Dermal Piercing: The Different Kinds and Awesome Images

By Tephanie Stephenson / September 12, 2018
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Dermal piercings will always be in style. They look sexy and fun, which is why more and more piercing enthusiasts are going gaga over it.

Today, we will talk about the different types of dermal piercing and everything else that comes with it including the aftercare process, how to prepare for it, what to do when you get an infection, and more.


What is a Dermal Piercing?

The dermal piercing is also called as the single-point or microdermal piercing. It is a type of piercing that lies on a particular body surface and is locked inside the skin through a dermal anchor.


Most body piercings have an entry and exit point, but when it comes to the dermal piercing, there is only one: an entry point. Just like what we have mentioned, an anchor is instead embedded in the dermal layer underneath the flesh itself. This makes it look like there are small beads on one’s skin.

The dermal piercing can be placed on any flat surface of the body and face. Most piercing enthusiasts choose to create different patterns with the dermal piercing, depending on their preference and the piercing location.


What to Expect at the Shop

First, your piercer will make you sign some consent papers for both you and their safety. Next, they will make you choose your jewelry, which is often just a bead or stud in the case of dermal piercings. After that, you will be asked to sit at the piercer’s chair to have your preferred location pierced.

Once all that’s done, your piercer will then sanitize the equipment that he will be using then prepare you for the piercing. If you asked for a numbing cream, then your piercer should apply it on the area now.


Next, the jewelry will then enter your skin. This will be held by an anchor that will be inserted under your skin’s surface. The piercer will then use a needle or a dermal punch to remove a small piece of your flesh to create a small hole in the skin. The dermal anchor will then be inserted here, followed by the screw to close everything up.

After the piercing, he will then go through the aftercare instructions and tell you the things that you should buy for cleaning your piercing.


What is the Pain Level for the Dermal Piercing?

The level of pain depends per person, however, you can expect the dermal piercing to be a little bit more painful than the usual piercing. Besides, your skin would have to be pierced through the inside, as the anchor needs something to hold on to. This will only take a few seconds, so you can expect the initial piercing pain to go away soon.

If you know you can’t handle the pain at all, then ask the piercer to use a numbing cream. They will spread the cream exactly on the area to be pierced, as well as the surrounding areas.


How to Help the Healing Process

First, it’s important to understand that the healing process for dermal piercings could take up to three months or longer. Taking extra care of the wounds and protecting the pierced area could speed up the process, but not so much as the recovery period of smaller piercings. Even so, taking good care of the area and its hygiene is important to avoid complications such as swelling and infections.

Avoid Swimming in Lakes, Swimming Pools, and Oceans

Swimming should be a no-go, no matter what and where you get pierced. It’s especially a cause for concern with dermal piercings because people might think that strapping on a swimmer’s cap or something similar would offer enough protection. Chances are that this won’t help and whether it’s chlorinated or untreated water you’re swimming in, you will expose yourself to either inflammation or infection.

Steer Clear of Too Many Ice Packs

It’s a natural instinct to put frozen bags of veggies or cold compresses on a part of your body that hurts. But you should try to refrain from doing this after getting a dermal piercing to avoid bringing bacteria into contact with the open wounds.

Do Not Drink Alcohol or Do Drugs for the Time Being

Everything that you put into your body that could affect your health is going to prevent it from being efficient at regenerating tissue. There’s a lot that goes into fixing your tissue and skin, especially for two different holes in close proximity.

Generally, keeping your entire body as healthy as possible will help speed up the healing process. Dermal piercings can take a huge toll on your body’s regenerative abilities, so you should do whatever you can to keep the process going by not limiting yourself to caring for the outside of your ear.

Things that you Can Do to Lessen the Pain with your Dermal Piercing

While the dermal piercing pain is inevitable, there are things that you can do to lessen the pain. Continue reading to make sure you will experience less pain during and after the piercing.


Wear the Right Clothes

Wear comfortable and loose clothes during the day of your piercing. Avoid wearing tight and fitting clothes, as the clothes can tug on your jewelry, irritating your piercing. Get some comfortable clothes and wear those until your piercing gets a hundred percent better.

Rest a Lot

Get an ample amount of rest before the day of your piercing. Being well-rested will help you get through the process better and easier.

Getting in the shop without any type of rest will make you feel nauseous and out of it, so make sure to get at least 8 to 10 hours of sleep before getting your piercing done.

Fill your Stomach

When you are hungry, your blood sugar goes down. This means that you will get nauseous faster than usual and this may affect your pain tolerance. Make sure to eat even just a light snack before coming in to get the piercing.

Steer Clear of Things that can Make your Piercing Hurt More

Steer clear of things that can affect your piercing pain including alcohol, drugs, lack of sleep, and going to an inexperienced piercer.

Follow the instructions above to make sure that the pain will be tolerable for you.

Be a Hundred Percent Ready

Do your research and know everything that you need to know about the dermal piercing. Read articles about the topic, watch some videos, and interview some friends.

Decide if you are a hundred percent ready and dedicated to getting this piercing. Once you have it, there is no going back, and you definitely have to care for it properly to make sure that it heals well.

Get a Numbing Cream

If you are super scared of the piercing but you want to get the dermal piercing badly, then go ahead and ask your piercer if you can use a numbing cream. This will minimize or eliminate the initial sharp pain, leaving you with a beautifully pierced skin without any type of pain.

Hydrate your Body

Going in dehydrated is not an option. Drink lots of water before getting the piercing done and carry a bottle of water before going to the shop to make sure that you will stay hydrated all throughout the process.

