We get asked all of the time questions like:
Unfortunately a lot of piercing shops do not explain to their customers about the different sizes that body jewellery comes in when they are pierced (I know that there are some great piercers out there that explain everything to, its just that we tend to hear more about the ones that don't).
Well basically piercing jewelry usually has 2 measurements:
1 - Thickness or Gauge
You will see 2 measurements refered to regarding thickness - mm (milimeters) which tends to be used in the UK and Europe, and Gauge (g) which is used more commonly in the US.
To give you some idea in the UK a 1 penny coin is approximately 1.6mm (14g) thick
Obviously we can only say "usually" because the size of jewellery used in a piercing may vary depending on the person, the piercer and how long ago it was pierced. For example tops of ears years ago were pierced with standard ear piercing guns, so the jewellery was quite thin, sometimes only 0.8mm (20g), but now that piercing should be done with a needle and will more commonly be 1mm (18g) or 1.2mm (16g).
While belly bars or rings are usually 1.6mm (14G) we get people call that have thinner 1.2mm (16g) bars, and some people actually stretch their tounge piercings, so they will require a thicker bar.
2 - Length or Diameter
Generally piercers will pierce with jewellery slightly longer to allow for some swelling, once the swelling has gone down and the piercing is healed usually a slightly smaller piece of jewellery is required. Sometimes peoples bodies can actually reject the piercing causing it to migrate and grow out, this is common with eyebrow piercings and occasionally pierced navels. Sometimes the migration will slow down and settle at a smaller size (eg a 6mm (1/4") belly button) and will never grow out. Wearing good quality Titanium or Bioplast jewellery rather than Steel can help the body to accept piercings and prevent this from happening.
It is very important to choose well fitting body jewelery, too loose and it may catch on clothes and could rip the piercing, too tight and it could cause irritation to the piercing site and may cause an infection.
It is a good idea to measure an item that fits you comfortably, have a look at our measuring guide to see how the measurements are taken: