Start ‘em young, teach ‘em right

I just read on Rachel’s page about Ari getting her ears re-pierced soon.  It got me thinking about children’s ear piercings. While, I, as a piercer, refuse to do babies ears. However, I fully encourage parents to wait until there child is old enough to ask for the piercing and then bring them into a proper piercing establishment. Most of the modblog readers can spout off reasons why piercing guns are bad and those are all valid points. However, people often overlook the importance of a skilled piercer doing the lobe piercings and assume merely using a needle alone is enough. This is why the vast majority of ear lobe piercings are poorly angled or not symetrically matched and  also why many in our community who have stretched from “regular” lobe piercings end up needing to be scalpelled to correct this initial screw up later down the line.

Rest assured John Scarab’s niece is on the right path if she decides to follow in her uncle’s footsteps and stretch her lobes when she is older. Or maybe she will decide to keep with the smaller jewelry like the white gold studs with pink sapphires she was pierced with. Either way as long as she doesn’t decide to “Gauge” her ears, John has done well for her.


34 thoughts on “Start ‘em young, teach ‘em right

  1. Thanks for the post. My niece is eight now and her parents have told her she has to wait until she’s ten, at which point her favorite (and only) modded aunt will take her to a real piercer who will pierce her ears in a much less traumatic way than mine were done. Nothing makes me want to scream at parents as much as watching a baby get pierced at Claire’s.

  2. My ears were pierced when I was a baby, by a doctor. My parents don’t know ANYTHING about mods. My piercings are not symmetrical -__-

  3. the first time my lobes were pierced it was with a gun and not with the new ones that you have to “push” through – this one you pull the trigger and *bang* there’s the piercing.
    i will never forget that pain. i was 10.

  4. my parents got mine pierced with a gun when i was 10 weeks old.

    now i have 1inch slightly wonky lobes. wheeey.

  5. my uncle tried to pierce mine when i was 6 with a gun.
    he obviously didn’t know what he was doing and the stud thing got stuck like half in my ear, it was awful.

  6. This is super awesome. And look how brave she is being, she doesnt look scared at all!

    I got my ears pierced when I was five, after I had asked for them to be done “like mummies” (who had 13 ear piercings at the time. My mum was way cool.)

    Back then (1987?) there werent any piercing places in our little town, so mum took me to the doctor, who did them with a needle, and I have to say he did a pretty good job. They are pretty symmetrical and have stretched to 16mm just fine. They cant really go much bigger, but that has more to do with my original lack of earlobe than any piercing error on the old small-town doc’s part.

  7. Got mine done with a gun when I was 10.. There’s nothing funny about uneven stretched lobes, haaha.

  8. wish my parents had done that; I got mine gun-pierced when I was three months old. I understand it’s a cultural thing (my mom is from Venezuela, where it’s pretty common for babies to get their ears pierced), but my holes are definitely not even. I’m going to get them scalpelled once I stretch a bit bigger.

  9. 🙂 It’s so cute when little kids get their ears pierced!

    I got the honor of doing my little sister’s ears this past thanksgiving, and it was awesome! She took it like a champ! Didn’t whine half as much as the older clients I pierce. Hahahaha.

  10. I had mine pierced with a gun at 12 (much later than all of my school friends!) at the local jewellers. Credit to them they had been piercing ears that way for YEARS, and I’m lucky in that they’re pretty symmetrical although were very high placed on my lobes. I’ve since stretched them up to 00g and it turned out to be a huge advantage as I have a good amount of skin below the holes now.

  11. It’s great to know their are people who are ding it properly. I don’t mind if a parent gets there child’s ears pierced when they’re a baby as long as it’s done properly because 99% of the time the child’s going to want their ears done in 5 or so years anyway.

    I got my first holes when I had just turned three and my second for my forth birthday. Both were done in a hairdressers…nice Mum. I don’t remember wanting them done but apparently I harrassed my parents for weeks…

  12. bikuki- your totally right! i got my ears pierced as a baby, and as a result, my holes were lower than should be. everything was fine when i was at a 0gauge, and even 00. when i went to 1/2″, i was changing plugs one day and noticed there was barely any lobe left on the bottom. i had to take them out, after years and years and years of having (moderately) stretched lobes, in order for them to shrink up. got them sewn up. now waiting to fully heal in order to re-pierce (HIGH) and start the whole stretching process all over again. which is really annoying.
    granted, most people dont think to pierce lobes high so that when theyre stretched there is plenty of lobe, but still… i wish my mom never chose for me to have my lobes pierced. no matter of it was cute or not.

  13. i got mine done with a gun when i was 9 or 10 too, they got infected so i got them done again with a gun and that hurt 945903486436 times more! 7 years later at 1 1/8 still healing after getting scalpelled in august because of my weird lobes!

  14. Before I was really into mods and knowing the difference between a gun used at a place like Claire’s or a hairdresser I got my oldest daughters ears done. She yanked them out a few weeks later & her holes are now closed.

    I’m looking forward to the day both my girls ask to have their ears pierced & hopefully the shop I go to will do them, as we will never get them done with a gun!

