When someone says “nose piercing” they’re usually referring to the body modification that is pierced and rests in the curve of one of the nostrils. Depending on where you find yourself culturally, “nose piercing” can take on a more general meaning and can refer to piercings such as the septum or the bridge of the nose. This broad sense of the term is also found when referring to the jewelry as a “nose ring” because this term is commonly used to reference any piece of jewelry worn in the nose. Besides the standard nose piercing that is simply a solitary piercing made in the natural crease of your nostril, there are a variety of other piercings that are found around the same area, including:
Double Nostril – two holes are created with the first piercing being higher than the other; requires a strategic and professional piercer due to the risk of hitting nerve structures; jewelry used are nose bones, nostril screws, l-shaped , nose hoops, circular barbells and even captive bead rings
Triple Nostril – requires more precautions in creating patterns to ensure nerve structures are not affected; most convenient jewelry used in this type are nose bones; commonly seen on the top crease of the nostril in a triangular pattern
High Nostril – jewelry is placed a few centimeters above the natural curve of the nostril crease; jewelry options for the high nostril piercing is limited to nose bones, l-shaped, and nostril screws
There are a total of five types of nose rings that are available for purchase on BodyCandy.com: the hoop, nose bone, l-shaped, nose screw, and fishtail.
Fishtails are straight nose rings with an extra long length and are specifically made to be custom fit by a professional piercer. If you’ve been having a difficult time finding a standard nose ring that fits your nostril comfortably, then you may have the unique sizing need that is met by choosing to wear a fishtail nose ring. Because the fishtail is about 19mm, or 3/4″ long, and has no shaping or bulb to hold it in place, it can’t be worn as is. You have to take it to a piercer in order to be sized and shaped first. This type is most commonly bent into an l-shaped nose ring or some form of nose screw, but it can also be made into any other shape, including a nose hoop.
Pros: customizable size and shape
Cons: needs to be sized by a professional piercer before wearing
2. Nose Screw
The nose screw (also known as a nose stud, nose twister, or nose hook) comes down straight from the bottom of the decoration or gem setting and has a short, hooked post that goes into a small curl, which works as a backing to hold the jewelry in place and is appropriately named after the way you twist the screw into your nostril. There are right bend and left bend nose screws, so you must choose one or the other depending on which side of your nose is pierced to provide the best comfort and fit. This is probably the most popular type of nose ring available and has plenty of style options to choose from.
Pros: secure, provides flush fit against skin, wide variety of styles
Cons: may be visible in nostril, more difficult to insert into piercing
3. Nose Hoop
Nose hoops, which may be called by a variety of names depending on the geographical region or type of jewelry, will come in a variety of sizes and colors and are most often made of surgical grade stainless steel or titanium. A favorite during the nineties, this model of nose decoration has recently experienced a resurgence. Most hoops have an open end with a small flat disc on one side that rests just inside the piercing, and this style tends to be more noticeable than its studded counterparts. Hoops that are made specifically for the nostril piercing will be called a nose hoop, nose ring, or nose circular; others may choose to wear a captive ring or horseshoe circular barbell and refer to these styles are nose hoops as well. There are a number of different types of hoops available that can be used as nose rings on our site, including seamless segment rings, captive bead rings, and closure rings.
Pros: wide variety of sizes and colors, unlikely to apply pressure (good for healing), classic style
Neutral/Cons: more noticeable, less decoration/gem options
L-shaped nose rings have a shaping that appears as an uppercase “L,” hence the title, “l-shaped.” Because of the ninety-degree angle and the extension of material beyond it that rests against the inside of the nose, an l-shape will also have a fairly secure fit. It is also a much easier option to insert into your nose piercing as compared to some of the other types. The standard length of this item from the bottom of the setting to bend of the L is usually six to seven millimeters, though this may be shorter for specialty sizes.
Pros: fairly secure fit, wide variety of styles, easily made from fishtail nose rings, comes in left and right versions, easy to insert into piercing
Cons: easier to lose from nostril than other types, may be visible in nostril
5. Nose Bone
A nose bone has a short post with a decorative top that rests on the outside of your nostril and has a slightly bulbous bottom that secures the post in place in your nostril piercing. The nose bone usually has a straight piece of around six or seven millimeters in length and pops in and out of your piercing, sometimes with a little resistance due to that bump at the end. Easily removable and very comfortable, no excess material sits against the inner side of the nostril. Once inserted, the ball-shaped end will prevent the jewelry from falling out. These types of nose rings should not be used for initial or healing piercings because the bump at the end will give you plenty discomfort when you try to put it in.
Pros: provides flush fit against skin, secure fit, rarely visible in nostril, wide variety of styles
Cons: should not be used in healing piercings, may be difficult to insert into piercing at first
Alternate Style Options: Micro Nose Rings, Labrets, and Faux Hoops
Do you need help figuring out what material is best for you and your nose piercing? Check out our previous blog post, which has everything you could ever hope to know about the materials used for our nose rings. If you need help with sizing, we’ve got a blog post for that too!