Archive for March, 2011
Trendsetting for spring, leather is making a plunge right into resort wear. Designers such as Phillip Lim have incorporated leather into their trench coats, rompers, chino pants, and cropped jackets, which delivers a powerful accent to the subtlety of spring.
The muse for the collection is Studio 54 icon Bianca Jagger. Friend of pop artist Andy Warhol and ex-wife of Mick Jagger, Bianca was a 70s party goer and jet setter, but also an activist. Her influential style is most noted for sexy powerhouse looks with straight slacks, buttoned up collars, and blazers.
Consider this hot new trend the double standard of leather: usually a staple for fall or winter (having the purpose of warmth and protection from cold, harsh conditions), now forwarding the idea that even in the hottest of months, this material can make the sweetest ensemble a little salty.
Even if bomber jackets and leather shorts aren’t in your plans to pack for the next beach vacation, leather jewelry can always be a great option for your wardrobe. Accenting with a leather mesh cord or multi strand piece can give your outfit that extra bit of rugged flair without dominating the whole ensemble.
In recent years with the popularity of modern astrology and the newest developments in astronomical research, the zodiac has become an interesting and noted topic of discussion. The mass acceptance of astrological paraphernalia has also led to a new trend in the world of piercings: zodiac body jewelry.
Zodiac jewelry is fun and unique, and believe it or not, has a history all its own. The zodiac itself dates back further than 1000 BC, when different ancient civilizations began mapping, recording, and naming the constellations. Astronomers from ancient Babylon are credited with crafting the first twelve section division of the sun’s ecliptic path. Even today, the common English names for the twelve astrological signs are not actually English, but the original Latin.
The modern zodiac was not completely defined until very recently, when the exact boundaries of it’s corresponding constellations were fixed and designated in 1930. The twelve Western signs are Aries (March 21st-April 19th), Taurus (April 20th-May20th), Gemini (May21st-June 20th), Cancer (June 21st-July 22nd), Leo (July 23rd-August 22nd), Virgo (August 23rd-September 22nd), Libra (September 23rd- October 22nd), Scorpio (October 23rd-November 21st), Sagittarius (November 22nd-December 21st), Capricorn (December 22nd-January 19th), Aquarius (January 20th-February 18th), and Pisces (February 19th-March 20th).
Zodiac jewelry, including corresponding gems and birthstones, dates back to biblical times, although this too did not find it’s modern definition until the early 1900′s. Ever since the 1970′s when astrology and horoscopes experienced a surge in popularity in the United States, all kinds of Zodiac jewelry have become available. Some of the more common items include necklaces and pendants, charm bracelets, and belly rings. These pieces generally come in silver, steel, pewter, enamel, or glass, and some even have clear or colored gemstones. With more and more people wearing their astrological sign around their necks and on their bellies, the world may just be less likely to hear that age old question, “what’s your sign?”
There are five common types of nose rings for a standard nostril piercing: the hoop, the bone, l-shaped, nose screws, and the fishtail. Four of these five are generally worn by necessity or preference, and the fifth, the fishtail, can be made into any variety of the others.
Fishtails are straight nose rings with an extra long length and are specifically made to be custom fit by a piercer. This item can be bent into an l-shaped piece or some type of screw, and because it's custom fit, it remains a great option for those who have abnormal sizing needs.
The nose screw comes down straight from the bottom of the decoration or gem setting and then curves into a semi-circle or crescent type shape. This style of nose jewelry is incredibly common, particularly in items containing gold or expensive gemstones, because of its super secure fit.
L-shaped nose rings are also prevalent. These have a shaping that appears as an upercase "L," hence the title, "l-shaped." Because of the ninety degree angle and the extension of material beyond it that rests against the inside of the nose, an l-shape will also have a fairly secure fit. The standard length of this item from bottom of the setting to bend of the l is usually six to seven millimeters, though this may be shorter for specialty sizes.
The popularity of gems in nose piercing is definitely tied to the nose bone, a six or seven millimeter length straight piece, tipped with a slightly wider sphere to hold it in place. Easily removable and very comfortable, these are still a good fit, and are generally set with a gem solitaire. No excess material sits against the inner side of the nostril, however, once inserted the ball shaped end will prevent the jewelry from falling out.
