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Body piercing info

This morning I had a lovely conversation with Erica a very
knowledgeable piercing artist at Enigma Inc. This is a remarkable
tattooing and body-piercing salon located at 1817 West Broad Street,
Richmond, Virginia, USA. Phone # 804-353-8161. Here is the LD (low
down) on the posted body piercing terms according to Erica:

Industrial- this is a two whole one ring piercing through the
cartilage at the upper part of the ear, just below the top curved
portion of the ear. The ring is a full circle with a ball to complete
the circle. The upper part of the circle goes through the ear twice.
The earring lays flat against the ear. A similar piercing called a
Saturn is made through the top curved portion of the ear.

Labret- (pronounced la bre) this is a piercing just below the bottom
lip, not in the pink part of the lip but in the skin part just below
the lip. Some people refer to this as a chin piercing. The ring is
similar to a straight barbell ring however the portion that is in the
mouth resting against the gum is flat so that no damage is made from
impacts against the teeth. The location of the piecing is in the
center area just below the lip. The exposed ball portion of the ring
screws on.

Monroe- this is also a barbell shaped ring with a flat side inside of
the mouth. The placing of the piercing is on the face where a “Marilyn
Monroe” beauty mark would be, on the cheek in between the corner of
the lip and the upper cheekbone.

Madison- this is a slightly curved barbell like ring that is put
through two wholes pierced in the fleshy skin of the neck in between
too tendons, this is the small indentation in between the collar
bones. In a male this would be below the “Adams apple”. Some people
use a horseshoe shaped ring with two balls for this piercing.

I have a twenty three year old daughter that is friends with a tattoo
artist at this salon. When she was thirteen we sadly lost her father
and my first husband to cancer. He was an artist as well as a
mechanical engineer. About three years ago she had one of her fathers
drawings tattooed on her spine below the waist. The idea being that
this tattoo was covered when she wanted it covered and visible in a
bikini. A few months ago she call me and said that she had some of her
fathers art tattooed on her and now she wanted some of my art tattooed
on her. She asked me to design an armband for her and I did. Personal
adornment can take many forms.

It has been a lot of fun researching the piercing terms.

Cathy Wheless

I was out of town this weekend in another Midwest U.S. city and saw
some piercing that had escaped my notice before.

One was an earring hole 6 gauge all around.

The other – we went into a restaurant and two college or so aged men
we having dinner together. They both had very large earrings that
were on the front and back of their ears – they were about the size
of a large button – bigger than a jeans button, about coat button

The really weird part is that their earlobes were also enlarged to be
just bigger than the earring. I really couldn’t tell if the
"earring" I was seeing was one piece, going all the way through the
ear or not.

Have others seen this before?

Northern Illinois, Midwest, USA

These are ear-plugs, and as far as I know, the attributuion for these
is Mayan. You start small, and SLOWLY increase the size of what you
put in the pierceing. The plug is one piece (unless the people you saw
were wearing illusion plugs, normal post with large front and back).

My sister in law and her boyfriend each have one. Last time I saw
them, she was wearing a small quartz point (about an inch long, about
6mm in diameter) in her ear, and was not going to go any bigger. He
was wearing a quartz crystal two inches long and roughly the size of
a dime.

Elizabeth Schechter
Silverhorn Designs
6400 Baltimore National Pike
Suite #170-A, #445
Baltimore, MD 21228
410-719-8712 earring hole 6 gauge all around... earlobes were also
enlarged to be just bigger than the earring... 

Hi, Elaine. I have seen ‘stretchers’ made of sterling and wood–they
are basically conical, often with a curve–kind of like a mini
cornucopia shape. Bit-by-bit the wearer works them further into their
hole, until, with time, they have a stretched out hole. I have only
seen this in a North American art-student sort of context; I’m sure it
comes from another native culture. (By the way, those of you who share
my fate of floppy-lobes may like to hear that the Chinese consider
large, more ‘detached’ lobes desirable, attractive, lucky. At least,
this is what I’ve been told.)

We call it a flange piercing in the UK The hole is sucessivly
enlarged with bigger and bigger wires until it can take a button with
a flange (like a wheel of a car without the tyre (synclastic?))

Hi! Some of the Brazilian Tribes of the Amazon use this form of
earlobe enlargement as adornment. The size of the disc reflects a
tribesman status. Some tribes may instead enlarge the lower lip with
a wooden disc for similar reasons. I have also heard that longer
earlobes are a sign of wisdom and spiritual enlightment according to
China’s traditions. If you notice depictions of Buddah the earlobes
will more likely be enlogated. Good luck to all, Vera

Dear Vera, Do you think there may be a correlation between narcissisim
and the primitive mind? I noticed the same phenomenon (earlobe
mutilation) amongst the Maasai in Eastern Africa. But, then again,
who are we to judge? Plastic surgery is certainly no better than
primitive forms of mutilation and it is socially redeeming in that it
lines the pockets of people who might have otherwise become struggling jewelers.
Ron at Mills Gem, Los Osos, CA.

Sounds like whats known as a bobbin. If so then yes, it does go all
the way through a suitably large hole, which started off small and was
gradually enlarged. What I’m describing has nothing to do with the
current upsurge in body piercing, rather it’s rather ancient.
Practiced fairly widely around the globe. I believe that amongst some
Native American people it has significant cultural importance.

They both had very large earrings that were on the front and back
of their >ears -- they were about the size  of a large button --
bigger than a jeans >button, about coat button size. 
Kevin  (NW England,  UK)