Frowny Piercing [50 Ideas]: Pain Level, Healing Time, Cost, Experience

frowny piercing picture

Not into smiley piercings because of the cheerful name? Check out the frowny piercing!

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Below you’ll find everything you need to know about frowny piercings, including procedure details, cost, healing time and pain level. Aftercare product recommendations and a photo gallery will ensure you’re ready to make the frowny piercing all your own.

What is a Frowny Piercing?

Frowny piercings puncture the frenulum tissue that connects the lower gum and lip. Sometimes called anti-smiley piercings, frowny piercings are the bottom lip version of the smiley piercing. These piercings can only be seen if the lower lip is completely pulled down.

frowny frenulum piercing barbell

frowny piercing on guy

Should You get a Frowny Piercing?

Just like any piercing, the frowny piercing has its own risks and rewards. Check out the pros & cons below to see if this piercing is right for you:

Pros Ad

  • Frowny piercings are relatively painless and simple. There aren’t many nerve endings in the frenulum, so the pain is minimal.
  • Unlike some other oral piercings, you will always be able to easily hide your frowny piercing until you’re ready to show it off.


  • This piercing requires a thick lower frenulum to hold jewelry securely in place. If your frenulum is too thin, you may not be able to get a frowny piercing. Check with a piercer beforehand.
  • Rejection is more of a risk with frowny piercings than some others. Be sure to insist on high quality jewelry made from titanium or stainless steel, and talk to your piercer if you have concerns.

frowny piercing picture smiley and anti-smiley piercing image

Piercing Procedure

The first & most important step to any piercing is finding a reputable piercer. When you arrive at the shop, your piercer will review the procedure with you and have you fill out some paperwork. Once they’re ready, your piercer will take you back and inspect your frenulum to make sure your tissue can hold the jewelry. If the answer is yes, you’ll be asked to swish with mouth wash to ensure a clean procedure.

When you’re both ready, your piercer will hold your lower frenulum in place with a clamp and puncture the tissue with a hollow needle. The needle will then be replaced with jewelry to complete the procedure. Your piercer will discuss proper aftercare with you as a last step. Make sure to ask any lingering questions before you leave the shop!

Check out the video below to see the frowny piercing procedure in real time:

How Much do Frowny Piercings Hurt?

3 out of 10

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Frowny piercings rank at a 3/10 on the piercing pain scale. The initial puncture is relatively simple and painless.

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However, you’ll most likely experience some swelling and irritation for a few days after your piercing. Be sure to keep ice cubes and ibuprofen on hand to make this process easier.

Read more about the most & least painful piercings.

frowny piercing photo frowny piercing horseshoe jewelry

Healing and Aftercare

Frowny piercing healing time is approximately 4 to 8 weeks total.

Your healing time can potentially be reduced with thorough aftercare. Follow the guidelines below to keep your piercing happy:

  • Always wash your hands thoroughly before touching your piercing.
  • Maintain good oral hygiene & be careful when brushing your teeth.
  • Do not remove your jewelry until the piercing is completely healed. Early jewelry removal can cause immediate piercing closure!
  • Clean your piercing twice per day as described below.

How to Clean Your Piercing

Be sure to rinse with mouthwash promptly after eating or drinking. Twice per day, rinse the piercing with saline solution. Make your own saline solution at home by dissolving 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt in 8 oz of warm water. Pour some in your mouth and swish it around the piercing to reduce inflammation. Repeat this procedure once in the morning and once at night for a regularly clean piercing.

Read more about proper aftercare technique.

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Recommended Aftercare Products

Sea salt

This piercing sea salt is ideal for making your own saline solution at home.

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Piercing aftercare spray

Saline spray is a great on-the-go option. Throw it in your bag and clean your piercing anywhere!

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What to Avoid During Healing

Avoid the habits below to reduce your risk of irritation and infection:

  • Touching or twisting your jewelry.
  • Smoking and chewing gum.
  • Oral contact with other objects or people.
  • Eating spicy or hot foods, and drinking alcohol.
  • Removing your jewelry before your piercing is healed. Remember, early jewelry removal can cause immediate piercing closure!


While any piercing comes with potential risks, oral piercings present their own concerns:

  1. Jewelry migration and rejection. Your body may try to push the jewelry to the edge of the frenulum tissue. This can be avoided by selecting an experienced piercer and choosing jewelry made from steel or titanium to avoid reactions.
  2. Tooth & gum erosion. Your bottom teeth or gums can suffer potential harm from repeated jewelry movement. To avoid these issues, be sure to change out your initial jewelry for smaller variations when healing is complete.
  3. Piercing infection. Watch out for swelling, pain, inflammation or discharge around your piercing. If any of these are present or you have concerns, contact your piercer or doctor immediately.

Best Jewelry

Curved barbells are commonly used as initial jewelry for their lack of movement during healing. You’re free to explore jewelry options like captive bead rings, hoops and circular barbells after healing, or simply switch out the curved barbell for a shorter, customized option. See what works best for your mouth shape and piercing!

lower frenulum piercing black ring jewelry anti-smiley piercing curved barbell jewelry frowny piercing horseshoe jewelry

How Much do Frowny Piercings Cost?

  • In the US, frowny piercings range from $30 – $70.
  • In the UK, frowny piercings range from £25 – £65.
  • In Europe, frowny piercings range from €15 – €50.

Frowny Piercing Experiences

Frowny Piercing Image Gallery

Urban Body Jewelry

Christina Andrusenko

My name is Christina. I’m passioned about piercing. I have 2 piercings for 17 years: Earlobe and Madonna. I used to have 3rd one before – nose piercing.

It pisses me off when I can’t find proven information about piercing type I interested in. That is why Piercee was created.

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