October 25th, 2011
I was asked to provide some information about risks of piercings specifically as regards teenagers (14 and up). Below are the questions and answers:
Q: What are some associated health risks that teens may be more exposed to when their piercing is healing?
A: Some teens pierce themselves or have a friend do it, or go to a piercer who is unethical (piercing minors without parental consent). In all of these situations, the risk of infection is MUCH higher than if they go to a professional studio and get pierced by a qualified practitioner. Sterilization equipment is expensive, and it is required for safe piercing. The piercing "kits" that are advertised as sterile do NOT provide everything needed for a safe piercing. These situations are all recipes for disaster. One of the likely problems is that the piercing won't end up in the right spot. When this takes place, it doesn't look good, and it won't heal well. Piercings that are not placed properly to the individual anatomy have a tendency to become irritated or infected; the can migrate and reject, and cause tissue discoloration and/or excessive scarring. Poor quality jewelry can cause the same problems. And teens are frequently on a tight budget, which means they often buy jewelry that is poor in quality
October 9th, 2011
I got this message from a girl seeking advice about jewelry for her smiley piercing:
Hi I'm D.,
I was wondering if you could help me out with something, although I'm not sure if this is a type of help you can give. I have my smiley pierced and I recently snagged it a little. Which I have noticed it might have torn little enough to not bother me, but enough that it is now sitting a tiny bit lower then when initially pierced. Was sitting on the lower gum line. Now I can just barely feel it touching some tooth.
Now I know these ones are pretty risky as far as migration goes, but I'm madly in love with it and want to do anything to keep it without risk. My problem is it is now causing one of my front teeth to be incredibly sensitive and this was never a problem before. I know I can go smaller in diameter as far as the captive bead ring goes, or just flat out switch to a bent barbell which I want to avoid the barbell unless it's my only option.
So I've spent the last week trying to find somewhere that has a CBR with a silicone or silicone like bead instead of surgical steel to protect my teeth more if rubbing happens. I know they make them commonly in larger gauges and the smallest I can seem to find is a 10g. I definitely DO NOT want to put anything bigger then the 18g I have now.
Don't want to lose my pretty piercing, and with bigger sizes it's pretty much inevitable. What I'm so slowly getting at is do you have any idea where I could find some? Preferably the internet if possible, if not that's okay too. Or maybe somewhere I can custom order it? I hope you can help! By the way I looove your site! You're awesome! Talk to you soon.
October 6th, 2011
I recently received a message from the owner of an adult boutique who is interested in carrying body jewelry:
Hi Elayne, I own a lingerie boutique in a small town and have many customers ask me for body jewelry, particularly for hood piercings. I was not familiar with the many types of piercings until I found your website while researching body jewelry. Thanks for posting all the wonderful information! But I am still trying to figure out which type and size of body jewelry I should research and recommend for my customers. Labret studs? Rings? Any info to get me started in the right direction would be so appreciated!
September 20th, 2011
I received a question from a woman who was experiencing a very unpleasant side effect from her clitoral hood piercing:
I am so glad I found your website. I need your wisdom. I have had my vch for about two years and ever since I got it I have had a fishy scent. Prior to my piercing I had no scent at all - not to be gross, but my husband said I had no scent or taste. For example, I could be in bed for days with the flu and not shower and still not have any scent. Now, even though I wash daily I still end up with a fishy scent by the end of the day. (Sorry for the to-much-info details but I wanted to explain just how much my vagina has changed since the piercing). I clean with ivory and move the barbell back and forth. I don't have any discharge, redness, or pain. My husband said the scent is not that strong but I am horrified. I have not changed my piercing since I got it and from what the piercer told me I have a stainless steel barbell with "less than 18% nickel". I am wondering if I need to chane to another material, if I may have bacteria inside the piercing, or if the barbell possibly changed the pH of my vagina??? Should I just take it out? I am so embarrassed and would be grateful for any advice you could give me.
Thanks so much,
August 22nd, 2011
I got a message from a woman who nearly ended up with a severely embedded piece of jewelry in her clitoral hood:
So I just got my VCH done about a week ago. It doesn't hurt, there's barely any swelling, and there's no discoloration. It's a barbell and in all of the pictures I've seen, you can always see both ends of the barbel. You can only see the top of mine and the barbel itself sticks out about 1/8 of an inch. I was looking in the mirror and searching for the bottom part (with clean hands) and couldn't find it! I can see the bottom ball of the barbel under my skin but I can't actually see the metal. Is this normal? If so, am I ever going to be able to change it?
Go see your piercer immediately for an evaluation! You may have had jewelry put in that was too short and it may be embedding. Even if it is not embedding, you need a longer bar if you are unable to find the bottom ball easily.
You were right! Thank you so much. I went to the place I got it pierced and a different piercer looked at it. She was blown away by the un-professionalism of the previous piercer. I got a longer bar after much discomfort but It's so much better now. Thank you
June 14th, 2011
I just got back from an amazing trip to Las Vegas for the Association of Professional Piercers annual Conference and Expo. It was held at Bally's Hotel and Casino, which was a nice change from the past 2 years at the Tropicana, and a really nice step up from the prior 7 at the Riviera.
May 6th, 2011
I received a message from a woman inquiring about a genital piercing:
I was on a piercing forum and a girl made a post about a "high HCH" piercing. She didn't really go into detail, just mentioned that she has it. While I sent her a message for more info, I figured that if anyone could shed light on the subject, it would be you. I can't find any pictures or info on the piercing aside from people saying that they have it. I was wondering what makes a high HCH different from a regular HCH piercing? How is the procedure different and would it be a viable piercing since I already have a VCH?
I would appreciate any info that you can give me and I hope you come back to Philly to pierce soon since i missed you last time!
May 5th, 2011
I received a message from a reader with a question about a certain style of body jewelry:
in your book under the male pubic piercing section it says to use a captive circular barbell for this piercing and i really like the idea. is this a piece i will have to make or do you know where to buy them as i cannot find them anywhere. Steve
Any studio that sells circular barbells and captive beads should be able to put one together for you.
It is a design I invented by combining those two ordinary body jewelry items! It is just a matter of finding the right size captive bead, and sometimes adjusting the gap between the circular barbell balls by slightly narrowing or widening the ring. It is super easy to do for anyone who is familiar with body jewelry.
Let me know if you have any other questions.
Awsome, thank you. I really appreciate your help and love your book. I really enjoy knowing what to expect and how procedures are supposed to go along with proper placement. My peircer and I always talk about everything before we begin and I like that what he says almost always mimics your book.