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A dahlia piercing is also known as a joker piercing and is one of the least common lip piercings you can achieve. Each corner of the mouth is pierced with a labret stud, as close to the corners as possible to create a lengthening effect. This piercing is also sometimes called a joker piercing but is called a Dahlia because of the facial mutilation of the infamous Black Dahlia murder.  Though the aim of a Dahlia piercing is to be as close to the corners of the lips as possible, this can be a very difficult effect for piercers to achieve due to the extensive movement of this area. Because of the rarity of this lip piercing, many piercers may not have even heard of it, especially in the UK, and it is unwise to ever ask a piercer to perform a body modification they are unfamiliar with. 

As an oral piercing, Dahlia piercings require careful consideration as the body jewellery will enter the outside of the mouth and exit inside. Each side of the piercing should be treated individually and you should bathe the outside of the piercings with a saline solution twice a day to reduce the risk of infection. The inside of your piercing you can also cleanse by rinsing your mouth with a saline solution (don’t forget to spit that out!) or a PHP neutral mouthwash. Also avoid alcohol in the first few weeks and spicy foods to avoid irritation. Labret studs are worn with this body modification, though some people enjoy wearing BCR’s. This would depend on how comfortable this would be for the individual. 

The issue many piercers have with Dahlia Piercings is their precise location. Too close to the corners of the lips and the piercing may reject, migrate or even tear the mouth itself. Too far out and the piercing becomes a cheek piercing, which is a different kind of piercing altogether. Healing can take 3-10 weeks depending on whether the body modification is irritated and because lip piercings can swell your piercer should give you a longer labret stud than is necessary towards the end of healing. If this body jewellery irritates you after the initial swelling has gone down then you can return to your piercer for a change after 4-5 weeks. 

Dahlia Piercing Tips
  • This is a very usual piercing, shop around to find a piercer who is familiar with it and can show you examples of their work
  • Cleanse both sides of the piercings twice a day and don’t touch your piercing without washing your hands first. 
  • Placement is all-important with this piercing but if you start to feel irritation, tightness in your skin or pain then you should return to your piercer for advice
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