The truth about ear studs
Let’s talk for a minute about the vast majority of commercially available jewelry marketed for pierced ears.
Below you will see a picture of 14K gold jewelry that supposedly is safe and comfortable.
1. The edges of the jewelry appear sharp and the finish is less than mirror finish. Open grooves in the backing and the rough, sharp edges can damage piercings and harbor bacteria and debris.
2. The wonderful 14K gold stamping. The stamping is on the post of the earring, and the crevices and edges are a perfect breeding ground for nasty pathogens.
3. Super sharp threading on the post. I have seen this sort of threading go as far up as 3/4 of the way up the post, essentially causing the piercing to constantly be irritated and damaged. Rubbing this threading even against normal skin can cut into the surface… OUCH!
4. The 14K gold means quality, right? WRONG! The karat only tells you of the percentage of gold in the jewelry in GENERAL. It does not specify if the post, backing, front design or any other part of the jewelry is gold, or even if it is plated! Plated gold can flake off and cause rough edges and expose the wearer to the metals under the plating, which can contain lead (toxic), nickel (a common metal causing reactions), copper and other “stuff” to make the jewelry harder, brighter and more “gold looking”.
Long story short, the jewelry going through your body should ALWAYS be implant grade, with a mirror finish and no rough edges, and not have imprints or other marks where bacteria can colonize. We love using neometal threadless titanium labrets, which come in many different lengths (for chubby or thin lobes) and tons of threadless top choices! Stop by today and pick up some truly safe, implant grade quality jewelry and see what a wonderful difference it makes!
So I’m sure we’ve posted this piercing before, but I’m not sure we’ve posted the aftermath. The extreme damage to the gum and bone is why this piercing should have never been done and should never be replicated.
Just looking at it makes my mouth hurt.
Here is a great before and after photo that Johnross from Mean Street Tattoos in Bensalem PA posted, of a Surface piercing that he did on the Nape area of a client of his. She came into see Johnross; to get her Tragus pierced, and to downsize the jewelry in the Nape piercing that she had done at another shop. After seeing what she had; he carefully explained to her that her current Nape piercing was not looking good, and that the type of jewelry that was in it was probably inappropriate and detrimental. After further explaining to her the benefits that he has found when using an I.S. Titanium Surface Barbell with Titanium Flat Back Faceted Gem End tops (known for their low-profile) in this situation (he uses them on his clients on a regular basis), he offered to pierce her for free with the purchase of the jewelry. She decided to go for it, was totally happy with the outcome, and swore to be back and to tell all of her friends! You are very savvy when it comes to strengthening your customer base, @jrspiercings ! Bravo! And, thanks for the tag, and for choosing to offer INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH Fine Quality Body Jewelry to your customers! #repoststatigram #industrialstrength #isbodyjewelry #madeintheusa #implantgradebodyjewelry #finequalitybodyjewelry #f136 #polishedtoamirrorfinish #mirrorfinish #swarovski #issurfacejewelry #surfacepiercing #lowprofile #isthreadedends #picoftheday #igdaily #legitbodyjewelry #youaregoingtolooksobeautiful #customerforlife #loveit
This is why you don’t use curved barbells/bioplast/bioflex/biowhatever in piercings in case you were wondering.
Curved jewelry is never appropriate for surface piercings.
Got the dreaded piercing bumps? Save yourself some time and watch this instead of asking us.
Q:In case you needed another reason to hate Claire's... I worked there when I was 16. I had been working there for two weeks when I was "licensed" to pierce ears. Two weeks. 16 years old. "Licensed." I had no idea how wrong it all was until long after I quit. I feel very angry about this still.
that’s all i have to say about that.
Just because a piercer uses can order you good jewelry, doesn’t mean they’re a good piercer.
…ow. ow. and again. ow.
I think you all know what’s wrong here. Improperly fitting jewelry is just the start… piercing that doesn’t fit the anatomy and obviously failed piercing in the past are among other offenses.
Safepiercing Inbox Question:
I’m submitting my question because my message is way too long for an ask, and I figured a picture of the piercing in question would help some. So. Hi.
