Nose piercings are a popular form of body art, but healing nose piercings can sometimes be tricky. If you’ve noticed your nose ring doesn’t seem to be healing well, you’re not alone. Read on to learn some of the common reasons a nose piercing may fail to heal properly, plus tips to get it back on track.

If you’re short on time, here’s the quick answer: The most common reasons for nose piercings not healing include jewelry issues like unsuitable metal or shape, infection, trauma or injury, or improper aftercare.

Solutions like switching jewelry, treating infection, and improving aftercare can help get your nose ring to heal.

Jewelry-Related Causes

When it comes to nose piercings, the type of jewelry you choose can have a significant impact on the healing process. Here are two jewelry-related causes that could be preventing your nose ring from healing properly:

Metal Allergy or Sensitivity

One possible reason why your nose ring is not healing could be due to a metal allergy or sensitivity. Some individuals may have an allergic reaction to certain metals commonly used in jewelry, such as nickel or cobalt.

This allergic reaction can lead to irritation, redness, itching, and even infection around the piercing site.

If you suspect that you have a metal allergy, it is essential to switch to hypoallergenic jewelry made from materials like titanium or surgical-grade stainless steel. These metals are less likely to cause an allergic reaction and are considered safe for most individuals.

Additionally, it’s crucial to avoid cheap or low-quality jewelry that may contain higher amounts of irritating metals.

Inappropriate Jewelry Shape or Size

Another possible cause for your nose ring not healing could be the use of inappropriate jewelry shape or size. The shape and size of the nose ring can affect the healing process, as well as the overall comfort of wearing the jewelry.

If the jewelry is too tight or too loose, it can cause irritation and prevent proper airflow to the piercing site. This can lead to prolonged healing or even the development of keloids. It is recommended to consult with a professional piercer who can assess the fit of your nose ring and recommend the appropriate size and shape for your specific piercing.

Pro Tip: Remember, everyone’s nose is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. It’s essential to find the jewelry that suits you best and ensures comfort and proper healing.


One of the main reasons why a nose ring may not heal properly is due to infections. Infections can occur when bacteria or fungi enters the piercing site, leading to redness, swelling, and discharge. It’s important to identify the type of infection in order to properly treat it.

Bacterial Infections

Bacterial infections are the most common type of infection that can occur with nose piercings. They are usually caused by improper hygiene or touching the piercing with dirty hands. Symptoms of a bacterial infection include increased pain, swelling, and a yellowish discharge.

To treat a bacterial infection, it is important to keep the piercing clean and avoid touching it with dirty hands. Using a saline solution or an antiseptic solution recommended by a professional piercer can help to kill the bacteria and promote healing.

In some cases, oral antibiotics may be necessary to clear the infection.

Fungal Infections

Fungal infections are less common than bacterial infections, but they can still occur. They are usually caused by a type of fungus called Candida. Symptoms of a fungal infection include persistent redness, itching, and a white or yellowish discharge.

Treating a fungal infection requires antifungal medication, which can be prescribed by a healthcare professional. It is important to keep the piercing clean and dry, as fungi thrive in warm and moist environments. Avoid using creams or ointments that may trap moisture and worsen the infection.

It is important to note that if an infection does not improve with home care or worsens over time, it is recommended to seek medical attention. A healthcare professional can properly diagnose the infection and provide the appropriate treatment.

Trauma and Injury

One of the common reasons why a nose ring may struggle to heal is due to trauma or injury. This can happen in a couple of different ways.

Bumping or Hitting Piercing

If you accidentally bump or hit your nose piercing, it can cause damage to the healing tissue and slow down the healing process. This can happen while playing sports, during physical activities, or even while sleeping if you accidentally roll onto your face.

It’s important to be mindful of your nose piercing and take precautions to protect it from any potential trauma.

Did you know? According to a study published on PubMed, trauma is one of the leading causes of delayed healing in body piercings.

Pulling Off Scabs

Another common mistake people make is picking or pulling off scabs that form around the nose piercing. While it may be tempting to remove these scabs, doing so can disrupt the healing process and potentially introduce bacteria into the wound.

It’s important to let the scabs naturally fall off on their own, as this is a sign that the wound is healing properly.

