The Perils of “Piercing Guns”

The Perils of “Piercing Guns”


Piercing guns are generally considered ‘bad’ for several reasons, and the use of these are widely discouraged by Professional Piercers, and organizations like the Association of Professional Piercers (APP). Here are some of the key reasons why piercing guns are not recommended for Body Piercing:


Tissue Trauma: Piercing guns can cause significant trauma to the tissue being pierced. They use a spring-loaded mechanism to forcefully push the blunt jewelry through the skin, which can lead to more tissue damage, and pain. Piercing Guns can also potentially shatter cartilage or cause other damage, particularly when used on ear cartilage or nose piercings (a nostril piercing is also going through cartilage). This can lead to serious complications like permanent excess scar tissue build up. Professional piercers typically use single use, hollow, tapered, sterilized needles that create a very clean, precise incision/channel for the jewelry. Piercing guns lack this option, and the jewelry is forced through the tissue, causing more damage.


Inaccurate Placement: Piercing guns do not provide the same level of precision as a Professional Piercer using a needle. This often results in inaccurately placed and angled piercings, which can be difficult to correct (often impossible to correct without fully re-piercing it) and may never heal properly.


Pressure and Bruising: The force applied by piercing guns applies excessive pressure on the tissue, causing more bruising, swelling, and tissue damage. This can extend the healing time and increase the risk of infection, irritation, and scar tissue build up.


Blunt/Low Quality Jewelry: Piercing guns are limited in the type of jewelry they can use, often restricting the options available for the piercing. Professional Piercers offer a wider variety of jewelry choices. Piercing guns pierce the body with the jewelry itself- often a stud and butterfly back. This is much more blunt and less suitable for piercings. This type of jewelry can cause more irritation and complications during healing. Jewelry used in Piercing Guns is typically much lower in quality than what is used at a Professional Body Piercing Studio. Materials such as surgical steel (this has a nickel content that is never safe for anyone with metal allergies), or plated jewelry. Plated jewelry of any type should never be used/worn as initial piercing jewelry. This plating will inevitably begin to wear down over time, exposing the underlying metals to the wound and causing irritation.


Lack of Sterility: Piercing guns cannot be properly sterilized between uses, which severely increases the risk of cross-contamination leading to the potential transmission

of blood borne pathogens (HIV, HBV, HCH), and infection. To be adequately sterilized, in this instance in regards to the piercing instrument (a needle for example) or jewelry to be worn in the fresh piercing site, it should be put through a multi-step specific sterilization process that includes being put through an Autoclave. This cannot be done with Piercing Guns.


Unregulated Use: In many places, the use of Piercing Guns is unregulated. This means that individuals who may not have proper/adequate training or education in hygiene, human anatomy, metal types, sterilization, and piercing techniques can use them.


For these reasons, it's recommended to choose a trained Professional Piercer who uses sterile, single-use, hollow tapered needles and adheres to strict hygiene/sterilization standards and practices. Professional Piercers dedicate years of their lives training and educating themselves in order to provide a safe and comfortable piercing experience, with a focus on minimizing trauma and complications. They also offer a much broader range of high quality, anatomy specific jewelry options for your piercings. Professional Piercers are educated in sterilization practices, cross contamination, blood borne pathogens, human anatomy, metal/jewelry types/materials/styles, and much more!

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