If you’ve recently gotten your nose pierced or are looking to change your nose ring, you may be wondering: how can I tell what gauge my nose ring is? Knowing the gauge, which refers to the thickness or diameter of the piercing, is important to ensure you get a properly sized replacement ring.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: you can often identify the gauge of your nose stud by looking for markings on the jewelry itself. Standard gauges for nose piercings range from 20g to 14g, with 20g being the smallest and 14g being the largest.

A reputable piercer can also help determine the gauge if you are unsure.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about gauges for nose piercings. You’ll learn about the different sizing systems, standard gauges for nose rings, how to read markings on jewelry, and get tips for measuring gauge yourself.

Nose Ring Sizing Systems

When it comes to choosing the right nose ring, understanding the sizing systems is crucial. Nose rings are available in different gauges and diameters, and knowing the measurements will help ensure a comfortable fit.

There are two main sizing systems used for nose rings: the gauge system and the diameter system.

Gauge system

The gauge system is the most common sizing system used for nose rings. It measures the thickness of the nose ring wire. The higher the gauge number, the thinner the wire. For example, a 20 gauge nose ring is thinner than a 18 gauge nose ring.

The most common gauges for nose rings range from 20 to 14 gauge, with 20 gauge being the thinnest and 14 gauge being the thickest.

It’s important to note that the gauge system is not standardized worldwide. In some countries, such as the United States, the gauge system is based on inches, while in other countries, such as the United Kingdom, it is based on millimeters.

Therefore, it’s essential to know which system is being used when purchasing a nose ring.

Diameter system

The diameter system measures the inner diameter of the nose ring. It determines how snugly the ring will fit in your nose. The diameter is usually measured in millimeters. Common diameters for nose rings range from 6mm to 10mm.

When determining the right size for your nose ring, it’s important to consider both the gauge and the diameter. A smaller gauge number indicates a thicker wire, while a larger diameter provides a looser fit.

It’s best to consult with a professional piercer or refer to a size chart provided by reputable jewelry retailers to ensure an accurate fit.

For more information on nose ring sizing systems, you can visit www.piercingbible.com or www.bodyj4you.com.

Common Gauge Sizes for Nose Rings

20 gauge

The 20 gauge is one of the most common sizes for nose rings. It is also the smallest gauge size available for nose jewelry. This size is perfect for those who want a subtle and delicate look. The 20 gauge is approximately 0.8mm in diameter, making it a great choice for individuals with sensitive noses or those who prefer a more discreet style.

18 gauge

The 18 gauge is slightly larger than the 20 gauge and is a popular choice for nose rings. It measures approximately 1.0mm in diameter, providing a bit more presence without being too bold. This size is versatile and can accommodate a variety of nose ring styles, from studs to hoops.

If you’re looking for a size that strikes a balance between subtlety and visibility, the 18 gauge may be the perfect choice for you.

16 gauge

The 16 gauge is a slightly thicker option for nose rings, measuring approximately 1.2mm in diameter. This size is a good choice for individuals who want a more noticeable and statement-making look. The 16 gauge is commonly used for nose hoops and can provide a bolder appearance while still maintaining a comfortable fit.

If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous and want to experiment with a larger size, the 16 gauge is a great option.

14 gauge

The 14 gauge is the thickest size available for nose rings, measuring approximately 1.6mm in diameter. This size is often used for septum piercings, which require a larger and sturdier piece of jewelry.

If you’re looking to make a bold and daring statement with your nose ring, the 14 gauge is the way to go. It’s important to note that 14 gauge nose rings may not be suitable for all nose piercings, so it’s best to consult with a professional piercer before making a decision.

When determining the gauge of your nose ring, it’s essential to consider your personal style, comfort, and the type of piercing you have. Consulting with a professional piercer is always recommended to ensure you choose the right size and type of nose ring for your specific needs.

Checking Markings on Nose Ring Jewelry

When it comes to determining the gauge of your nose ring, there are a few things you can look for on the jewelry itself. One of the most common ways to determine the gauge is by checking the markings on the nose ring.

These markings can provide valuable information about the size and thickness of the jewelry.

Millimeter markings

Some nose rings may have millimeter markings on them, which can help you determine the gauge. These markings indicate the diameter of the nose ring in millimeters. For example, if you see the number “18” on your nose ring, it means that the diameter of the jewelry is 18 millimeters.