I plan on seeing the guy who pierced my rook tomorrow (and yes, he is an experienced piercer working at a local tattoo/pierce shop whom I trust wholeheartedly), but I figured a second (or, well, first) opinion wouldn’t hurt.
On the “top” of the rook, the obviously visible part of the piercing, a small bump formed. I do know it’s a typical (albeit sad) thing to happen with cartilage piercings and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was because of bad cleaning on my part, but I also wonder if the jewelry I used was part of the problem—I was pierced with a curved barbell. If the bump is from pressure of the piercing (more often than not the ball of the bar pressed down against my ear, right where the bump has grown) would having the piercer switch out the jewelry with a hoop work out better? I’ve had the piercing for exactly eight weeks, the estimated healing time if I’m correct, but the swelling hasn’t gone down like my tragus piercing previously had. (My tragus, same ear, was pierced in late July and by mid September I noticed that the swelling was gone so I assumed the same thing would happen with the rook)
Again, it may very well be a combination of my own cleaning habits and the pressure from the jewelry, but I thought asking wouldn’t hurt.
The first photo is from when I initially had my rook done (for comparison purposes, I suppose), and the second is how it looks now. The bar isn’t short by any means, but with the swelling it is a rather tight fit so it’s another reason why I’m thinking a hoop might be better suited.Any thoughts or answers are much appreciated. I know this is a rather long submission, so if you’d prefer to inbox me a response, that’s cool too. Whatever works. Also, any thoughts on a conch piercing being done with a hoop versus a bar?
- Well, first off that jewelry is way too long for the size of your rook. It looks like maybe a 3/8” or 7/16” long curved barbell to me. Typically 5/16” is a good fit for most new rooks. With excessively long jewelry like that you’re going to have pressure and snagging problems pretty frequently I imagine.
- It’s also hard to tell from that picture but it looks like the bottom hole exits almost on the ridge of the rook itself rather than underneath the fold. If that’s where it’s actually placed the jewelry will naturally add pressure to the tissue. I would guess pressure is one of the main problems since the lump seems to be focused on the front of the piercing. The scar seems to be almost bracing in one direction which makes me think there is outward pressure.
- That kind of bump can also be a sign of allergic reaction. Do you know what grade of material it happens to be, or who the manufacturer is? If it’s a cheap grade of steel rather than F-138 implant grade steel, or F-136 implant grade titanium you might be having a sensitivity or allergic reaction from the jewelry material.
- My first suggestion would definitely be a better fitting piece of jewelry. Try something shorter. You still want a little wiggle room to avoid pinching, but you can downsize the length of your jewelry by at least 2 millimeters. High grade jewelry would also be a smart move. Try something from one of our APP corporate sponsors. Some of the names you can look for are LeRoi, Industrial Strength, Anatometal, and Neometal. You’ll still want a curved barbell. Rings or hoop style jewelry will just stick out and cause even more irritation.
- If your regular piercer can’t seem to help you with the new jewelry you need there’s never any harm in getting a second opinion from another experienced piercer.
- You can also check out these APP informational brochures for troubleshooting and aftercare info.
- Good luck with it, let us know how things work out for you and we’ll do a follow up post.
- Ryan Ouellette, APP outreach
Dear goodness why?!!
A friend of mine posted this to my wall on facebook a few minutes ago and I HAD to post it on here before going to bed.
WHAT’S AWFUL: Everything… EVERY SINGLE THING! And the scissors?! Why are scissors being used to insert a surface anchor… then the lack of gloves, unsterile piercing area, dirty (and wrong) tools being used. This is a nightmare!!
HOW IT CAN BE FIXED: When I see things like this, I feel like there’s no hope. GO TO A PROFESSIONAL!!! How hard is it to save a few bucks and get something safely done?! Geez! If you want it done THAT badly, at least get it done safely! Gosh darn!!
Watch at your own risk. This one made us a little queasy.
(yes, she does actually use scissors)
There are many things to consider, but I’ll touch upon the ones I feel are very important.
1) The cleanliness of the procedure is of the utmost importance. Was it a professional studio? Was the studio clean and well kept? Does the studio use an autoclave (sterilizer) that is…