Any piercing of the lower lip, or labrum, is referred to as a labret piercing. Labret piercings are a mark of dedication and endurance, thanks to the excessive care and self-control needed to wear jewelry on the lower lip. As with many other piercings, they have an extensive history. You could find men and women living on the coast of northwest America 3,000 years ago that had labret piercings. The piercings were used to distinguish tribe, social occupation, and gender at a glance. It is likely the same in many other past locations.
In order to give labret piercings, piercers use a hollow needle and pierce the lower lip. They attach the jewelry—usually a stud—and bring it back through the mouth. After that, they fasten a stud and you’re set to go for a few months of healing. Oddly enough, getting the initial piercing is the most simple step of wearing a labret piercing. If you are interested in a lower lip piercing and think you are a dedicated and responsible person, then read on! We’re here to answer your questions about different types of labret piercings, labret piercing healing, labret jewelry, and more!
Related Article: The Top Types of Piercings You’ll Want to Get!
Yes, there is a piercing!
Types of Labret Piercings
Many piercers separate labret piercings into different categories and assume that when someone says ‘labret piercing,’ they are only talking about a basic stud below the lower lip. If you would like any of these piercings, be sure to refer to them by their specific name when speaking with your piercer.
- Dolphin Bites – Two studs placed close together and centered underneath the lip.
- Frenulum Piercing – A piercing of the web of skin beneath your tongue. Frenulum piercing is also a name for a type of male genital piercing, so be sure to specify that you want a tongue frenulum piercing.
- Lowbret – This is the same as a labret piercing, but it is lower than usual, instead of right underneath the lip.
- Shark Bites – Two sets of two studs, for a total of four studs. Each set is beneath the end of each lip, and the sets are horizontal to each other.
- Snake Bites – Two studs placed beneath the canines.
- Spider Bites – Two horizontally aligned studs placed very close to each other underneath the side of the lip.
- Vertical Labret – A piercing that supports a ring and goes through the labret, into the mouth, and out of the lip again.
- Viper Bites – Two horizontally aligned studs placed close to each other on the same side of the mouth. They are the same as spider bites, but have more space between the piercings.
Do Labret Piercings Hurt?
The short answer is yes, but not for the reason you’d think. The initial piercing, like all face piercings, is a little more intense than basic cartilage piercings. Unless you have very sensitive skin, you should be able to handle the initial piercing. Most labret piercing pain happens due to poor care of the piercing. If you are the type of person who can’t help but mess with something in your mouth, this piercing isn’t for you. If you mess with the piercing too much, it can become loose, migrate, and even expand.
On top of that, the jewelry itself can cause damage to the inside of your mouth. Large backings can wear away at the gums and jaw and even damage tooth enamel if the jewelry is high enough. If the area becomes infected, it can spread into the roots of the teeth and from there to the jaw…which is pretty bad news. Another risk of labret piercings happens due to inexperienced piercers. Sometimes piercers will opt for a small labret instead of a large one for the piercing. If the labret is too short, it has a risk of embedding into the mouth! Thankfully, it’s apparent if that will be a problem right away, and you can either replace the jewelry with a larger labret right away or let it close and try again another time.
Once you have your piercing, avoid alcoholic beverages, acidic foods like oranges or soda, and smoking. Don’t touch your face unless you have just washed your hands with disinfectant. Since the mouth has a host of bacteria of its own, you have to go out of your way to clean it multiple times per day. Most piercings only need to be cleaned once per day, but you’ll want to be cleaning at least three times per day, especially after you eat or brush your teeth. The best method of cleaning is to swish around boiled salt water—which tastes absolutely disgusting, but is worth it if it saves you some trouble down the road. Brush your teeth after every meal and wash your mouth afterwards. Sugary foods have a higher chance of causing infection in the area, so limit foods with a high amount of carbs if you can.
Labret Piercing Jewelry
Most piercers will have a variety of labret jewelry for you to pick from. If you don’t find anything you like, you can always find a jewelry store. Let’s face it, sometimes you’re looking for something that can’t be found in a conventional store—if you find yourself in that situation, there is always the internet. You can find any kind of jewelry imaginable in online stores. Crafty sites are more likely to have unconventional piercings that will make you look unique. With a little networking, you might be able to get some custom studs for just a little more than store-bought jewelry!
Despite all of the risks associated with labret piercings, most people are responsible enough and make it through the healing process. Personally, I think snake bites look awesome. While I strive to inform about any health issues that might pop up, I hope I haven’t dissuaded you from getting this unique piercing. As I mentioned before, labret piercings are a sign that the person is dedicated, responsible, and stylish. What’s not to like?
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