Nose piercings are a popular facial addition that allow you to express your personal style. After deciding to get your nose pierced, one important choice is picking the right nose ring gauge. Gauge refers to the thickness or diameter of the piercing jewelry.

If you’re looking for a quick answer, standard nose ring gauges are 20g, 18g, or 16g for most starter nose piercings. But keep reading for a detailed guide on nose ring sizing, measurements, the gauge chart, factors that affect ideal gauge size, plus aftercare tips for new nose piercings.

This comprehensive article will cover everything you need to know about selecting the optimal nose ring gauge for your piercing. We’ll provide measurement conversions, gauge size comparisons, pros and cons of different widths, how your anatomy impacts gauge choice, troubleshooting issues like irritation bumps, and aftercare best practices.

Whether you want a dainty look or bold nose ring, we’ll explore how gauge affects style, healing, and comfort so you can pick the perfect size for your nose piercing.

Nose Ring Gauge Sizes and Diameters

The Gauge Chart Conversion to Millimeters

When it comes to nose ring gauges, it’s important to understand how they are measured. The gauge size refers to the thickness of the jewelry, with smaller numbers indicating a thicker gauge. The most common gauge sizes for nose rings range from 20 to 18, with 20 being the thinnest and 18 being slightly thicker.

To convert gauge sizes to millimeters, you can refer to a gauge chart which provides the corresponding measurements for each gauge size. For example, a 20 gauge nose ring is approximately 0.8mm in diameter, while an 18 gauge nose ring is around 1.0mm.

Standard Gauge Sizes for Nose Studs

When choosing a nose stud, it’s important to consider the gauge size that will fit your piercing comfortably. The most common gauge sizes for nose studs are 20 and 18. A 20 gauge nose stud is thinner and may be more suitable for those with smaller nose piercings or those who prefer a more delicate look.

On the other hand, an 18 gauge nose stud is slightly thicker and may be preferred by those who want a bolder or more noticeable piece of jewelry. It’s important to note that gauge sizes can vary depending on the type of jewelry, so it’s always a good idea to consult with a professional piercer or check the product specifications before making a purchase.

How Gauge Compares to Actual Diameter

Understanding how gauge sizes compare to actual diameters can help you visualize the thickness of the jewelry you’re considering. For example, a 20 gauge nose ring is approximately the thickness of a standard earlobe piercing, while an 18 gauge is slightly thicker.

To give you a better idea, here’s a comparison chart:

Gauge Size Approximate Diameter (mm) Comparison
20 0.8 Standard earlobe piercing
18 1.0 Slightly thicker than a 20 gauge

Remember, these are just general comparisons and the actual fit may vary depending on your individual anatomy. It’s always best to consult with a professional piercer who can provide personalized advice based on your specific situation.

For more information on nose ring gauges and measurements, you can visit which provides a comprehensive guide to nose piercings and jewelry.

How Nasal Anatomy Impacts Ideal Gauge

When it comes to choosing the right nose ring gauge, understanding your nasal anatomy is crucial. The size and shape of your nose, as well as your pain tolerance and sensitivity, all play a role in determining the ideal gauge for your piercing.

Let’s explore how these factors influence the choice of nose ring gauge:

Nasal Thickness and Shape

The thickness and shape of your nasal bridge can vary greatly from person to person. Some individuals have a thin and delicate nasal bridge, while others have a thicker and more prominent one. This difference in nasal anatomy can affect the size of the gauge that can be comfortably worn.

For those with a thinner nasal bridge, a smaller gauge may be more suitable to prevent discomfort or irritation. Conversely, individuals with a thicker nasal bridge may opt for a larger gauge for a more noticeable and statement-making look.

Nostril Size

The size of your nostrils is another important factor to consider when choosing a nose ring gauge. Just like nasal thickness, nostril size can vary significantly among individuals. For individuals with smaller nostrils, a smaller gauge would be more appropriate to ensure a comfortable fit.

On the other hand, individuals with larger nostrils may prefer a larger gauge to achieve a more proportionate and balanced look. It is essential to select a gauge that fits snugly without causing any discomfort or excessive movement.

Pain Tolerance and Sensitivity

Every individual has a different pain tolerance and sensitivity level. Some people may have a higher pain threshold and can handle larger gauges with ease, while others may be more sensitive and prefer smaller gauges.

It is important to consider your own pain tolerance when choosing a nose ring gauge. If you are new to nose piercings or have a low pain tolerance, starting with a smaller gauge and gradually increasing the size over time may be a more comfortable option.

Remember, it’s always better to start small and gradually size up if desired.

Gauge Differences for Style Preferences

When it comes to nose ring gauges, there are various factors to consider, including style preferences. The gauge size of a nose ring refers to the thickness of the jewelry. Different gauge sizes can create different looks and styles, allowing individuals to express their unique personalities.

Here are some gauge differences to consider for your style preferences:

Dainty vs Bold Jewelry Style

One of the main considerations when choosing a nose ring gauge is the desired jewelry style. If you prefer a dainty and delicate look, opting for a smaller gauge, such as 20 or 22, would be ideal. These smaller gauges create a subtle and understated appearance, perfect for those who prefer a more discreet nose piercing.

