Archive for Labret and Monroe Piercings
With the growing acceptance of all things cannabis lately, the 20th of April will carry more of a reason for celebration than ever before. No matter your choice on whether or not to participate in the holiday’s hazy traditions, we’ve got you covered in today’s post with some fun 420 history and a plethora of awesome weed-related jewelry and accessories.
But why this date? What makes April 20th and the time of 4:20 so special to the cannabis community? There are a lot of myths surrounding the origins of this holiday, which isn’t too surprising since some weed enthusiasts are known to have difficulties remembering the time to get the pizza out of the oven. Likewise, the story itself is nothing short of what you would expect from the celebration considered the Oktoberfest for potheads.
4/20: A Brief History
Let’s take a little trip back to the year 1971 – the year when five high school students from California first uttered the term “4:20” whilst meeting daily at that specific time under their school’s statue to partake in a smoke session before wandering around the wilderness searching for a legendary lost cannabis crop allegedly left behind by “some dude from the Coast Guard.”
Despite never stumbling upon their pot field treasure, the term “420” lived on in infamy as a code to conceal drug use from parents and teachers that eventually found its way into pop culture (thanks to one of the high schooler’s older brothers being a friend of the bassist for the Grateful Dead) to become the number that is now synonymous with the plant and the culture that surrounds its consumption.
A 2014 article from Vice News has a bunch of interesting facts and research about this day and its origins if you feel like incorporating a little knowledge into your holiday this year.
One of my favorite tidbits from the article is the fact that the Denver, Colorado Interstate mile marker 420 has been stolen so many times that it was replaced with mile marker 419.99 to deter further theft.
If you’re looking for some 4/20 friendly body jewelry to show off your love for the holiday, we’ve got a TON of awesome options for you to check out, including:
- belly button rings – so many dope dangles!
- nipple rings
- industrial barbells
- captive rings
- cartilage earrings
- eyebrow rings
- nose rings
- labrets for lip piercings
- tongue rings
- plugs and tapers
Want something even more resourceful? Check out our 0 gauge pipe talon taper (it’s the blue Sherlock-like piece in the above image) made from unobtanium borosilicate glass for the perfect piece to add to your stash.
Another cool option for 4/20 body jewelry is our glow-in-the-dark items! A selection of our logo inlay jewelry features the ability to glow, which only adds to the righteous style you’ll gain from wearing it. This colorful rasta pot leaf belly ring is an especially popular choice on our site.
We also carry a selection of weed-themed jewelry for those who haven’t delved into the vast world of body modification just yet, featuring fashion jewelry and accessories including the products featured in the image below. Additionally, a lot of our jewelry with rasta colors and marijuana leaf designs are currently a part of our clearance section for an easily affordable celebration.
We’ve all been there – you’re putting in your new body jewelry and the ball drops to the floor, never to be seen again. For those accidents that occur with a bead captive ring, you’re going to need a different type of replacement ball than what you would get for threaded barbell body jewelry. The ball for securing BCRs is held in place with the help of tiny divots or dimples on each side, which securely fit in the opening of the circular ring.
If that just isn’t an option for you or you would like to have a go at it yourself, we have some tools, tips, and tricks to assist you in showing off your BCR like it was meant to be:
Tips Before Getting Started
- Change your jewelry in a place with a lot of light like your bathroom because the beads are usually tiny and difficult to handle.
- Cover the drain of the sink if there is one in the vicinity with a paper towel or tissues so that you won’t lose the ball down the drain.
- Get a clean small cup or dish to put the jewelry in when you’re exchanging the pieces so nothing escapes while you’re in the process.
- Practice popping the bead in and out of the captive ring several times prior to actually trying to insert into your piercing (if you’re not sure how to do this, read through the step by step directions below before trying).
- If you’re having trouble removing the bead from the captive ring, try to wedge your thumbnail under the edge of the bead, but be careful not to drop the bead when it pops out!
- Keep your hands and your jewelry clean throughout the process to prevent infection (ESPECIALLY if you drop any part of the jewelry!)
- If you feel the ring getting caught on any part of your skin when changing it, slide the ring back into its original place and try again.
- Try not to look in the mirror while changing your jewelry because this is often more confusing than helpful when compared to changing it assisted by your sense of touch.
Step by Step
- Remove the bead from your current captive ring and slowly rotate the ring through your piercing until the ring opening is lined up with either end of your piercing.
