I Want a Nose Ring and That Has Nothing to Do with Dating (I Think)


Confession: I have a lower back tattoo. I refuse to call it a tramp stamp because the term is ridiculous and offensive and meaningless. And I also believe that term was coined after I was inked, mine is not right in the middle of my back and it’s not as low as more recent lower back tattoos because when I got mine, the waistbands on pants were still at or above the belly button. So there. True story.

Over the years I admit I’ve been tempted to get more tattoos but nothing has struck me enough to make that permanent decision. I actually sometimes forget about the one I already have. I’ll be at the gym and raise my arms enough for my shirt to ride up a bit and a friend will say, “Hey, I didn’t know you have a tattoo!” and I’ll turn around like a dog chasing its tail and think, “You know, I didn’t know, either – oh wait, that’s right, I spent an hour in a sweltering tattoo shop when I was nineteen dealing with the pain and buzz of a tattoo machine.” What can I say, I don’t really look at my own back that often.

I’ve also flirted with the idea of getting subtle strands of oddly-hued hair, but then those chalking and Kool-Aid fads became big with tweens and I had no desire to appear as though I was trying to act like a ten year old girl (let’s not talk about my taste in music, though).

In my head I have a rebel streak but the truth is I shop for most of my clothes at Target, Marshall’s and Nordstrom Rack and my style is more classic or suburban mom on a budget than edgy or trendy. People apologize when they swear around me because I look innocent. I drive a mini-van. I love the look of dresses and cardigans a la Jess Day. I’m about as alternative as Women’s Day magazine.

And yet. I’ve recently made friends with a new group of women and almost all of them have nose rings and now I have decided I want one. This is not the first time I’ve coveted this tiny piece of jewelry – I can remember talking to a retail store employee years ago who had the tiniest little stud in the corner of her upper nostril and I thought to myself, “That is awesome. I can pull that off.”

Flash forward to now and I question – CAN I pull it off? Does it matter if I can’t? If I want this miniscule stud in my nose does it really make a difference how others will perceive it? I work in an industry where having one is not a detriment. My kids won’t love me any less.

Debating the appropriateness or awkwardness on my face aside, it’s a piercing. I haven’t even worn earrings since I had kids. I already have two perfectly normal and acceptable holes in my nose called nostrils, do I need a third? What if I get an infection and I tragically lose my entire nose and I end up on warning posters in high schools telling kids, “Facial piercings smell like a bad decision. If you can still smell after you lose most of your nose.” Do I have to worry about a stud flying out across a room if I sneeze? My sister said to me, when I brought up the idea, “You do realize that can leave a scar, right? And you’re almost 40.”

I had myself talked into it last Friday after a glass or two of wine, my pierced friends eager to accompany me to the mall as I underwent the procedure. Don’t worry, I’d go on a day when I’d not had any wine. Now the naysayers in my head are taking over.

But I want one. I’m sorry, but I love the look. And it has nothing to do with the fact that I’m pretty sure the first guy I’ve liked since my divorce is fading on me. Not at all. Completely unrelated.


Image by Cristina Valencia used under creative commons license. She’s got a pretty cool Flickr feed if you want to check it out!

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13 thoughts on “I Want a Nose Ring and That Has Nothing to Do with Dating (I Think)

  1. I admire the shimmery tiny studs, but the truth is I think I would come across as a little to needy and attempting to be young. Also, because of extreme nasal sensitivity, I don’t think I’d keep it forever and that little nodule of a scar would drive me bonkers. That’s why this just-turned-forty-year-old is going to pass.

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  3. I used to have my nose pierced and it never left a bump or a scar. There was a tiny dot that you’d only see if you looked real close. Now it’s totally gone, replaced by a small, barely there, diamond. When I got it done for the second time, it made me myself again. I’ve never once sneezed it out.

  4. Was searcing for my GF’s blog and came upon yours. Loved reading your storys and came to the present where you are agonizing whether or not to get a nose stud. Do it. Here is my story…sound familiar?

    Was recently divorced and it was because my hubby was a jerk, not me. All of a sudden, I’m a single mom with a one year daugher. I felt defiant. I was trying to reclaim my own life. I went to the hairdresser, Lana, and told her to do something dramatic and sassy with my hair. I told her not to tell me what she was going to do, just to surprise me. Now, she has the cutest little diamond chip nostril screw. While she transformed my mousey brown flat ‘do to a short pixie cute frosted blond. I loved the cut and the look of her nose stud. I had a lot of time to think about how cute that piercing was on her and how shiny a little diamond nose stud would look on me. I’d always considered myself a little conservative working in retail. Nonetheless, I thought nose piercings were adorable. When I left the salon, I felt something was missing, i.e., my nose stud.

    A few days passed and I started looking for women with nose studs. There were many of all ages, some in their 20’s, 30’s, forty’s and one with all grey hair in her 60’s. They all look super cute. I returned to Lana for a haircut and I was obsessed with her little diamond nose stud. I had an epiphany at the hair salon.

    When I left Lana in the salon, I realized there is something about a piercing that can change everything about a woman — and it’s different for each woman. Sometimes it can make her look magical or mystical with a hippie feel. Or it can add a punk and rebellious edge. All of it gives off the feeling that the woman is daring, carefree, even spiritual. I love how it can be big and bold or small and subtle. And it suits some women so well you can’t imagine them without it. A piercing is more adaptable than a tattoo in that it’s body modification that you can change. Don’t want a hoop, try a stud; or even wear one of the many colorful and artistic adornments made especially for those who are pierced.

    I found the best piercer and just did it. Afterwards looking in the mirror, I had such an ethereal look, and I felt beautiful once again. My nose stud had completed my transformation into a sexy women again.

    Moral of my story: Remember it’s your life; live it for you. I say don’t agonize any more and just do it!

    You now know my nose piercing story. Follow your nose intuition as you said, “…I want one… I’m sorry, but I love the look.” No apologies necessary. Its time for the minivan mom to reach her dream.



    • Thanks for sharing your story! My tentative plan is to get mine pierced tonight – eek! – and this helps sway me in the direction of “Yes!” I figure I can always take it out if I don’t like it. My sister brought up the point that prospective dates may not like it, but do I want to date someone who thinks a tiny nose stud is a deal breaker??

  5. Kira,

    Glad my experience helped you decide to go ahead now. I think your sister is wrong and you’re spot on about guys who may not like your nose stud. I’ve been dating the same person now for a year (fingers crossed). He originally saw me order a coffee and donut at Dunkin Donuts! One night (after a few glasses of wine) he confessed he was attracted to me when he saw my face in a different direction and noticed I had my nose pierced and a tiny stud (1.5mm CZ) in my left nostril.

    When I asked him if my nose stud was cute, he said, smart guys are attracted to women who don’t necessarily portray the image of magazine models, and who are more difficult to judge, i.e., middle aged women with nose studs. He said, “…the harder it is to judge a girl, the more thoughtful guys will be interested.”

    Hello! I should have done it sooner 🙂

    Hope you’ll share your experience, journey and even a picture. Ii know you’ll look super cute.


    • I did not – yet. One reason being I just got a new job and have not yet talked to my boss about whether it’s “okay” or not. But I keep seeing more and more women with them and still want to do it!

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