Encyclopedia of Body Piercings: Industrial Barbell Cartilage Piercing

Encyclopedia of Body Piercings: Industrial Barbell Cartilage Piercing

Piercing Experiences: Leah's Nipple Piercing Video Reading Encyclopedia of Body Piercings: Industrial Barbell Cartilage Piercing 5 minutes Next BLACK FRIDAY and CYBER MONDAY SAVINGS ARE COMING YOUR WAY

Location: generally, a connection made in the upper cartilage of the ear made between two piercings: one close to the head in a forward helix position and one on the outer edge of the ear in a standard helix position

Jewelry: initially, a long, straight barbell will typically be used in a gauge size of 14 gauge (1.6mm) with the length dependent on the anatomy of your ear; other jewelry types used can include flexible PTFE or Bioplast barbells as well as custom curved barbells

Healing: total healing time can be anywhere from 3 to 9 months; sometimes longer

Aftercare: about twice a day, wash with warm water and antibacterial soap; sea salt solutions and sprays can aid with the process and both are recommended for use in an aftercare routine

Also known as the scaffold, bar, or project piercing, the industrial piercing can be pierced in a number of different ways, including the typical horizontal industrial cartilage piercing. However, there is also the vertical industrial piercing, which is a connection made from the rook, outer conch, or helix to the inner conch area of the ear.

Piercisms: When you get more than one type of industrial piercing done in the same ear, this ear candy style is referred to as an "ear cage".

However, especially with this area of the ear, the structure and thickness of the cartilage can vary, so the only factor limiting for the ear projects you can create is based on your own anatomy. Some ears will simply not have enough tissue present to support an industrial piercing at all. The best way to be sure of whether or not you and your ear can get this piercing is to visit your local piercing professional and see what their expertise has to say.

Thinking about getting your industrial pierced but not sure what the actual process entails? Check out the video above from our YouTube channel that shows Jenny getting her industrial piercing performed by professional piercer James, from American Skin Art in our hometown of Buffalo, NY. 

General Aftercare Tips for Ear Piercings:

  • Avoid smoking, using public telephones, and sleeping directly on your new piercing. 
  • ALWAYS make sure you wash your hands before touching your piercing/its jewelry. 
  • Resist the urge to change your initial jewelry prematurely - it's worth the wait to do it correctly. 


Additionally, piercings in the cartilage of the ear, which lacks an adequate blood supply, makes it more difficult to heal than locations that receive better circulation such as the lobe. The industrial piercing requires more attention to care than with the typical cartilage piercing healing process because you'll be working to soothe two new piercings that are connected together rather than one resting freely in your ear. If you skimp on taking care of your new industrial or don't have it performed by an experienced piercer, you could be risking scar tissue formation, migration, or even rejection, which no one with a new piercing should ever have to experience.

Pierced Pro Tip: As we mentioned with the forward helix cartilage piercing, you'll want to be sure to show your piercer where your eyeglasses typically rest on your ear to aid in proper placement and decrease the possibility of potential issues down the road.

Sometimes, two separate barbells will be used to combat an industrial in danger of complications. However, this method can also lead to further issues when you attempt to reconnect the piercings down the road since you can't ensure that they heal for correct and level placement with a singular barbell. As always, remember to consult your local piercer if you ever have any worries about your piercing or questions about the healing process. Piercers are your friends!

Want to check out some interesting options for your industrial piercing whether you just got it pierced or have had it for years?!

We've got you covered here at BodyCandy.com with a ton of industrial piercing jewelry to choose from!


This post is included in the Ear Piercing category of our encyclopedia and is joined by many other blog posts about the other piercings available as options in the ear and surrounding areas.

  1. Standard Ear Lobe Piercing
  2. Upper Ear Lobe Piercing
  3. Standard Helix Cartilage Piercing
  4. Forward Helix Cartilage Piercing
  5. Rook Cartilage Piercing
  6. Conch (Inner) Cartilage Piercing
  7. Flat (Scapha/Outer Conch) Cartilage Piercing
  8. Daith Cartilage Piercing
  9. Snug (Anti-Helix) Cartilage Piercing
  10. Industrial Barbell Cartilage Piercing
  11. Tragus Cartilage Piercing
  12. Anti-Tragus Cartilage Piercing
  13. Surface Tragus Piercing

DISCLAIMER: the styles and locations displayed in the reference images featured in this post won't match perfectly with your ear's shape because each and every person has an anatomy that is uniquely individual and some of the piercings featured in our encyclopedia may not be possible for you to get. To find out what piercings are available for you and your specific anatomy, the best option is to visit your local professional piercer and ask for their expertise in determining what piercings are possible for you and your ear!

Do you already have your industrial pierced or have an experience about the piercing to share with others?! We totally encourage you to do so! Just leave a comment below!