Getting a new piercing is an exhilarating experience, but it doesn't end when you get up from the piercing chair. Instead, the most important part is aftercare. In the case of piercings, it is recommended to clean the freshly cleaned area several times a day to keep it clean, fresh, and free of dirt.
It is usually recommended to use a sterile saline spray or good piercing spray to clean it as this will clean the wound, drain the leak, and stimulate blood flow to the open wound. But are all sea salt spray the same?
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A sterile saline spray or solution is usually recommended for cleaning new piercings as they are not as harsh as other cleaners. Products such as hydrogen peroxide, povidone-iodine (also called betadine), or other strong soaps can dry out the skin and destroy the newly formed tissue, essentially reversing needed healing.
Creams and ointments, no matter how thick, should also be avoided, as they interfere with the air circulation necessary for healing and, if used for a long time, can contain ingredients that are harmful to health.
In addition, products containing benzalkonium chloride (BZK) and benzethonium chlorides (BZT) – such as earplugs and action – should also be avoided as they can be irritating and are not intended for long-term use.
With so many products on offer, it's no wonder piercings and dermatologists usually recommend sterile saline solutions for treating new body and facial piercings.