  15. awwww a child’s 1st piercing 😀

    i was 15 when i had my 1st, done with a needle, the idea of a gun really freaked me out, plus the piercer who did it was hot 😀 lol

    but babies getting piercings? fail, i hate seeing babies with piercings, likes like the mother has said “my child needs some extra bling” really theres no need for it untill that child can ask for them themselves

  16. among the usual issues with the piercing gun-uneven piercings, poor quality jewelry, nonexistent training, the consent of the child and their understanding of what’s being done to their body-is that they’re not clean. they can’t be autoclaved, and have actually been linked to large outbreaks of Hepatitis C in certain areas. I had a customer once that came in, in her early 30′s, and really wanted her earlobes pierced, but was pretty terrified. why? because she’d had her ears pierced with a gun and gotten Hepatitis. She was 7 when this happened. Needless to say, after getting her ears pierced by a highly and properly trained, experienced piercer in a professional piercing studio she was muuuuch happier with the results. I like working with piercers who don’t mind piercing children, none younger than 5, but these piercers also make sure that they’ve talked to the child first; they’ve made sure the child is asking for-without coercing from the parents-the piercing, the child understands what’ll be happening and the responsibilities involved in getting and taking care of piercings, and that they think the child is ready for the piercings and all that is involved in having them. i like that more parents are becoming educated in the dangers and inappropriateness of the piercing gun, and also about seeking out a proper establishment and piercer when getting a child’s lobes pierced is finally decided upon.

  17. i cant see what the problem is really, spout off all ya want, but if piercers wont “do” kids ears then jewellery stores etc will. as long as its safe and consentual

    i had my lobes pierced at a jewellery store years ago, and i now have 80mm tunnels, so go figure.

    or simply rant on.

  18. @paddy
    What most people don’t ever seem to understand about gun piercings (or anything risky for that matter) is that just because it worked or has worked for you and/or friends doesn’t mean it works for everyone.

    Just because you’ve driving home drunk before doesn’t mean you’re a safe driver and can drive drunk all the time, it means you’re lucky. The possibility of things going wrong increases immensely. It’s the same issue with ear piercing guns..

    Something going wrong is much more likely/probable with a piercing gun than a needle piercing by a trained and experienced piercer..

  19. I’ve got my ears pierced when i was 5 or 6 years old. I just said to my grandma “i want it!” and we went to some medical center (it called “center of child’s health and beauty” or something like that). It was the time when piercing guns were new and gaining popularity in Russia and almost everyone of my friend were pierced with them but we were lucky enough (or my grandma just knew something about piercing at this time) and my ears were pierced with a needle. Everything was done good and symmetrical and i never had problems with healing them or with stretching afterward.

  20. @25

    I think you need to re read my post im no ear piercing gun advocate-

    i cant see what the problem is really, spout off all ya want, but if piercers wont “do” kids ears then jewellery stores etc will. as long as its safe and consentual.

    (aimed at what the piercer is doing in the post, not about piercing guns)

    i had my lobes pierced at a jewellery store years ago, and i now have 80mm tunnels, so go figure.

    (i shall elaborate- years ago there where no piercers, so the only option in my shitty small town was a jewellers, and anyway a piercer wouldnt have done mine as i was young, again making a point that it is possible to be lucky)

    should i also point out now that i’ve been piercing over 10 years, i don’t use guns, as i undderstand the problems, but the other 4 studios in our city do?? shall i bash on anout the guns etc like most others do or should i offer the point that again –

    i cant see what the problem is really, spout off all ya want, but if piercers wont “do” kids ears then jewellery stores etc will. as long as its safe and consentual

  21. As a piercer, I refuse to do kids who can’t come into my shop, ask me for what THEY want, and then sit down and have a fairly competent conversation with me about how they are going to take care of their new jewelry. As a father, I have always enjoyed working with kids, and I tend to ask them to come back a day or two after the original consult so that I can verify they understood what we talked about.

    I will never endorse a piercing gun, but it seems to be overlooked that just because you went to a piercing shop and got it done with a needle, that that is not always the best option either. There are a lot of unskilled artists out there, and many more who have never worked with children and do not take into consideration the future growth of that child’s lobes. A kid’s ears are not going to be the same size at 18 as they were at 7.

    If you’re going to go the route of a piercer, make sure they have worked with kids before, and can show you.

  22. When I was 8 years old I decided I wanted my ears pierced. My mum was more than happy to let me with one condition: I had to get them done with a needle. My mum is not at all modded, but I thank her so much for her knowledge of safe body piercing. I can honestly say a piercing gun has never touched my body!

  23. I’m sorry Patty, I’m not trying to troll or anything! I just felt by saying that a jewelry store will do it as long as it is safe and consensual, a gun piercing on a baby or a kid is neither of those things!

    Consent is based on valid information and an ear piercing with a gun most certainly isn’t safe.

    And considering you seemed to show a sarcasm to the idea that your jewelry store gun piercing went just fine, I could assume that you had no quarrels with them…

    I know the internet has no intonation, but thats how I read it.. Sorry for the misunderstanding..

  24. I can’t stand when people say they’re “gauging” their ears. Ugh. ‘Gauge’ is not a verb!

  25. john joyce did my tragus and he was so professional and sterile i was completely at ease and felt just the slightest pain. im sure this little girl felt the same way

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