following steps are tedious, but will speed the healing process and make for a prettier brow. The person who pierced your brow will be the first one to ask for advice. He or she has seen it all before and will likely know the answers to your questions.

First step, you must have clean hands. Use any good anti-bacterial soap to wash your hands. It is better if you are in the shower or have just gotten out. The steam will make the rings or balls of the jewelry easier to turn without any friction.

The eyebrow piercing needs to be disinfected twice daily, usually morning and night. The anti-bacterial soap should be used to soap up around the piercing and the soap and water will allow the ring and/or balls to twist easily. Apply a disinfectant liberally on both ends of the ring.

Some doctors recommend an anti-bacterial ointment. Some doctors say this prolongs the healing process. So, be your own judge here. Definitely do not use any petroleum based product, as it will hold in bacteria and lead to infection. Also remember to check the tightness on your eyebrow piercing. It's very important to check daily, and tighten to the right. After applying the disinfectant, you might want to use a gauze pad at night for the first few weeks over your piercing. Some piercers recommend a new pillowcase so bacteria, which may be lingering on the pillowcase, won't cause a problem for your beautiful new piercing.

During the healing process a scab will form and the piercing may drain a little. Remember that the jewelry needs to remain in place to act as a drain. If the jewelry is too large to allow proper drainage, it should be replaced with a smaller size. Removing your jewelry prematurely can cause an infected hole to close. Draining is normal, but if you feel it is turning into a thicker and darker discharge, please contact your doctor for more advice.

Bruises are not unusual after a piercing. They often take a little while to show. Don't be alarmed, eyebrows often bruise. The piercing is a major damage to the tissues and being on the surface of the face; the internal bleeding is easily shown. Yellow isn't necessarily bad, often a slightly older bruise will have this color. If the brow is shrinking and does not have fresh tenderness or oozing, chances are the brow is in good condition. If you put a cold pack on your eyebrow (hold it gently so you don't hurt the new jewelry) it may help to shrink the swollen tissues. But don't put on make-up to cover-up the bruise as it may cause an infection.

The entire healing process should take around 6 to 8 weeks. Do not expose your piercing to cosmetics such as make-up, hair products, lotions, creams, gels, etc. Cosmetics contain many different ingredients and can cause irritation and infection. During the healing process, it is best to avoid sunbathing, hot sauna, etc.

The last thing to watch out for is clothing getting caught in your new accessory! Loose fitting and clean clothing is a must, at least until you get used to your new piece of jewelry. Wait until the piercing has healed completely before engaging in strenuous physical activities such as playing football or even a pillow fight.

Once your piercing has fully healed, you can change your jewelry whenever you wish. To avoid complications, you should always wear good quality body jewelry of appropriate size and thickness. Use proper cleanliness habits so infections do not set in after your initial piercing has healed.