Lastly, there's the nose hoop. Hoops will come in a variety of sizes and colors and are most often made of surgical grade stainless steel or titanium. A favorite during the nineties, this model of nose decoration has recently experienced a resurgence. Most hoops have an open end with a small flat disc on one side that rests just inside the piercing. This category is simple, comfortable, and also very traditional.
Any of the options available can be worn based on comfort preference, sizing, or aesthetics. The bottom line: decorative piercing jewelry for noses isn't just beautiful, but surprisingly versatile.
Of all the possible facial piercings, one of the more common and aesthetically acceptable piercings is the labret. This piercing is located underneath the bottom lip. Any of the skin under the bottom lip can be pierced but there are specific names for each placement of the piercing. Centered under the bottom lip, usually halfway between the lip line and the top of the chin is called the labret. The labret is pierced with a needle going through the outside of the lip and directly out the inside at the same spot. This is pierced with two different types of jewelry. The thickness of a person's bottom lip and the skin under their lip will help determine the size and type of the jewelry which is best to use. The first would be a stud; a flat back disk which sits against the inside of the lower lip, with the shaft of the jewelry going through the lip to the outside, where a ball, spike, or gem is threaded to the end. This leaves only the jewel showing on the face. Another type of jewelry to be used for the labret is a ring. The ring would go through the skin and the ends would meet outside. Rings that meet with a ball that fits between the two ends and closes off the opening are called Ball Closure Rings (BCR's). These are very popular and the balls come in many colors. An alternative to using beads as a closure to a labret ring, is a segment ring. This works the same way, the ring passing through the skin, and where the two ends meet, there is a continued piece of the ring which fits in between the ring ends and closes up the opening. Once a labret piercing heals there is another type of jewelry which can be worn, usually called a hook. This jewelry has a ball, spike or gem that sits on the outside of the lip and then as the shaft passes through the inside of the lip, it bends up and runs along your mouth and out over the top of your bottom lip. The end of this appears in a hook shape over your bottom lip and is threaded with a jewel on the end of the shaft as well.
The healing time for a labret piercing is usually 6 to 8 weeks. The care consists of (most importantly) avoiding touching the area, and if necessary making sure to wash hands before doing so. Using sea salt to rinse the mouth and area three times a day is also very effective to aid the healing process. Most piercers will recommend not smoking, applying makeup to the area and other specific directions, so be sure to follow their instructions in order to speed along your healing.
As with all piercings, there can be possible problems if the correct care is not taken. Make sure when getting this piercing you choose the best fitting jewelry for yourself. You will want the jewelry with the most comfortable backing that sits inside your mouth. Some jewelry can irritate the gums and teeth by rubbing against them, causing dental problems. Jewelry rubbing against your teeth can wear away your enamel, and against your gums can actually wear down your gum line, so be sure to check out the different jewelry options and choose the type that fits your mouth best.
Hey, BodyCandy blog readers, guess what we found? A whole crew of Spring Breakers who are in love with BodyCandy Jewelry! This group went on Spring Break in Florida, and they sent us some pics to show us just how much fun they have wearing some of their favorite pieces of jewelry and accessories from our online store. Check it out!
One member of the Spring Break crew writes:
Last week we vacationed in Sarasota, Florida and stayed right on Siesta Key Beach. It was amazing; 80 degrees and sunny every day. Between lying on the beach all day and going out to the clubs at night, we rocked some awesome jewelry. Hot new belly rings, light up earrings, glow in the dark belt buckles…
Belly rings ranged from palm trees to flamingo’s to martini glasses; all appropriate for the tropical setting.
|During the day, I wore my new personalized Lucite necklace. (I chose to have my name customized in pink on my necklace and I got so many complements!)|
I also wore my personalized flip flops on the beach. People couldn’t believe
their eyes when I showed them my name on my own sandals. I wore some toe
rings too during the day and at night. I really liked the invisible toe
ring because it fit snug around my toe and the charm really stood out,
but all the toe rings added that extra something to my outfit.
|At night, my friends and I wore these light-up CZ stud earrings that literally lit up the room. Each of us had different colors; blue, green, red, multi-color and purple. We sure got a lot of attention! One girl came up to me and asked where I got my earrings, and I told her bodycandy.com. She went on to explain that she gets all of her jewelry there too and was going to order the light-up studs tomorrow so that she could impress her friends!|
The guys I went to Florida with wore glow in the dark personalized belt buckles one night. They thought they were so cool that they had their names glowing from their belts! It really did look pretty awesome when it was dark. They told me that the glow belt buckles started so many conversations with new people and that they wanted to wear them all the time!
