By Alana Brooks
Assistant Opinion Editor
Close your eyes and relax. Take a deep breath in.
1, 2, 3, big pinch- and it’s over.
Getting a piercing can be a scary experience, no matter where on your body you get one. With all the pain and aftercare, piercings are a journey many people make. Unfortunately, some piercing recipients are destined to fail from the start.
When getting a piercing, many people opt to go to places like Claire’s or Piercing Pagoda to get them done, not realizing how harmful those types of places can be for your body.
Rogan Eric is a professional piercer at Pleasures of the Flesh in Fort Myers. A member of the Association of Professional Piercers, Eric is a certified safe piercer.
With sanitation issues along with the quality of jewelry used at the gun-wielding mall shops, Eric warns against going to the popular ear piercers.
“Unfortunately, even though (piercing guns) are something that’s very familiar to the public, a lot of people don’t realize that they don’t have to go through any training to use them,” Eric said. “One of the other things too is just that the jewelry they use, they’re not regulated by the health department at all.”
I personally got my ears pierced at Claire’s. Twice. Since then, I’ve gotten two additional piercings, both done at a professional studio and I will never go back to a place like Claire’s. Not only were my experiences better at the studio, my piercings done there are healthier and healed faster.
Even the aftercare instructions given at Claire’s and Piercing Pagoda go against what is best for new piercings.
“They definitely set you up for failure,” Eric said. “They tell you to twist and turn and move your piercings and that isn’t what you should be doing. You should be keeping them clean and leave them alone.”
If you’re thinking about getting a piercing, save yourself the pain of having to get it done and letting it heal, just to have to do it all over again. Go to a professional.
“I definitely would like to see a lot more people get away from it so that they can kind of eliminate a lot of the problems that come with it,” Eric said.
A list of APP certified piercers is available at safepiercing.org.