Horizontal Eyebrow Piercing

Horizontal eyebrow piercing 1

I should start by say­ing that I’ve want­ed a pierc­ing since late high school, either an eye­brow pierc­ing or a tongue stud1.

For some rea­son though, I nev­er seri­ous­ly con­sid­ered it. To me, it was like hav­ing chil­dren; one of those things you know you’d want some day, but don’t take it seri­ous­ly. Then last week, I was sit­ting at my desk and ran­dom­ly thought, “Why not?”. So I slept on it, and woke up the next day still want­i­ng one. That’s when I decid­ed to do it.

My biggest con­cern was that it would­n’t match me. Some peo­ple with pierc­ings look like they’re try­ing to over­com­pen­sate by being part of a “scene”, or by being younger (i.e. the midlife cri­sis, which my dad seems to be liv­ing out with three pierc­ings last year), or it just does­n’t fit their face. The last thing I want­ed to do was get some­thing that screamed atten­tion for the sake of it. Most peo­ple have told me that I’m a far cry from mid-life cri­sis age, but I’ve feel­ing much old­er late­ly.

So I fig­ured that I’d rather get it at this age, than when I’m in my fifties like my dad, when it looks ridicu­lous. But as Tiana remind­ed me, it’s much less per­ma­nent than a tat­too. If I don’t like it, I can just take the pierc­ing out with min­i­mal scar­ring (as long as there are no oth­er com­pli­ca­tions).

So I decid­ed to get a hor­i­zon­tal, because I find that ver­ti­cals are not real­ly my style (and alto­geth­er too com­mon for my tastes). The side seemed some­what arbi­trary to me, and I did­n’t decide which side until I did my hair one morn­ing and noticed that the part on my hair was on the right, and so it seemed like there was a more open space there for the pierc­ing to fit.


I want­ed some­one to go with me, as I knew I’d feel very uncom­fort­able and alone walk­ing into the stu­dio (it’s just not my scene), but real­ized that it was some­thing I had to do for and by myself. It was at a time when I was incon­sid­er­ate­ly ditched, and feel­ing like I could­n’t depend on any­one, so my resolve was par­tial­ly fueled by anger and sto­ic resent­ment.


Planet Ink is beau­ti­ful. It’s big and open and bright, there are two plain black couch­es, some gener­ic flash on the walls, and every­thing hap­pens in the back rooms. It’s ster­ile, mod­ern, and pri­vate.

I went to the stu­dio on Saturday to make an ini­tial con­sul­ta­tion with an artist. I walked up to the counter, told the per­son what I want­ed to get, and he told me to fill out a form. Then he went to ask the artist how much it was going to be, and told me $65 when he came back. So I paid him, think­ing there was noth­ing pecu­liar about pay­ing upfront, or mak­ing a deposit. Then soon after, an artist named Juliette came up to me, and told me to fol­low her in the back.

I was think­ing I’d be able to can­cel if I changed my mind dur­ing the month of wait­ing for the appoint­ment — that’s about how long it took for me after I booked my tat­too appoint­ments — but nope, I thought to myself, “WOAH, this is going to hap­pen RIGHT NOW. I decid­ed to roll with it, which turned out to be a good thing, cause I did­n’t want to think about it took much and psych myself out, or change my mind. Otherwise, I would­n’t be able to sleep from the excite­ment.

So this was pret­ty much as close to an impulse deci­sion as I ever get.

Juliette first start­ed to mas­sage my skin to feel where a good loca­tion would be, and to find cer­tain mus­cles she want­ed to avoid. Then she took some kind of extra-fine tipped car­bon pen and put two dots above my eye­brow. It was too close to the cen­tre, so I told her to adjust it back.

When we got the loca­tion right, she had me lie down, and put a clamp on the area. Then she told me to inhale deeply, then exhale deeply, and on the exhale she put the nee­dle through. I real­ly did­n’t know what to expect of the pain, but the sen­sa­tion was sim­i­lar to get­ting my blood tak­en, which is noth­ing real­ly.

Before putting in the curved bar­bell, she warned me that there’d be a shift in pres­sure, then put the jew­el­ery in. I inquired about a sur­face bar, but she said that in her 10+ years of expe­ri­ence the curved bar­bells have a bet­ter accep­tance rate.

I walked out in less than 20 min­utes. It was eas­i­er than buy­ing a pair of glass­es.

So far

There’s been no leak­age, no swelling, no prob­lems aside from some slight ten­der­ness in when I press­ing too hard by mis­take when wash­ing or dry­ing my face.

I’ve had to adjust a few things. The heal­ing peri­od is 6–8 weeks, so I have to sleep on one side, which is not easy because I toss and turn, and like to adjust when I get tired of one side. I did a long pho­to­shoot over the week­end, and I squint my right eye to look into the viewfind­er with my left, and felt a bit of irri­ta­tion because of how much pres­sure I was putting on the sur­round­ing area.

It’s a lot more notice­able than I expect­ed. Unlike my tat­toos, which are usu­al­ly hid­den under my sleeves and face inside, this is right on my face. Pretty much every­one who knows me has noticed with­out me men­tion­ing any­thing. Maybe it’s the change more than any­thing, like if I had stopped wear­ing glass­es one day.

The future

I know that sur­face pierc­ings are one of the hard­est to heal, and I’ve accept­ed the fact that it may reject soon enough. But I fig­ure that I might as well try it, and have it for a while at least, instead of regret­ting that I nev­er got one when I’m too old.

In addi­tion to miss­ing a week of Tai Chi class­es, I have to be more care­ful when spar­ring now. With the appro­pri­ate baby­ing, I hope to have it healed well enough that it won’t get ripped or start reject­ing with a direct hit to the area.