On the other hand, if you want to make a bold statement and showcase your nose piercing, larger gauges like 16 or 18 can provide a more prominent and eye-catching look.

Hoops vs Studs

Another factor that influences gauge choice is the type of nose ring you want to wear. Hoops and studs are two popular options, and the gauge size can affect the overall aesthetic. For example, if you prefer hoops, you may want to choose a slightly thicker gauge to ensure the hoop maintains its shape and durability.

On the other hand, if you prefer studs, you can opt for a smaller gauge since studs have a more minimalistic design and do not require as much thickness.

Thicker Gauges for Elaborate Pieces

If you’re interested in wearing elaborate and intricate nose jewelry, thicker gauges may be necessary. Thicker gauges provide more stability and support for larger and more intricate designs, ensuring that the jewelry stays securely in place.

This is particularly important if you plan on wearing ornate nose rings with detailed gemstones or unique shapes. It’s always a good idea to consult with a professional piercer or jewelry expert to determine the appropriate gauge size for your desired nose ring style.

Aftercare Tips for Fresh Nose Piercings

Cleaning Solutions and Schedule

Proper cleaning is crucial for the healing process of a fresh nose piercing. It is recommended to clean the piercing twice a day using a saline solution or a mild, fragrance-free cleanser. To make a saline solution at home, mix 1/4 teaspoon of non-iodized sea salt with 8 ounces of warm distilled water.

Gently clean the area around the piercing using a cotton ball or a clean, disposable swab. Avoid using harsh chemicals or alcohol-based products as they can irritate the skin.

Avoiding Infection

To prevent infection, it is important to keep the piercing and the surrounding area clean. Avoid touching the piercing with dirty hands and refrain from swimming in pools or hot tubs during the healing process.

It is also advisable to avoid applying makeup or creams directly on the piercing, as these products can introduce bacteria into the wound. Maintain good hygiene practices and ensure that any tools or jewelry that come into contact with the piercing are properly sterilized.

Troubleshooting Irritation Bumps

It is not uncommon to experience irritation bumps during the healing process of a nose piercing. These bumps, also known as hypertrophic scars, can be caused by various factors such as irritation, trauma, or an allergic reaction.

To alleviate irritation, apply a warm compress to the affected area several times a day. Avoid picking or popping the bump, as this can lead to further complications. If the bump persists or becomes painful, consult a professional piercer or a healthcare provider for further guidance.

Changing Jewelry During Healing

It is generally recommended to wait until the piercing is fully healed before changing the jewelry. This healing process can take anywhere from 6 to 12 weeks, depending on individual healing times. Changing the jewelry too soon can disrupt the healing process and increase the risk of infection.

If you are unsure about whether your piercing is ready for a jewelry change, consult with a professional piercer for guidance. They can assess the healing progress and provide appropriate advice.

Remember, everyone’s body heals differently, so it’s important to listen to your body and follow the aftercare instructions provided by your piercer. With proper care and attention, your nose piercing can heal beautifully and become a unique expression of your style.

Caring for Your Nose Piercing After Healing

Once your nose piercing has fully healed, it’s important to continue taking good care of it to prevent any complications and ensure its long-term health. Here are some tips and guidelines to follow:

Gauge for Long Term Wear

Choosing the right gauge size for your nose ring is crucial for comfortable and safe long-term wear. The gauge refers to the thickness of the jewelry, and it is measured in millimeters. The most common gauge sizes for nose piercings are 18g (1.0mm) and 20g (0.8mm).

If you’re unsure about the appropriate gauge for your nose, it’s best to consult with a professional piercer who can guide you based on your individual anatomy and personal preference.

Seasonal Jewelry Changes

One of the fun aspects of having a nose piercing is being able to change your jewelry to match your style or the season. However, it’s essential to ensure that the new jewelry you’re inserting is clean and properly sterilized.

Avoid using any harsh chemicals or alcohol-based solutions to clean your jewelry, as this can irritate your piercing. Instead, opt for a saline solution or gentle soap and warm water to clean your nose ring before inserting it.

Additionally, be mindful of the material of the jewelry you choose; hypoallergenic materials like surgical stainless steel, titanium, or niobium are recommended to minimize the risk of irritation or allergic reactions.

Preventing Closure and Scar Tissue

To prevent your nose piercing from closing up or developing excessive scar tissue, it’s crucial to keep the piercing site clean and avoid any unnecessary trauma. Clean your piercing regularly with a saline solution or a gentle cleanser recommended by your piercer.

Avoid touching your piercing with dirty hands and refrain from changing the jewelry too frequently, especially during the healing process. If you notice any signs of infection or excessive scarring, it’s essential to seek medical attention or consult with your piercer for proper guidance.

Remember, everyone’s healing process may vary, so it’s essential to listen to your body and give your nose piercing the attention it needs. By following these care tips and guidelines, you can enjoy your nose piercing for years to come.


When getting a new nose piercing, the gauge or thickness of the starter jewelry impacts comfort, healing, irritation risk, and style options. Standard 20g, 18g, or 16g sizes work for most but consider nasal anatomy, pain tolerance, jewelry style, and aftercare based on gauge.

With proper cleaning and care, your optimal nose ring gauge will allow comfortable long term wear and accessorizing for your new nose piercing.

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