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Infection, Irritation Bump, or Keloid?

We're here to help

Healing piercings can be tricky,  with proper care and guidance from a professional piercer, irritations will fade, and your piercing will heal beautifully. Avoid outdated advice and consult an expert for personalised aftercare tips. Trust their expertise for a smooth and successful healing journey.

Piercing/Irritation Bumps

Piercing bumps can form when the body's healing process is disrupted. They commonly occur on cartilage piercings like nose and ear piercings, but can also happen on other types of piercings. The immune system responds to the piercing, causing inflammation and the formation of bumps.

Preventing piercing bumps is key, achieved through proper piercing technique, aftercare, and quality jewellery.

While no foolproof method exists, our studio has effective techniques. If bumps occur, our professional piercers can provide tailored recommendations to reduce inflammation and promote faster healing.

Irritation bumps are just that, “irritation”.
We need to identify the cause of the irritation and eliminate it, think about your day to day routine and think about moments where you could be irritating your piercing. 

Common Irritants

  • Touching, twisting, turning, picking at your piercing, not only can this cause irritation, touching your piercing without clean hands can also cause infection 

  • Sleeping on your piercing, this can cause pressure on the piercing site, excess swelling and trauma and incorrect healing angles 

  • Excess moisture or sweat at the piercing site, wet hair can play a role 

  • Trauma to the piercing site – snagging, tearing 

  • Headphones or Ear buds knocking your piercing 

  • Over cleaning 

  • Under cleaning 

  • Using harsh chemicals on your piercing, including beauty and hair products 

  • Your general health, becoming unwell from cold and flu 

  • Swimming in chlorine, the sea etc 

Check Your Jewellery

  • Downsizing your piercing when swelling has dissipated, this stops movement on the jewellery that can cause the piercing to heal at odd angles, creating pressure on the piercing site 

  • Jewellery metal reactions
    Surgical steel jewellery contains nickle which can irritate some people 

  • Jewellery gauge being too small- changing your jewellery to thinner jewellery to soon 

  • Changing the jewellery to a different shape too soon can cause pressure on the piercing site

  • Gently clean your piercing twice a day as instructed by your piercing professional. 

  • Only clean the piercing when its needed 

  • Over cleaning the piercing can cause irritation 

  • Only use the recommended cleaning solution, using harsh chemicals can irritate your piercing. 

  • Infection, If you think there is infection present. Use a gentle antiseptic like Betadine, Crystaderm or Colloidal Silver, 
  • Antiseptic should only be used for 3-5 days 

Keep It Clean

You can also try these home remedies

Please note, these are suggestions only and should not replace the advise of your medical professional

Saline Hot Compression

Saline compression soaks may work to draw out the impurities, clean infected areas, and loosen dead skin cells and dried pus.

The warmth of the water may also encourage the body to reabsorb the bump. 

Mix sterile saline with boiled water, and soak your piercing blister three times a day until it is completely gone. This can also help to remove discharge from your piercings. 

Pros - One step to clean and compress and is sterile

Cons - Expensive

Herbal Hot Compress

Herbal compress, like a chamomile tea bag soaked in Cool boiled hot water. 

Apply a hot compress with a chamomile tea bag nightly. The heat helps draw some of the irritation out and chamomile helps reduce inflammation. Encouraging the body to reabsorb the bump

Pros - One step clean and compress.  Compounds in chamomile may help to further reduce inflammation. It is also cheaper

Cons - Not sterile and there is some risk of allergic reaction

Disc Compression Therapy

Compression therapy which utilises the gentle but constant compression of a larger titanium disk on the bump, encouraging it to dissipate even more quickly.

We have also had success in using small piercing discs at the site of the irritation to compress the bump and encourage the body to reabsorb it. 

Pros - Can work quickly, no daily treatment needed

Cons - Multiple trips to purchase different jewellery, you may need to pay for fittings


Please note; these recommendations are things we have tried and suggested to a number of clients who have had success in healing these infections. This information is not to replace information given to you by your medical professional.  

What you need to know...

Infections can occur if a piercing is not kept completely clean or if the aftercare instructions have not been followed properly.

Please see our aftercare guide here

Excessive swelling can also cause infections. When infection does occur, you may have the following symptoms: redness, soreness, swelling and puffiness, yellow pus oozing from the piercing, a fever, and excessive pain.

If an infection is caught early, there is no need to see a doctor or remove your piercing. However, if an infection is severe or persistent, it's important to see a doctor immediately for treatment.

It's important to note that removing the piercing can cause the infected wound to close, potentially leading to scarring. 

Recommended Treatment

  • Gently clean the piercing and then apply antiseptic to the area 3 times a day. 
  • We recommend; Betadine, Crystaderm and Collidal Silver.  
  • These products should only be used for 3-5 days.  


If the problem persists or worsens we recommend seeing a doctor as soon as possible 



What you need to know

Keloids are raised scar tissue that occurs as a result of trauma or injury to the skin.

A piercing is a puncture wound. Very rarely, this type of scar may appear after a piercing.

Keloids are thought to be genetic and most people will know if they are prone to Keloids before they get a piercing.

They need to be treated by a Doctor and will not go away on their own. 

Piercings are foreign objects inserted in our body, every time we get pierced, we try to trick our body into thinking this piece of metal belongs there. 

If these remedies don't take, then you will need to see a doctor.   

Remember, we are invested in giving you the best possible outcome and are happy to assist you in any way possible while you treat your piercing bumps. 

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