The Piercer's Corner - So what’s the big deal about jewelry quality?

So what’s the big deal about jewelry quality?

When customers come walking in the door looking for body piercings, I always take that opportunity to offer upgrades to the jewelry for that initial piercing. There are so many options that you should take a minute and read over the following material types to see what will work for you. It is so hard to emphasize that price should not be a determining factor to whether or not you should skimp out on the most crucial part body piercing, the jewelry itself.

At the most basic level we offer pre-sterilized 316L Surgical Stainless Steel. While this is still a considered a good starter metal I always follow up with questions to see if you have a metal allergy or have experienced allergic reactions wearing basic jewelry. Many people believe that stainless steel is nickel free, but most stainless steel alloys (even surgical stainless steel) contain 8-12% nickel. I bet you didn’t realize that roughly 6-12% of the population is allergic to nickel. If this is the case, the next step up would be Titanium.

We buy our titanium pieces from various fine body jewelry manufacturers. The pieces are precision machined out of solid implant-grade titanium bars (ASTM F136-61AI-4V ELI) that are cast and milled here in the USA. Each piece is hand polished to a mirrored finish. Why is this finish so important? If you wear jewelry that has a porous or uneven surface, the new cells that form during healing grow into the irregularities. Then, when the jewelry shifts or moves, these areas tear. As this cycle is repeated, scar tissue forms and healing is delayed. A faulty finish can also introduce bacteria into the wound and cause infection. What is also great about Titanium as that we can anodize your piece to almost any color you like.

Gold (yellow or white) is appropriate for initial piercings, as well, if it is 14k or higher, nickel-free, and alloyed for biocompatibility. Gold higher than 18k is too soft for body jewelry because it can easily be scratched or nicked. Anything that is gold plated, filled or overlay is NOT suitable for initial piercings, since they involve a top layer that is measures in millionths of an inch, it can wear and/or chip off.

My personal favorite is glass. Not only is it super comfortable to wear but it can come in so many colors, textures and shapes. Fused quartz glass, lead-free borosilicate, and lead-free soda-lime glass are inert and considered safe for initial piercings.

Although our in-house supply of jewelry is constantly growing, if you don’t see something you like, we are more than happy to help you place your custom order for any gold or glass jewelry you desire. We have an array of manufacturers that we can order from to make your piercing as unique as you are.