The Hole Truth


A good or bad piercing studio could be the difference between a nice, neat bit of fashion and a scabby, bloated, pus-filled mess.

It’s best to visit the studio before you have the piercing to check for any potential health risks using the checklist below.


A good studio:

  • has registration certificates for the business and the person doing the piercing
  • is clean and tidy. It should look as clean as a medical setting such as a hospital
  • has surfaces clean and clutter-free
  • has a floor that’s easy to wipe rather than a carpet
  • gives you a health questionnaire to complete as some medical conditions, such as diabetes and allergies, can put you at greater risk of developing complications
  • asks for proof of age. It is not illegal for under 16s to have piercings, apart from genitals and nipples, but a good piercing studio will check your age and make sure you know the consequences of having a piercing
  • should wash their hands before putting on surgical gloves
  • will use a different set of disposable aprons and surgical gloves for each person
  • will have sterile equipment. Needles and jewellery should be wrapped and should be opened in front of you so you know it is sterile. Pliers, or forceps, should have been sterilised but may be stored in a clean, disinfected covered container
  • will not have any animals in the shop
  • will cover your piercing up with a dressing when finished.

If you’re not happy about the quality of the studio you are visiting, it’s ok to leave.