How to Choose Your Next Piercing?

How to Choose Your Next Piercing?Are you a piercing enthusiast? Or maybe you are preparing to get your first piercing? Regardless of your experience with piercings in the past, getting a new piercing is always a big decision. It is important to know what you want and where you want your next piercing to be even before you book and appointment with your piercer. While sudden decisions work in some cases piercings do require a certain commitment so it’s always best to think a bit about where you want to have your next piercing done.

For some people, this decision is easy. They have a list of body parts they wish to pierce and they always know where their next piercing is going to be. But what if you are not sure? There are many people who know that they want a piercing, but don’t know how to decide about the location.

Here are some quick tips of how to choose your next piercing:

Think about It

The first thing you can do to ensure you are satisfied with your decision is to think about it. Never rush things out. While it may seem great to be spontaneous and just walk into a piercing studio, this is not the best way to go. Nor is simply deciding to get pierced on the spot while accompanying your friend to the piercing studio. While these decisions don’t always backfire it is highly advisable to think about where you actually want to have a piercing done.

Consult Your Piercer

It is always advisable to consult your piercer before you make a decision. Speaking of which, you need to research potential piercers and piercing studios in the area if you already don’t have a reliable piercer. Finding a professional, knowledgeable piercer and a good studio is a must.

Once you have your piercer, book a consultation. Keep in mind that many piercings depend on the anatomy. Many piercings and placements can be done only if you are anatomically suited for them. It is therefore important to make sure that you are anatomically built to accommodate a certain piercing. Don’t have your heart set on a piercing only to find out on the day of the procedure that you are not suited for it.

A consultation with your piercer will help you not only make sure that you can accommodate a piercing but will also provide alternatives in the case that you can’t get a piercing you originally wanted. Your piercer can give you some great ideas on placements and piercing types that may look great on you, so make sure to listen.

Know Your No-Nos

Speaking of which, you need to know if some piercings are a sure no-no. You may want to get them, but there may be many reasons why you cannot have a specific piercing. One of the reason is mentioned above. You may simply not built to accommodate a specific piercing so it cannot be performed on you. Another reason may be medical. There may be certain reasons why it is dangerous to get a specific piercing or any piercing at all. This is why it is important to also consult your doctor before any piercing decisions.

Finally, keep in mind that sometimes outside factors can influence your decision. For example, you may be forbidden to wear body jewelry at work or to have visible piercings on your face. This is another factor that will influence your decision.

Make a List

When in doubt, make a list. This is the best way to sort things out. Maybe you don’t know what piercing you want to get next, but you might have a list of piercings you absolutely don’t like. Research your options. Look at pictures of various piercings and try to imagine yourself having one.

Making a list will also help you sort out your priorities. You may discover that you prefer some piercings over the others or that you really like one style over the other. All of these things are helpful when it comes to deciding which piercing to get next.

Ask Your Friends

Once you have a list of piercings you wish to get, you may ask your friends for their opinion. Keep in mind that this should not be the first thing to do – it is important to consult your piercer and to make a list of piercings on your own. It is vital to decide about your new piercing on your own.

If you are still undecided after all these steps, however, you may consult your friends and other people. Ask about their opinion and see what they say. Again, this should be your decision, but your friends may offer some helpful advice that will make the decision easier.

Smelly Piercings: How to Prevent this Problem?

Ear PiercingPeople generally don’t like to talk about it, but it’s a fact that piercings sometimes smell bad. This can happen to piercings at any stage of healing, though it’s sometimes more alarming than in other situations.

What is characteristic for smelly piercings is that the smell can occur even with healed piercings. In fact, fully healed piercings are sometimes the most affected by this problem.

Keep in mind that this problem can be easily solvable, so if this happens to you, don’t despair! The important thing is to make sure that the smell is not a symptom of another problem.

Why Are Some Piercings Smelly?

Piercings can become smelly at any time, so this isn’t something you can predict. The good news is that the smell is usually not the sign of a bigger problem, but it is important to make sure that there is no infection or another issue producing the smell. Keep in mind that infections and other problems are most common with new piercings that are still in healing. If your piercing develops an infection and if some pus forms inside the piercing, it will smell.

