How to Choose a Body Piercer

Performing a PiercingThere are many bad piercers out these so you need to be extremely cautious when choosing a person to get you pierced. The choice of a studio and a person who is going to perform the procedure is vital in ensuring your safety and complete satisfaction. You should never get pierced unless you are sure that the person knows what they’re doing.

For these reasons, it’s important to take your time and research available piercers before you make your decision. There are some warning signs you should never ignore when choosing a piercer.

Here are some things to pay attention to when choosing a body piercer:

  • Is the studio reliable? Good piercers usually come with reliable studios, so you should always look for a good place to get pierced. While a piercing studio and a piercer as a person are not the same thing, keep in mind that no reliable piercer would want to work in a trashy, unsanitary studio. This is why it’s important to inspect the studio itself before you make your decision. Is the place clean? Does it adhere to all safety and hygiene standards? Does it have an autoclave? These are just some of the things you should consider before making your decision.
  • License. It goes without saying that you should only get pierced by a licensed professional. Always ask to see a business license in a studio and current health board certification.
  • Is the person qualified? It is vital that your piercer is qualified and can perform the procedure properly. One potential problem here is that there are no clear regulations on which qualifications a body piercer should have. Someone might only have one short course or a couple of weeks of training. These piercers are not reliable and you should not choose them. Keep in mind that successful training lasts for years.
  • Is the person knowledgeable? Another thing you should pay attention to is how much your piercer knows about various aspects of the procedure, health and aftercare. You need someone who has enough knowledge in all the aspects of the piercing process, starting from health and safety standards. A good piercer has to know a lot about cross-contamination, infection control and proper sterilization in order to ensure safety during procedure. They should also have some knowledge of anatomy and how to avoid important nerves and other body structures. A piercer should know how to choose proper jewelry based on materials, shape, size, and more. Also, a good piercer should know all about proper aftercare and to explain all steps to the clients to ensure they follow these aftercare instructions.
  • Is the person experienced? You should only get pierced by a person who has rich experience in performing piercings. Theoretical knowledge is not enough. Also, being experienced with certain piercing types is not enough: your piercer has to be experienced in the type of procedure you wish to get. While most professional piercers know how to perform popular piercings (earlobe, nose, eyebrow or navel piercing), if you wish to get something less popular or more complex, it is vital to make sure that your piercer is experienced with the given piercing type. This is particularly important for genital piercings and other highly sensitive piercing types.
  • The portfolio. Before you decide on a piercing artist, ask to see their portfolio. While portfolios are more common for tattoo artists, reliable piercers will have them, too. Piercers take photos of the piercings they perform so you can judge their work. Typically, photos are taken at various stages of the healing process. While many of the photos in the portfolio show newly made piercings, a good piercer will also have examples of healed piercings. This way, you should be able to see how this person’s piercing job looks when it’s healed.
  • Do they use a piercing gun? If a piercer uses a gun, it’s a clear sign they don’t know what they’re doing. While most professional places will not employ anyone who uses a piercing gun as a tool, it’s important to check. In case they use a gun, or even if they mention gun as a possibility to choose from, it’s a clear sign that the person is not a professional. You don’t want to be pierced by someone who uses gun.
  • Can you be comfortable around this person? Perhaps you don’t like a particular piercer without being able to tell why. This is ok. In case you’re getting bad vibes from someone, or if you just don’t feel comfortable around them, it is ok to request someone else. Someone can be a good professional but if you can’t be comfortable around them, you should not be pierced by them. This is particularly important for some more intimate piercings, such as nipple or genital piercings. You need to be relaxed around the person doing the piercing, so this is an important factor to consider.

10 Smart Questions to Ask Your Body Piercer

Piercer in StudioWhile there are many stupid, unnecessary questions people ask their piercers, there are also some good questions you should be asking. These questions will help you make a decision about a piercing and allow you to inspect a piercing studio for safety and professionalism.

What to Ask?

Many people understand that researching a studio or a piercer is an important step you need to take before you get your piercing. However, not everybody knows what exactly to ask, or when.

Some people are very shy when it comes to asking questions, or they don’t remember what they want to ask. If this is a problem with you, keep in mind that piercers are there for you and it’s their job to answer all of your questions. In case someone seems too busy to answer your questions properly or to help you make a decision, simply go somewhere else. You deserve to be informed about every aspect of the piercing process.

In case you are one of those people who can think of great questions but forget them all when they enter a piercing studio, the best way to go is to simply write your questions down. There’s nothing wrong about it. Simply think of all the things you wish to ask your piercer and take this list with you to the piercing studio. This way, you will never forget to ask the essential questions.

Another problem may be that you don’t really know what to ask, or you ask questions that may not be the most important, but forget the vital ones. In this case, it’s important to keep in mind that the safety should always come first. Meaning, you need to be informed about all the aspects of the piercing process that will ensure your health and safety. It’s also vital to ask these questions before you get pierced and to also be informed about proper aftercare. This is the only way to ensure safety and not to endanger your health.

