Downsizing Your Piercing

Spider-Bite Body Piercing (located in Manchester, New Hampshire) is a long-standing piercing establishment that proudly serves the Queen City.

Below you will find some general information and tips about downsizing a body piercing you received from us at Spider-Bite.

Need Help?

If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to visit our location or give us a call at 1.603.645.1449.

We have a piercer on staff seven days a week (from 12pm – 8pm) and we would be happy to help.

The Importance of Downsizing

Getting a new piercing comes with a lot of useful information from your piercer on how to care for your new adornment. Every client gets an aftercare speech and while it is a great deal of information to take in, it’s all very important to the happy healing of your new piercing.

One thing that tends to be forgotten is downsizing your jewelry after the initial piercing. The body reacts and swells to the introduction of a piercing, which usually requires longer jewelry to start with. This prevents the jewelry itself from becoming embedded in the skin while the body adjusts.

While most piercings get a slightly longer initial piece of jewelry, there are two specific areas that need longer jewelry to start off with that should be changed at a designated time.


The first is cartilage. Anything in the ear or even the nose needs to have room to swell and shrink back up. You might find that the length of your jewelry feels strange or unsightly but rest assured that this is part of the process.

With cartilage piercings, it is recommended that you wait about three to four months before downsizing your initial jewelry. Specifically on the outer rim, in the helix, it is very important to take this step in the healing process.

Photo of an ear with many piercings
Photo of a woman with a tongue piercing


Without downsizing a helix piercing, the longer jewelry can actually cause the piercing to migrate. Migration of a piercing means that the angle of the channel changes. This can cause irritation, crooked piercings, or even loss of the piercing itself. Initial jewelry left in for too long can also cause irritation bumps, which absolutely no one likes to deal with!

Oral Piercings

Another area of piercings that swells a great deal is any oral piercing. The spongy tissue in that area has a high amount of blood flow. When it comes to oral piercings, the initial jewelry must always be longer to start off with. If you get your lip pierced, when you are shown the piercing, you may notice that you can see a good amount of the post on the jewelry.

By the time you are finished listening to the aftercare for your new piercing, chances are that your lip has already swollen up to the top of your post. Every oral piercing does the same thing and while everyone’s body is different, all of these piercings get longer initial jewelry.


Microdermals are another piercing that can be downsized but are slightly different than a traditional piercing. Typically, the initial gem size is 4mm but many clients wish to get something smaller and daintier. After about six to eight weeks, clients are able to downsize the gem to a 2mm piece, which many like better for aesthetic reasons.

Unfortunately, the gem size is the only part of a microdermal that can be downsized. If your microdermal does not lay flush against your skin or sits at a strange angle, that is not something that is able to be corrected with a downsize. This usually means that the microdermal has not been inserted level or is perhaps too shallow.


Making sure to come back in for a downsize is very important to your piercing. We will always change the jewelry out for free for you as well, as long as you purchase the jewelry from us. If you have any questions about downsizing, feel free to contact us!

Photo of an adult male with piercings


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Spider-Bite Body Piercing is open daily and adhering to the State of New Hampshire’s COVID-19 safety guidelines. Your safety is always our top priority.

We recommend that you wear a mask and use the hand sanitizing stations located at each entrance to the shop. If you are (or have been) feeling unwell recently, please come back when you are feeling better.

Age Requirements

We ID* all of our piercing customers. We offer earlobe piercings for kids ages 8-12.

For anyone under the age of 18, you must bring your legal parent or guardian along with your original birth certificate (no copies or cell phone pictures allowed) and an acceptable, non-expired ID*.

Thank you so much for your understanding.

*Forms of identification we accept:

driver’s license
birth certificate
state ID
military ID

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