Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Anonymous said: Hello, there's a piercing place near me that only charges $10 a piercing. I talked to the owner, and he says that other places are just too expensive, and that he cares about his work and his clients too much to charge anymore than what he does. My girlfriend goes there for all of her piercings, and so far has not had a problem (she's gotten quite a few). I just wanted to make sure this place is safe. Is it possible for him to safely charge only $10 for jewelry and the piercing process?


In our opinion, it would be impossible for any piercer to offer piercings, including jewelry, safely at that price. There are lots of factors that play into this, but we will focus on a just a few:

1) The biggest red flag this raises is about the quality of the jewelry being used. Many people think that all jewelry is the same and that it doesn’t matter what the quality of the jewelry installed is. This couldn’t further from the truth. If you think about it, the jewelry is the thing that will be in direct contact with your piercing while it is healing, and for as long as you have your piercing. It is the thing that will most directly affect how your piercing heals. If the jewelry is not made of a high-quality, safe material with a mirror-finish, it can drastically affect the healing of the piercing. In some cases, the piercing may appear to heal fine, but you could be exposing your self to an unsafe material that can have affects on your health. 

Just like anything else, high-quality jewelry costs more (often a lot) than low-quality, mystery-metal jewelry. To be able to afford to offer piercings for $10, including jewelry, we can assure you that the jewelry being offered by this piercer is NOT high-quality, safe jewelry. Even if he was willing to make absolutely no profit, he still would not be able to buy quality jewelry that would be appropriate for a lot of piercings, for less than $10. There is a great deal of very low-quality, unsafe jewelry available that literally costs pennies to buy…and none of it is something anyone should want to wear in their body, even if their piercings seem to heal okay. 

2) Being able to offer the piercing process safely also costs money. Depending upon how the piercer operates, sometimes the piercings can be done at a very low cost to the piercer. However, even at a very low costs (using the cheapest supplies, skirting various health and safety practices, never seeking out continuing education etc), we still don’t see how $10 could ever be a reasonable price to charge…and that doesn’t even include the cost of the jewelry which we addressed above. 

When it comes to health and safety practices, we would be VERY concerned about what sort of corners this piercer might be cutting. To put people’s health and safety at risk by using low-quality jewelry is one thing. But, cutting corners in the areas of health and safety (cleanliness, sterilization, cross-contamination, spore testing, equipment maintenance etc) is unconscionable. 

So, that’s a lot of words to basically say this:

It is our opinion that there is absolutely no way this piercer is offering safe piercings with quality jewelry for that price. it’s great your girlfriend hasn’t experienced any negative effects up to this point…and hopefully she never will. However, we would strongly encourage her to find a different a piercer.

No matter what story this person has concocted to justify his questionable practices, it just isn’t possible to do piercing safely for that cost. 

Monday, September 8, 2014


Raelyn Gallina has passed away.

Raelyn was instrumental in the rise in popularity of body piercing in the early 90s, making Philadelphia a main stop on her body modification tours. She helped to shape what body piercing was, and would become, on the East Coast. I was lucky to have had both piercing and branding work done by her.

She was never given the status in our community that I always felt she deserved, and when I became president of the APP in 2009, I knew I wanted to work to change that, and she was the first person I was able to honor with the APP President’s Award. (She’s holding it in her lap in the video, and you can read more about it in The Point #48, at Of all the things I was able to do as president, this was one of my accomplishments I’m most proud of.

Over the 20-plus years I’ve been in the industry, and my time with the APP, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and work with most of my heroes—but Raelyn was still something special. She will be missed, but not forgotten.

Sunday, August 24, 2014 Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Fresh lobe piercings, her very first piercing.. Thanks for letting me be the one to hook you up ^_^

Fresh lobe piercings, her very first piercing.. Thanks for letting me be the one to hook you up ^_^

My wonderful piece of art

My wonderful piece of art