Essential Questions to Ask

Here is the list of top 10 questions to ask your body piercer:

1. How long have you been piercing? This is a vital question to ask. You need someone who knows what they’re doing.

2. Are you experienced with the type of piercing I am interested in? (Very important for all sorts of rare piercings or complicated piercings, such as male and female genital piercings).

3. What are the measures you take to ensure client safety and reduce health risks? This is one of the most important questions to ask. Your piercer should show you the studio and go through all the safety measures they take to minimize any health risk for customers.

4. Does the studio have an autoclave? All piercing studios have to have autoclave. They should also show you the latest test results proving that the autoclave is working properly.

5. How much do you charge for piercing? Ask them to give you the exact quote for the type of piercing you request. Ask if initial jewelry is included in the price or not. Also, don’t forget to ask if jewelry change is done free of charge. Sometimes, you will need to change your jewelry when the first swelling is gone, and it’s best to be done by a professional.

6. Can you describe the procedure for me? Ask for details. Your piercer should guide you through every step of the piercing process.

7. What kind of body jewelry do you use? This question should answer several concerns. Ask them about the exact materials they use. If they offer gold jewelry, ask them if their jewelry contains nickel.

8. What is the aftercare routine for this type of piercing? Ask your piercer to guide you through the aftercare process and to describe the routine you need to follow.

9. What kind of cleaning products you recommend? Ask your piercer to tell you the type of cleaner you need to use. This should not be a brand recommendation; your piercer should tell you the type of solution best suited for your piercing. Usually, it’s a saline solution, but you need to make sure. Also, ask what kind of cleaning solutions are definitely not recommended.

10. How long is the healing time? Keep in mind that healing time is individual and will depend on your lifestyle. However, your piercer should be willing to give you an estimate.

How to tell if a Piercing Studio is Safe

Piercing Studio SafetyOnce you have decided what kind of a piercing you want, it’s time to choose your piercer. It also means choosing a particular studio. You should never get pierced outside a studio, even by a professional. Studios are equipped with all the tools, furniture and devices needed to perform piercing successfully, and it just can’t be replicated in home conditions. Furthermore, piercing studios have to adhere to strict hygiene requirements. A reliable piercing studio is clean and all the equipment in it is properly sterilized. Again, this is not something you can achieve at home.

In order to pick the best studio to be pierced in, you need to know how to tell a reliable place from a shady one. A good studio doesn’t have to be big, but it has to follow all safety regulations to ensure client safety.

Inside a Studio

A typical piercing studio should have at least one bed reserved for performing piercings and consultations. Many studios have a bed located in the back, behind a piercing shop. This is not problematic, but it’s important that the area is private and separated from the rest of the shop. Larger studios have more than one bed, each in a separated, private area.

The area made for performing piercings and consultations should be perfectly clean, sterilized and well-organized. It should also offer privacy to customers. This is a place where you should be able to talk to your piercer, ask questions and relax before and after a procedure. In case a studio doesn’t offer a separated, private space for procedures it’s a sign that it’s not a good studio. It’s a sign that people there don’t care about your health and safety.

Apart from important furniture, such as the examination bed, a good piercing studio will also have all the needed equipment and tools for performing successful procedures.

A typical studio will also have an autoclave unit that is used for sterilization. Autoclave is a powerful sterilizator and the only thing that should be used to sterilize equipment and jewelry. Alcohol and other similar things are just not good enough. Never agree to be pierced in a studio that doesn’t have an autoclave.

Another important room inside a piercing studio is a sterilization room. It should be separated from the examination room. This is where all the tools, equipment and jewelry is sterilized in the autoclave.

Hygiene and Sterilization

It goes without saying that a piercing studio should always be clean and well-maintained. Piercing business is not a joke. There are numerous health concerns and it’s important that a piercing studio follows all the present standards of hygiene, sterilization and cleanness.

After sterilization in an autoclave, all equipment should be placed in special, sterile pouches. Piercers should not just keep the equipment around. Hygiene in a piercing studio goes beyond mere swapping the floor and removing dust. A piercing studio has to adhere to strict rules of sterilization and hygiene to ensure safety for all the customers.

These standards apply to piercers, too. All piercers have to wash their hands and sanitize them before work. In addition to this, piercers have to wear surgical gloves during procedures and consultation. In case of a more complex procedure surgical gloves have to be changed during work to ensure safety.

How to Check?

As a client, you have all right to know if a studio follows all standards and safety regulations. Don’t be afraid to ask a piercer to show you the examination room, autoclave and equipment. It is their job to present you with the evidence of highest hygiene standards and sterilization. Stay away from any studio that tries to hide its results or fails to produce a proof of hygiene standards.