After being in Florida for 5 days, I did not want to leave, but I know once Summer rolls around I’ll be sporting some new trendy jewelry from BodyCandy!
Would you like to see your photos here? Send us your best Spring Break and vacation photos of you and your friends wearing BodyCandy jewelry for a chance to be featured in the BodyCandy blog. E-mail pictures along with names, stories, or comments here: Submit Photos
With so many different materials out there, it can be difficult to decide exactly what’s best when it comes to body jewelry. Most items made to be worn in a body piercing will come in several styles and types, and for the conscious consumer, it’s always a good idea to be aware of all the facts.
Gold, for example, can sometimes be confusing, as many different types of “gold” jewelry appear on the market. For body jewelry in particular, most of what’s available will be gold tone (not real gold), 18 kt gold (75% gold with metal alloys composing the secondary percentage), 14 kt gold (about 58.5% gold along with other metals), or gold plated (a different type of metal, coated in some type of real gold). 14 kt gold is the most prevalent for this type of jewelry because the trace metals added in with the real gold provide strength that allows for everyday wear. Some manufacturers will use metals like copper in 14 kt gold items, while others prefer to use sterling silver for quality or to insure the item is hypoallergenic.
Sterling silver as a material is also very common for items like nose and belly piercings, because this metal is high shine and durable. Other metals used for piercing jewelry include surgical grade stainless steel, and titanium. Stainless steel items will often be labeled as 316L Stainless Steel, which refers to the composition of the metal. This type of steel is surgical grade and is approved for use in surgical components like hip replacement parts. Titanium is also a surgical grade material, and is often used for both initial piercing, and continued wear. Grade 23 titanium, which is used for quality body jewelry items is hypoallergenic and extremely resistant to weathering and fracture. This type of titanium is even used in aircraft framing! The phrase “anodized titanium” will appear in jewelry specifications as well. Anodized means that there is a titanium coating over other material (usually 316L stainless steel).
The best components by far for those who have allergies are going to be made out of bioplast, however, rather than one of these metals. Bioplast is a non-metallic, movable material that is completely biocompatible. This type of jewelry and barbells are often recommended by piercers, especially for healing piercings or prevention of infections in individuals who may have skin sensitivity or allergies. Bioplast comes in a wide variety of colors and styles, just like metal items, and in some cases can even be sliced down and rethreaded for custom length.
No matter the type of jewelry, any of the materials covered here are bound to be reliable and fashionable, to meet changing lifestyle needs. And when in doubt, your friendly neighborhood piercer is a wonderful resource for even more information about what you can and should be wearing in your favorite piercing.
In the United States, as in most countries, toe rings serve mainly as a fashion accessory for the foot. What most people don’t know however, is that toe rings have a very interesting history. In India, a toe ring is worn on the second toe of the left foot of a Hindu woman to symbolize marriage. This would be similar to the traditional wedding ring in Western culture. Some women in India wear them on just one foot, both feet, or have a set for all five toes. The rings are usually crafted in a hoop form that’s open in the back for easy removal. Men also sometimes wear them to symbolize strength and masculinity. Toe rings are referred to by different names in different cultures; in Hindi a toe ring is called a bichiya (pronounced: bee-chee-ya).
Toe rings were introduced to the United States around 1973 by Marjorie Borell. After returning from India, she started selling and manufacturing them in New York at her own trendy retail outlet called Fiorucci. She eventually sold her designs to other companies and the idea took off. The wearing of toe rings in India is still a commonly practiced custom today, and they remain a sought after fashion accessory in the United States as well.
Coming in third on the list of most common body piercing sites, it's no wonder the nose has grabbed modern America's attention. From celebrities to rock stars, and even neighborhood teenagers, a nose stud or hoop is becoming increasingly commonplace in our popular culture. The practice of nasal piercing however, has it's own far longer and much further reaching history. Documentation exists dating back as far as 1500 BCE.
