The Soapbox

December 9, 2009

Soap Delay

As I mentioned in my post on soap, The Dope on Soap, two antimicrobial soaps made specifically for wound care, Provon and Satin, are often recommended for fresh piercings.  However, Care Tech, the maker of Satin, was ordered to suspend shipping by the FDA while they investigate unauthorized claims.

“The FDA is concerned about Care-Tech’s products because they lack FDA approval, do not conform to any applicable over-the-counter drug monograph, and are not appropriately manufactured.”

Here’s the link to the FDA press release.

In addition, I’ve heard from more than one source that Provon’s manufacturers may be behind in their supply and distribution, so while these situations are no doubt temporary, if you can get your hands on Provon or Satin at your piercing studio or elsewhere, grab ’em!

Meta, Pics & Flicks

Flickr: I’m slowly uploading all my piercing pics to my Flickr Photostream.  I don’t want to upload all of them at once, because the Flickr strip on the blog changes as I upload, and I want a variety for you.

Delicious: Also, I’m working  on moving my bodymod links to my Cloudlb delicious bookmarks account to post all of the links there. In a similar vein as the Flickr pics, they show up on the sidebar as I post them, and there are a lot of them, so keep an eye out for new ones as time goes on. If you have a delicious account, you can add me to your network to get them that way, too.


7000 Years of Jewelry

I’m so excited!  I got this wonderful book — and got a really great bargain on ebay — about the history of jewelry.  It looks to have some great information on body jewelry in history which I hope to share with you once I digest it.  Here’s the link to the Amazon page of the book.

Midnight Baby!

And finally, Welcome to GrandBabyCloud No. 8! BD#2 in Portland had a little girl this morning at midnight.  At home, with a midwife, and in the birthing tub.  Oy.  No name yet, no pics or anything so far, but we are so happy!

fin

Ed./clarity


Orion the Hunter

December 5, 2009

Please welcome Orion, Grandbabycloud No. 7, to the Earth!

Some Meta and a Good Sale:

Yes, it’s snowing on the blog, courtesy of WordPress.  Ho, ho, ho.

And I changed my header once again, although I’m still not satisfied with it. I thought the purple would go well with the blue background, but I like the contrast better.

The pics now showing on my Flickr strip are still Art from My Body–this time taken with the Lolo function on my iphone app.  Still pretty cool, I think! You can see all the piercings pics I’ve posted so far on my Flickr photostream.

BodyArtForms has a sale this month:  Use coupon code LIGHTS2009 at checkout and receive 20% off your entire order for the entire month of December! This sale can not be combined with other coupon codes.


How to Save Money on Body Jewelry

November 27, 2009

Bargain Box

I’ve looked and looked for a nice jewelry box to put my jewelry and tools in, to no avail.  I wanted a large compartment below to put tools, tapers, etc. in, and all of the “jewelry” boxes I find are too small, too fancy and weird for body jewelry (I’m not putting my barbells in a cherry veneer armoire).  So I found this box at my local Hobby Lobby on sale for 50% off!  Making it a true bargain  box for $2.50.! You can find bargains on body jewelry, too, if you look.

First, a word of warning:

DO NOT compromise on the quality of your initial piercing jewelry, or jewelry to be worn in unhealed or troubled piercings. This includes when you are in the process of stretching.  You are trying to convince your body to heal around a wound, and therefore you need highly polished, well machined simple jewelry from an appropriate material for your new piercing.  This means high  quality stainless steel, titanium, stainless steel, glass (or gold or platinum, but this post is about saving money.)  For your initial jewelry purchase, ask your piercer what brands and grades of piercing jewelry they carry, and buy the best starter jewelry you can afford! This is very important for healing your piercing, and not a place to be cheap!

Well-healed piercings can usually wear a wider variety of body jewelry. In fact, you can spend quite a bit of money collecting wonderful jewelry for all your holes.  I never recommend cheaply made, inferior quality body jewelry, but in stable piercings you can compromise a bit, if you know what to look for.

In honor of Black Friday, here are some ways to save on body jewelry: (Note:  Some of the specific deals and offers described are time limited, so if you come across this blog post much past Black Friday 2009, they will be gone.)

Ask Your Piercer

Your first piece of jewelry should normally be purchased from your piercer.  You should never compromise on quality, nor should you choose a piercer or studio on price.  However, it never hurts to ask if your piercer is offering any special deals or discounts. For instance, some piercing studios will offer a second piercing or jewelry at a discount.  They may have some jewelry they are willing to let go on sale, too.  Studios generally buy they jewelry wholesale and mark them up in accordance with standard business practice.  This gives them a little wiggle room for negotiating.  If you develop a good relationship with your piercer and are a good customer, they may be willing to discount your jewelry a bit–it never hurts to ask.  Don’t be obnoxious about it–remember that jewelry sales can be an important part of a piercing studio’s income (and we want to keep those good studios in business!).

Comparison Shop

Always check different retailers for the item of jewelry you are shopping for, including shipping!  Look for deals on shipping.  This can be tedious and time-consuming, though:  maybe I’ll feature some discounts in future posts to help you out.  Steel Navel and BodyArtForms offer free shipping (via USPS mail) on orders over $25. Many retailers also offer freebies and perks with orders–free o-rings, stickers, gauge cards, and even free jewelry!.  Those gauge cards come in handy, believe me!

Sales, Clearances & Seconds

Most online retailers will have a sale link or bin.  Jewelry seconds are also offered sometimes, particularly by manufacturers.  These seconds may be mis-sized slightly, or have irregularities or imperfections, but they might be all right for your purpose.

Steet Navel has both a Sale page and a Clearance Page. BAF also has a Sale page and a Clearance page. Clearance deals are limited and go fast, but you just might find the perfect jewelry for your hole.

Body Circle Designs frequently has sales.  Right now they are having a “Huge Holiday Sale” offering 20% everything.  They are also offering deals on overstocked items. Body Circle Designs manufactures and sells awesome, super  polished, extremely  high quality jewelry.  Highly recommended!

BodyArtForms is offering 30% off Anatometal Super Gemmed Eyelets through November 30. Great deal on these coveted and rather expensive pieces!

One Tribe runs Current Specials–always worth a look!

Newsletters, Special Offers, and Contests

Sign up for all the retailer newsletters you can.  To varying degrees, these newsletters will have special offers for loyal customers.  Some online retailers reward loyal customers with “points” earned, early discounts, or contests.

The winner in this category has to be Steel Navel; the great people at SN are creative in thinking up special offers and contests for their customers.  They have a ton of free stuff to choose from when ordering.   Contests, Twitter Fridays, and special surprises if you participate in their forums.

Tribe Rewards: From Tribalectic.com.  Earn points by uploading pictures and participating.  100  points=$5 off

BodyArtForms, one of my favorite all purpose retailers, has: “free basic mail shipping on orders over $25 (for jewelry only in the USA & Canada). We offer Free jewelry on orders over $30, 4 free black o-rings, a free gauge/measurement card, and a free BAF sticker.”  BAF is also running a Print Ad Contest for a $250 jewelry prize.

Used Body Jewelry

People do sell or trade their body jewelry.  As people go up or down in gauge, retire their piercings, or just need to clean out their jewelry box, they put their used body jewelry up for sale.  I myself would never purchase used body jewelry in acrylic, wood, or organic materials that could not be sterilized in an autoclave, though, and I would take any used jewelry to my piercer for autoclaving first.  (Please keep in mind there’s a difference between cleaning, disinfecting, and sterilizing, and protect yourself!)  Steel Navel offers Classified Ads for forum members.  Other sites may have special boards where people discuss trading, bartering, or selling used body jewelry.

Discount Retailers

Type in “save money on body jewelry” and you’re likely to get a score of cheap ads and marketing come ons.  You can find all the inexpensive “belly rings” and acrylic jewelry you want.  You can save money buying cheaply made, imported jewelry by shopping discount retailers, or buying from mall shops, Wal-Mart, etc. You can save money by shopping Ebay–maybe.  I personally don’t buy this kind of stuff unless it’s for limited wear in healed piercings or emergency replacement jewelry. Keep in mind there’s a lot of cheap crap on the market, of uncertain grade and poor finishing.  If it looks cheap, and the price is too good to be true, consider it second tier jewelry; that is, not to be worn long-term or in new or healig piercings.

As you can see, my bargain jewelry box has plenty of room for tools and –oh! Shh!  Someone’s sleeping!

Note:  I am not affiliated with or compensated by any of the jewelry retailers mentioned.

fin


Mirror, Mirror

May 3, 2009

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Little Seven Spirals

New jewelry again! I got my new pair of Little Seven “shortys.” I show them above along with my Little Seven swan spirals, to show the difference in size (the shorty is on the left). These are 8 gauge pieces.  I love the spirals,  but they are heavy, and a little over the top for work.  The shortys I can wear all week without discomfort, and they are just right for work.  Very nice!

