Back dimple piercings are a type of dermal piercings that are inserted into the lower back. The procedure should always be done be a professional piercer in a sterile setting.
A back dimple piercing is a type of dermal piercing that’s placed on the lower back. Specifically, it goes into the indented area where the pelvis and spine meet (aka the dimples of Venus). Most folks opt for a pair, but some peeps prefer to only get one done.
Here’s everything you need to know about back dimple piercings, including what to expect during the procedure.
Back dimple piercings are considered single-point. That means they have an entry point but don’t have an exit. These are generally considered more difficult to do when compared to other piercings (e.g. nostrils, ears, or nips). That said, it’s uber important you go to an experienced piercer who works in a 10/10 sterile environment.
Once you’ve found your trusted piercer, here’s what to expect at your back dimple piercing appointment:
- Your provider will look at your back to see if your dimples are deep enough for piercing.
- The piercer will clean, disinfect and mark the areas with a skin-safe marker.
- At this point, the piercer will choose between two different techniques depending on which type of back dimple piercing you choose. They might use a clamp-and-needle technique or a skin punch. (More on these options later.)
- Your piercer will pierce the dimple and place your chosen jewelry into its new skin-home. They’ll repeat that step for the twin dimple on the other side.
- The piercer will disinfect the area one more time.
- Your piercer will give you tips on how to care for your above-the-butt ornaments.
Having a needle poked through your skin isn’t exactly fun. But the exact level of pain you experience depends on your ouchie tolerance. Some folks say it feels like a quick pinch. Others claim it’s hella painful. Again, it varies from person-to-person. The good news is that the piercing itself only takes a minute.
P.S. Piercing pain can also depend on the method your piercer uses.
There are two ways to bedazzle your back. You can choose between an anchor or a diver. Here’s the deets on each.
Anchors are the most traditional dermal piercing. When inserting an anchor, the piercer uses a clamp to pinch or hold a small section of skin. Then they pierce it with a needle. While holding the small incision open with forceps, the piercer inserts the anchor, foot first. The top of the anchor sits above the skin and has either a screw top or a magnet.
A diver is a dermal piercing with a fixed jewelry top. To insert a diver, the piercer uses a tool called a skin punch. The skin punch helps the piercer puncture the skin down to the dermis. This creates a teeny hole where the diver is inserted.
Anchors vs. diver back piercings
While neither type of piercing is technically better than the other, the anchor offers a bit of aesthetic flexibility by letting you change your jewelry on a whim.
The diver, on the other hand, causes less bleeding when it’s put into your skin. But once it’s in, you can’t swap out the jewelry unless you remove the diver.
There are a few different types of metal anchors and divers to choose from:
- Titanium. This is the posh option and the best bet for those of us with sensitive skin. Surgical grade titanium is considered the least likely metal to give you skin problems.
- Stainless steel. A very popular choice, surgical grade stainless steel is hypoallergenic.
- Niobium. Lustrous, grayish-white and named after a granddaughter of Zeus in Greek mythology, this inert and hypoallergenic metal is a little less expensive than titanium and almost as resistant to corrosion.
- Gold. If you want to drop beaucoup bucks on an 18-karat diver… don’t. It’s not durable enough to adorn your back dimples. The 14-karat stuff is a more solid choice (literally), especially when healing.
- Vibranium. Just kidding. This metal doesn’t exist. But wouldn’t that be cool?
PSA: You should avoid using nickel, even if it’s plated with another type of metal. According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association (AAD), up to 18 percent of peeps in North America have a nickel allergy.
Back dimple piercings typically cost $70 to $100. Just keep in mind this doesn’t always include the cost of jewelry. Certain types of metals can cost $100 or more, but the average price is about $10 to $30.
Back dimple piercings are generally safe if performed in a sterile environment by an expert body piercer. But there are still some potential probs to look out for. Here’s a rundown of the risks.
- Infection. Any type of piercing can increase your chance of a skin infection. The risks get higher if the insertion process isn’t performed correctly or if clean tools aren’t used.
- Displacement. If the anchor isn’t inserted deep enough or if it gets roughed up too much… anchors away! Your little piece of jewelry will sail to a new location under your skin or take off completely.
- Tissue damage. If the anchor is too deep, it will act like a little wrecking ball, causing damage to surrounding tissue.
- Rejection. There’s a chance your body will reject your piercing. This happens when your immune system initiates a process that pushes the jewelry out of your skin.
- Ripping. Nothing like getting your new diver caught on that holiday sweater! Merry ouch. Anything that snags on your back jewelry will potentially rip your skin. So be extra careful wearing loose clothing or when you use a towel.
Back dimple piercings will usually heal in a few months, but don’t be surprised if it takes about 6 months to fully heal. Here are some factors that can affect healing time:
- General health. Having a weakened immune system or poor circulation can slow down the healing time.
- Hygiene. Poor personal hygiene can increase your risk of skin infections and other gnarly side effects.
- Find the right piercer. Finding the right piercer is crucial. Only go to someone who really knows what they’re doing. Also, be sure to verify that they work in totally sterile conditions.
- Patience. Your piercing isn’t going to recover overnight. So try to be patient and stick to your aftercare regime everyday until it’s 100 percent healed.
Here’s a quick do’s and dont’s’ list to help you keep your piercing clean and safe.
- Wash your sheets on the reg.
- Sleep on your side or stomach.
- Clean your piercing 3 to 4 times a day with saline.
- Wash your hands with soap and water before your piercing.
- Wear clothing that won’t snag or put pressure on the piercing.
- Gently wash around the crust that may form around the wound.
- Take showers and gently pat the area dry with a clean paper towel.
- Due to its hard-to-reach location, you should seek professional assistance when changing the piercing. You might also need help cleaning it.
- Pick at the crust or rip off any scabs.
- Touch your new piercings with germy hands.
- Take baths or use pools, hot tubs, or saunas.
- Clean your piercing with alcohol or ointments.
- Use lotions, perfumes, or sunscreen on the wound.
- Avoid any exercises or sleeping positions that might irritate the piercing.
A little crusting and swelling around the top of piercing is totally normal for the first week or two. However, you might have an infection if you notice symptoms such as:
- severe pain and swelling
- skin that feels hot to the touch
- a foul AF aroma coming from your piercings
- fever, body aches, or other flu-like symptoms
- yellow, green, or pus-like ooze coming from the piercing area
Also, stay sharp for any clues that your body is rejecting the piercing. Here’s what to look for:
- The piercing hole got wider.
- The jewelry came out of place.
- The anchor came out of its little skin pocket.
- There’s hardening skin forming around the top of your jewelry.
- The jewelry is droopy or floppy instead of sitting flat on your body.
Once your piercings look nice and healed — and you have an anchor instead of a diver — you can opt to swap out the top jewelry whenever you’d like.
The catch: Don’t try this at home, kids. Bumping out the anchor foot is harder than it looks, so go back to your trusted piercer to swap out the jewelry for you.
If you decide it’s time retire your piercings, your piercer should handle that for you, too. It’s an easy procedure and far less painful than putting them in. Once they’re out, the holes should close up and heal relatively quickly, though you might have little scars as mementos of your back body mods.
Back dimple piercings are a form of dermal piercing. They’re inserted into the dents on your lower back. They’re generally considered safe if you get them done by a dermal piercing expert in a sterile setting. However, there are certain risks to be mindful of.
Talk to your piercer about the appropriate aftercare steps you should take. Also, hit up a health care provider ASAP if you notice any signs of an infection or severe irritation.