"Daith" Piercings Are L.A.'s Most Surprising Beauty Trend

“If you’re only going to have three piercings right now, I would do your lobes, your tragus, and your daith,” L.A.’s "It" piercer Brian Keith Thompson told me on the phone this week. “The daith is really popular right now — and [they] look cool all together.”

And if this piercing oracle says it's true, you better believe it. The Body Electric owner/artist is responsible for constellation piercings, L.A.’s obsession with nipple adornment, and even the latest uptick in the labret (the center of the bottom lip) and the philtrum (he just did FKA Twigs’, but more on that later. Did we mention his client list is stacked with major A-listers?)

So, what are the raddest piercings you need to know about for 2017? When it comes to ears, the daith, rook, forward helix, and tragus are in hot demand — often in artful groupings of three or more. Facial piercing trends are shifting too, with lip piercings becoming more popular and the nostril slowly usurping the septum. (There's a sentence we never thought we'd write.)

As for body? Feel free to blame Beyoncé for this next one. “There was a lull, but we are seeing the navel come back even stronger now,” Thompson says. “Very delicate, thin, dainty rings are big.” No surprise here: The nipple is still huge, too: “I thought that it was going to die down, but I can’t keep barbells in stock right now!” he reports.

Ahead, Thompson walks us through the piercings and combinations that L.A.’s loving.

This story was originally published on February 15, 2017.

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Behold: The daith. According to Thompson, it’s having a huge moment in L.A. — and for good reason. Not only does it feel incredibly cool and fresh, but because it's tucked further into your ear than the helix (and less prone to bumping or jostling), many find that it heals better.
“A tragus and a daith look so good together,” Thompson says about his current favorite combo. Here, his client sports multiple lobe piercings featuring the duo.
Thompson notes that regardless of trends, it's important to find a look that works for you. Here, a helix is accented with a rook, a placement right above the daith. (Does anyone else feel like they're playing chess RN?)

His only rule? "You don’t want to do a daith and rook, or either of those with a conch, because it gets a little crowded."
Here, the daith is paired with four lobe piercings to create an eclectic look.
“Constellation piercings are still very big right now,” Thompson told us. Personally, he prefers groupings of three, like these two helix piercings and lobe. (See tons of rad constellation piercings here.)
This look shows how easy it is to incorporate multiple small piercings onto your ear without any overcrowding. The secret? Keep all the jewelry dainty.
Hoops are far more popular than studs right now. “[Hoops] are flying off the shelves,” Thompson says. “I have girls coming in and doing hoops all the way up their ears.”
It's really popular for people to wear a few tiny hoops in their upper-ear cartilage piercings and small studs up the lobe.
The forward helix is also big right now, and looks incredibly cool when paired with just the lobe or outer helix, he says.
“It's crazy how popular the nipple is right now,” Thompson says. “Last night, for example, I did a group of three girls — it’s still a big thing.”
Thanks to the growing popularity of multiple piercings, people are becoming far more educated on how many are possible in each sitting. “People now understand they shouldn’t be getting five or six piercings at one time," he says. His best advice? “Do a couple, let them heal, then come back — it’s far easier to heal three piercings than seven.”
“A stud in the nostril is more popular among those that work in a professional environment, while hoops are a little more artistic," Thompson says, adding that hoops are far more popular for those doing several piercings. “I am seeing a lot of people pairing them up, doing multiples or one on each side," he says.
“I just did a really cool conch with a little baguette from [jewelry designer] Maria Tash,” Thompson says about this piercing. “Hoops are definitely more popular for the conch, but studs are big, too.”

Suspender earrings are also having a moment, and Thompson loves the ones from jewelry designer Smith & Mara.
Thompson always gravitates towards piercings in numerals of three, like this simple helix, lobe, and tragus trio.
FKA Twigs recently flew from London to L.A. just for Thompson to pierce her philtrum. “She said, ‘I can’t believe I came all the way from London just to do this’,” he says with a laugh. Of course, we understand why — the facial piercing had to be perfect.
While this trend might not be for everyone, Thompson predicts that it will have a huge moment this year. Think of it as the cool new Marilyn lip piercing.
“I love the septum on girls, because you can hide it,” Thompson says. “If you’re going to go see Grandma, you can just tuck that shit up."

Here, Bella Thorne shows off the septum piercing — just one of many piercings that she’s gotten from Thompson.
Introducing: the two new facial piercing trends collide in this simple, chic look.
Fair warning from Thompson: The labret trend is not for everyone. “She looks like a badass with it, but it takes a definite type of style to pull it off. And it's tough to heal,” Thompson says. “It’s right in the center of your lip and you’re talking, you’re eating — there is a lot going on and you need to be patient.”

Pro tip: You can get a similar effect with gold liquid liner before you commit.
Finally, a chic new way to cover up old gauge holes.
Way cooler than the pant chains people used to wear in high school...
When everyone else opts for a cuff or hoop, go for the stud.
Want more piercing inspiration and tips from Thompson — including how to make your new holes heal faster? Right this way.
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