The Coolest Piercings New York Girls Are Getting Right Now

"The conch has really taken off lately, but it's the anti-tragus that I've been doing a lot lately," says Ben Tauber, NYC's "It" piercer. If that sounds like gibberish to you, you're not alone. But for New York girls in the know, those are the two coolest piercings to get right now. And Tauber would know — he's the one giving them out all day long at one of Manhattan's coolest piercing studios.

The Ohio native works out of Maria Tash, the cool-kid piercing spot and jewelry boutique in the city. Like most piercers, Tauber's main goal is to create something unique and well-suited for each client, but trends still prevail. In New York, the anti-tragus is reigning supreme, followed closely by the conch, rook, and daith — and normally paired with lobe piercings to create odd numbers, which just feels right for Tauber.

When it comes to mixing metals, he loves all combinations except rose and yellow golds together — "it tends to look like you had two of the same rings, but something is a little bit wrong with one of them," he explains — and he prefers hoops over studs. Of course, at the end of the day, you should listen to yourself above anyone else. "Do what you want to do and what feels right for you," Tauber says. "More times than not, people who listen to their friends come back a week or two later to do what they originally wanted."

There's one rule he does enforce, however. "I try not to exceed four or five piercings at once," Tauber explains, "Any more and it gets tricky for the body to heal it, and I want stuff to look good and be there forever." When it comes to post-care, he recommends NeilMed's spray for keeping the piercing clean — and not much else. "The less you do, the better."

Prepped and ready to get your creative juices flowing? Tauber walks us through 13 of his coolest piercings combinations, ahead.


Behold: The edgy, yet dainty, anti-tragus. Traditionally done on the high point of the top of the lobe, Tauber placed this one slightly to the left, just for fun. "It's just a little switch up on the ordinary," he says, "A little more special." He reports that it's since taken off — he does more slightly off-center anti-tragus piercings now than ones placed at the highest point.
The customer wanted to go big, but the beauty of this combo lies in the restraint. "She already had a helix [top ear piercing] and I felt that if we did a conch [inner ear] it would take away from her existing rook [antihelix] piercing she had done," he says, "And if we did anything on the outside, it would be too much, so we settled on doing that sweet little anti-tragus. It's something a little different, a little unique."
This is another example of an anti-tragus placed slightly more outward, plus two trending placement spots: the conch and the flat of the ear, or the "Tash rook," Tauber says. More on those ahead...

First, the conch, done here alone. "A conch piercing makes a statement, even if it's on its own," Tauber says, "You don't need other stuff to make it work."
Tash Rook

One of the most popular places to get pierced right now is floating in the middle of the cartilage. It's so new that "there's a lot of piercer discrepancy as to what that area is called," Tauber explains. "You can call it the flat of the ear, but here, we call it Tash rook." (A classic rook is slightly lower, on the inward ridge.)
The best part of the Tash rook? A single hole allows for a major statement or a subtle touch, depending on what jewelry you select. "This is one of our opal tree flower garlands," Tauber says, "It's one of my favorite pieces right now because it brings in different colors."
On the other side of the spectrum is the Tash rook adorned with a subtle star. "She was worried about being too flashy with her jewelry, so we settled on doing a more minimal piercing, but with fun placements," Tauber says. "We did the little hoop in her conch and then we did the little star up top to give that last little pop of something different. It's a flat piece so you don't really see it when she's looking straight on, but when she turns a little bit, it catches light."

Another growing trend is the orbital. That is, two holes that hold the same hoop. (Not to be confused with the industrial, which is two holes that hold the same bar.)

"The popularity of orbitals come and go in waves," Tauber says, noting that it was a hit on a recent work trip to Hong Kong, and is having a major uptick in New York, too. "A lot of people have been converting their second and third holes into orbital holes, to use them in a way that's a little more unique. You can always just have a piercer slide a ring between the two holes to create that look."
Orbitals work on the cartilage, too. "We had done one of those cartilage piercings previously, and she had taken it out and wanted to do something a little bit different," Tauber says. "I was like, 'Alright, let's give you an orbital up there.' She didn't really understand, but she gave me a bit of free range, and I love the uniqueness of [it]."

Running out of room is a common issue among clients. "This client liked a bigger effect, and he wanted to keep it going," Tauber says. When that happens, picking the right jewels is key, so not to look cluttered or chaotic. Tauber did this fourth piercing, opting for a piece that flows, not competes. "The circle copies the ring he wears up top, so it works really well," he says.
Constellations look just as cool with hoops as studs. "We did three hoops to build space between her second and top hole," Tauber says. "It has that feeling of minimalism, so it's not hitting too aggressive, even with all the piercings."

Here the daith, with a spiked hoop for maximum impact, balances her constellation piercings. "She had a lot going on, and I wanted to bring it around full circle," Tauber says.

"This is a take on the classic helix piercing," Tauber says. "People are always revisiting their piercings, so just doing a simple little one above it or below it creates something special."
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