The Monroe Piercing – Pros, Cons and Tips

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The Monroe piercing is a sleek and stylish type of facial piercing that is becoming very popular for its versatile look. Although it’s more popular among women than men, Monroe piercings tend to look good on any gender.

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Located in a part of your face that’s impossible to miss, the Monroe piercing can be eye-catching or understated depending on how you dress it up.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know about the Monroe piercing and whether it’s the right choice for you.

What is the Monroe Piercing?

Monroe piercing

The Monroe piercing is located off-center on the left side of your face, just above your top lip. It’s meant to look like Marylin Monroe’s famous beauty mark (a.k.a. mole), although her mole was located on her cheek and not near the lip.

If the piercing is located on the right side of the upper lip, it’s known as a Madonna piercing. If Madonna and Monroe piercings are worn at the same time, on either side, then the two are known as angel bites.

The most common gauge sizes for a Monroe piercing are 14 gauge and 16 gauge. Which you get depends on your preferences and what your piercer thinks is best.

Best Monroe Piercing Jewelry

Knowing your gauge size is important when you choose jewelry for your Monroe piercing to ensure you get the right size. If you don’t know, you can ask for it to be measured by a piercer.

It’s also important to know the length of the post for your Monroe jewelry. You can get this information from your piercer when getting the piercing done. Most Monroe piercing jewelry is around 8.0mm to 10.0mm in length, but depending on how thick or thin your flesh is, your Monroe jewelry could be as short as 6.0mm and as long as 12.0mm.

There are two main types of Monroe piercing jewelry:

1. Labret Stud

Labret studs for Monroe Piercing
Crystal labret stud by Mignon Rose. See it here.

Labret studs are the most popular option and can range in size depending on how noticeable you want your piercing to be. The flat backing of a labret stud provides more stability, less movement, and less likelihood of the ring getting snagged on your teeth or damage to your gums.

Simple ball monroe stud
Labret style screw back stud by JustNoseRings. See it here.

Some studs feature gemstones and crystals, while others are just a plain little ball. The choice is yours.

A simple silver or black stud can look like a beauty mark from a distance, harking back to Marylin Monroe’s beauty mark. Gemstones can add a touch of color to your face while a shaped stud (like a star or heart design) can add detail and beauty to your piercing. It’s best to avoid red studs as these can look like a rash or pimple.

In terms of stud fastenings, Monroe studs can have push-in, screw-on and or internal threading fastenings. Choose something comfortable and easy for you to handle.

2. Hoop

Dainty hoop earrings
Dainty hoops for Monroe piercing by Oufer Jewelry. See it here.

While a hoop can give attitude and a badass look to any piercing, it needs to be worn with care. A hoop wrapping around your lip can be a recipe for disaster if you aren’t careful. Imagine the number of things that could get caught in it!

If you do decide to opt for a hoop, do so after your piercing has healed to avoid issues. Be careful when eating or using cutlery and take it off if you find it difficult to manage.

Monroe Piercing Pain – Can I Handle It?

Pain is a subjective experience so it’s difficult to pinpoint how exactly you may react to it. However, in general, the Monroe piercing is considered a fairly painful type of lip piercing. For most people, the Monroe piercing causes a sharp, piercing pain that quickly subsides.  However, some people experience no discomfort at all.

One of the main issues with the Monroe piercings is that they can swell quite a bit, because of the fleshiness of the lip area. It’s best if you’re piercing is done with a needle instead of a piercing gun, as these are clean and sharp enough to minimize damage. Piercing guns typically use too much force and have more bacteria, which isn’t ideal for any piercing.

“Every piercing hurts to some extent. After all it’s a needle going through your skin, that’s going to hurt no matter what! I’ve got a high pain tolerance so when I got my Monroe piercing done, it just hart really badly for a few seconds. That was it.”


“I can’t really say if it hurts or not because I got mine done with anaesthesia – so for me, no, the Monroe piercing didn’t hurt at all.”


Monroe Piercing Aftercare

monroe piercing

The Monroe piercing typically takes about 6 to 12 weeks to completely heal, but this can vary and largely depends on how well you look after the piercing.

Because the piercing is in a tricky location that’s prone to infection, you’ll need to look after it carefully and pay attention to how it’s healing. Your Monroe piercing might look like it’s healed from the outside but could be still sore on the inside.

Here are the main steps to take to ensure your Monroe piercing heals quickly:

  • Ensure you follow strict oral hygiene. Brush your teeth regularly and keep your mouth as clean as you can.
  • Avoid kissing and other oral activity as this not only exposes your mouth to bacteria but also can put pressure on the piercing and move it around unnecessarily.
  • Watch that you don’t move the piercing with your tongue or touch it with your hands too much. This can be tempting to do, especially when the piercing is still new, but try to leave it alone as much as possible.
  • If you do touch your piercing, ensure your hands are clean and washed.
  • The Monroe piercing is often too high for you to accidentally bite the jewelry, but it can get caught on your teeth. This is something to be aware of and avoid.

By being organized and diligent, you can help your Monroe piercing to heal quickly.

“I think the aftercare is more annoying than the pain itself. I just felt a sharp sting when getting the piercing done, but I had pain for several weeks every time the Monroe jewelry snagged on my teeth or got wiggled around.”


Monroe Piercing Cost

Labret monroe stud
Labret Monroe stud by Titanium Fashion. See it here.

The Monroe piercing isn’t a very complicated piercing type, but it’s best to choose a piercer with skill and expertise because if the job isn’t done right, you can have issues with your gums and end up with a piercing that takes longer to heal. This is why it’s worth spending a little more on a skillful piercer.

In general, a Monroe piercing should cost you around $50 dollars but this can vary depending on the piercer.

Pros and Cons of a Monroe Piercing

If you’re undecided on whether a Monroe piercing is the right choice for you, balancing up the pros and cons should help you make your decision.

Monroe Piercing Pros:

  • Monroe piercings are ideal on their own but they also work well with other facial piercings to create your unique look. It offers a lot of customization options.
  • You can opt for a minimalist aesthetic with a simple stud or a more elaborate style.
  • It’s a cute piercing that’s also very sexy.

Monroe Piercing Cons:

  • Monroe piercings can result in scarring, especially if you select large pieces of jewelry for the piercing. If at any point in time, you decide to take out the Monroe jewelry, you may be left with a scar on your face.
  • It’s not considered professional wear in many work environments.
  • It’s easy to get infections during the healing period of the Monroe piercing because of all the oral bacteria and the amount of movement the Monroe piercing is exposed to.

If your heart is set on a Monroe piercing, there’s no reason not to get one. However, you might want to consider how this will be received in your work context, as this is one piercing that’s quite difficult to hide.

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