The unusual

If you talk to piercers, they will tell you that a lot of their trade is doing ‘normal’ piercings. I mean nostrils, ears and so forth. I would hesitate to use the word ‘boring’, or even acceptable.

You can look for more unusual things. You can do a quick search on the Web and find all sorts of extreme piercings, but you don’t have to go that far.

You can find that your piercer is extra enthusiastic about your choice. I had a rhino piercing and my piercer was so thrilled to do it and so pleased with the result, because it’s rare. But it will get you attention, and, if you don’t want that… well, of course you do, that’s why you are having the piercing in the first place.

One of my easiest piercings was the nape of my neck. It entertains people behind me on the bus.

Nice nape piercing

Choosing a piercer

How do you choose a piercer that you will like? Well, there are several ways:

geography – if you live in or near a big city, you will have very many piercers to choose from, but if you live in a small town, there may be one or perhaps none. You may have to travel, in which case, check in advance and make sure you make the journey worthwhile (eg get multiple piercings)

on-line – look on-line at websites. Any decent piercer will have some web presence, preferably a ‘proper’ website rather than just a FaceBook page. There should be examples of their work, prices, opening hours. If you like what you see, if they do something similar to what you want, go for it.

ask other people – if you see someone on the street with a piercing you like and would want, just ask them where they got it done. This has happened to me on multiple occasions. I sometimes carry my piercer’s business card as a spare, just in case.

choice – if the percing you want is unusual, not all piercers may do it. A simple e-mail stating your request will make it clear. If they don’t reply, avoid.

repeat business – if you have been somewhere before and had a good experience, go again. Tell others.

ask on-line – there are forums, social network groups etc for piercing. Ask there, but remember that the suggestion may not be genuine.

Getting a piercing?

If you are thinking of getting a piercing, then here are a few pieces of (common sense really) advice:

Decide exactly what you want. Don’t get a piercing on a whim, because you are drunk or high or as a dare. Think long and hard about it.

Find its name, and/or a picture. If you can’t, find something as near as you can.

Look on the Web to see examples of your choice, see videos of people with it, find blogs of people sharing their experiences. Every piercing for every person is different, of course, but it will give you some idea of what it will be like. Especially, anyone who has your chosen piercing and their experiences afterwards. Did it reject etc… Do your research.

It’s true you can remove a piercing and it will heal, and maybe leave a scar, but think of it as permanent. Play piercings are not a thing. Consider if it might affect your job prospects, or relations with family or friends or partners.

Find a local piercer who will do it. Tell them exactly what you want. Most piercers will do most piercings, but they may give you some good advice eg it will reject easily, takes a long time to heal, I can do it but you will get a better experience with X, I can’t do this, I wouldn’t advise doing this because… Piercers will give you advice, not to be awkward, but to make sure you understand the issues. For most piercings, there will never be an issue, but if you want something unusual… Piercers want happy and satisfied customers.

Be prepared to travel. If you want something very ususual, you may find very few people do it. For example, I wanted a magnetic implant in my finger and the only place to get that was in Leicester. Then COVID hit.

Most piercing places accept walk ins. A piercing does not take long. Since COVID, some don’t, so make an appointment. If you want something complicated, or specal jewellery, make an appointment. Their Web site should help you. If you are travelling, make an appointment in advance to avoid disappointment. If you do make an appointment, turn up on time.

If it looks like they use piercing guns, ask them for something different ie a proper needle, or go elsewhere. There are many reasons why piercing guns are not a good choice. Even if you are thinking of doing what someone called a ‘boring’ piercing eg ear lobes, nose or eyebrow, consider going to a dedicated piercer rather than a high street store. You will get a better and more personalised service, competitive prices and you may just become a regular.


Several times people have said to me “I’ve always wanted a piercing but…” or simply “Should I get a piercing?”.

What follows the ‘but’ can be many things. There are possibly some medical issues that might prevent you from getting pierced, or you can’t afford it (though piercings are not that expensive), work restrictions may prevent you from getting a piercing, etc.

I spoke to one lady once who worked in an airport in the USA. She said to me that she’d always wanted a nose piercing or two, but her job wouldn’t allow it. She was vaguely thinking of quitting work so she could get the piercing.

It’s understandable that there are reasons why you might want a piercing but not do it, or delay it.

There are no restrictions on who can have a piercing and who can’t. Any piercer who says otherwise should be avoided. There are no gender specific piercings, except the obvious, and age does not matter, as long as you are of legal age for where you live or have some kind of parental consent.


One thing that rather amazes me is when people ask their piercer, will it hurt? I mean, they decide they want some kind of a piercing, a nostril piercing let’s say, they make an appointment, pay their money, get measured up and then ask, will it hurt? Or maybe they ask for some pain numbing stuff, or start chickening out and asking for their money back.

Will it hurt? Well, who knows. Yes, of course someone is sticking a needle through your skin, but different piercings affect different people, er, differently. Besides, and this is an important point, whatever pain there is will be very brief, over in a second or two. It’s a small scarifice to get the piercing you say you want.

If you want a piercing, what do you expect will happen?

My piercer does the measuring meticulously, asks others if it looks OK, checks with her client they are happy and it’s what they want, then just does it, quick as you like. No messing about with the customer thinking about it. “Breathe in” and ouch, done.

If you pull out at the last minute, shame on you. Don’t expect your money back. You have wasted the piercer’s time and held up other customers. Piercers don’t want temper tantrums. Just go for it and it’ll be over before you know it and you will wonder what the fuss was about, probably.