There may be some com­pli­ca­tions such as key­loids, which Asian peo­ple are more sus­cep­ti­ble to when get­ting pierced, but my dad got three ear­rings last year with­out a prob­lem, so I’m hop­ing I received that gene.

I’m still get­ting used to the idea that I have jew­el­ery on my face. I may con­sid­er putting in discs, which I want­ed at first, but appar­ent­ly they’re not a good as start­ing jew­el­ery because they cut off oxy­gen to the area that needs to heal. I like the balls right now. I think they’re more sub­tle than discs, but not like I’m embar­rassed and try­ing to hide them.

It’s been over a week, and I’m still very hap­py with it.

Update — August 2010

The pierc­ing must be ful­ly healed now, because there’s no ten­der­ness at all when I touch it. I’ve even snagged it on a shirt once (I tend to for­get about it now), but I could­n’t see any dam­age or feel any pain. I’d say it took about six months.

I got an infec­tion once, I sus­pect from some stress I was going through at the time cause it took for­ev­er to clear up. It made the skin recede so a bit of the bar shows, which sort of bugs me. I don’t think it’s notice­able from a dis­tance though.

Some more pho­tos. I’m still real­ly hap­py with it.

29 2/12




29 6/12


29 1/12




  1. My work in the den­tal indus­try, how­ev­er, has made me shy away from get­ting any­thing in the mouth, so that elim­i­nat­ed the only oth­er option for me. []


  1. Do you still have this pierc­ing? Ive had mine for a year and now i have to take it out :(

    • Yep, it’s been four years, and the skin has reced­ed a lit­tle bit around the ends, but it’s still in there. Why did you have to take yours out?

      • Thanks for the reply! on one of the ends the skin reced­ed so much that part of the jew­el­ery is now stick­ing out :( im won­der­ing if this is because of it get­ting wet too many times and the skin could­n’t rebuild enough. Wow 4 years? thats great!

  2. I am too scared to get one, not to men­tion my moth­er will flip out! yours looks per­fect though :)

  3. Thats not the curved ring right which one is that?

  4. I just got mine done yes­ter­day and I am so in love. I have a sta­ple. Its like the curved bar­bel how­ev­er it is shaped just like a sta­ple. My guy said he has­n’t had any prob­lems with them in the past and has­n’t heard of any rejec­tions with­in the group if peo­ple he has done. My body how­ev­er takes to pierc­ings quite well and I have had no rejec­tions. Yours looks per­fect and I can only hope that mine stays around for a while as well. Any point­ers to what I could do dur­ing my heal­ing process?

  5. I was think­ing about get­ting an eye­brow pierc­ing, and while googling it your pic­ture came up. I had­n’t even thought that was an option, but I total­ly fell in love with that plac­ing. I feel like the skin under my eye­brow is too ten­der for a hole to be put through it, and also if it scars above would be less notice­able, I think. Though the link to key­toids has scarred me for life.

  6. I have a sim­i­lar pierc­ing, but it’s under my eye­brow opposed to on top of it. I think it’s very attrac­tive on you!

  7. It looks great, but I think your a bit too judge­men­tal toward your­self, con­sid­er­ing you got this pierc­ing by 1st cat­e­go­riz­ing your­self as to where you’d belong after you’d become the “guy with hor­i­zon­tal pierc­ing”… & after you wrote how you do not want to be list­ed under the fol­low­ing: guy with too many tats, guy who is atten­tion seek­ing, etc. and than you make an entire blog about how it suits you as a per­son. You are the epi­de­my of judgemet­al. Why did­n’t you just get it for your­self, like the rest of every con­cious per­son who body mods(despite what you might think, ex: atten­tion seek­ing etc etc). Thats the entire rea­son ppl body mod, to go toward an aes­thet­ic deci­sion they enjoy with­out every­one elses per­mis­sion, good job clar­i­fy­ing your choic­es to the world, great pho­tos. Now your the guy with a pierc­ing who crit­i­cizes every­one elses lack of per­son­al aes­thet­ic choic­es.

  8. I’m look­ing to get this pierced! I have a lip ring in the cen­ter of my lip, and the pain and care is easy to han­dle. I want to know if it’s dif­fi­cult to change or any­thing of the sort? And does it tend to crust up real­ly bad and get stuck momen­tar­i­ly like a lot of oth­er pierc­ings would? I’m not sure because it’s under such thin skin. Please reply! Thank you.

  9. How do you change it? Like I use to have the oth­er ver­sion of that eye­brow pierc­ing but it reject­ed and now I want that style. What are the steps to chang­ing the jew­el­ry?

  10. this post sin­gle­hand­ed­ly made me get one, that I have now for about 8 months. great stuff!

  11. Your pho­to inspired me to get a hor­i­zon­tal eye­brow pierc­ing.
    I’ve had it now about 6 months and I adore it so, thanks for the inspi­ra­tion.
    I came across your pho­to online and imme­di­ate­ly felt it was the most per­fect exam­ple I had ever seen… Interesting, yet styl­ish.
    It suits you super well and I’m glad you decid­ed to get it.
    Wear it for as long as it make you hap­py. I feel no pierc­ing real­ly lasts for­ev­er (if you have a per­son­al­i­ty like mine).

    Oh, and thanks for hav­ing the guts to share :)

  12. Hi there! Just came across your arti­cle. I just got my hor­i­zon­tal eye­brow done today and just love it to bits. Im hop­ing mine stays in as long as yours! Great pics btw!

  13. Omg you’re freakin gorgs!!!! 😍😍😍😍😍

  14. It’s 2023 and I lit­er­al­ly saw your post and this real­ly helped me make my deci­sion to get one! I hope you still have this!

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