Getting Your Ears Pierced for the First Time

Getting your ears or your child’s pierced for the first time is an exciting event. KAY even offers free ear piercing at select stores with the purchase of piercing earrings. Before you make the decision to pierce, here are a few things to know. 

What age is appropriate for ear piercing?

  • Some cultures pierce ears almost immediately when children are babies. If you want to have your baby’s ears pierced, it’s a good idea to consult your pediatrician first.
  • Most children start asking to have their ears pierced around 9 or 10, when their classmates are having it done. 
  • In general, the right age for ear piercing varies. It’s up to you and your child to know when the time is right. Just be sure you are both aware of the responsibility to care for ear piercings. 

What is the process?

  • At KAY, an air gun is used. You can visit a tattoo or piercing shop if you prefer that the piercer use a needle. 
  • The practitioner should wear surgical gloves and sanitize all surfaces and instruments. 

What type of earrings are best for a first ear piercing?

  • There will likely be many safe earring options to choose from wherever you get your child’s ears pierced. It’s important to pick a metal that’s nickel-free for babies and only contains trace amounts for older children. 
  • Earrings with screw-on backs and short posts are recommended for babies because friction backs can loosen and become a choking hazard. However, most piercing earrings come with a rounded back that pushes into place. These are secure and more comfortable to sleep on. 
  • After the piercing heals, avoid drop earrings and hoops for babies and small children. They can catch on clothing or other objects, and they’re easier for babies to pull. 

How do you care for and clean newly pierced ears?

  • Earrings must stay in for at least 6 weeks to prevent the holes from closing.
  • Clean the piercings twice a day with clean cotton swabs and a sterile saline solution made for wound care. This is crucial for preventing infection.  
  • Turn the earrings a few times a day to avoid scar tissue.
  • Most piercing facilities will supply you with a cleaning solution and detailed aftercare instructions.


You can find more information about ear piercing at KAY here, and see if your local store offers this service.