Can I vape after getting a piercing?

Piercing, Piercing FAQ

/By

Kieran

You can vape before or after getting a piercing. Just like vaping after getting a tattoo, the nicotine in vaping products will slow down the healing process. And your piercing will heal slower than somebody who neither smokes nor vapes.

While it is best practice to wait until your piercing is healed before doing anything unhealthy, vaping is better than smoking.

In this article we’ll discuss some of the reasons vaping slows down the healing process for piercings. And we’ll outline the amount of extra time it will likely take your piercing to heal.

But first, let’s just take a minute to say congratulations!

You’ve flipped big tobacco the bird. You’re on your way to a healthier life. Getting rid of cigarettes is a great first step. Congratulations!

I was a smoker when I started my tattoo and piercings journey. And I transitioned to vapes and then eventually, I quit.

I’ve been tattooed and pierced as a smoker. Tattooed and pierced as a vaper. Tattooed and pierced while using nicotine mints and nicotine gum. And now most recently, tattooed and pierced nicotine free.

Here’s my answers to all those vape related piercing questions based on research and my own real world experience.

How will vape affect my piercing? 

The nicotine in vape juice (e-juice) will effect your piercings in the same way that nicotine in cigarettes does. Piercings are wounds. And nicotine adversely impacts wound healing. Nicotine slows down the healing process and will extend the time it takes a piercing to heal. It constricts blood vessels and increases blood pressure. And nicotine will restrict and decrease blood flow near the surface of the skin.

Research has found that vapes, like cigarettes, will reduce the oxygen content in your blood. In doing this, nicotine and vapes will slow down the healing process for piercings.

Vaping will negatively impact your piercings healing time. Somebody who vapes will heal slower after a  getting a piercing than a client who neither smokes nor vapes.

I’ve had piercings done as a smoker, a vaper and finally, I’ve been pierced nicotine free. Switching to vaping from smoking, I found my piercings (and tattoos) healed 10-15% faster. Cutting 2-4 days off the average healing time. When I finally gave up nicotine all together, I gained roughly the same again. 

Can I vape before, during or after getting a piercing?

If you don’t have an active nicotine addiction it is best to avoid vaping before, during or after getting a piercing as nicotine will slow the healing process. And nicotine is an addictive substance that is bad for you.

If you do have a nicotine addiction, it’s safe to vape before or after getting your piercing. But be aware that the healing time for your piercing will be slower than somebody who neither smokes nor vapes.[1]

Do not vape in a tattoo or piercing studio during your appointment. And this is for the same reasons we covered in our article on how vape will affect a new tattoo.

Vaping in a shop while getting a piercing shouldn’t be done for three reasons. First, it makes the studio look unprofessional and unhygienic. Second, it makes the store undesirable for all non-smokers and non-vapers. Third, it makes it difficult for the body piercer to work.

Any non-smoker or non-vaper will avoid a studio filled with clouds of smoke or vape. Because it makes the studio look less professional and unhygienic.

Most vapes do contain propylene glycol and propylene glycol does have a bactericidal effect. Yet it’s not safe to just assume vapes won’t contaminate the studio. Just because one element in a vape has a negative effect on bacteria it does not mean that everything in the vape acts the same way.

Most non-smokers and non-vapers won’t be happy if they’re stuck in a closed space filled with vape cloud. And trying to work through the vape cloud could be difficult for the body piercer.

The more vape cloud within a studio the less hygienic and less desirable the piercing studio will look to somebody who doesn’t vape. And the more vape cloud that is in a piercing studio the more difficult it will be for the body piercer to work.

So don’t vape in the shop or studio while getting your piercing. Vape before or after getting a piercing, but only if you need to. 

man wearing Vagabond shirt vaping
Article Sources

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  1. Jaleel, Z,  Blasberg, E,  Troiano, C, et al.  Association of vaping with decreased vascular endothelial growth factor expression and decreased microvessel density in cutaneous wound healing tissue in rats. Wound Rep Reg.  2021; 29( 6): 1024– 1034. https://doi.org/10.1111/wrr.12945
  2. Andia Mitri, Gloria Lin, Reid A. Waldman, Jane M. Grant-Kels, Effects of tobacco and vaping on the skin, Clinics in Dermatology, Volume 39, Issue 5, 2021, Pages 762-771, ISSN 0738-081X, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clindermatol.2021.05.004.