Little Seven is a company that makes beautifully crafted hanging spiral jewelry.  There’s a great picture of their wares on their website here:  Little Seven.

The Mirror Finish

One of the reasons why I’m really loving my Little Seven jewelry is the  finish.  The APP jewelry specs specify a “mirror finish” for initial piercing jewelry.  Why?  Because well manufactured, highly polished jewelry is free from nicks, burrs, etc. which can irritate your piercing. (See my post, Body Jewelry: The Least You Need to Know.)

The Piercing Bible describes it like this:

When jewelry has an uneven surface, the new cells that are formed during healing grow into the irregularities.  Then, when the jewelry shifts or moves, these areas tear.  As this cycle is repeated, scar tissue forms and healing is delayed.  A faulty finish can also introduce bacteria into the wound and cause infection.  (p. 79)

Ouch!  This is one reason why cheap body piercing jewelry Is Not Good! It takes a lot of hand-polishing to get the finish this smooth, and of course that translates into a higher cost. But it’s worth it!

You will have no fear of that problem with any of the Little Seven products.  The finish is not only “mirror,” but satiny smooth to the touch and sensual.  Your fingers just want to slide around the swirls and spirals of the jewelry like fondling a worry stone.

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Here’s a pic of what the shorty looks like on.  I tried to get a pic to show the way the two pieces are reverse images of each other . . . but my face kept getting in the way!  You can buy Little Seven jewelry from fine piercing studios and a variety of online retailers.  I got mine from the good folks at Steel Navel.

fin


Oooh, how I love new jewelry!

March 20, 2009

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As much as we love getting pierced, and all that goes with that process, sometimes it’s all about the jewelry! I just got this pair of large “saddlebag” horn ear bobs from One Tribe. Simple, classy, black, to go with all my black stuff.  Nice enough for work, easy to insert and not the type of in your face, “hello! I’m pierced!” jewelry that could cause employment problems.  These are 8 gauge, and the ends are very sharp and brittle, so they would not be for sleeping in.

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Here’s what they look like on.  There’s also a “short,” or smaller version.  Since they have a nice large surface area on the saddle part, One Tribe points out they can be customized, with the addition of gems, etc. Maybe next time!  I ordered these on a Saturday, and received them in the mail on the following Thursday.  That’s pretty swift!

Here’s the link  to buy these at One Tribe:  Long Saddlebags.


Making Body Jewelry

February 19, 2009

I found this on squidoo, an instructional site.  It’s an interesting pictoral/article entitled, “How Organic Body Jewelry is Made,” which is a somewhat misleading title as it basically refers mostly to horn jewelry made from water buffalo horn, as well as some wood pieces.

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The article is  produced by a company called Siam Intercontinental Handcrafts.  I know nothing about this business, other than they wrote a very nice article.  And apparently sell body jewelry.  Still, the article goes step by step into how they make their jewelry, which is quite interesting.

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Step 5  After the piece has taken on the correct shape and approximate size the hand sanding and hand polishing is begun. Different grades of sand paper are used starting with 120 grit, then 240 through 360 and 600 grit. After the piece has become very smooth we hand polish it using natural bees wax with a small amount of sand added and a strip of natural cotton cloth. The cotton strip is tied to a point at one end and the jewelry is rubbed back and forth along the length of cotton until a high luster is achieved.

Be sure to read the entire article, here.  The pics above belong to Siam Intercontinental Handcrafts, not me.

I was going to do a nifty compare-and-contrast thing here, because there was a great little instructional page on how to machine a steel barbell.  But I can’t find it anymore.  If anyone has a link to that, please let me know.


Keep those holes open

January 7, 2009

fetish-jewelry-2379471374_7657fc053c_mIf you love your piercing, keep your jewelry in at all times!

Occasionally I run across people who are having problems with a piercing, and it turns out–they’re removing the jewelry regularly–either for cleaning, or for concealment purposes.   No wonder.  Piercings, especially fresh or not-all-the-way healed piercings, get aggravated with a lot of jewelry changes or messing around.

Don’t think you can remove and re-insert jewelry daily for football practice, work, or school.   Piercing jewelry, especially while healing, isn’t like regular jewelry–it’s meant to be left in!

Piercings can close up fast! They can also stay open forever if you take them out.  But none of this is predictable for every piercing or every person.  Piercings are quirky that way!

Thanks to puroticorico’s photostream at Flickr.