Throughout the centuries, nose piercing has been a prevalent cultural practice amongst numerous tribes and ethnic groups, including Hindus, many ancient middle eastern tribes and the modern Beduin, South American peoples like the Mayans and Incas, groups of Aborigines in Australia, and several indigenous African tribes. The gift of golden nose earrings is even mentioned in the book of Genesis.
The placement and adornment of piercing means many different things to different peoples. South and central American civilizations would often pierce the septum and decorate it with feathering or bone fragments as a symbol of status, while the Vedic cultures of India pierce female noses primarily on the left side in keeping with the belief that this improves feminine health. In certain middle eastern tribes, the size and shape of a nose ring is even an interpretation of wealth.
Other variations of nose jewelry also exist worldwide. These include multiple piercings of a single nostril, gauging or stretching of a septum piercing (usually worn as either a large ring or a plug), attachment of ear lobe or cartilage piercings to the nose with a decorative chain, and even piercing of all three major points in the nasal cartilage (septum and each nostril.)
No matter the type of decoration worn, the evolution of nose piercing in America has been relatively slow in comparison to the rest of the globe. Increasing in popularity after World War II, piercing of the nose in particular finally reached mass acceptance along primarily the East and West coasts of the US in the 90's. Arguably it's greatest boost came about in the early 1970's riding the coat tails of the anarchist movement and the mass circulation of Punk music.
From ancient mysteries to modern day social magic, nasal piercing has had its share of fastidious ups and downs. The one thing most of us can agree on: whether its a shiny silver hoop or more sparkly gem laced fair, a perfectly pierced nose is nothing to sneeze at.
A BCR or a bead (ball) captive ring is one of the most popular types of body jewelry. BCRs are also commonly called CBRs which means captive bead (ball) rings. They can be worn in almost any piercing because they are available in many different sizes and gauges. All styles of BCRs consist of a ring with a small opening and a ball or bead that fits snugly into the opening, thus keeping the jewelry in place. The beads/balls usually have small indents in either side to accommodate the ends of the ring but sometimes the beads will have a hole drilled all the way through them in order to make it easier to fit. The rings are made of many different materials including surgical stainless steel, titanium, niobium as well as acrylic. The beads are made of many different materials including steel, glass, stone, acrylic and more. The beads can have embedded gems or crystals, while others may be formed into different shapes including some that have additional charms that dangle off the bead. These rings are very versatile and you can easily match them to your own personal style. Captive rings are great for many piercings because the rounded, closed shape makes them less likely to snag on your clothes, etc. The tight fit of the beads also makes it hard to lose the rings because they can’t fall out so long as the bead is in place.
Many people find it difficult to get the beads in and out of the ring but here are some tips and techniques to make changing your jewelry easier. The safest and easiest way to change your BCR is to take a trip to your piercer. They will generally change jewelry free of charge and they have the proper tools to work with tight-fitting jewelry. They will also make sure that your new jewelry is clean before it is inserted into your piercing.
If you can’t get to the piercer and you want or need to change your jewelry yourself, make sure to follow these simple rules. It’s best to do this in a place with a lot of light, like your bathroom, because the beads are usually tiny and hard to handle and are often dropped. Cover the drain in the sink with a paper towel or tissue so that the bead or ring can’t go down your drain if you do drop them. Get a clean small cup or dish to put your old jewelry in once it is removed and to hold the bead from the new piece so that it won’t roll away while you’re inserting the new ring. First, make sure that your new jewelry and your hands are very clean. To do this, scrub your hands with an antibacterial soap and very warm water and then lather up your new jewelry with more soap and rinse and dry all the surfaces very well. The second thing you should do is to practice popping the bead in and out of the new ring a few times before it is inserted into your piercing. To get the bead out of the ring, hold the ring firmly between your thumb and forefinger and grasp the bead tightly between the thumb and forefinger of your other hand. Twist the ring slightly while applying pressure on the bead and it should pop out. If you are having trouble removing the bead, try wedging your thumbnail under the edge of the bead but be careful not to drop the bead when it pops out. To replace the bead, line up the bead between your fingers where you can see the indents on both ends, and then rest the bottom indent on the end of the ring opening. Hold the ring tightly while you carefully push the top indent into the ring opening.