Pro tip: To help prevent scabs from forming, make sure to clean your nose piercing regularly with a saline solution or a gentle, fragrance-free soap as recommended by your piercer.

By being cautious and avoiding trauma or injury to your nose piercing, you can significantly improve its healing process. Remember to always follow aftercare instructions provided by your piercer and consult a professional if you have any concerns or issues with your nose ring.

Aftercare Issues


One possible reason why your nose ring won’t heal could be because you are over-cleaning it. While it is important to keep your piercing clean to prevent infection, excessive cleaning can actually hinder the healing process.

Over-cleaning can strip away the natural oils and healthy bacteria that are necessary for the healing process. It can also cause irritation and dryness, making it difficult for the piercing to heal properly.

Solution: It is recommended to clean your nose ring no more than twice a day using a saline solution or a gentle, fragrance-free cleanser. Avoid using harsh soaps or alcohol-based products, as they can be too drying for the piercing. Remember, less is more when it comes to cleaning your nose ring.

Using Harsh Products

Another common mistake that people make is using harsh products on their nose ring. Some individuals may think that using strong antiseptics or disinfectants will help speed up the healing process, but in reality, these products can do more harm than good.

Harsh chemicals can irritate the piercing, causing inflammation and delaying the healing process.

Solution: Stick to mild, non-irritating products specifically designed for piercing aftercare. Look for solutions that contain saline or sea salt, as these are gentle and can help promote healing. Always read the product labels and follow the instructions provided.

Remember, every person’s body is different, and the healing process may vary. It is important to listen to your body and pay attention to any signs of infection or excessive irritation. If your nose ring still won’t heal despite following proper aftercare, it is best to consult with a professional piercer or a healthcare provider for further guidance.

Solutions for Healing

Change Jewelry Style or Metal

If you are experiencing difficulties in healing your nose ring, one possible solution is to change the style or metal of your jewelry. Some people may have an allergic reaction or sensitivity to certain metals, such as nickel, which can impede the healing process.

Switching to jewelry made from hypoallergenic materials like surgical-grade stainless steel or titanium can help alleviate any irritation and promote healing.

In addition to the metal, the style of the jewelry can also impact healing. Certain types of nose rings, such as hoops or studs with sharp edges, can cause friction and irritation, making it harder for the piercing to heal.

Opting for a smoother and more comfortable style, like a captive bead ring or a flat-backed stud, may provide relief and allow for better healing.

Treat Any Infection

If your nose ring isn’t healing properly, it’s important to check for any signs of infection. Symptoms of an infected nose piercing can include redness, swelling, pain, and discharge. In such cases, it is crucial to seek medical attention and consult with a healthcare professional.

They may prescribe antibiotics or recommend topical treatments to clear the infection and aid in the healing process.

It’s worth noting that some infections may be caused by improper aftercare or touching the piercing with unclean hands. To prevent infections, always follow proper aftercare guidelines, which typically include cleaning the piercing with a saline solution or an antimicrobial soap and avoiding touching the piercing unnecessarily.

Improve Aftercare Routine

Proper aftercare is essential for the healing of any piercing, including a nose ring. If you’re having trouble with healing, it’s worth reevaluating and improving your aftercare routine. Here are some tips:

  • Clean your piercing twice a day with a saline solution or an antimicrobial soap recommended by your piercer or healthcare professional.
  • Avoid touching your piercing with dirty hands.
  • Avoid using harsh products on or around the piercing, such as alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or ointments that can dry out the skin.
  • Avoid swimming in pools, hot tubs, or bodies of water until the piercing is fully healed to reduce the risk of infection.
  • Avoid sleeping on the side of the piercing to prevent unnecessary irritation.

Remember, everyone’s healing process is unique, and it may take time for your nose ring to fully heal. If you have any concerns or questions about your piercing, don’t hesitate to consult with a professional piercer or healthcare provider.


While nose piercings can sometimes be tricky to heal, identifying and addressing the underlying cause can help get your nose ring back on track. Pay attention to jewelry, infections, trauma, and aftercare for optimum results.

With some adjustments, your nose ring can heal smoothly and you can enjoy your new piercing.

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