- Hold the ring firmly between your thumb and forefinger before grasping the bead tightly between the thumb and forefinger of your opposite hand. Twist the ring slightly while applying pressure on the bead – it should pop right out.
- Gently slide the ring out of the hole.
- Clean the captive ring you just removed before putting it into the cup or dish you have ready.
- Remove the bead from your new captive ring, place that new bead into the cup or dish with your old jewelry, and slowly put the end of the new captive ring’s opening into the hole of your piercing.
- Gently rotate the jewelry through your piercing until the end of the ring comes through the opposite hole.
- Once it’s inserted through your piercing, hold the new captive ring’s bead and line it up between your fingers so that you can see the dimpled indents on both ends of the ball. Rest the bottom indent on one end of the captive ring’s opening and steadily hold the ring while carefully pushing the top indent to fill the opening – you should hear it snap into place.
- Ta-da! Look and feel fabulous 😉
So, the most important part of all that? Keep everything as clean as you can! If you follow those rules, then wearing your new BCR will be easy, fun, and fashionable without the stress and frustration of going at it alone.
Ready to look for a captive ring of your own? Check out our previous style guide post on everything captive rings have to offer!
Not sure about the size you need? Check out this posting on proper sizing of captive rings to ensure you get a perfect fit.
Watch and Learn
If you’re someone who prefers to see something done before they do it themselves, then this video is perfect for you! Inserting and removing the circular barbell is the easy part, but many proudly pierced individuals find putting that dang ball back in place the most frustrating part of all.
Here at BodyCandy.com, we carry a variety of useful tools that can help you get to your perfectly pierced style more smoothly and with minimal stress on the jewelry. You should avoid using household tools to open and close your captive ring because this method can scratch the metal ring leaving a rough surface that can damage your piercing (not to mention it’s not exactly sanitary!).
If you’ve been having trouble handling your captive ball or if your BCR is of a larger gauge size, one of these tools should provide you with exactly the assistance you need:
Ball Removal Tool
This can and will literally save your balls! Many don’t know that this type of tool exists, but it is an essential accessory for any pierced style. It’s small and portable, so you can change styles on the go without worrying about fiddling with tiny ball ends. The ball removal tool has a rubber end that grips the ball to give you a little friction to twist it off from your jewelry without the risk of dropping it. This is a great tool for those with butter fingers or hands too big to handle little pieces.
Ring Opening and Closure Pliers
For stubborn captive rings that need some adjustment, there are a variety of tools that can be implemented to make your life a little easier. Ring opening pliers create enough wiggle room to allow the ball to more easily be placed back in its spot on the ring.
How to Use Ring Opening Pliers:
1. Place nose of pliers into the center of the captive ring.
2. Squeeze the handles together until the captive ring is held fast by the pliers and rests within the appropriate grooves.
3. Squeeze the handles gently until the captive opens just slightly and the captive bead becomes loose. Be careful not to squeeze too much or else the jewelry may be damaged.
Start by using the tool in small increments and then remove the jewelry from the pliers to check the progress (measured by how easy or difficult the ball is to move) so that you don’t bend the ring too far, but just in case you do, we have a tool for that too. Ring closure tools look a lot like the pliers used to open up the jewelry but are used to adjust a ring to make it smaller, just in case you don’t know your own strength and made it too big trying to open it up.
Ball End Grabbers
Since we are well aware that holding onto those tiny balls can be quite damaging to our mental state, lower the risk of a dropped ball with tools specifically designed to keep a tight grip. These types of tools come in different shapes and sizes, so make sure you’re getting one designed for what you need. One option is a tool that has a claw-like grabbing mechanism to grasp ball ends that are rolling around in your jewelry box; another option is a tool that looks a lot like tweezers with rounded tips that are used to hold the ball end while you are maneuvering it into the grooves to fit back into the captive ring.
Next time you have a stylish captive ring in your sights, don’t pass it by. You’ll be able to buy and use this type of body jewelry with confidence knowing you won’t have to fight it to wear it.
Not sure what to get for that hard to shop for person on your list this holiday? Undecided on what direction to go in? Shop the BodyCandy gift guide for our top picks for the modified beauties in your life!
Piercings should be an acceptable part of the work environment, but we know that isn’t true everywhere. Unfortunately many employers still view piercings as “unprofessional,” and may expect you to remove or cover up your body jewelry while on the clock. They can be a health and safety hazard in some industries (fast food, restaurants, jobs that require you to use industrial machinery, etc.) though, and that should be taken into consideration if you decide to get pierced.
