I didn’t have time to write my diary entry last week, so I’ve condensed week 3 and 4 into this post.
So the last two weeks of my body piercing apprenticeship have seen me continuing to assist Richard in the studio by setting up for piercings, observing and starting to insert and fit the jewellery into new piercings under Richards’s guidance.
We’ve seen some interesting piercing coming into the studio in the last couple of weeks – I saw my first septum piercing performed and a couple of micro dermals, which were fascinating to watch, and a nice change from the commonly requested navel, lobes and nose piercings.
Me and our designer at BMG, Gemma also made our fist YouTube video for Real and BMG – along the lines of a tutorial video of how to change different types of jewellery easily. It was a lot of fun to make and definitely a learning curve! We’re just finishing off the final editing of it before we upload it within the next week or so. Stay tuned!
I’ve also started to perform simple ear lobe and cartilage piercings on friends and known customers who were happy enough to let me practice my techniques on them, which has been great for me to gain more confidence and allowing me to continue my training.
I’m hoping to ask some willing family and friends to come in the shop in the next few weeks, so I can practise my new skills on some more simple piercings to start with, which should mean that my nerves will be at a minimum and I’ll be able to practise my soft skills of explaining the procedure as well as the practical skills.
As I said, I’ll keep this short and sweet – and should have plenty to write about come next week, so until then – bye for now!
A few things you may not know about PTFE body jewellery:
You may or may not have heard of PTFE – it is a unique material used for body jewellery, best known as the brand name “Teflon” which is used to coat non-stick frying pans -The very same material you may have used to help slide your fried egg from pan to plate this morning!
The three main qualities of PTFE which make it ideal for body piercing jewellery is its flexibility, meaning that it can move with your body and feels very comfortable, making it an ideal choice for parts of the body that move a lot, such as oral piercings where metal jewellery is worn is at risk of tooth and gum damage and navel piercings especially during pregnancy.
It’s one of the most biocompatible materials around, meaning it will not irritate the skin and a great choice for sensitive and damaged piercings as it can help reduce swelling and healing times.
Thirdly, its non-stick qualities – this makes the jewellery much easier to clean as lymph and other bodily fluids will not stick to it and does not attract build up.
Pregnancy belly bar – The length of the shaft can be altered during pregnancy and provides a more comfortable fit.
An unusual surface chin piercing, using PTFE to promote clean and healthy healing on a difficult body placement.
An example of PTFE used on surface piercings to ensure a more comfortable fit
Other interesting facts about PTFE and its use include:
PTFE was discovered by accident in 1938 by Roy Plunkett.
It is also used to coat certain types of hardened armour piercing bullets.
It is the only known substance to which a gecko cannot stick to!
Bioflex/Bioplast is another form of biocompatible plastics that holds similar qualities to PTFE.
There are visual differences; PTFE has an almost milky appearance, whereas Bioflex/Bioplast is clear and transparent.
Although both flexible materials, Bioplast/Bioflex is firmer which can make it easier when attaching ball endings.
Example of a Bioflex labret stud.
The top just pops in and out of the Bioflex post. It is easy to insert, sits flat against the skin and holds in securely.
You can find a wide range of Bioflex jewellery on the BMG website Here.
If you would like more information, please send us an email firstname.lastname@example.org
So, week two of my body piercing apprenticeship has been a quiet one generally, with the Easter holidays coming to an end, there has been less appointments for piercings, but that’s not to say I have been able to sit back and relax!
I’ve been getting more involved with the general front of shop this week. Having to deal with customers coming in and enquiring about both our cash for gold and custom made jewellery services we also offer. This has been a great opportunity to gain more experience on dealing with clients, building a good rapport, customer service and learning about the different processes involved in designing and making custom orders.
My confidence is growing steadily – I’ve been able to change over customer’s jewellery, if they need to switch down to a smaller piece after their initial piercing, and continuing to clean and mark up for new piercings, (which I’m still working to improve to get the points clean and more precise.)
However, I did do my first piercing this week, and must admit – I was terrified!
As piercings go, a nape piercing was quite a difficult one to perform for my first, but also a good one to do, as it covers many of the preparation areas which are required to perform on other body piercings.
Although Richard was there guiding me all the way through, much of the procedure was done by myself, from setting up with the correct instruments, the final markings for the placement of the piercing. I was shown how to use forceps correctly to line the piercing up straight and how to hold the cannula (needle). Which I struggled with the most – probably due to obvious nerves and shaking hands!
Richard was a great mentor, and made sure I was relaxed and took some nice deep breaths before the big push! (I was more worried about the piercee’s nerves and comfort than my own.)
I was surprised at how sharp the cannula was, and how little pressure you needed to apply to penetrate the skin and exit smoothly.
