Looking to draw attention to your eyes in a whole new way? This piercing is much different than the punk rock safety pin or hoop that we are familiar with. Horizontal eyebrow piercings are gaining popularity but are still more exotic and hard to find than a traditional “through the eyebrow” vertical eyebrow piercing. A horizontal eyebrow piercing is a surface piercing that is placed just above or below the eyebrow hairs or in some cases within the actual brow. Sometimes it may be slightly angled to suite specific anatomy. It is up to the piercer’s best judgment and your preference to decide the best placement for your new piercing; maybe close to the center or outer part of eyebrow if there is sufficient tissue.
A good professional piercer will manipulate and massage the area prior to piercing. This makes everything more comfortable by relaxing the tight skin and muscles in your face. Especially when massaging is done, most people find the horizontal eyebrow piercing to be nearly painless. Massaging the area also helps them to find the muscles they need to avoid. The two spots where the needle will go in and out are marked with a surgical pen. After you approve of the placement you will lay down on the piercing table, inhale deeply as the needle goes in, and then exhale slowly. Proper breathing is crucial; if you are calmer your body will be more receptive to the needle and there is less chance of jumping or flinching. Your piercer can use forceps or do this piercing free hand, depending on their personal preference and your anatomy. They will use a hollow 18, 16, or 14 gauge needle, depending on your brow structure and the aesthetic you are going for. Many people with this piercing say there is a warm and fuzzy feeling that is comparable to the small amount of pain involved with waxing or plucking your eyebrows.
Any eyebrow piercing, whether it is vertical, angled, or horizontal, is apt to experience bruising, swelling, and possible bleeding for up to a few days after the initial puncture. Even the most properly place piercing and perfectly fitting jewelry may seem like it is rejecting at first, but this feeling will subside once the tissue loosens around the jewelry and the swelling is alleviated. Surface piercings in general are harder to heal, so remember that patience is a virtue and do not take any shortcuts with aftercare. Make sure you follow your piercer’s aftercare guidelines closely.
The healing time for a horizontal eyebrow piercing is normally anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks, which is the same as a regular (vertical/angled) eyebrow piercing. Initial jewelry is a 18, 16, or sometimes 14 gauge (for fuller faces) surface bar or mini curved barbell with a minimum 3/8 inch length. As with all piercings, the initial jewelry you are pierced with will be longer to make room for swelling. It is recommended to have your piercer change the jewelry for you when the swelling subsides. Then you will be 100% sure that the piercing is healing correctly and that you have the correct size of jewelry. This will aid in healing and help prevent a lot of irritation and other problems that can arise.
Bigger is not better when it comes to horizontal brow piercings, and stretching is not recommended for any kind of eyebrow piercing. In general, wearing jewelry that is too heavy for a horizontal eyebrow piercing or wearing a straight barbell instead of the recommend curved can be problematic and may deter healing. When the jewelry and placement of the piercing are correct, the rejection rate for horizontal eyebrow piercings is very low. Your professional piercer will pinch your brow area during the consultation to make sure there is ample skin to pierce. Multiple eyebrow piercings are possible and beautifully compliment other facial piercings, adding that special twinkle to your eye.