Ask to see the examination room. Take a look around it. Is it clean? Are all tools in their sterile pouches? What about the needles? All needles should be packed and sealed until use. As a rule, a needle package should be opened in front of you before the procedure. A piercer should show you a packed needle and you should see it being opened. Never allow a piercer to use an already opened needle, even if they claim it’s “sterilized”. Once used, needles have to be disposed in special containers marked “biohazard”.

Also, don’t forget to ask about their autoclave. A proper autoclave has to be able to kill even the most persistent microorganisms, such as dangerous bacteria and viruses. Studios are required to perform regular checks and to go through inspections. If an autoclave is working properly, they are given a report that attests that such autoclave is safe to be used. When you go to inspect a piercing studio, don’t forget to ask them about the report. The staff should be willing to show you the most recent result proving that their autoclave is safe and working properly.

These are the basic measures you need to take before you decide on a piercing studio. Too many times, people are attracted by low prices so they don’t think much about consequences. Remember: you get what you pay for, so it’s advisable to spend a few bucks more to get pierced in a professional, safe and sanitized piercing studio.

How Not to Regret a Piercing

Pierced girlPiercings are fun, exciting and great in so many ways. To make sure that your piercing experience a positive one, it’s important to follow certain guidelines. Let’s face it: there are many things that can go wrong, from unprofessional piercer to inadequate aftercare. Cheap jewelry made of dubious materials can also ruin your experience, not to mention endanger your health.

Also, there are some other things to keep in mind. Even a professionally-done piercing can turn into a mistake if you regret it. Contrary to some opinions, people usually don’t regret a piercing simply because they had it done; after all, in most of the cases, you can easily retire a piercing if you don’t want to have it anymore. So, simply having a piercing done is usually not a cause of concern and regret.

What people regret is not making a proper decision on what they actually want from their piercing. They never took the time to properly figure out where they really want to have a piercing or what kind of a jewelry would suit them. None of these mistakes are dangerous (not in a way improper piercing procedure or dangerous materials are dangerous, anyway), but they can sure make you regret a piercing and diminish your enjoyment.

To prevent this problem, it’s important to think about what you truly want from your piercing and to take some time to research it. Inform yourself about the type of the piercing you are interested in, take time to find a reliable piercer and think about the type of jewelry you want to wear.

Things to Take Into Account

Here is a list of things you should consider when getting a new piercing:

What type of the piercing do you want? It usually translates to: which body part do you want to pierce? There are some common ones (ears, navel, eyebrow, tongue, etc.) and more “exotic” ones. There are even very rare piercing types you can get at various parts of your body (such as knuckle piercing or uvula piercing). Keep in mind: originality when it comes to body part to pierce is not always the best way to go. There is a good reason why certain piercing types are more common than the others. Certain areas of the body and certain piercing types are less prone to rejection, migration, infection and other problems.

Find a reliable piercer. This should go without saying. It becomes even more vital if you want to have a rare piercing. Any good piercer can perform a successful belly piercing, but not everyone is experienced with rare piercing types, such as Fourchette piercing and many others. If you wish to get one of these piercings, make sure to find a piercing who is experienced in that exact piercing type.

Before you go to get your piercing, make sure that your anatomy allows you to have this particular piercing. Certain piercings are dependent on the anatomy so not all people can have them.

Follow aftercare instructions. This can’t be stressed enough. It’s vital that you take a good care of your healing piercing so you should follow all of the aftercare instructions carefully.

Take time to observe your piercing so you can note any potential changes, such as redness, inflammation and other warning signs. If you react promptly, there is a good chance that you can treat the problem and avoid further complications.

Choose your jewelry wisely. Body jewelry has to be made of material that will not cause allergies and other problems. This is why it’s vital to get jewelry at a reliable store. Jewelry used for piercing has to be made of body-friendly material that will not hurt you. Never go for cheap jewelry you can get at a dollar store or at a mall – it can cause more harm than good.

Think about your style and what kind of jewelry you like to wear. Experiment until you find the ones that might suit you perfectly. Just make sure to wait until the piercing is fully healed before you attempt to change it.

Follow these simple tips and chances are that you will never regret your piercing.

10 Dumb Questions to ask your Body Piercer

You might have heard the saying, ‘There are no dumb questions’, Well, it is time to revisit that statement and come to terms with the fact that there actually are questions which can be defined in no better way than dumb. If piercing is painful for the person getting a piercing, then what is it that pains the Professional Piercer? No points for guessing, it is obviously Dumb Questions that people ask before, during and after the procedure of body piercing. Asking questions is a very good habit and should be encouraged in order to get proper information, especially about the aftercare. However, asking dumb questions is kind of well dumb!, and more than you actually learning something useful, it can really just piss off the piercer in whose hands lies your ‘flesh’ to be pierced. Continue reading