Body piercings may have a little redness, itchiness, and form “crusties” while healing, which is all normal. Swelling should go down after a couple of days (a week or two maximum depending on the location and treatment of the piercing).
For stretched piercings, irritation or redness and discomfort may occur, but if you stretch properly, this should only be minimal or none at all.
Before you do anything, wash your hands. Never touch a piercing with dirty or unwashed hands, because you will more than likely still have harmful bacteria on your fingers and palms that can lead to an infection if you don’t clean them beforehand.
NEVER use rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide on your piercings. Not only does rubbing alcohol kill bad bacteria, but it also kills the good bacteria and cells needed in order to heal a piercing, which of course means it won’t do any good here.
The only types of products you should use on your piercings are: saline solution (sea-salt soak that can be made at home), unscented anti-microbial mild soap, or essential oils (if healed).
For regular, new piercings: You’ll want to cleanse your piercing two to three times a day; you can soak it in a saline-solution (1/4 teaspoon non-iodized sea salt + 1 cup warm water) for 5-10 minutes, 2-3 times a day (these sea-salt soaks can also calm irritation and perhaps reduce swelling), or you can use unscented antimicrobial mild soap. Make sure you wash away all of the sea-salt/soap with water afterwards and let air dry.
For oral piercings: You’ll want to use an antiseptic, alcohol-free mouthwash after each meal.. It is also a good idea to swish the above-mentioned saline solution around in your mouth for a couple minutes 2-3x a day to help prevent infections or reduce swelling if possible.
If you’re stretching a piercing (see the Stretching page for info on proper stretching): For fresh stretches, you’ll want to do the above-mentioned information on regular piercings. Also, to help thicken up your lobes, you can do oil massages for a couple minutes 2-3x a day with vitamin e oil, emu oil, or jojoba oil. Most people will say massaging them is very beneficial. It is also a good idea to take your jewelry out for an hour or two+ every day to let them breathe (or however you can keep them out without the piercing shrinking up too much), this will promote circulation and will help keep your lobes thick.