What Does It Feel Like To Get A Belly Button Piercing?

Belly Button Ring

If you decide to head into a shop to get a body piercing, you probably already know that it’s going to sting. But if you’re here reading this blog, it’s probably because you want to know a little bit more about what to expect. We’ll say it straight up – having a sharp needle pushed into a part of your body is bound to hurt, even if you’re really good with pain tolerance!

The navel piercing is a classic and timeless body mod. Belly button piercings have many variations, but are located somewhere in/around the skin surrounding the navel. You can pierce the top of your navel, the lower part of your navel, the sides of your navel, or even a combination of two, three, or all four of these options – as long as your personal anatomy allows for it.

But what does a belly button piercing truly feel like? Body Candy wanted to get some real-life pierced and modded testimonials, so we set out to ask a bunch of our customers what it was like to head to the shop and get their belly blinged out.

No matter what the piercing, every experience at the piercing shop will vary from person to person. These Body Candy Babes are here to tell you what it was like for them!

Note: some customer names have been changed for privacy

navel piercing

Ryann I. – Providence, RI

For me, personally, I would say that it didn’t really hurt. I got my belly pierced about three years ago and I actually found the experience to be quite therapeutic.

As my piercer brought me back to her station, I noticed that her table and the surrounding area looked very thoroughly sterile. Everything was packed up in plastic or covered appropriately. She had me hop on the table and asked me to lay back with my shirt off. She made small talk with me while giving out bits of advice. I didn’t even realize what was happening until she told me to focus on my breathing and take a few breaths in and out. I felt her clamp my belly and push the needle through. It definitely pinched, but I feel like the clamp gave me an adrenaline rush and I barely felt a thing. She corked the needle and put in my titanium jewelry for healing. It really was that simple. I’d say it was a 20 minute experience tops.

For me, I felt barely anything, but I asked lots of questions and had gotten a few piercings before (ears, nose, etc.), so I kind of knew what to expect already.

Belly Chain

Laurie L. – Burlington, VT

So if I had to compare it to anything, it would be like someone pinching the top of your belly button with sharp fingernails or something. It definitely hurt but not enough for me to tell other people not to go!

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I have several piercings and I want to be honest, this one was one of my most painful. Most of my friends with belly button rings say it wasn’t bad at all though. I think that just points to the fact that no matter who you are or what you do or how you prep for a piercing, every body is different. What feels like a 9 out of 10 to me could be a 4 out of ten for you. If I had to pick, I think getting my belly done was around a 7.

One thing I want to mention is how little I thought about my belly button until I had a healing piercing inside of it. There is a lot that brushes up against your belly from day to day, and I def missed out on a few days in the water because I didn’t want to get it wet.

I love my belly ring though and I think anyone who wants one should get it!

Belly Rings

Harleena D. – Chicago, IL

So. I’m gonna be real and say that I’m a big girl. I didn’t get a belly ring for a long time because I was self conscious about my belly and I thought it would be weird to get my belly pierced because of that.

Eventually I worked up the courage (due to my best friend’s kind words – peer pressure!) and made an appointment. I barely remember because it was over so fast but it felt like a quick pinch and that was that. Really the whole experience was over so fast and my piercer was so kind to me. She really made me feel comfortable even though I was still a little self-conscious.

The thing I do want to note is that even though the piercing was super easy, I ended up getting a piercing bump that drove me crazy. I was cleaning it a bunch and I started getting scared because it wouldn’t go away. Eventually I called my piercer back up and she told me I was messing with it too much and to just clean once a day instead. It eventually went away and now I love my body much more because of my pretty little belly ring!

Belly Button Rings

I have over a dozen piercings and they all hurt. It’s just a part of being an alternative individual. But eventually you grow to enjoy the pain, and not even in a weird way. It just feels like a release.

My belly was nowhere near as bad as my conch or my nipple piercings. To be honest, I think the clamp hurt more than the actual needle. It’s kind of shocking to be clamped on your belly button. Like, it’s a little cold and a little abrupt. It’s not like I’d ever been grabbed on my belly button like that before.

Really (lol) I was all startled by the clamp that by the time the needle went through I was still feeling by the grip of the clamps!