Once the jewellery was inserted and the piercing complete, I had an enormous sense of achievement, and of course a huge boost to my confidence.
Here it is – my first piericng complete.
Let’s just say, I’m really looking forward to the next few weeks/months ahead of me and the challenges it brings!
We have noticed a rise in the popularity of multiple piercings coming into the studio recently. With customers requesting piercings such as the double and triple helix and conch piercings, tragus and rooks.
So what has caused this sudden increase of multiple piercings?
One possible explanation could be due to with popular culture and with the influence the media and celebrities have on popular trends.
For example, nearly every time a celebrity is pictured in the media, on social networking sites with a new piercing, it isn’t long until we see that particular piercing has a rise in popularity.
Here are just a few examples with celebrities sporting multiple piercings that have had an increase in popularity in the past few years:
The actress has been known for being a fan of multiple piercings for having septum and eyebrow piercings in the past, and owns both tragus and anti helix piercings currently.
Rihanna with her tragus and lobe piercings, she also has a nipple piercing.
The Black Eye Peas singer, as pictured here with both eyebrow and holds multiple ear piercings.
Katy Perry pictured with multiple ear piercing, including lobe and helix.
The model also features an impressive collection of ear lobe and helix piercings.
Which now leaves us the question of which celebrity will be next to set the next piercing trend alight?!
Here at Real/BMG after the recent departure of our resident piercer Ciaron, we’ve been given the wonderful opportunity to take on a new apprentice body piercer.
Here are a few words from our new body piercing apprentice after her first week with us:
As this is my first entry on this blog, I thought I’d start by introducing myself and share with you my experiences I’ve had on my first week…
My name is Katie, I’m 25 and live in the village of Hurstpierpoint approx 4 miles south from the Real piercing studio in Burgess Hill.
I’ve always held a passion for body modification/piercing, ever since my first ear piercing when I was around nine years old. As I grew older the number piercings increased, as did my interest and intrigue into the piercing industry, although this eventually was put on the back burner as I the years went on…
However, recently I met Richard, (BMG/Real’s CEO)at a local networking event held by my previous employer – a week later I saw the advertisement on Real’s Facebook and BMG’s Facebook page , a rare opportunity to become an body piercing apprentice– an opportunity I couldn’t let pass, and was ecstatic when I was offered the role!
I’m lucky enough to have Richard take me under his wing and share his knowledge and experience with me.
Alot of this week has been observing piercings and getting a feel for how the shop is run on a day to day basis. But having completed my first week – I’ve already learnt so much, and know there’s a long way to go yet!
I thought the most important and terrifying part would be actually sticking a needle into someone’s flesh – THAT, I’ve discovered is the quick and easy part.
Everything else, like setting up the piercing studio in a practical and clinical manor, where everything is to hand and contaminated equipment disposed of effectively and safely, whilst maintaining the highest hygiene standards – all of which has far more importance and procedures that I ever considered before.
Having got a feel for the preparation standards of the studio, I’ve also been given training on how to clean and mark up on clients. Of which I’ve found really challenging, as I’ve quickly learnt that everyone is shaped differently -in particular ear lobes at different heights, shapes and sizes!
As well as the practical aspects of the job, I’ve also started to comply a list of our suppliers to start organizing purchase ordering (or checking purchase orders) and organising tons of jewellery by length, width and type/shape, which of course all is all part of the job.
Although I’ve only been here a week, I really feel at home already here. The rest of the team at Real/BMG have been so welcoming, and helpful to guide me – especially if I have no idea if I’m doing something right or not!
So watch this space… there’s still more to come as the weeks go on. (I’ll start to get some pics included hopefully, and I’m sure my blogging abilities will slowly improve too!)
Good fitting body jewellery is really important. Find the perfect fit for YOU!
Now we all know you can pick up standard body jewellery from many places – even some high street shops now sell belly bars and nose studs! But does it really make a difference to spend that little bit more to get good quality and a good fit? The answer is YES! The most readily available body jewellery is made from either Titanium or Surgical Steel. Now both of these are absolutely fine for your piercing – but you may find that Steel is very heavy and Titanium looks a little dull.
You may have also come across a lot of body jewellery (nose studs in particular) that is made from Silver. This looks a lot nicer than the Titanium, but is extremely bad for your piercing. Silver can oxidize in the skin and kill off the surrounding skin cells. If this happens – it will give the piercing a really horrible blackened appearance. So steer clear of Silver body jewellery unless it is coated in a protective lacquer.
Most standard ‘bulk made’ body jewellery will be machine made in one size, and one size does not fit all. Think about it… Everyone is different, so no piercing is ever going to be exactly the same. Let’s take nose piercings for example – Noses come in a variety of shapes, different sizes, some point up, some poke down, some are very prominent and some lay flat. When a body piercer pierces a nose they will need to decide where the nose stud (or hoop) will sit best and look best, and this will vary from person to person.
