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Your first piercing can be scary. It's totally okay to be nervous! There's a needle getting shoved through your skin, so it's probably going to hurt, right? There's so many questions that go through our heads the first time we get pierced.

How bad is it going to hurt?
What if it doesn’t heal?
Will it look good on me?

Cartilage Piercings

These are all questions that can absolutely detour someone from going through with a piercing. Let's clear up the questions about pain!

How bad is it going to hurt?

Well, it's going to hurt. Will it be the worst pain of your life? No way, but it's better to go into your piercing knowing that a tiny bit of pain is a part of it. If you're not very tolerant of physical pain, you might want to bring a friend along to calm your nerves, you'll totally want to plan out some rest and relaxation time after your piercing, and above all else - talk to your piercer! Let them know how you're feeling throughout the process so that they can be sure you're as comfortable as possible.

Nose Piercing

You can’t always trust the opinion of a friend on this. As a teenager, I went into my navel piercing thinking I "wouldn’t feel a thing," because that’s what my girl friends told me. I felt a lot of things, but I was completely fine afterwards. Every body has a different tolerance for pain.

Belly Button Piercing

As a general rule of thumb:

  • Earlobe, navel, tongue and eyebrow piercings are the least painful.
  • Septum, labret, dermal (surface) piercings, cartilage piercings, nostril and male intimate piercings are typically a medium level of pain for most.
  • The most painful piercings are in sensitive areas, ie. nipple and intimate piercings (for females.)

I think it goes without saying, piercing an area of your body that's already sensitive is going to be the most painful. Don't let that scare you off, though. Your body will naturally react to stimulation, and if you're someone who is very in-touch with your body, you'll probably feel a bit startled. None of this means you're going to feel like you're literally dying just because you got your nipples pierced.

Just for good measure, I thought I'd share this totally awesome piercing video that demonstrates all of what I just said. Check out BodyCandy's own Snapchat queen, Ann, getting her nipples pierced!

If this is your first time getting pierced, there's a few things you can expect to happen, and ways to prepare yourself your induction into the pierced and proud crowd. 

  • Paperwork. You're going to need to show ID and sign some forms.
  • The piercer will explain exactly what they're going to do.
  • Sizing, positioning and a bit of waiting before the actual piercing happens.
  • Picking out your jewelry! This part is fun, but listen to recommendations your piercer makes before you get stuck on a piece you really want. Some jewelry can't be worn in fresh piercings, so you may have to wait.

For more information on what to expect, visit our guide to first time piercings:
First Time Piercing: What to Expect, How to Prepare

  • A

    I have my snakebites which I have had to repierce 3x, septum, nostril, top belly button, bottom belly button, I have had surface piercings on my arms, I have had dermals in collar bone, neck, and face (which they all knocked out and had them repierced). My lobes, my cartilage, and I stretched my ears to 9/16th. And by far my most painful piercing (my first one before my ears even at 15) was my NAVEL. That hurts like a B!! And it hurt the first horribly and it hurt the 2 other times I had it pierced LIKE HELLLL. I thought maybe I remembered it wrong cuz I was 15 but I just got my 3rd navel and OMG…. it just seems to never end. But worth it.

    ALanna on

  • A

    Hey Alex!

    Traditional tongue piercings (through the middle of the tongue) are generally considered pretty low on the pain tolerance scale… Just be prepared for a bit of swelling!

    Alley (Body Candy Team) on

  • B

    Pain tolerance definitely has a part in this, i only have my nose and my belly button pierced, people say that nose piercings hurt more than belly buttons but i have to disagree. The pain also increases if you are tense, if your body isn’t relaxed you will feel more pain

    Bronte on

  • J

    I did my earlobes myself when I was 12. Didn’t hurt at all. Got my navel pierced 20 years ago, didnt hurt at all though it was sore for weeks. Got my VCH yesterday and that HURT! But the slight aching was gone 2 hours later and it feels fine as of the next day.

    Jenn on

  • A

    How badly do tounge piercings hurt?

    Alex on

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