How to Take Care of a New Monroe Piercing

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A Monroe piercing, also known as a Madonna piercing, goes straight through the upper lip and off to one side. The jewelry most commonly used for this piercing is a labret stud, although fishtail labrets may cause less damage to the gums. Meant to mimic a beauty mark, a Monroe piercing requires that you follow diligent aftercare both inside and outside your mouth. With proper care, the piercing should heal in two to three months.

Things You'll Need

  • Unscented antibacterial soap
  • Paper towels
  • Non-iodized sea salt
  • Bottled water
  • Microwave
  • Measuring cup
  • Teaspoon
  • Spoon
  • Sterile gauze or cotton swabs
  • Wash your piercing on the outside with fragrance-free antibacterial soap. Rinse it well with warm water, and dry it with a clean paper towel.

  • Warm 1 cup of bottled water in the microwave for 30 to 45 seconds. Mix in 1/8 tsp. of non-iodized sea salt, and stir well with a spoon.

  • Soak a piece of sterile gauze or a cotton swab with the salt solution. Clean your piercing with the cotton swab and leave it wet, or hold the gauze over your piercing for 15 minutes to do a more thorough sea salt soak. Repeat steps 1-3 twice daily.

  • Rinse your mouth with the sea salt solution for at least 30 seconds. Repeat twice daily.

  • Visit your piercer when the initial swelling goes down, after one to two weeks. Piercers insert a bar that is slightly too long in initial oral piercings to allow the piercing to swell. Because long bars can catch on clothing or irritate your gums, it is important to downsize the jewelry as soon as your Monroe piercing is finished swelling.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always replace your toothbrush as soon as you get a new oral piercing. A used toothbrush can transmit bacteria, which can lead to infection.

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