Once you have gotten the bead into and out of the ring a few times, rewash your hands and the jewelry, especially if you have dropped any part of the jewelry because you don’t ever want to introduce bacteria into your piercing. Next, carefully remove the bead from your current jewelry and slowly rotate the ring through your piercing until the ring opening is lined up with either end of your piercing and gently slid the ring out of the hole. If you feel the ring snag or get caught on any part of your skin you should stop, slide the ring back into place and try again. Looking in the mirror while doing this is often more confusing than helpful so try to do it by the way it feels. Once you remove the old jewelry, clean it before putting it into the dish because you don’t want any germs or bacteria from your old jewelry to get onto the new jewelry or your hands.
Next, remove the bead from your new jewelry, place the new bead in the dish and slowly put the end of the ring opening into the opening of your piercing. Gently rotate the jewelry through your piercing until the end of the ring opening pops out the other side. Just like when you removed your old jewelry, if you encounter any snags or pain do not try to force the ring through the hole. You should stop, remove the ring and try again. Once you have the ring inserted through your piercing, hold the bead firmly between your thumb and forefinger (like you did while practicing) and line up the bottom indent with the bottom of the ring opening. With your other hand, hold the ring and be careful not to twist your piercing. Firmly push the top indent of the bead into the ring opening until you feel it snap into place. If you drop the bead at any time make sure to wash it (and your hands) thoroughly before attempting to replace the bead in the ring. Changing a BCR is a tricky task but with a little practice it can be done. Just make sure to keep all the parts clean while you’re doing it so you can avoid infections.
If your BCR is a larger-size gauge you will probably need special tools to open and close the ring. These tools are called a ring opener, which stretches the ring to release the bead, and a pair of ring-closing pliers, which tighten the ring back to the right size to hold the bead firmly. Piercers will almost always use these tools to change any BCRs because it is easier and doesn’t put as much stress on the piercing. You should avoid using household tools to try to open and close your rings as they can scratch the metal ring and leave a rough surface that can scratch or cut the inside of your piercing as well as harbor bacteria and germs.
If you follow these rules, wearing new BCRs is easy, fun and fashionable. You can change your jewelry like you change your mood!
Most people are confused about the difference between a labret piercing and a Monroe piercing. They are both in the same area, however, placement of the jewelry gives them their identification. The most common labret piercing is centered below the lower lip just above the crease of the chin, but can almost be positioned anywhere around the mouth (higher, lower, in multiples ect). A labret is sometimes referred to as a "tongue pillar". The common gauge size for a labret is 14 but it can range from 12 to 16 depending on placement and style. There are many options for the type of ornament that someone with this piercing can wear, for example; a ball, gem, stud, ring, stone, spike ect. Labret's were originally worn by the American Northwest Coast Indians as a symbol of status. The word labret comes from the Latin word labrum, meaning "lip".
One example of labret ornamentation is a stud. This is a short barbell with a slim disc on one side and some type of decoration on the other. The disc would go inside the mouth and the gem/ball would be shown on the face. The ornament can be twisted off so that it fits through the piercing, and is screwed back on or replaced with a different charm. A ring is also an option for the labret. This is a small circular barbell that is custom bent or widened into a "U" or "C" shape to fit you. The ring is safe and comfortable. It is important to wear the right type of jewelry for your piercing to ensure safety.
The Monroe is a piercing that is placed off center above the upper lip, meant to resemble a beauty mark. The Monroe is also known as a Madonna or Crawford, named after the three famous women: Marilyn Monroe, Madonna and Cindy Crawford. This piercing is very glamorous, representing a beauty mark adorned by a piece of stud jewelry, like a sparkling diamond! Usually, if the piercing is on the right side of the face it is called a Madonna, and if it is placed on the left side, it is referred to as a Monroe. Placement depends on personal preference. The Monroe piercing has been seen on several celebrities, such as Amy Winehouse and Ashley Massaro, and even on male celebrities like Trace Cyrus.
Since both of these types of piercings are in and around the mouth, you must be cautious during aftercare. You should brush your teeth frequently to cut down on bacteria and stay away from smoking. In addition, a rinse can help reduce swelling and quicken the healing time. The healing process can vary from person to person, but for a labret piercing healing takes approximately six to eight weeks and for a Monroe it is typically about eight to twelve weeks.
Remember, you can use the same piece of jewelry for both the Monroe and the labret piercing. These piercings are becoming more and more popular because they create a very pleasing aesthetic. Just make sure to use the right jewelry and to take extra care of your piercing.