The most common problem with nose stud fitting is the tail. This is the part (usually curved) that sits inside the nostril. We have found that a lot of people have problems with this twisting around and poking out of their nostril. Very annoying and very attractive! This just means you need to try a different style or a shorter tail. Easily sorted!
Another prominent issue is the shaft length. If it’s too short – the gem/ball on the outside will be pulled into the piercing too much. This will look bad and be uncomfortable (it may also cause redness and irritation). And if it’s too long then the gem/ball will protrude up and away from the nose – meaning it is easy to catch/accidentally pull out, plus it will look bad.
Some people will argue that having made-to-measure body jewellery is more expensive – this can be true, but (like most things) you really do get what you pay for when it comes to this. All of our body jewellery is made in nickel-free Yellow Gold, White Gold, Palladium or Platinum – all of which are very well suited for body piercing jewellery. We cannot stress enough how important it is to get good quality and well-fitting body jewellery. You really will notice the difference. It will feel comfortable, sit correctly and look fantastic!
Here at BMG we are proud to offer the best range of hand-crafted body jewellery – all handmade by our expert goldsmiths just for YOU. One of our specialties is our handmade Diamond nose studs, and we have happy customers all over the world!
Hi hope everyone is good – Have you seen this on Facebook. I found a piece of software called woo box and fixed it into our FB pages. It allows us to do things like sweepstakes and picture competitions so here is the first one we have done. The closing date for this is 1st March and winner is announced on the 15th March so there is still plenty of time to find you favourite piercing picture and enter to win a £150 voucher to spend on BMG jewellery website or in Real piecing studio & jewellery workshop. If your passionate about piercings and think you have a special picture please just enter, don’t forget to tell all your mates to vote on it and you could be the proud owner of something really special.
Here are some of the pictures entered so far: Face book competitions are becoming more popular so look out for more. We have had good results so far with this one our first and have several more coming up so watch this space.
Basic ear piercing but effective – I like the double tragus piercing – good luck
Nice jewellery – Crown of diamonds yellow gold BCR – very cool
Nice work from an experienced piercing pro – good luck
Its not a first – but a good old fashioned take on a trag – quite old really but nice to see the return of the slave ring being used in this way. Good luck
I love this Tragus stretch it looks great with the white tunnel – hey this is a must for a platinum and diamond custom made tunnel – have some new plugs soon on the site with opals and abalone watch this space. Good Luck
Great nice to see a clean basic piercing here – did we do this one ?? your doing well on the votes – good luck
We are excited to let you all know that we have rejuvenated our nose stud tail shapes just for you!
After much research and trialing, we have made some tweaks to BMG’s Nose Studs so that YOU can benefit from a more comfortable fit, easier insertion and overall better look.
Take a look at the new changes below. You will see that these are only very slight changes: We have straightened out the bend in the ‘L’ tail, perfected the curve of the ‘Half-U’ and made the full ‘U’ more compact. You will find that the nose studs will be easier to fit, more comfortable in the piercing and less likely to protrude from the nostril.
This is the easiest of the nose studs to get in and out. If features a straight post with a slightly wider ‘end ball’ to hold it in place. There are optional tiny rubber rings which pop over the end for extra security. It us most popular with people that like to change their nose jewellery often.
This is more secure than the ‘Pin’ tail, and is relatively easy to get in and out of the piercing. It features a straight post and tail, with a right-angle bend. The ‘L’ is most popular for people who like ease of use with a little extra security.
We created the ‘Half-U’ as a happy medium between the ‘L’ and full ‘U’. It offers good security and comfort. It is a little trickier to fit than the ‘L’, but once you get the hang of it – it’s simple. The ‘Half-U’ is specific to nostril side, so has a left or right choice. Most popular with people who don’t plan to change their nose jewellery too often, and don’t get on with the full ‘U’. This one is also a good choice for the initial piercing.
This is the most secure of tail shapes. It features a U bend shape which can be a little fiddly to get in, but stays put. Some people might find that it is a little too much metal inside the nose, meaning it sometimes pokes out of the nostril. The ‘U’ is most popular with people who want a secure fit, and don’t plan to change their nose jewellery. The ‘U’ tail is also side specific (left/right).
Any extra feedback on the new tail shapes would be much appreciated, along with any further suggestions Comment below or email us.
It can be hard to know which jewellery to go for when you choose your piercing jewellery. This blog will explore & explain the different types and styles of body piercing rings available to you. Continue reading →
So you want to get your nose pierced and know nothing about the procedures or jewellery? Then this basic guide should help…
Body Matters Gold Ltd specialise in hand-made Diamond Nose Studs- Perfect for nose piercings! They are made-to-measure using nickel free Gold, Palladium or Platinum and set with high-quality conflict free Diamonds and Gemstones. See our 3pt Diamond Nose Stud in White Gold here:
Having been piercing and designing body jewellery for nearly 20 years I hope these short explanations should send you in the right direction for your piercing.