It’s important to note that the millimeter markings may not always correspond directly to the gauge. However, they can still give you a general idea of the size of the nose ring.

Gauge markings

Another way to determine the gauge of your nose ring is by checking for gauge markings. Gauge markings are typically represented by a number followed by the letter “G” (e.g., 20G, 18G). The number indicates the thickness of the jewelry, with smaller numbers representing thicker gauges.

For instance, a 20-gauge nose ring is thinner than an 18-gauge nose ring. The higher the gauge number, the thinner the jewelry will be. It’s worth mentioning that most standard nose rings are usually between 18G and 20G.

If you’re having trouble identifying the gauge markings on your nose ring, you can use a gauge measuring tool. These tools are specifically designed to measure the thickness of jewelry and can give you an accurate gauge reading.

Remember, it’s essential to know the gauge of your nose ring to ensure proper fit and compatibility with your piercing. If you’re still unsure about the gauge, it’s always best to consult with a professional piercer or jewelry expert.

Measuring the Diameter Yourself

When it comes to determining the gauge of your nose ring, there are a couple of methods you can use to measure the diameter yourself. These methods are simple, quick, and can be done in the comfort of your own home.

Using a Gauge Card

One easy and convenient way to measure the gauge of your nose ring is by using a gauge card. A gauge card is a small, flat tool that is specifically designed to measure the diameter of jewelry, including nose rings. It typically consists of a series of holes, each labeled with a specific gauge size.

To use a gauge card, simply insert your nose ring into the holes until you find the one that fits snugly. The hole that provides the best fit corresponds to the gauge size of your nose ring. This method is particularly useful if you have multiple nose rings and want to quickly identify their respective gauges.

Using Calipers

If you prefer a more precise measurement, you can use calipers to measure the diameter of your nose ring. Calipers are a tool commonly used in various industries for accurate measurements. They consist of two arms with adjustable tips that can be used to measure the distance between two points.

To measure the gauge of your nose ring with calipers, open the arms and gently place the tips on either side of the ring. Close the arms until they are snug against the ring, and then read the measurement indicated on the caliper scale.

This measurement corresponds to the diameter of your nose ring, which can help you determine its gauge size.

Remember to handle your nose ring with clean hands and be cautious while measuring to avoid any accidents or discomfort. If you are unsure about the accuracy of your measurements or need further assistance, it is always a good idea to consult a professional piercer or jeweler.

Visiting a Piercer

If you want to know the gauge of your nose ring, one of the best ways is to visit a professional piercer. These individuals are highly knowledgeable and experienced in body piercings, and they will have the tools and expertise to accurately measure the gauge of your nose ring.

Visiting a piercer not only ensures accuracy, but it also provides you with the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about your nose ring or any other piercing-related concerns.

Why visit a piercer?

Visiting a piercer is essential because they have the necessary training and expertise to accurately measure the gauge of your nose ring. They use specialized tools like calipers or gauge wheels that are specifically designed for this purpose.

These tools allow them to measure the thickness of your nose ring and determine its gauge accurately. Additionally, piercers can provide valuable advice on proper jewelry sizing and fit, as well as offer suggestions for different styles or materials that may better suit your needs or preferences.

What to expect during a visit to a piercer?

When you visit a piercer to determine the gauge of your nose ring, they will first examine your piercing to ensure it is healed and not infected. They will then proceed to measure the thickness of your nose ring using the appropriate tools. This process is quick and relatively painless.

Once the measurement is taken, the piercer will inform you about the gauge of your nose ring and provide any additional information or recommendations based on their expertise.

It’s important to note that visiting a professional piercer is highly recommended over attempting to measure the gauge yourself. While there are methods to measure the gauge at home, they can be inaccurate and potentially lead to complications.

A piercer will ensure the correct measurement and provide you with the peace of mind that comes with professional guidance.

To find a reputable piercer near you, you can check out websites such as Association of Professional Piercers or ask for recommendations from friends or online piercing communities. Remember, your safety and satisfaction should always be a top priority when it comes to body piercings.


Knowing the specifics of your nose ring gauge and sizing is important for getting properly fitting replacement jewelry. By learning to read gauge markings, measuring diameter, or visiting a piercer, you can easily figure out your size.

With the right gauge jewelry, your nose piercing will look and feel its absolute best. Our guide covers all the key details on gauges to help you shop for the perfect nose ring.

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