Frequently Asked Questions
Hamish does most piercings and has over 30 years experience. Read about Hamish here.
Occasionally Hamish is training a piercer and if appropriate, you may be asked if the trainee can pierce you with Hamishs' supervision.
Flesh Wound has been operating since 1995. Read our history page for more information.
Eat an hour before your appointment. This boosts your blood sugar levels and is an easy “feel good” pre-piercing preparation. We always welcome “walk-ins”, but appointments are strongly advised so you won’t have a long wait. If you have any health issues which might impact on your ability to heal, please consult your Doctor before you get a piercing.
Avoid the use of alcohol or mind altering drugs. They will not help you, but may make you feel worse.
Some people like to make an occasion of their piercing, so feel free to bring a friend along to witness the event!
Yes, but for less than a second and significantly less than most people anticipate. Responses are often “is that it?”, “I thought it would hurt more”, and “this is addictive!”.
We are consistent in our techniques to make the experience as comfortable as possible.
The answer is NO! At Flesh Wound we use a deep, slow breathing technique to help you relax and prepare for the piercing. Only licensed medical professionals can administer injectable anaesthetics. When a piercing is performed by a skilled, professional piercer, the actual piercing is quicker and considerably less painful than an injection would be. An injection also distorts the tissue around the area to be pierced, which can result in a crooked or misshapen piercing. Topical anaesthetics cannot penetrate deeply enough to provide any significant numbing.
For indicative healing times please see the Guide page.
Healing times vary from piercing to piercing and person to person, and can be affected by the after-care the piercing receives.
Touching a healing piercing with dirty hands, contact with body fluids, rough treatment, and the lack of appropriate cleaning agents can cause problems and lengthen healing times.
Following the after-care instructions given to you when you are pierced by Flesh Wound will minimise healing time and the risk of problems. We suggest different products that generally work for most people. Some individuals may heal better with only a saline wash if their skin is sensitive to suggested products.
The discomfort and tenderness present around a new piercing diminishes through the initial healing period. Each person is different. Some find no discomfort from a new piercing, while others have a few days discomfort, yet others find the discomfort pleasurable. Healed piercings often bring people a great deal of pleasure in addition to the aesthetic appeal.
There are two stages to healing a piercing. The initial stage seals the piercing and reduces the chances of infection dramatically. The second stage is longer and is the time it takes for the piercing to “tighten up”. During and after the second stage jewellery can be removed for varying lengths of time. The piercing will begin to shrink as soon as you remove the jewellery. How long it takes to shrink to a degree where you cannot reinsert the jewellery varies. Never force jewellery into a piercing that has shrunk. Come to Flesh Wound and have an insertion taper used to reinsert your jewellery.
If you are pierced at Flesh Wound, and follow our after-care instructions faithfully, and continue the regular cleaning until the piercing has COMPLETELY HEALED, then the chances of infection are virtually non-existent. We take extreme care to ensure that all piercings are performed in an appropriately clean environment using sterilised equipment. After that, it is up to you.
We will never discourage you from consulting your physician if you believe you have an infection. There are however many conditions which are not infections, and may be mistaken as such. They include reaction to the metal or more commonly to the cleaning agents you are using. The best idea if you have any doubts or worries about your piercing is to come see us at Flesh Wound, and we will be able to advise you on the problem and the best way to solve it.
The percentage of people who get infections in our piercings is extremely small, and these are usually the result of inappropriate after-care practices.
A professional piercer would never use a piercing gun – even on an earlobe. The main reason being that guns cannot be adequately sterilised between uses. Additionally the jewellery designed for guns is inappropriate (even for lobes) as the post is too short to allow for swelling or proper cleaning, and the backing traps infectious matter close to the piercing.
While many people imagine that being pierced by a gun would hurt less than being pierced by a needle this is not so. With a gun the piercing is accomplished by forcing a blunt stud through the tissue – a considerably harsher method than a professionally performed piercing.
Probably not unless you are wearing a large watch, steel-capped boots, clothing with a lot of metal fittings, have a large concentration of piercings in one area, or if your piercing jewellery is of a very thick gauge.
For most people this does not cause problems. Riding a bicycle should be avoided with guiche or fourchette piercing. Tight waist bands and excessive movement against a navel piercing causes pressure. Rubbing against any healing piercing causes irritation. While your own urine and sweat are technically sterile to your own body it is a good idea to clean your piercing after a workout. Wearing clean absorbent clothing with a minimum of dyes can be helpful.
Pools, hot tubs, and natural bodies of water are teeming with potentially harmful organisms. For the first month of healing, your piercing will not be healed enough to protect you from harmful invaders.
A waterproof dressing called ‘Tegaderm’ is available from the chemist, or ‘Nexus Water Proof’ dressing is available in the supermarket. Both will provide a measure of protection.
If you must go swimming within the first few months of healing without a waterproof dressing then ensure you clean your piercing immediately after you finish swimming.
Placement and after-care have a lot to do with the success of piercings. Navel and eyebrow piercings have the greatest tendency to grow out. Having your piercing done by a professional piercer can greatly minimise this problem. Also following the after-care advice given to you after you are pierced will help avoid any growing out of the piercing.
We absolutely NEVER use a needle on more than one person. However, one needle may be used for more than one piercing on the same person in the same session, but only on an earlobe.
At Flesh Wound the needles are sterile packaged, and disposed of in a medical sharps container after use.
All tools and instruments used for your piercing are sterile packed / autoclaved.
Any more than 3 piercings in one session can be too stressful for the body to cope with and can prolong your healing time.
For most people a piercing increases sensation. That is one of the main reasons people get pierced. The number of people who have reported no change or loss of sensation is actually very small.
Anyone’s body fluids apart from possibly your own can be a source of infection. The use of condoms (Ansell Lifestyle Flared Condoms are very comfortable), dental dams, and latex gloves should always be used for sexual activity when a piercing is healing.
Do not have rough sex with a new piercing. Genital piercings are intended to enhance sex, not interfere with it, so allowing it to heal with no problems is a good idea.
We will not pierce you while pregnant. The most important thing is ensuring that you are taking care of your growing baby and all efforts should be put towards that. It is not wise to cause your body any undue stress and we therefore encourage waiting till after the pregnancy.
Since the nipple secretes milk through hundreds of ducts which are not blocked by a nipple piercing a healed piercing should not interfere. A piercing in the process of healing would be problematic.
We strongly suggest that the mother remove her jewellery while feeding her baby.
Titanium, 316L surgical implant grade steel, 14 or 18 karat gold or niobium work well for the vast majority of people. We do not use silver, gold plated or gold filled, brass, bronze or copper jewellery.
Sometimes what you imagine will look best will not work best. Your preferences in look and play aside, the size needs to be tailored to your body’s individual structure, and most importantly, what will be most comfortable and promote carefree healing. We will discuss the size with you prior to piercing.
Usually a matter of individual custom fit. Some piercings do have “standard” sizes which work for most people and often there is a minimum size. Jewellery must fit the piercing for healing to work and function properly.
Minimum age for Earlobes is 5 years old, with child and parental consent.
12-15 years old, Ear, Nose, Septum, Navel and selected Oral with parental consent and present during appointment.
16-17 years old, Ear, Nose, Septum, Navel, Eyebrow and selected Oral with Photo ID.
18 years and above, full range of piercings and body modifications with Photo ID
Head over to our glossary for the definition of most types of piercings or body modifications.
Gauge is the width of the jewellery that goes through your skin. Call us for advice on size for a particular piercing. Conversion between mm and inches are on our Gauge Chart