The Golden Rule:  Avoid touching and sleeping on your piercing. These are the top troublemaker's in the healing process.

What do I need clean my piercing?

Sterile saline solution with no additives, like this one from NeilMed. Homemade salt solution that is too strong can irritate the piercing.

If you want to make your own solution, the APP recommends a sea salt solution mixture as a viable alternative. To make it, dissolve 1∕8 to 1⁄4 teaspoon (.75 to 1.42 grams) of non-iodized (iodine free), fine-grain sea salt into one cup (8 oz. / 250ml) of warm distilled or bottled water. A stronger mixture is not better as a salt solution that is too strong can irritate the piercing.

Clean gauze or paper towels. For certain piercings, using gauze or paper towels that have been saturated with sterile saline solution may be an easier way to clean it. Paper towels are also used for drying the area after cleaning. You’ll want to avoid cloth materials just in case they get caught in your new jewelry.


Wash your hands. This is generally recommended before cleaning or touching your piercing at any time as it helps prevent infection.

Rinse off the area with warm, clean water. Please note, you do not have to rotate your jewelry through the piercing as you are cleaning or rinsing it. Doing so could cause added irritation in the area.

Apply the saline rinse. Just a quick spray from the sterile saline will do the trick. Do not use soap to clean the area. Do not use a Q-tip, as microfibers can irritate the piercing.

Dry the area. Using clean disposable paper towels, gently pat the area dry. Avoid using cloth so it doesn’t get snagged in your amazing new jewelry. Cloth can also carry bacteria, so it’s best not to use it.

Always call your piercer if you have any questions about your piercing or how to care for it.