September 8th, 2009
Here's an email I received from a woman who was experiencing a problem because the jewelry that was placed in her VCH piercing was too short:
Hi there, I've contacted my piercer too, but I'm looking for some guidance and hoping you can help. I had my VCH pierced a week ago. It was initially healing very nicely with no issues. However, when I had it pierced, I was told that my hood was very long and he probably could have used a longer barbell (I have a straight barbell in now). This morning when I was cleaning it in the shower, I noticed that it was uncomfortable and found out that the bottom ball on the barbell has retreated into the piercing hole. I tried to manually push it back through but it is stuck and very uncomfortable. What should I do? Will my piercer be able to remove the jewelry and hopefully put a longer barbell in? I'm worried that it's healing around the ball and will be very difficult to remove. Thank you for any help you can give, Amanda
Amanda, Go see your piercer immediately! You MUST have a longer bar put in ASAP! If you allow jewelry that is too small to remain in place then it is likely to end up embedded. As the ball sinks in, your tissue grows around it, and soon you'll need the assistance of a doctor to remove the embedded jewelry by making an incision or two near it! Wearing ill-fitting jewelry is dangerous, especially when a piercing is so new. A curved bar gives you the advantage of some extra space without adding extra length--I usually start VCH piercings with them. This excerpt from The Piercing Bible explains proper VCH placement and jewelry:
September 7th, 2009
I received this question from a piercee who hadn't been well informed by her piercer:
I got the horizontal hood piercing. I have a bead ring, Brenda the lady who pierced me said she couldn't use the barbell like the one in my tongue. I love my new piercing but Brenda is on vacation and I got some questions. I work in recieving and I'm constantly moving my ring always moves to the side; is that normal?? My period is coming cuz I could feel the cramps, do I need more than sea salt water and antibacterial soap to clean it?? And how how long do you have wait to have sex. My piercer said a week but I don't think that sounds right. Well these are my questions I hope to hear from you soon.. Thanks Christina
September 6th, 2009
I responded to this question:
"Which female genital piercing is less painful, more stimulation, heals easily and faster, and is most popular and fashionable? I'm interested in inner labia piercing, vertical & horizontal clitoral hood piercing. Which is the best..Thank u"My reply:
The vertical clitoral hood piercing (VCH) is one that most women are anatomically suited to wear. You can check to see if you are built for it by using the "Q-tip test" as pictured on this page: http://ringsofdesire.com/q_tip.html When performed properly it is very quick and not an intense piercing. BE CAREFUL: many piercers have no specific training to do these piercings and I receive email daily from women who have gotten botched genital piercings! Do your homework and learn how to evaluate a piercer for competency and appropriate qualifications. You can learn everything you need to know in The Piercing Bible. It is as fast to heal as an ear lobe piercing (as soon as 4 weeks), and most women find that direct the contact of jewelry against the clitoris is pleasurable and stimulating. There was even a study done that was printed in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology that stated the piercing improved "desire, frequency of intercourse and arousal."
For much more information about safe piercing, read "The Piercing Bible--The Definitive Guide to Safe Body Piercing" by Elayne Angel (Random House, May 2009). http://piercingbible.com/
August 28th, 2009
I was recently contacted by an interesting woman. She's a gynecologist (among other things) and she requested my help to answer questions about body piercing for a book she's writing:
Dear Angel- I am an OB/GYN physician, artist, and author, and I am interested in getting touch with Angel to discuss clitoral piercing for a book I am writing. My book (working title: Coochie Confidential- Questions You'd Only Ask Your Gynecologist If She Was Your Best Friend) is a book of Q&A about all aspects of women's health. The book will be published by St. Martin's Press in Fall 2010. Should you be interested in answering these questions, I would be happy to credit you, quote you, and reference The Piercing Bible. One question that was submitted relates to clitoral piercing.
August 1st, 2009
I received this message from a woman interested in getting a dangerous genital piercing:
I have been looking into a piercing for quite a while now, but it is a rather rare one. I have asked two different piercers about it and was refered to you.
I am told that you are one of the best and can give me the best opinion/advice. While looking at genital piercings, I saw a Nefertiti and I am now set on it. It is a combination of a christina and a vertical hood. I need to know what you think of it and who you would recommend.
I am 98% positive I have correct anatomy for it however they were both concerned about a flexible bar and the fact that it is so long. My friends mom is an OR nurse and looked into the bar and said it was alright. If you could look into it I would greatly appreciate it. I have done some of my own before and could attempt it but am worried about getting it straight and the correct needle and would rather have a professional do it.
I know you are probably busy but this would mean a lot to me as it is my "dream" piercing. If you could either tell me what your opinion is or give me a number and times I could reach you it would be awesome. If you do not want to I understand, but would like to know that so I am not waiting for a reply. Thank you very much for your time.
Thanks for your email.
The reason I don't cover the Nefertiti or the Isabella piercings on my webpage is because I don't do them; I consider them too risky. (I do however, have an actual clitoris piercing, and will do those on women who are anatomically suited. I say this by way of explaining that it isn't just the intensity of the piercing itself that is my concern.)
July 2nd, 2009
I got this message from a gal I pierced in NY:
I just wanted to thank you for my beautiful piercing, I'm so happy with it, but I am a bit concerned that it may be getting infected. Perhaps I'm just overreacting, but its really really tender and sore, and its been about three days and I also noticed a small dot of discharge that was a light yellow today for the first time. I've been following all of your directions and keeping everything clean and sanitary, so I'm not really sure what went wrong. I'm really afraid, but if you can tell me what steps I can take steps now to possibly reverse the infection and what else I can do besides the sea salt baths and antibacterial soap, I'd really appreciate it. I read the chapter in your book about Trouble and Trouble shooting but since my symptoms weren't as severe, it didn't seem to really pertain to me. Please help if you can! Sincerely,
I referred her to some relevant pages in my book (182-183 "What to Expect") because this portion explains that some secretion, redness, and tenderness are all perfectly normal in a new piercing! And they can last throughout the healing period...
I also advised her that one of the worst things she can do is over-clean. I told her to try to relax and follow the instructions I'd given her for aftercare and to review them in the book.
She wrote back:
Thanks Elayne, I guess I was just over reacting but I appreciate your help! I read all of the pages and a few other chapters in your book and everything reassured me that what I'm experiencing is normal. I think that the problem was that I was over cleaning my piercing, but now I feel much better and not so much pain and tenderness.
May 20th, 2009
October 25th, 2008
I went ahead and got pierced last week (VCH), and it is doing pretty well. I just have a couple more questions for you. I am still researching stuff on the vch and there was one place that said 16 gauge is to small for a genital piercing, and that you aren't suppose to have a hoop in when you heal... Well the ring I have is 16 gauge. Is that a problem? If so can you advise me on a gauge size and jewelry type? ThanksI use 14 gauge as a minimum, because the 16 really is on the thin side. But, if it that is the size you have in, and the piercing is properly placed and heals well, you can easily have it stretched up later. You should wait until you have been healed for a month or two before stretching. If you begin to have healing problems such as irritation, tearing, or migration, then you should have your ring swapped out for a bar as soon as possible. Always have a professional do any jewelry change that becomes necessary during a healing period. I use a ring only when a woman is built with a "valley"-- a recessed hood area, and outer labia that are large and cover the area. If you have a "hill" configuration with a prominent hood, then the ring is not a good jewelry style for healing because it will be subject to excessive trauma (though it could be fine for later).