Dermal Piercings 101

Are you thinking about getting a dermal piercing done, but not quite sure how the whole process works?

They can be a fun and interesting way to express yourself, but they’re quite different than a traditional piercing. They are similar to surface piercings, but surface ones go in and out of the skin, dermals are what is known as a single point piercing.

Piercings by Joseph (Modesto Location)

How is it done?

There are two methods that can be performed to do a dermal piercing – using a needle, or using a dermal punch.

Not every state allows a punch to be used, and at Emerald Tattoo, our piercers use a needle. The piercing site is sterilized using a surgical scrub, then the piercer will use a 10g needle to create an L-shaped pouch under the skin, instead of a hole. Then an anchor is placed into the pouch, and the jewelry is screwed onto the plate using forceps. Because of the difficulty of this kind of piercing, only a professional should do this procedure.

Keep in Mind

Dermal piercings can be placed all over the body, and be used to create many different looks and effects. Due to the nature of these piercings, there are a few risks that come along with it. Here are a few things that you should keep in mind when considering a dermal piercing –

  • Placement – You don’t want your new piercing in a place where it can be snagged easily or caught on clothing. If you absolutely want to have hip dermals, or on your back, etc, make sure to wear the appropriate clothing. Something loose fitting is the best option.

  • Rejection/Migration – Dermals have a high rate of rejection and migration. Constant bumping and possibly dislodging from being caught on clothes can cause the piercing to reject or migrate.

You can do so much with dermal piercings, and create beautiful pieces on your skin, but proper aftercare while your piercing is healing is key. It can take anywhere from 1 month up to 3 months for a dermal piercing to heal completely. The steps are essentially the same for other piercings, it’s still very important to keep up on the cleaning to prevent any complications –

Piercings by Samantha (Lodi Location)

  • Always wash your hands before touching your piercing

  • With warm water, use an antibacterial soap (such as H2Ocean blue foam soap) and gently wash the area

  • Pat dry using a disposable paper towel. Cloth can harbor bacteria and can also catch on the piercing

  • Use a sea salt spray (such as H2Ocean piercing spray) 3-4 times a day

Once your dermal is healed, the jewelry possibilities are endless! There’s a wide variety of jewelry tops that you can get, from flowers to ladybugs, balls, simple gems, and even spikes. You can get them placed on your forehead to make it look like you have horns, or on your chest to add some sparkle and catch the eye! Dermal piercings are very fun and beautiful, and our expert piercers at Emerald Tattoo can create any look that you’re trying to achieve.

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