The smell that is a sign of infection will typically be followed by other signs, such as swelling, pain, discomfort, redness and discharge. In fact, the discharge is that causes the bad smell. If you notice these signs make sure to consult your doctor immediately. This is a sign of a developed infection, which means that it’s been there for a while. This is why it’s important to monitor your piercing regularly to notice any changes as soon as they appear. If you miss the signs the infection will develop further, which can cause numerous problems. In some extreme cases piercing infections can affect the whole body, so this is something you need to prevent at all costs. Therefore, if you notice any warning signs, make sure to seek medical help immediately.

However, keep in mind that smelly piercings can occur even if there is no other problem around. No infection and no underlying issues, and still you get a smelly piercing. What is going on?

Keep in mind that your body constantly secretes a substance known as sebum. This substance is secreted by sebaceous glands located in the skin. Sebum can easily be recognized as an oily substance. It is not a harmful thing – it is actually there to lubricate and protect the skin. However, once sebum is mixed with dirt, dead skin cells or bacteria, it can turn smelly pretty quickly. Since piercings are wounds in the skin and even healed ones have dead cells and dirt around them, it is clear how piercings can become smelly in no time.

You will notice sebum mixed with dead cells and dirt as an oily, soft discharge. It may be stinky and smell like cheese. In some extreme cases, the discharge will be almost solid. This is what causes your piercings to become smelly.

How to Get Rid of the Smell?

While it is impossible to prevent sebaceous glands from creating sebum, there are some things you can do to prevent its accumulation and bad smell:

  • Clean your jewelry. It is important to keep your jewelry clean at all times. Dirt, bacteria and dead skin cells can easily accumulate around your jewelry, causing problems. In order to prevent sebum to accumulate, make sure to clean your jewelry regularly.
  • Wash your piercing areas carefully. Make sure to always clean your piercings during showers. Some people forget about cleaning when the piercing is healed, but keep in mind that aftercare is not the only time when you should take care of your piercings. Piercings are best to be cleaned without chemical products, so a wet cloth will do. You may also use salt soaks to clean your piercings.
  • Do not use harsh chemicals around your piercings. Harsh soaps, shampoos and other products can easily accumulate around your piercings, causing irritation and other problems. This can lead to further problems, including smelly piercings. Make sure to always use only gentle products around your piercing and to clean the piercing area fully with water to remove any chemicals from your skin.
  • Take your jewelry off during showers and swimming. If your piercing is healed, consider taking your jewelry off during showers. This will make leaning easier and prevent the accumulation of soap and other products on the jewelry. You may also do this during swimming and other activities involving water, but make sure not to leave your piercing without jewelry for too long or else the hole will start to close. You may use temporary jewelry or piercing retainers for these activities.
  • Use a drop of lavender oil on your piercing. After your piercing is clean and dry, apply a drop of lavender oil to the piercing. This should prevent the smell. Alternatively, you may use a drop of tea tree oil for the same purpose.

The Most Popular Facial Piercings

Facial PiercingsFacial piercings are among the most popular piercings in the world. Generally, it depends on the piercing in question: some are more popular than the others. When deciding on a piercing it’s always useful to know about the most common piercing types, because they usually come with many different jewelry styles you can use. Not to mention that popular piercing types mean that many piercers are trained to perform them. Therefore, it will be easy to find a piercer to perform a piercing for you.

Here is the list of the most common facial piercings, not counting oral piercings:

Eyebrow

Eyebrow piercing is not only one of the most popular piercings but also the most common surface piercing in the world. There are several variants of this piercing, and some are more popular than the others.

By far, the most common variant of the eyebrow piercing is vertical. It is done vertically through the ridge of the eyebrow. If you wish to get this piercing, rest assured that there will be many piercers who can perform it without a problem.

Other placements and orientations are also possible, such as the horizontal eyebrow piercing or anti-eyebrow piercing. These are somewhat rarer placements, though most piercers will know how to perform them. Keep in mind that eyebrow piercings are generally not complex so most piercers will have at least some experience with them.

Nostril

Nostril piercing is another super-popular piercing. It is relatively discreet and uses small jewelry pieces, so it’s loved by many people who want to have a piercing but don’t want it to be huge or distracting.

Nostril piercings are not difficult to do, so all professional piercers know how to perform them without a problem. When choosing a nostril piercing, you will need to choose the nostril you wish to pierce (left or right). You will typically be able to choose the placement (how high or low on the nostril the piercing will be). However, keep in mind that your piercer will determine the best spot to get pierced and in some cases choosing a different placement may be uncomfortable.