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My best advice is just to not slack on aftercare. It’s sore for a bit but the only real pain I experienced was in the evening right after I got my piercing done. I also got mine done at the very end of summer so that I didnt miss out on any swimming or beachy days. Plus, loose-fitting clothing like hoodies and sweatshirts are way easier on a healing belly ring.

Beach belly ring

Maggie F. – Los Angeles, CA

Here’s how my belly ring experience went down:

I went to a shop around the corner from my apartment. I saw it had good reviews online so I didn’t make an appointment or anything. Luckily they were accepting walk ins that day so I was good to go.

After about 10 mins of waiting, the piercer called me up and asked me what I wanted to get done. I told him I wanted my belly button pierced and asked him if my weight would be an issue (I am a little chubby). He asked me if my belly button creased when I sat down and luckily it didn’t. He brought me in the back room and sat me down.

It kind of smelled sterile like a hospital which made me feel good about the location. He asked me to roll my shirt up and lay back on the piercing table. This was probably one of the worst parts honestly, it was kind of chilly on my back. He was kind of a quiet guy, but talked about the whole experience as it was happening. “I’m going to be using a clamp on your belly button which might feel weird.” “Ok I just need you to take a few deep breaths.” Stuff like that.

The needle going through felt kind of weird, but it was over so fast. It kind of felt like getting a vaccine. Just a real sharp, burny pinch. But after 5 seconds maximum it didn’t hurt anymore whatsoever.

Tangent: I was afraid I was going to have to take out my belly ring when I got pregnant but I found out they make pregnancy belly ring retainers so you can keep it through your growing baby bump. Now I have my son AND my belly ring!

We want to hear about your belly button piercing experience!

Do you have a navel piercing? What was it like when you went to the shop? Did your belly button ring hurt? Tell us all about your personal experience in the comment section below so other potentially-pierced peeps can feel better!

bellybutton ring

Okay okay so I was quite at ease when getting my belly pierced. I would also say getting my second ear piercing hurt more, especially since my piercer got the gun stuck in my ear and had to shake it out. But the belly piercing has the same pain level as getting a shot or blood drawn… maybe a 4 out of 10 pain level, as it just feels like a pinch. I went to a shop really close to my home and the place had really good reviews. When I got seated, I was surprised at how clean everything was. I was walked through the whole procedure and felt really calm throughout the whole thing. The only pain I felt was after the whole thing was over, because something a lot of people don’t tell you is that is really burns and aches afterwards for a few days, especially the day off. They clamp your belly button, which is a funny feeling, but it’s just a slight pinch. Then the needle goes through, and the jewelry. But it does hurt to stand and sit a few days after since your skin is stretching out from the piercing. Also you need to wear baggy clothes so it doesn’t get stuck to anything and it has room to breathe. I also recommend taking really good care after and cleaning it twice to three times a day. Don’t ignore the after care because I did that with my ear piercings and it got infected pretty bad.

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Victoria on August 11, 2021

Okay so my belly was my first body piercing besides my ears. I have tattoos and can deal with pain fine, so I wasn’t nervous about it. I went to the same place I get my tattoos, and it was also where my boyfriend got his ears pierced. The clamp, and the piercing itself did not hurt. Putting the jewelry in hurt badly because I am a small girl and the skin on my stomach is pretty tight, and my piercer said it was hard to get the jewelry piece through, so I actually felt a lot of pain throughout my whole stomach.
If someone were to ask me if the pain was worth it getting it pierced, I would tell them no. But I do I love my belly ring? Yes. (Btw, I take no blame on the piercer, I believe it really was just my body because I don’t think everyone experiences this.)

Ashley0225 on February 01, 2021

I had surgery done on my stomach so the area my belly piercing sits in is completely numb so I had zero pain lol. My belly piercing is my favorite one and even tho I dont show it off much it makes me feel really good.

Mel on September 03, 2020

Hey Melissa! Besides the stories above… try pinching your belly button between your fingernails. It’s just a quick pinch and then its over with! What you should really prepare for is the aftercare – it’s really important to take care of it while it’s healing.

Alley (Body Candy Team) on August 12, 2020

I’m looking to get my bellybutton pierced and would love some advice on what to expect. I have both my ears pierced 3 times each and I totally love it