Not All Body Jewelry Is Created Equal

Body jewelry comes in all sorts of shapes and forms. There is quite the variety out there. Guaranteed, you can find a new piece of jewelry for your piercing that you never saw before every day if you looked hard enough.

Unfortunately, this variety doesn’t always offer quality. In fact, you can find some downright awful body jewelry. They can be made from less then desirable materials. They can be made poorly. They can even get to the point of just being bad for you body jewelry .

Running an online retailer for piercing jewelry has forced me to find some bad pieces of body jewelry out there. Some of these findings is from research while others are just first hand experience. This is what I have learned thus far.

One of the most common types of materials used for piercings is acrylic. There are many reasons for this. Some pretty cool designs can be made out of acrylic. Acrylic is cheap so not only production costs can be kept small but retail prices can be can be very appealing. It is also very lightweight. However, it is one of those materials that you should try and avoid. The first thing that makes acrylic undesirable is that it can not be autoclave sterilized, one of the best ways to sterilize. Also, alcohol can cause it to degrade. If it can’t be sterilized than there are bound to always be germs or dirt or really anything on it. Also, acrylic isn’t meant for long term use. Anyone that tells you it is should immediately cause red flags to go up.

Another popular material for use in piercing jewelry is what is considered “organic” body jewelry. However, it isn’t that great for use in piercings. Nearly all materials used in organic piercing jewelry are extremely porous. This means they can never be completely cleaned as it is impossible to get every little pore clean. This also means that they can harbor bacterial and other bad things. Why would you want to risk it? Most organics cannot be autoclave sterilized either.

Non surgical steel one of the most popular metals to use in body jewelry. It is one of the cheapest metals to use. It is durable. Overall it is a desirable material to be worn in a piercing. It can even be autoclave sterilized. However, it may not be the best material for you. Most people won’t have a problem with it. However, these “regular” steel piercing jewelry can contain a fair amount of nickel which can cause allergic reactions among some people. Overall, it is recommended to not use these steel pieces for you piercings if possible.

Now, you could have piercing jewelry that is made of an acceptable material. That is the first step in the right direction. However, there are other things that may make them undesirable. First off, they just could be plainly poorly made. Some manufacturers only care about the quick buck. They could have sharp edges that aren’t supposed to be there. They could use a cheap glue to hold pieces in place, like gems. Poor glass makers will make body jewelry that can break under normal circumstances. You need to make sure what you are buying is quality.

So, there are all these bad things out there in the body jewelry world. What should you look for? Well Surgical Steel, a high grade stainless steel, is a great place to start. The recommendation is that this should be the bare minimum you go for. Niobium is next up on the scale. Titanium is probably the best metal you can buy for your piercings. There is absolutely no nickel in it and so it is one of the most hypoallergenic metals out there. Glass is a great material for use in piercings as well. Just be sure that what you are buying is quality. Silicone is an okay material. The only problem with it is that it creates a seal between it and your piercing which can cause complications. It is great for short term use.

All of the recommended materials above can be autoclave sterilized. This is the method hospitals use to sterilize their equipment. If at all possible, it is highly recommended that you buy sterilized body jewelry. This guarantees a number of things. Poor quality piercing jewelry can not stand the pressure created in an autoclave. An autoclave guarantees everything that can cause infections is killed on the body jewelry. If you get a new piercing, you should be getting sterilized body jewelry for the initial piercing no matter what. Otherwise, you are asking for trouble.

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