Labret

Labret piercings are the most popular of all lip piercings. In fact, they are so popular that many people call any lip piercing “labret”. However, keep in mind that labret is a lip piercing with a special placement and choosing any other placement will create a different lip piercing and not labret.

Labret piercings are performed through the lower lip, typically in the center of the lower lip. As such, it sits under the lip and above the chin. This is a standard labret piercing. Other placements, such as piercing done on the upper lip, on the philtrum, on the sides, etc. create different lip piercing with their own unique names: Madonna, Monroe, Jestrum, etc.

If you wish to go with the most popular choice, choose labret piercing on the bottom lip. However, keep in mind that professional piercers know how to perform many different lip piercings so if labret placements is not what you want, you can always opt for a different lip piercing type.

Septum

Septum piercing is a nose piercing done in the middle of the nose, through the nasal septum. Some people may think it’s not such a popular piercing. While it’s true that septum piercing is less common than other piercings on this list, it’s important to note that it is still among the most popular facial piercings.

Therefore, if you wish to get a septum piercing you need to know you’re in a good company. Also, since this is a popular piercing, it means there are many piercers who are experienced in performing this piercing so you don’t have to worry about that.

Stylish Body Jewelry Tricks

Stylish Body JewelryStylish body jewelry is stunning and very attractive. It’s one of the best ways to enhance the look of your piercings and to make them aesthetically perfect.

If you want to attract attention or just to look your best, richly ornamented, beautiful piercing jewelry is a must for your piercings.

Obviously, a lot will depend on the circumstances, such as the occasion, your personal style and, above all, the type of piercing. Some piercings are better than the others when it comes to displaying richly ornamented jewelry. A lot will depend on the body part: if you have a facial or ear piercing, you can enhance it by wearing big, gorgeous jewelry pieces. If the piercing is somewhat hidden the effect might be lost.

Stylish Body Jewelry and Your Style

A lot will depend on your personal style. For example, certain jewelry pieces work great with stylish clothes. In these circumstances, you might want to wear very beautiful and luxurious jewelry. This is particularly important for special circumstances when you wish to look your best. Gold and diamond jewelry is perfect for these occasions and it will enhance your look. These jewelry pieces are very luxurious so you will sure attract a lot of attention.

Navel jewelry is particularly great when it comes to designs and ornaments. The best thing about these jewelry pieces is that you don’t have to wear them with stylish clothes – they can be a great choice for more informal occasions, such as a party or even a relaxing day at the beach. There are so many jewelry choices that will enhance your look, and a lot will depend on the occasion.

For example, elegant and stylish clothes (such as evening dresses) ask for luxurious jewelry pieces, especially if it’s a special occasion in question. More relaxed clothes or an informal party ask for more vibrant jewelry pieces. However, this is only a suggestion. Only you can tell what kind of body jewelry you prefer for any given occasion.

Stylish Body Jewelry for Genital Piercings

While wearing gorgeous body jewelry is a big plus, it might be wasted for piercings that are hidden. That is, if you don’t have someone special who can be allowed to see your naked body and all hidden piercings!

That being said, intimate piercings are typically not a good candidate for richly ornamented body jewelry, mainly because these body parts are very sensitive and gentle. It is typically required to wear plain and smooth body jewelry for all your genital piercings. However, you might want to surprise your partner from time to time and wear gorgeous and stunning body jewelry. In these special occasions it might be ok to wear richly ornamented jewelry in your genital piercings and other sensitive piercings (such as nipple piercings), as long as you don’t wear these heavy and big jewelry pieces on a daily basis. Other than that, the only limit is your imagination!

Attractive Jewelry for Men

What about men, you may ask. Most of the richly ornamented body jewelry pieces are designed for women. These pieces are made to be worn with dresses and other stylish clothing. Does it mean men cannot wear big and luxurious body jewelry?

Nothing can be further from the truth. Men can, and do, wear attractive body jewelry. First of all, there are generally no jewelry for men or women specifically: any person can wear any jewelry piece that they like. In other words, there is no reason why only ladies can enjoy those rich and stylish jewelry pieces.

