Tragus Piercing 101


Tragus piercings are a super stylish and trendy way to extenuate your ears. Countless celebrities and influencers have flocked to the pierced tragus trend. As the curated ear becomes more popular, tragus piercings are a perfect option for those who are contemplating getting a new one. There are reports of tragus piercings helping people overcome headaches or migraines the way acupuncture can. Here’s some basic facts and tips regarding tragus piercings.


First, you may be asking yourself, what is a tragus piercing? The tragus piercing is a single puncture placed through the cartilage flap at the outer point of your ear canal. Depending on your anatomy, the procedure is typically preformed with a 16GA or 14GA standard piercing needle. A tragus piercing on average will be more painful than a standard lobe piercing due to the extra pressure from puncturing through cartilage. If you have ever received a cartilage piercing, you should have no problem with this piercing. If you haven’t received a cartilage piercing, you can expect it to fall on the pain scale between 4-6 out of 10. Jewelry length recommended for tragus piercings is 6 mm-8 mm. A reputable piercer will only pierce your tragus with a stud for the initial piercing. Steer clear of hoops until your piercing is completely healed. Once your piercing is healed, here are some of the styles of jewelry you can choose for your tragus piercing. 

Flat back labret stud Earrings:

Flat back earrings are studs with a flat backing that sits flush with your skin. This is perfect for those who are looking for a fitted, clean look. They are very comfortable to wear for extended periods of time and are the most comfortable to wear while you are sleeping.


Barbells (Ball Back) :

Ball back barbells are your classic cartilage studs but with a ball backing as opposed to a flat backing. These are also considered comfortable for long term wear and sleeping.

Cartilage hoops (Classic):

Cartilage Hoops are just like standard ring earrings you can wear in other areas of your ear, but these are clickers or bendable hoops that are usually 16GA or 18GA. They form a complete circle and can be rotated 360 degrees in your piercing.

Cartilage Hoops (Captive Bead Ring):

Captive Bead Rings are hoops that are also a complete circle, the difference is that the circle is completed with a bead that has indentations on the sides for the ring to snap into place and secure the item.


  Horseshoe barbells:

Horseshoe barbells are shaped as a horseshoe with either removable ball or decorative ends. This style is very fashionable, but should only be worn once your piercing is healed. Horseshoe barbells can get caught on your hair easier than other styles of tragus jewelry, and the snagging may prolong the healing process. The benefit of horseshoe barbells is that they drape your tragus giving you a sleek fun look, and they are easy to change.


Anti-Tragus Piercing:

The Anti-Tragus piercing is located in the curved small area of your cartilage right above your ear lobe. This procedure is performed with a standard 16GA piercing needle. Pain expected while receiving an anit-tragus piercing is a 6 out of 10 on average. Healing time for this piercing can take 6-12 months. Popular jewelry styles for this piercing are similar to a regular tragus piercing, but also include:

Curved Barbells:

A curved barbell can have screw-able beads on each end, or one of the beads is affixed, so you will only screw off the other to insert or remove the piercing.


Healing your Tragus Piercing:

Here are some tips and tricks for healing your tragus piercing. Healing time for a tragus piercings can be anywhere from 3-12 months. It’s extremely important to allow your piercing to heal completely before switching out your jewelry. Until your piercing is healed, do not touch or twist the piercing. Your piercing should be cleaned twice a day with a saline spray solution like our Neilmed Fine Mist Piercing Aftercare Spray. If you don’t have access to a saline solution spray, you can use warm salt water to cleanse the area. When your piercing is fresh, it’s recommended to avoid soap and shampoo around the area while showering or washing your face. Never use alcohol based cleaners, lotions or powders around your fresh piercing. You can gently dab the area with warm clean water if there is crust or puss around the piercing, but don’t pick at it with your hands. Picking at the piercing or twisting the jewelry before it’s healed can lead to infection, scarring, and prolonged healing.

Once your piercing is healed, you can finally switch out your jewelry! When you are pierced initially, often the piercer will choose a bar length longer than your desired look to allow for swelling during the healing process. Getting to choose a piece of jewelry that will fit your tragus perfectly will compliment your look like you have no idea. It’s such a simple piercing but can vamp up your look either subtly in a clean classic minimalistic way, or it can really set the tone for your whole look as an ornate showstopping piece. Check out some of the styles of tragus jewelry we offer at  😊



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