What Is a Septum Piercing? A Beginner’s Guide May 13, 2020 – Posted in: Piercing Advice, Piercing Types – Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Septum piercing highlights:

  • The septum piercing is placed at the “sweet spot” of the tissue between your nostrils. 
  • If placed properly, it should take 6 – 8 weeks to heal.
  • Be sure to clean your jewelry regularly, even after it has healed, to avoid the septum stench.


Septum piercings have gained a resurgence in the 2020s decade. In the past, this piercing held more of a rebellious vibe, but in recent years, it’s become a favorite of everyone from fashionistas to business professionals.

We love septum piercings because they offer that quintessential counterculture vibe, but healed septum piercings can still be easily hidden. This means that you can enjoy your clean-cut professional look during the day and rock your nonconformist aesthetic in your spare time. 

As with all piercings, it’s important to do your research before you make an appointment with a piercing studio. To help get you started, here’s a beginner’s guide to septum piercings.

Septum Piercing Fast Facts

  • Healing time: 6 – 8 weeks (if placed properly)
  • Pain level: Low to midway on the pain scale
  • Jewelry: Hoops and circular barbells

What is a septum piercing?

You know that piece of skin and cartilage that separates your nostrils? That’s your septum. If you pinch your septum, you should feel a thin area of skin between some hard cartilage and the tip of your septum (often referred to as the sweet spot). That’s where the septum piercing is placed. It is a little bit higher and a little further forward than you might realize. If you can’t feel it, no worries; a qualified piercer will be able to locate the sweet spot for you. 

The septum piercing is great because of the variety of jewelry styles that you can choose from, making the piercing your own. If you’d like a subtler look, you can opt for a seamless ring. If you’re a fan of elaborate styles, you can also choose some bold hoop looks. And, ever-popular are circular barbells with little balls peeking from the piercing.

A major selling point of this piercing is that it’s pretty easy to hide in a professional environment. Since the piercing is located inside your nose, you can invest in a piercing retainer to wear during the weekday, and likely, coworkers and customers will be none the wiser about your piercing.

How long does a septum piercing take to heal?

If pierced correctly (meaning through the sweet spot and not through the cartilage), your septum will only take around 6 – 8 weeks to heal at a minimum. The shorter healing time makes it one of the easier piercings to get. 

Since the piercing is located inside your nose, where there tends to be some snot and other gunk, it’s important that you keep your piercing clean. The septum piercing is known to develop a bit of a stink (something that’s common in other piercings as well, but because this piercing appears within the nose, you’ll notice it a bit more) so you need to make sure that you’re keeping the piercing clean even beyond the healing period.

Cleaning and aftercare

To clean the piercing, spray a clean cotton swab with piercing aftercare solution and gently clean both sides of the piercing. or dip You should do this 2 – 3 times daily. 

If you start to notice a buildup of snot, dead skin cells, or crusties around the piercing site, you can soak them away with clean water or saline solution. Do not pick at the piercing.

As with all piercings, avoid swimming pools or standing water, keep it as dry as you can, and avoid products like lotion or tea tree oil. Try to keep the jewelry as still as possible. If you wear a circular barbell, try to adjust it as little as possible, even if it does go askew during the day.

Keep up with all aftercare practices until a piercer has confirmed that healing is complete. 

Shop for NeilMed’s piercing aftercare here.

Why can’t I get a septum piercing?

Although most people are able to get the septum piercing, some anatomies won’t allow for it. 

If you have a severely deviated septum, you might not be able to get your septum pierced. Your piercer will be able to take a look and let you know if it’s possible.

Rarely, some people don’t have the thin area of skin between the cartilage and the tip of the nose (the sweet spot). If this is the case, you might not be able to get the septum piercing. Cartilage takes a lot longer to heal (up to nine months or more) so if you don’t have the thin area of skin, healing will take much more time.

Allergies could impede healing since you’ll need to wipe and blow your nose throughout the day, which will move the jewelry around quite a bit. If you’re an allergy sufferer, it’s a good idea to get your septum pierced outside of allergy season.


Septum piercings are fantastic, but as with any piercing, you want to make sure that it’ll be a look that you love. Consider whether you can commit to the healing period, make sure that it won’t interfere with your job, and remember that you’ll need to consistently keep it clean throughout the entirety of its life to avoid the infamous septum stench. If you know that you can commit to these things, then the septum piercing could be for you.

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