However, if you are guy looking for something less “flashy” and ornamented but still very attractive, there are many choices. There are many stylish and luxurious body jewelry pieces men can use to enhance their piercings. You should know your style and choose the best jewelry pieces for your needs. Also, don’t forget the occasion and clothing so you can find jewelry pieces that will perfectly match your look.

Piercing Problems: Hypergranulations

HypergranulationOne of the most common problems you may have with your piercing is a red bump forming around the piercing. These bumps, called hypergranulations, can form even if you take a good care of your piercing, but are more common with neglected piercings.

One more reason to perform adequate aftercare and to take a good care of your piercings!

Hypergranulations form around the piercings in healing, though it is not unheard of to have one formed around an old piercing, particularly if it’s infected. That being said, most of hypergranulation bumps form around piercings in healing, which is one of the reasons to always take a great care of your new piercing and to observe it closely to notice any problems.

Keep in mind that a piercing is essentially a wound in healing. Hypergranulations form around wounds, and piercings are no different. These growths can form quickly around a piercing in healing, particularly if the piercing is subjected to significant level of moisture. Another common problem that can lead to development of bumps is infection – infected piercings often produce hypergranulations. Finally, keep in mind that trauma and other injuries to your piercing can lead to the development of hypergranulation tissue.

There are two ways in which hypergranulations manifest around a piercing. The first one is a reddish bump at one side of the piercing. It is typically formed on the side, but it can appear almost anywhere around a piercing. Many of those bumps look puffy and like they are filled with fluid.

The other common form is a red, puffy tissue around the piercing. These hypergranulations without a bump are more common around surface piercings, but it’s not a rule.

Hypergranulations always have a raised appearance and tend to be reddish in color. Often times, they resemble keloid scars, but are less extreme and usually much easier to remove. Keep in mind that a hypergranulation is always localized around the piercing and doesn’t spread much in other directions. It is an aesthetic problem but easier to control than keloid scars and it’s also less problematic for the health. That being said, some hypergranulations can get out of control so it’s always important to seek medical attention in the case of hypergranulations. While some cases can be successfully treated at home, sometimes there is nothing you can do. If the hypergranulations persist or if they grow and cause further problems, it is vital to seek medical attention.

As with many other problems with piercings, it is best to treat hypergranulations as soon as they start forming. This gives you the best chance to treat them completely and without much hassle.

How to Treat Hypergranulations

Oftentimes, hypergranulations form as a result of the pressure jewelry makes on the piercing. This is why changing jewelry to a more comfortable piece is typically the first thing to do if you wish to treat and stop hypergranulations. In this case, you may need to change jewelry for a smoother, lighter or longer jewelry piece. It is best to switch to jewelry made of hypo-allergenic material such as titanium or BioPlast.

If this happens during the initial stages of healing, make sure to consult your piercer to change the jewelry for you. Never attempt to change jewelry by yourself unless the piercing is healed or at least pass the initial stages of healing.

In order to get rid of the hypergranulation tissue, you need to use sea salt solution soaks several times per day. Alternatively, you may use specialized aftercare sprays made for piercings in healing, provided that they are not too harsh. The gentlest way to go is to make your own saline solution. If your piercing is in healing, use the solution you’d apply anyway as part of your cleaning regime. This time, however, make sure to add one or two more saline soaks per day than your usual amount.

Other than saline soaks, it is important to keep your piercing dry. Keep in mind that moisture makes the matters worse, so your piercing should be kept clean and dry.

You should see an improvement within a few days to a week. While he hypergranulation might not disappear completely, it should be smaller and your piercing should show signs of improvement. In case this doesn’t happen even after a week, you should seek advice from your doctor.

Do not wait – hypergranulations can turn into infections or scars, and you want to avoid that at all costs.

Additional Info and Tips

  • Do not mistake hypergranulations for other problems, such as piercing infections, acne or keloid scars. If in doubt, consult your piercer. However, keep in mind that it’s vital to talk to your doctor to get true medical advice and help.
  • Typically, hypergranulations form around navel and nostril piercings, but can develop anywhere. Do not assume that you are risk-free if you get a piercing that is not commonly known for causing hypergranulations.
  • To improve healing, make sure to get plenty of rest. Eat healthy meals and drink plenty of water.
  • Do not disturb your piercing. Make sure it doesn’t get caught on clothes or during your sleep. Never touch your piercing and don’t twist or turn the jewelry.
  • If you cannot treat a hypergranulation or if it gets worse, it is advisable to consult your doctor.
  • One of the best ways to prevent hypergranulations is to perform adequate aftercare for your piercing in healing and to observe your piercing regularly to notice any changes.
  • In some extreme cases, hypergranulations cannot be treated while the jewelry is still in and while the piercing exists. In this case, you will need to retire your piercing. However, if it’s done properly you may be able to get re-pierced when the tissue is rested and healed.

