Why I pierced my ears at home.
Note This is not a tutorial just an overview of what I used and why.
Many years ago I decided that I should be able to do as much as I can for myself, cost came into this decision, but it was mainly because I believe that self-sufficiency builds character. Over the years I’ve done loads of things from teaching myself studio photography to building an extension onto a home, building guitars, computers, fixing cars and doing everything about the house from installing kitchens to bathrooms myself.
So when I decided I wanted to get my ears pierced multiple times, after reading about the subject (Because reading is fundamental) I felt confident my wife and I could handle it. While there are a whole host of reasons people tell you not to pierce your own ears, the main one seems to revolve around hygiene and the sanitary environment a professional has to offer. I have to be honest and say that was exactly the reason I decided to pierce my ears at home. While I’m sure professional piercers take great pride in their cleanliness, I personally don’t know any of them from Adam, and I’ve certainly never met any of their hundreds of customers, adding human error into the mix and I’d personally rather take my chances with my own common sense and cleanness.
1) I am in no way saying professional piercers are not fit for purpose, I’m just saying I’m a clean freak and like to know where everything I’m holding, eating, wearing has been, hell I wear gloves most of the day, are you getting the picture lol
2) I’m not advocating that anybody else tries to do this themselves.
While I’m a jack(or Jill) of all trades and master of none, I know my skill set. However I have no clue of yours so I will have to assume this would not be a good idea for you, as things can and do go wrong.
That said if you are a mature, methodical, practical adult that takes responsibility for their own actions then I should imagine that once you have done your own research, cross-referenced a number of techniques and tutorials you to may decide to give it a go.
What I used to pierce my ear.
It took about a week to get all the pieces together for this project here is my list:
6x hollow STERILE BODY PIERCING NEEDLES 18g which is approx 1 mm.
6x studs I used were Hypoallergenic Surgical Stainless Steel with a thickness of 0.8 mm(20 Gauge)
1 piercing clamp and 1 pair of sanitized gloves
1 bottle of Prontolind spray (an antiseptic and aftercare product for piercings )
Rubbing alcohol, a candle, a cork and cotton buds, alcohol wipes and a kettle to boil the water (note I already had that)
One ear at a time, sweet cheese sauce ( you have to be of a certain age to get that ) 🙂
I decided to do three holes in my right ear first then wait two weeks before doing the next three on the left. This was for a few reasons, even if you have all the confidence in the World this is stressful, especially if you’ve never done it before, you need to be focused calm and take it slow. After the first ear, my wife was frazzled, while I had set everything up she had to push the needle through, as I did not believe I would be able to do it myself at the correct angle (which is important). To say she was freaking out at the idea of doing this was an understatement, but she did a great job and felt really pleased afterwards at what she had achieved. Also if like me you sleep on your side only piercing one side at a time gives you a chance to sleep on the opposite during the first delicate weeks. If my ear had fallen off I would still have the other one …see you never thought about that did you, that my friend is why you simply shouldn’t be doing this lol
How I kept everything as clean as I possibly could while piercing.
As I was piercing metal objects through my poor unsuspecting earlobe, I didn’t think I could go overkill on the cleaning. I soaked the vacuum packed studs in boiling water, then in rubbing alcohol. Despite the needles being in ‘sanitised packs’ I wasn’t taking any chances, I sterilized them with the candle flame, then wiped them with rubbing alcohol and kept them in the alcohol until I needed them. Before piercing I sprayed the ears with the antiseptic and again once I put the studs in. Because the needles are hollow, you put the stud in the back end of the needle, the stud passes easily into the piercing as you draw the needle through your lobe, being careful not to stab your neck (hence the cork)
Pain, blood, aftercare and losing my earlobe.
Out of the six holes, only one presented me with a little discomfort, that was the one that bled all the rest were ok. I suppose it all depends on your pain threshold, the needles as you would expect are ultra sharp. The blood, as blood usually does looks worse than it is. Over 4 weeks on and I’ve had no infection, I use the prontolind spray twice a day (it goes a long way) and I’m sure that has helped keep everything healthy. I have to say I’m very happy with what we achieved.
I highly recommend needles over stud guns no matter if you are going to a store or doing it yourself. I remember back in the 80’s having my ear done in a shop with a stud gun, it took ages to heal. I think most people agree the guns deal more damage to the earlobe, as the studs are not as sharp as the needles and the impact is much greater.
Oh as for me losing my earlobe that didn’t really happen lol, wow you actually read this didn’t you, thanks .