What is an industrial piercing you may ask? Well, it is any two pierced holes connected by a bar. It is also referred to as a construction bar piercing. However, it commonly referred to as a piercing that takes place in the upper cartilage of the ear. One piercing is at the top of the ear, closest to the head, and the other piercing is on the opposite side of the ear. A straight barbell is placed in the first piercing hole from behind the ear and placed diagonally across the front of the cartilage into the other piercing across from the head. It is secured with a screw on bead/barbell behind the ear. If there are two industrial piercings in the ear, it is usually termed a cage piercing.
The standard size of a piercing diameter is usually 14 gauge, but some even go with a 16 gauge at first and then upgrade to a 14 gauge after the piercing has healed. It is actually easier to heal if the piercings are first pierced with captive bead rings in the hole, until the piercings have healed. Once they have healed, the captive bead rings can be removed and a straight barbell can be worn in their place. Sometimes this method can make it pretty hard to fit an elongated barbell into the holes, which is why some people will use a flexible barbell made of bioplast when they are first pierced to make the healing process easier and less confined by metal jewelry.
The length of the barbell can range from 28-55mm in length depending on how far apart the piercing holes are located on your ear and of course by how large your ear is. The angle of the piercings and distance between the piercings will determine if a barbell industrial piercing is a good selection for you personally. The balls on either side of the barbell are either 5 or 6mm in size. They are internally threaded to securely fasten to your barbell itself.
The healing time on this type of piercing is significantly longer than others on the body. It takes approximately 3 months to a year for the industrial piercing to heal properly. This is due to the cartilage material being pierced and the fact that this location tends to be disturbed quite a bit by hair, clothes, hats, and sleeping positions. Anything that comes in contact with your piercing can cause it to be aggravated and take longer to heal.
When cleaning the industrial piercing it is recommended that it is cleaned 2-3 times a day. Sea salt soaks are a great safe method to clean the piercing. Make sure that all the folds and areas around the piercing are properly cleaned to prevent infection.
Industrial piercings are beautiful piercings for the ear and make a pretty fashionable statement. Just be prepared for a long healing time and a little discomfort, which will all be worth it when you are rocking this fantastic look.