Ashley Piercing

AshleyAshley piercing is a lip piercing that is a variation of a more common vertical labret piercing. That being said, since vertical labret is also a relatively rare piercing, Ashley is considered a lesser common type of lip piercing. That being said, this is a very effective piercing type so there is no reason not to get one if you like how it looks.

Piercing and Placement

Technically speaking, Ashley piercing can be seen as an “inverse vertical labret”. With Ashley piercing, one of the ends of the jewelry (one bead) sits on top of the lower lip, while the other end of the piercing is inside the mouth. This is a variation of vertical labret piercing. With typical vertical labret, both ends of the jewelry sit outside of the body: one in the middle of lower lip and the other under the lower lip.

In this sense, Ashley is both a facial and oral piercing, similar to other lip piercings in which one end of the jewelry sits outside of the body and the other one is inside of the mouth.

Ashley is very effective and attractive because there is only one bead visible on the lip, while the other one is hidden.

Since the needle goes through relatively much tissue, Ashley piercings tend to be painful, but it’s manageable. However, they are definitely considered one of the more painful lip piercings, so keep that in mind if you wish to have this piercing done.

You can expect some swelling after the procedure, but it should go away in the following days. Just perform aftercare as instructed by your piercer and you should be fine. That being said, if the swelling persists and you encounter other problems, it would be for the best to consult your piercer.

Jewelry

Typical jewelry for Ashley piercing is a curved barbell. This one seems to work the best and provides the best comfort. It is also a very safe choice in terms of piercing health and preventing infections and other problems.

Another common jewelry type for this piercing is a Captive Bead Ring. If this jewelry type is used, the bead should be positioned to sit comfortably in the middle of the lower lip.

However, some other jewelry types are also possible, such as straight barbells or labrets (labret studs). When choosing jewelry for Ashley piercing, it is important to make sure that the jewelry is long enough to accommodate the piercing.

Straight barbells might be more comfortable if you choose to have your Ashley piercing off-center (and to the side). Some people choose to wear these side Ashley piercings in pairs, so it’s a very attractive choice.

Because of the swelling, some piercers recommend longer initial jewelry that has to be changed after the first swelling is gone. In this case, make sure that your piercer is the one to change your jewelry – never attempt to change initial jewelry on your own!

Additional Info and Tips

Ashley piercing is also known as Inverse Vertical Labret, so this might be the name your piercer will use.

The healing time for Ashley piercing is similar to that of the vertical labret: 8 to 10 weeks.

Ashley piercing is typically done at 16 gauge or 14 gauge, though there are some cases of piercings done at a bit larger gauges. Some piercers even use an 18 gauge needle for this piercing, but this might be too small to be comfortable for most users.

Ashley piercings tend to close up fast when the jewelry is removed. They will start to shrink after 15-20 minutes if you take your jewelry off, so keep that in mind.

Checking Safety and Sterilization in a Piercing Studio

Safety and Sterilization in a Piercing StudioIn order for a piercing studio to be safe, it has to follow all the procedure requirements. This is particularly true for hygiene standards and sterilization. All the reliable studios will follow these procedures but sometimes it’s difficult to tell a good studio from the bad.

The main issue is that there are so many things that go behind the scenes. As a client, you will not be able to witness all the safety and sterilization measures in a studio. That being said, keep in mind that it’s your right to know that a studio is safe, and that you can request to see results of certain tests.

Checking Safety and Sterilization in a Piercing Studio: How To

It is important to ask and observe. Visit a studio and see how clean it is. Ask questions. Note how the staff behaves. During the procedure, observe how tools and other equipment is handled. Here are some important things to note when judging safety and sterilization in a piercing studio:

Cleanliness

The first thing you need to note is the state of cleanliness in the studio. It can be seen right at the door, even before you enter the piercing room. Make sure that the studio is clean and well-maintained. Clean, dust-free floors, chairs and counters. This is often a very telling thing about the hygiene in the whole studio, particularly the piercing room.

