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Ups and Downs of My Medusa

Before I decided to get my philtrum piercing, I had some concerns. I worried that it only looked good on super slim females with extremely delicate features; I worried about the labret stud becoming embedded; I worried about its effect on kissing. I have hit the double digit in piercings, so I wasn't worried about the pain, but I always carefully consider these things. Still, I had always loved the look of them, and in the end just decided fuck it, if it doesn't work, I'll take it out. And so I went with my friend, who was getting her lobes pierced to 8g, to get the piercing by my usual piercer.

I know Justin very well, and knew that my friend was in good hands. Sure enough, he pierced the lobes well, and made her so comfortable that she asked for help to remove some jewelry in her ear cartilage. She had tried to get an orbital done by another piercer, but he had been unable to link the two holes and sent her home with two rings. Imagine our surprise when Justin discovered that all the fiddling the other piercer had done had formed two massive blood blisters- two giant deep purple-black lumps near her piercing sites.

When he removed the rings, all the trapped blood basically gushed out in such massive quantities that it would have filled her ear, had it not been soaked up. Take note: the best thing to do, which worked for her, was to drain it and let it be. Waiting for it go 'calm down' on its own may have resulted in the bumps being permanent.

Justin was very calm, sure, and confident, and worked with her for a good amount of time. It was very dramatic- lots of blood, her swooning, etc etc. By the time it was my turn, we had been there half an hour just focusing on her. I sat in the chair, he lined the mark up with my center labret on my lower lip, and I specified that I wanted it low, so it was on the rim of my lip.

When everyone was happy, he clamped, lined up the needle from the bottom, and pierced up. The pain was intense but brief, with another sharp twinge as he threaded the jewelry through and twisted it closed. The pain settled a bit, and my lip throbbed; I had no desire to speak or eat ever again. I paid him and was out.

As Justin has pierced my lip before and knows I don't swell much, he did not fit me out with an extra long bar. He gave me a 3/8" bar, which gave me a millimeter or two extra room. My lip didn't swell much, but it did swell a little. Also, the feeling of being uncomfortably skewered, of being hesitant to move my lip, lasted a good two weeks before feeling more natural.

The healing was uneventful except for one thing: there seemed to be a lump of scar tissue that was growing over my disc in my inner lip. The jewelry had created a depression from being pressed against that soft tissue, as is normal, but there was a red and irritated lump forming that grew over inside. I researched as best I could, and found that one essay suggested it was a normal process called "nesting", as the skin tried to heal over the jewelry. A similar process occurred in my lower lip, but less dramatic, as the skin only grew over the back of the ring.

To combat the possible embedded labret syndrome, I would essentially cut it out in the morning by pressing my thumb to the jewelry and using it to pierce the tissue and create a hole; throughout the day, it became a bit of a habit to pop the jewelry into that hole, to make sure it hadn't closed over. This lasted a good three or four weeks; I was worried it would never stop, but eventually the tissue stopped growing, and even shrunk a bit.

There was never really any lymph to speak of, to be honest.

As it turned out, I loved my new piercing. I thought it was very feminine and dainty, and looked very good with my face (though I did have to buy much smaller septum jewelry). So, that was two out of three fears gone. There was only one more worry, which I confess turned out to be semi-true: that it would interfere with kissing.

My partner is not generally a fan of piercings, but especially doesn't like ones that "get in the way". My lower lip labret was only okay after I custom bent the ring to fit my lip exactly, but my retired vertical labret was actually a little painful if tugged sharply. As it turned out, the philtrum was not intrusive; I am told it is hard to feel at all. However, the longish bar was a problem, because the space that allowed me to pop it through the scar tissue also allowed it to be pushed painfully into my gums if there was any kind of rough kissing going on. Also, if I smiled, there was suddenly a good length of bar visible. I definitely needed new jewelry.

I was wearing a 3/8" bar, and tried to buy a 1/4" bar, to see if that would help. It was close, but no cigar- it was just a tad too short. So, I ordered a 7mm bar with a 2.5mm ball, and tried that. It was a perfect fit. When I was not smiling, the ball was tight to my skin, and when I smiled, the entire ball was visible, but none of the bar. Inside my lip, the disc is pulled tight but not chokingly tight. I've had it in for a week, and I was worried that maybe it would be too tight, but so far so good. I've been sick, too, and still no averse affects, despite blowing my nose several thousand times and knocking my piercing around daily.

So, all in all, I would say it was a very easy piercing to care for, though you definitely must keep an eye on the skin of the inner lip growing over it. After it healed, I would definitely preach the importance of getting a bar that fits, both for comfort and function.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 29 Dec. 2009
in Lip Piercing

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Artist: Justin
Studio: Premier+Body+Accents
Location: Harrisburg

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