If you’re in a field where your safety or the safety of others isn’t at risk due to your piercings, then here’s a few tips on how to hide your piercings and the types of jewelry you can use to make them look less noticeable.
Micro nose rings are a great option if you’re going for the less likely to be noticed approach. Sometimes the reason for covering a piercing is more of a formal appearance standard than discriminating against them altogether. This way you can still be pierced without drawing everyone’s eyes to your piercing. However, if your boss/teacher pays close attention to detail, these might not be the best idea.
If you’re looking for a 100% guaranteed way to hide your piercing, retainers are the way to go. These clear, bioplast rings will make it nearly impossible for someone to notice your piercing. Options like these are also available for tongue piercings, lip piercings and curved barbells for belly button piercings.
Septum piercings are one of the easiest piercings to hide because, depending on the type of jewelry you wear, you can easily flip your septum ring up inside of your nose. Consider choosing from jewelry that is labeled as a septum retainer if you know you may need to do hide your ring for work or school. These rings look awesome when they’re showing too!
Body piercings can be a permanent investment, and for a lot of people, the time and care they have to put into them can determine or detour their decision to get pierced. If you’re considering getting pierced, you should know that you’ll be investing at least a month of your time into the healing process. Aftercare instructions are crucial to healthy healing. If not followed properly, the time it takes to heal can be extended greatly. Before you even read on with healing times, please know the biggest factor in the length of time it takes is you.
While every body is different, if you follow your aftercare directions, you’ll land somewhere within these ranges.
Bridge Piercing (also bindi): 4-6 months
Cartilage (tragus, helix, conch, daith, rook, industrial etc): 3-9 months
Earlobe: 4-8 weeks
Eyebrow: 6-8 weeks
Labret (below the lip, centered): 6-8 weeks
Lip (to the side): 6-8 weeks
Monroe (upper lip): 2-3 months
Navel: 6-9 months
Nipple: 6-9 months (3-4 months for males)
Nostril: 3-4 months
Septum: 4-8 weeks
Tongue: 4-8 weeks
See our friend Stephanie getting, not one, but two new piercings! Her work is being done by our best piercing buddy, James, of American Skin Art located in Buffalo, NY.
Money shot: 0:39 and 1:41
What are Angel bites?
This piercing is two monroe piercings, which are located off to each side and just above the upper lip.
The areas are cleaned and sterilized, then marked with a temporary ink. The piercer may also use a type of measuring device to be sure the placement will exactly symmetrical. The piercings are done one at a time, the clamp is applied to the first side and the area is inspected to see where the back of the jewelry will sit against the gums. This ensures the jewelry won’t be damaging teeth. Once ready, the piercer will the pass the needle through the desired spot, cork off the pointed end, then proceed to follow the needle out with the jewelry. The post is trimmed and the ball end is placed and secured. The process is then repeated on the other side. After a bit of clean up, we’re all done!
These piercings take about 6 to 8 weeks to be healed. Be sure to see your piercer for complete care information!
What is a Monroe Piercing?
Also known as the Madonna or Chrome Crawford, this is a piercing that resembles a beauty mark that is placed off to one side and directly above the upper lip. Placement is towards the corner of the mouth and about 5/16 to 1/2 inch above the lip line.
The piercer will begin by cleaning and marking the area. Often the client will be asked to smile after the temporary marking has been placed , to see how the piercing will sit in other positions than neutral and make sure it will look good. The piercer will use a set of clamps to grasp the upper lip and pull it straight up vertically away from the mouth. This ensures a straight piercing. Consideration must be taken with this piercing as to where the back of the jewelry will sit, as to minimize the risk of damage to the teeth and gums. The needle will be pushed through, corked, and then followed through from the underside of the lip with the desired jewelry. Depending on the client’s taste this could be a plain ball or gem. The area will be cleaned again and then the piercer will give the client their care instructions.
After & Healing
The upper lip has the tenancy to swell for a few days after, this is common and subsides quickly. This piercing takes about 2-3 months or longer, depending on the client’s natural healing capabilities and the care given to it. Initial jewelry is usually a 14 gauge but can range between 16 – 12. The post will be fairly long to accommodate the swelling, your piercer may tell you to come back in a few weeks to switch it out to a shorter one!