The room where procedures are performed should be extra clean. Pay attention to the state of the floors and any furniture in the room. Again, while it is not enough that the room is clean, it is an indicator about hygiene. That being said, there is more to safety and sterilization than just clean furniture, but it’s a huge red flag if the piercing room is messy.

Also, it is important that the room used for piercing procedures has adequate containers to dispose used needles, gloves and other equipment. Make sure that your piercer follows these procedures. If you notice that they toss used tools and needles around, it’s a bad sign.

Autoclave

Make sure that your chosen studio has an autoclave. It is an absolute must and you should never agree to get pierced at a place that doesn’t have an autoclave. Autoclave has to be used to properly sterilize all the instruments and tools in the studio.

That being said, having an autoclave is not enough. It has to be properly checked and inspected regularly. You should always request to see the spore test results at your chosen studio. All studios should have the spore test performed by an independent inspector. This is the only way to ensure that the sterilization process is complete.

Sterilization Pouches

All tools and equipment should be stored in special pouches after sterilization. There is no use in using autoclave if the sterilized equipment is not kept clean afterwards. To ensure safety, it is vital that everything sterilized in the autoclave is kept in special pouches or another type of a sealed packaging.

You should never allowed to be pierced by a person handling unsterilized equipment. The only way to know it’s safe is to see how the piercer handles the equipment (it has to be unpackaged in front of you).

Gloves

It is vital that your piercer wears sterile gloves throughout the procedure. Never allowed to be pierced if the person is not wearing gloves. The gloves should be new and unpacked in front of you. The piercer should not just use gloves that were used for another client before.

Keep in mind, however, that one pair of gloves will probably not be enough for the whole procedure. In other words, your piercer will likely have to change several pairs of gloves to perform a single piercing. Typically, one pair of gloves is used for preparation and marking while the new one is used to perform the actual piercing. In some cases, several pairs of gloves have to be used for a single piercing, particularly in the case of more complex piercings or if there is a bleeding.

Also, it is important that your piercer wears gloves for things like jewelry changing and any consultation work. Just because you are not getting pierced at the moment doesn’t mean that your piercer should not have the gloves on!

New Piercing Needles

The needle used to pierce you has to be new and come in a sealed packaging. This is an absolute must. For the obvious reasons, you should never allowed to be pierced with a needle that’s already been used on someone else. You should not even allow to be pierced with the same needle used to pierce you (in case something has to be repeated).

It is important to make sure that your piercer takes a new, sealed needle. The needle should be unpacked in front of you and used immediately. This is the only way to ensure safety. Make sure that your chosen piercer follows all of the needed safety procedures.

Jewelry Settings: Prong and Bezel

14K Gold 6 Prong Round Gem Set Fixed Ring

14K Gold 6 Prong Round Gem Set Fixed Ring

There are many different ways to secure the gem to the jewelry. The most basic ways is to simply glue the gem to the jewelry. Needless to say, this is a very bad method, but it’s used surprisingly often, especially to produce body piercing jewelry.

You should always avoid this type of jewelry and choose jewelry with a more secure way to hold the gems. This is achieved through various settings made on the jewelry with the purpose to hold the stones. The most popular of these are prong and bezel settings.

Prong Setting

Prong setting is the most popular of all jewelry settings used to secure the stone to the ring. Prongs are small metal tines made in on ring. The stone is put under the prongs and prongs are places on the ring to secure it in place. This type of setting is often referred to as “claw-shaped” because the prongs resemble claws holding decoration in place.

There are many different types of prong settings, mainly depending on the number of prongs used to secure the gem. Some prong settings use only one prong, though it’s typically more: 3, 4 and 6 prongs are the most common. Some jewelry pieces use even more, such as 8 prongs to secure the stone.

The prong setting makes what is call a head of the jewelry. The head can be made from the same material as the rest of the jewelry piece or made from another material, often a precious one, such as gold. This is why you’ll find description of jewelry where the body of the jewelry (typically a ring) is made of one metal while the setting is made of another.