Cleaning your Dermal Piercing

Now, here comes the most important part: cleaning your piercing. The first thing that you must do is to prepare a saline solution to clean your piercing. You can ask your piercer if they have a ready-made saline solution that you can buy to clean your piercing.

After the piercing and upon getting home, you should already clean your piercing. Grab a sea salt and warm, distilled water and mix it together. Mix it until the salt has fully dissolved in the water.


Grab a cotton ball or Q-tip and soak it in the mixture. With clean hands, get the cotton ball or q-tip then apply it firmly on the pierced area. Let it stay for a couple of seconds then throw the cotton ball out right after.

Make sure to clean your piercing twice to thrice a day to prevent crusts and blood from forming around it. Also, never use creams, ointments, peroxide, or straight up alcohol when cleaning your piercing. Creams can easily clog your piercing, making it susceptible to bacteria and infections.

Peroxides and alcohol may be too strong for your piercing and can prolong the healing process. This can even give you blisters, make your piercing swell, and give you lots of pain.

Stick to the saline solution and do not try to attempt using anything else. Make sure not to tug or rub on your piercing while cleaning it to avoid irritating it.

Dermal Piercing Infections, Symptoms, and Risks

Sadly, infections can be quite common with piercings, especially if it is neglected and not well-taken care of after. Take note of the symptoms below to know if you have contracted a piercing infection.


If you’ve got these symptoms, then chances are you already have an infected dermal piercing. Watch out for these and see your doctor if you ever feel like you’ve contracted an infection.

Bloody Discharge

Having clear and white discharge come out of your pierced area is normal, but having green, yellow, or bloody discharge come out of it is definitely considered as a red flag. This might mean that your infection is already in its advanced stages and you need to see a doctor ASAP.

Throbbing and Extreme Redness

Redness and throbbing are common during the first few days after getting the dermal piercing. Besides, a foreign object was just inserted into your body, which means that it definitely will become red for some time.

However, if the redness and throbbing do not go away for a week or so, then consider having the jewelry taken off and tell your doctor about it, as you might already be suffering from an infection.

dermal piercing as engagement ring

Pain in the Area

One of the most common symptoms of a piercing infection is extreme pain. Sure, pain is common during the piercing and after a few days of getting it, but if it persists for more than a week, then something is definitely wrong. Always consult your doctor if you feel like the pain is becoming intolerable.


Actually, your fever does not have to be high-grade for you to be concerned. Just the fact that you are suffering from a fever means that your body is undergoing some negative changes.

Usually, getting a fever after a piercing means that the infection has spread all throughout your body. Your doctor will most likely prescribe an antibiotic for you to take to get rid of the infection.


Every type of piercing has its own risks and dangers. Read on below to know what the risks of getting a dermal piercing are.

Migration and Rejection

Piercing migration occurs when your own body rejects the chosen jewelry, just like it would with a splinter. Your body treats the jewelry as a foreign object, which means that it will sometimes fight off the possibility of the jewelry being accustomed to your body.

Getting piercing migration is high if you choose a jewelry that you are allergic to. The best way to combat this is to visit your doctor and have an allergy test done. If you find that you are allergic to a specific type of metal, then avoid jewelry that contains such metals.

flower dermal piercing


An Unwanted Infection

Like what we said before, infection is quite common when it comes to piercings. No matter where the location is, there is a risk of you getting an infection. Besides, an unknown object is being forcefully injected into your body, which can be traumatic for your body.

Make sure to choose a shop that has a good reputation and has a well-sanitized environment to make sure you won’t contract an infection.

Scarring and Hypergranulation

If you are prone to keloids, scars, and bumps, then chances are you will get one in your dermal piercing.

The best way to avoid these is by not touching your piercing often and not changing the jewelry until your dermal piercing is fully healed.

Tissue Damage

Tissue damage can happen if the jewelry is installed incorrectly. This usually happens when a person doing your piercing is an unprofessional or someone who does not exactly know what they are doing.

The piercing has to be inserted correctly, as inserting it too deeply can cause embedding, while inserting it too shallow can cause migration.

Always go to a professional piercer to avoid irreversible tissue damage.

Dermal Piercing Jewelry

There are a few types of jewelry that you can use for your dermal piercing. Some of these include Dermal Anchors, Dermal Tops, Barbells, and Skin Divers.

Some of the best metals to use to avoid infections and migrations are Titanium or Anodized Titanium, Surgical-Grade Stainless Steel, and Niobium.

Always ask your piercer about the best type of jewelry to use for the area being pierced to get the best dermal piercing ever.

Dermal Piercing Photos

Here are some dermal piercing photos for you to see in order to get inspired before getting your own.

Beautiful single dermal anchor piercing


Dermal piercings along the spine

Dermal piercings on the lower back

lower back dermal piercing


Dermal piercing on the face


Pretty dermal piercing pattern on the back of the neck

Dermal piercings on the nape

dermal piercing on nape


A single dermal piercing on the arm

Pretty dermal piercings on the tummy

Pretty dermal piercings on the tummy

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About the author

Tephanie Stephenson

Tephanie has extensive knowledge when it comes to body and facial piercings. She has seen it all – from nostril piercings all the way to nipple piercings. She has over 10 piercings including a nostril, medusa, eyebrow, tragus, earlobe, and industrial. She is an expert when it comes to cleaning piercings and keeping it infection-free. If you have got any questions for Tephanie about any type of piercing, comment it down below and she will get back to you in a jiffy!

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