Jewellery accessories shop, shopping malls stalls and market stalls are generally the places you can go and have your nose pierced from between £5 and £15 UK pounds. This process is often done using cheap jewellery, supplied to the vendor in a sealed packet with and label marked sterile. The packet is opened and the jewellery is placed directly into the gun.
Before we go any further have a look at this You Tube clip
1) You can see that the gun has a trigger which releases an earring. A piercing gun is usually used on an ear lobe where the flesh is much softer, making it easier for the jewellery to penetrate the tissue (this is what it is designed for).
2) The operator has no gloves on and furthermore panics and directly touches the area that has been penetrated by the earring. She also has long sleeves which rub near the area, and she puts her un-gloved fingers inside the nose.
3) The operator changes and another operator uses her finger nails to add pressure so she can force the stud through. Fingernails generally have bacteria underneath and she is using the underside of the nail right inside the nasal cavity
It really couldn’t get any worse. The first operator may have washed her hands, but you can be pretty sure the second one has not.
With a gun piercing such as this, the gun fires the stud into the flesh forcing its way through and displacing the tissue around the stud. This type of piercing can cause bruising and unnecessary trauma to the nose. The tissue will sit around the post properly and can become displaced. Displaced tissue causes the flesh to raise up around the piercing – making the healing longer and more problematic. The earrings used in the gun either have no back (making it either easy to fall out) or a butterfly style backing which can fall off.
Many years ago I took part in a training course for ear piercing, which was at a wholesale hairdressing supplier in Brighton Sussex. There were about five people on the course, four of which were young teenage girls training to be hairdressers. The training took about one and a half hours and showed us how to clean earlobes with a swab, make a dot with a skin marking pen, load the gun with the jewellery and shoot it through one of the other trainee’s ear lobes. The course did not discuss cross contamination at all, other that telling us we must wash our hands and wear latex gloves. Nose piercings where not discussed at all, but I overheard a couple of the girls saying “ I can’t wait to pierce noses”. Great News Then
A gun like this cannot be sterilised. It cannot be put into an autoclave or even a ultrasonic bath, all that can be done is to wipe it down with an antibacterial solution. So it will never be sterile. Gloves should always be worn and any piercer should have at least a basic knowledge of cross contamination procedures, anatomy and first aid.
A needle piercing is the best way to have your nose pierced. With a needle piercing the needle is extremely sharp – it is a hollow piece of surgical steel which comes in a sealed sterile packet. There are 2 types used:
1) The blade shown below is pushed through the nose flesh and followed by the jewellery, this is very popular in the USA, but less popular in Europe.
2) The cannula is favoured by most piercers worldwide, apart from in USA. Once the needle is inserted it is removed leaving a sterile plastic tube sitting in the piercing. The jewellery is inserted into the end of the plastic tube, as it is gently removed the jewellery goes into place.
With either the blade or the cannula method – a neat round section of flesh (the same size as the jewellery) is removed and the jewellery sits in replacing the tissue. The jewellery will be sterilised in an ultrasonic bath followed by autoclave in most cases. The instruments used during the piercing will also be sterilised.
However, not all body piercers have knowledge of cross contamination procedures. Have a look at this and keep your eye on the needle.
The jewellery used in this method is much better as it is designed for the piercing. However, noses differ from person to person and the mainstream jewellery is not always perfect. For example – most standard titanium nose studs can be quite large and the shaft lengths/ tail shapes are all the same. This can result in a bad fit – the shaft can be too long and the tail can poke out of the nostril. This doesn’t look good and can be very uncomfortable. There are a few companies now offering tailor made nose studs, one of which is us – BMG body jewellery. We are based in the UK and sell handmade body jewellery around the world, particularly the USA. We make different tail shapes, gauges, and shaft lengths to order and the design is such that they sit flush to the skin making them look and feel really good.
There is always a chance of fainting during and after a piercing. Most body piercers will have a valid first aid certificate having completed a first aid course. This will teach them how to deal with a fainting. One of the most important things to remember with someone that faints is – ALWAYS ensure a fainter is laid down with legs slightly elevated as soon as possible. This is so the blood flow can get to the brain quickly – to prevent it starving of oxygen. A fainter that remains upright is in serious danger.
For further information on nose piercing and nose stud choices – you can download a Nose Stud Report written by myself. You will also receive 10% discount on BMG body jewellery.
Thanks for reading and if you have any questions feel free to contact me, Richard Soper, on email@example.com