Prongs can be designed in different ways, and it often depends on the gem’s size, shape and design. Some of the most common shapes of heads used for setting are round, oval, pear, emerald cut, marquise cut, trillian cut and princess cut. When reading a jewelry description, there will typically be a description of the cut used on the stone.

Prong setting is very beautiful and stylish, but it’s vital to check your jewelry regularly to ensure there are no loose prongs on your jewelry piece. Prongs sometimes get worn out after prolonged use so it’s important to check them out to ensure they are still tight enough to hold the gem securely in place.

On the other hand, this setting is very popular because it allows the gem or stone to be seen more than in some other setting types. There is no much metal surrounding the gem so more light can pass through the gem, which makes it more sparkly.

Bezel Setting

Bezel setting is a specially designed part of the ring made to accommodate a gem or other decoration. It is wider and thicker than the rest of the ring. Bezel setting is typically located on the upper and outsider side of the ring.

When it comes to body jewelry, bezel setting can be positioned in two different ways, vertically or horizontally, in order to accommodate two different piercing types (vertical and horizontal piercings).

Bezel setting is made in such a way to hold the gem tightly and a specially designed lip encircles and overlaps the stone to hold it in place. This way, the gem is secured more than being simply glued to the surface of the jewelry (which is often done with poorly made, cheap jewelry pieces).

A bezel setting can be full (to completely surround the gem) or partial (to leave the sides open). The full bezel is more secure but partial allows more of the gem to be seen. One great thing about bezel setting is that it’s more secure than the prong setting. It gives a good protection to the gem so it’s a good choice for those with an active lifestyle or for piercings where you expect clothes to rub on the jewelry a lot.

Surface Piercing Aftercare

oberflaechenpiercingAs you probably know, aftercare can make or break your piercing. What does it mean? It means that a lot depends on proper aftercare and how much attention you give to your new piercing. Healing is a sensitive time for all piercings and you need to take a special care in order to ensure that your new piercing heals properly and without problems.

This is why all reliable studios will provide extensive information on aftercare and this is why your piercer will instruct you how to perform aftercare for your new piercing so it can heal without infections and other problems.

While aftercare is always important, it is particularly crucial for surface piercings. Here are some reasons why:

Surface Piercings are More Sensitive

Keep in mind that surface piercings are, by their nature, more sensitive and prone to problems such as migration, rejection and other issues. While these problems can occur with regular (non-surface) piercings, it is important to remember that surface piercings are more vulnerable. This is not a general rule (indeed, some regular piercings are very sensitive), but it’s something you need to keep in mind.

Another major issue is the placement. Many surface piercings are located at areas that are covered by clothes or that get touched a lot, such as back, neck, fingers, finger web, chest, legs, and more. These placements make surface piercings even more vulnerable.

Also, surface piercings are not permanent: sooner or later they will need to be retired. This is one major difference compared to regular piercings. While some regular piercings need to be retired at some point, this is a rule for surface piercings. Appropriate aftercare can ensure that your surface piercing lasts longer.

For all these reasons, it is important to perform adequate aftercare. With good aftercare, your surface piercing will have more chances to stay healthy and to last you longer. This is why aftercare becomes particularly important in the case of surface piercings.

Surface Piercing Aftercare Tips

Luckily, there are some important aftercare tips you can follow to make your surface piercing as healthy and long-lasting as they can be. Keep in mind that in the case of surface piercings, “aftercare” means more than the usual cleaning regime you need to perform for any new piercing in healing.

Some important tips to remember:

  • Choose placement carefully. Unlike standard piercings, which typically have their pre-defined placements (such as earlobe, lip, nostril, nipple, navel, etc.), surface piercings can be performed almost anywhere. Some of these places are better than the others in terms of preserving your piercing. For example, eyebrow piercings are among the most popular surface piercings because they are located at a relatively safe area in terms of disturbance. Some other surface piercings are more problematic. For example, those surface piercings that are typically covered with clothes can suffer a lot from friction and other problems. Therefore, the first advice – which begins even before aftercare – is to choose placement carefully if you want your surface piercing to last.
  • Be patient. Surface piercings often take a lot of time to heal. Or, more precisely, surprisingly long, considering the fact they are often less complex than some other piercing types. What makes surface piercings more complicated, however, is the fact that they are often done in pairs and groups. It all contributes to the long healing time. In order to preserve your surface piercing be prepared to perform cleaning and other aftercare instructions for months.
  • Perform adequate cleaning. As you probably know, proper cleaning is the most important aftercare instruction you need to follow. With surface piercings, cleaning has to be not only complete but also very careful. Since surface piercings are extra sensitive and prone to migration and rejection, cleaning has to be performed in such a way not to disturb the piercing in any way. When cleaning, try not to touch or move jewelry at all (twisting and turning jewelry is a major mistake for any piercing!) and try to disturb the skin around the piercing as little as possible.
  • Wear appropriate clothes. The goal is to reduce friction between the jewelry and clothes. Less friction means less chances for your surface piercing to be hurt. For this reason, it is advisable to avoid super-tight clothes whenever possible. On the other hand, fabric that is too loose may also cause problems by snagging on the jewelry. Simple cotton clothing items seem to work the best. If possible, do not wear any clothes on top of your surface piercing, at least during the initial healing time.
  • Protect your piercing. Since surface piercings are so sensitive, you need to do your best to protect it from any disturbance, particularly during the healing time. It means avoiding any unnecessary contact with your piercing. Keep your clothes, fingers, hair and any other object away from your surface piercing whenever possible. Let it breathe freely and make sure it’s not disturbed. Special care should be taken during the night. To prevent the jewelry from catching on the bed linens, place a gauze over your piercing. Perhaps the best practice is to be aware of your piercing at all times. This way, you will not forget about it, which means there is less risk of accidentally scratching it or hurting it in some other way.

Auricle Piercing

auricle piercingAuricle Piercing is a piercing done at the middle part of the outer rim of the ear cartilage. It is located under the ear’s helix. This is a highly sensitive spot rich in nerve endings, which makes auricle piercing one of the more painful ear piercings. However, it can look very effective so it is not surprising there are so many people who choose to have this type of piercing on their ears.

Placement and Procedure

Auricle piercing is positioned on the middle of the outer rim of the ear. As noted above, it is a very sensitive spot rich in nerves, so the procedure can be uncomfortable and painful. Because of this, and because auricle piercing is not among the most popular piercing types, it is important to find an experienced piercer who is familiar with this piercing type. You need a reliable individual who has experience with this particular piercing type – someone who knows how to perform only earlobe piercings will simply not do!

The piercing is done using a piercing needle, typically at 14 gauge. However, your piercer will decide if smaller or larger gauge is best for you. The procedure itself does not last long, but it may cause sharp pain and burning sensation even when it’s completed.

After the procedure you may experience some soreness, bruising and swelling. Minor bleeding is also possible. However, they should go after a week or so. If problems persist, make sure to consult your doctor.

After getting your auricle piercing done, it is important to perform proper aftercare in order to prevent infections, migration, rejection and other problems. To clean your new piercing, use a simple saline solution twice per day. Make sure not to overclean your piercing because it may irritate the skin and cause problems.

Jewelry

Auricle piercing typically requires relatively small but attractive jewelry. There are many different jewelry types to choose from. Some people prefer simple labret studs for their auricle piercing but with richly ornamented beads. This is one common choice for auricle piercing.

However, other options are also possible. For example, some people opt for circular barbells or Captive Bead Rings for their auricle piercing. Like in the case of labret studs, it’s best to choose ones with shiny and ornamented balls to make your piercing look extra attractive and noticeable.

Additional Tips and Info

  • Auricle piercing takes about 3 to 9 months to heal.
  • To prevent problems during healing, make sure to use only a mild soap when washing your ears and face. This will prevent irritation.
  • Try not to sleep on your piercing during the initial healing time.
  • During the initial stages of healing, avoid heavy shampoos, lotions and other chemicals that may irritate the piercing.
  • Don’t twist or turn your jewelry. It will only cause problems during healing.
  • It is important to keep your hair away from your ear during the initial healing time.
  • Another word of warning: never, under any circumstance, should you allow to be pierced with a piercing gun. Auricle piercing is a cartilage piercing and it simply cannot be done this way properly. That being said, piercing guns are generally bad so no piercing should be done using them.
  • Auricle piercings are often done in pairs and groups. Therefore, you can have a double auricle piercing, a triple auricle piercing or a multiple auricle piercing. These are all separate piercings done close together. If you choose to go this way make sure to use identical or matching jewelry for the each piercing so it’s clear they form a group.