A Mantis Piercing Trend?

I love that whenever an odd piercing that works aesthetically is done, there are always a rapid-fire set of them that follow around the world. First we saw the ones from Massimo Cortese in Naples (who dubbed it the “Mantis”), and then not long afterward Pauly got them from Mateo Way (calling his “The Devil’s Threeway”), and now Luis Garcia has done a set, calling them simply “forward facing nostrils”. These are pictured here.

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Brian Skellie reminded me that his wife Sandrine has had these piercings for over a decade (self-done), which I should have remembered when I met her back then here in Toronto (Caitlin is still mad at me because I let them smoke in my house but not her). Sandrine’s are the oldest that I can think of in the modern piercing scene. Each of these individuals wears the piercings slightly differently. Pauly and the Greek client fit them into a collection of very heavy facial work, Luis’s client balances them off of a pair of high nostrils, and Sandrine makes them work with the daintiest of beads — actually 1.5mm diamonds from NeoMetal. You wouldn’t think that such an odd piercing would be so aesthetically successful, but it is.

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It should be noted that this piercing also has a solid pedigree in a number of indigenous societies.

The Devil’s Three-Way

Following up on the “Mantis Piercing” nasal tip piercing that I posted a few days ago, Pauly Unstoppable Mowery had Mateo Way of Way Body Arts in Santa Cruz do what they are calling “The Devil’s Three-Way” on his nose. Since Pauly has massive stretched piercings, there are of course a few ways this could have been done (it could have come out of the septum like septrils do for example), but unless I’m mistaken, these are three microdermals, [EDIT: I am mistaken! They are neometal barbells, coming through from inside the nose!] which he’s looking forward to getting some bling for when they’re nice and healed. I constantly enjoy Pauly — he is always uniquely beautiful, and always finds new ways to express his character.

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Mantis Piercing

I’m assuming you can tell from the purple marking line on his face which piercing is new. Now, you might be thinking to yourself, why is Shannon calling it a Mantis piercing? Is he going soft in his old age? Because that’s clearly an Austin Bar, not a Mantis piercing! But where you’re wrong is that you’re not looking at one piercing (an Austin bar is a horizontal piercing across the tip of the nose, like a far-forward nasallang), but two. The mantis piercing is essentially a very strangely placed — but still essentially standard — nostril piercing, which also means that it has faster healing than the Austin bar in general. Instead of going out to the side of the nostril, it goes straight forward, and in a pair gives the illusion of being a horizontal bar. It’s not a piercing that would work well on its own, and while you don’t need as many piercings as this perforated fellow, it is a piercing that looks best in combination with other nose work.

This Mantis piercing was done on Nicola by 23 year-old body piercer Massimo Cortese of Wildink Tattoo Studio in Naples, Italy, and currently guest spotting in Ferrara. Done centrally, this piercing would be called a “rhino“, but off-centre Massimo is calling it the Mantis, which I think is a good name for it. Oh and I had fun joking to my daughter that if this person sneezes that everyone around them has to take cover because all that body jewelry goes shooting in every direction like shrapnel. But in all seriousness, I suspect that this piercing in part came about because this gentleman is simple so covered in piercings that they spent some time brainstorming for new places to pierce!

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No Need For Temples


Hoo boy, so, I was honestly just kidding yesterday when I mused about the possibility of Nelson Mandela being dragged through the mud by some commenters, but sure enough, it literally took only a single post before a political flame war broke out. Hey, fine. I guess Mr. Mandela is a more polarizing figure than I’d anticipated. But you know, I do so enjoy a challenge, and this gorgeous portrait of the Dalai Lama was too good not to share, but I’m curious now—what sorts of terrible, unseemly revelations will be unearthed following its posting? Did he buy an HD TV, but hasn’t yet sprung for an HD tuner? Has it been weeks since he’s emptied the dehumidifier? Is he hiding a Kenyan birth certificate? Don’t let me down, folks.

(Beautiful tattoo by Dave Allen at Preying Mantis Tattoo in Lakewood, Colorado.)

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See more in Portrait Tattoos (Tattoos)

Ohhh, Bug Plugs


That saucy little minx Uranium Hobo just sent in these shots of him sporting some home-made bug plugs. It was his first time casting in resin and, while he says they’re not perfect, everything is “glass smooth” except for a few nicks around the edges that he says don’t affect anything. These ones were rather heavy and stretched out the piercings somewhat, so next up will be a thinner pair, more suitable for long-term wear, filled with mantises.

See more in Ear Stretching (past 1/2″) (Ear Piercing)