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Curved Problems

With our changeover of basic range just around the corner we thought we should highlight how much effort and investment goes into producing the high quality body jewellery we stock. It may come as a surprise but the humble curved barbell and circular barbell throw up the biggest problems for jewellery makers. This blog will show some of the solutions to these problems by jewellery design and the processes and machinery used in curved jewellery production.

Disclaimer: These are not the only methods to produce these items. There are many ways to make everything.

Shape

Circles aren't as simple as they seem. Who doesn't love a bit of radial geometry!
Circles aren’t as simple as they seem. Who doesn’t love a bit of radial geometry!

Body jewellery may look like simple pieces of metal but the exact shapes have been refined over decades to create designs that promote a smooth, healthy heal and lifetime. Sadly not all body jewellery is made equal and a lot of the time lower quality pieces come from aiming to create the cheapest item possible rather than creating the best.

Geometry seems simple on paper but making a finished piece of jewellery from a drawing is made much more difficult due to implant grade Titanium being notoriously difficult to work with.

Curves or Bends?

The key word in curved barbell is “curved”. High quality curves are made to be an arc from end to end. Having the same profile and curve the entire length of a wearable is required so jewellery can move through a piercing without stretching and irritating the piercing channel (as shown in fig 1 and fig 2 below). Lower quality curves are bent in the middle which will put more pressure on the centre of the piercing channel as well as stretch the piercing channel as it passes through (as shown in fig 3 and fig 4 below).

Bends

A “bent” barbell is just that; A barbell which has been bent. The bend can be applied manually or by using machinery such as a hydraulic press. In both methods the barbell is held in a vice or jig (fig 5), a lever is placed over the barbell and then force is applied (fig 6). Ideally some form of go no-go gauge for manual or a pressure gauge for hydraulic would be used to create standardised bend. These methods are fast and low cost but require lots of operator time and there is a high chance of variations in the final pieces.

Curves

As a curved barbell is a full arc and it is generally made from a coil, full ring, part ring or straight bar blank. Whichever blank (a piece of material prepared to be made into something (such as a key) by a further operation) is chosen there is going to be material wastage. This material waste goes onto the final price of the piece so it is already going to cost more than the bent barbell. Coils create the most wastage but can also increase the speed (And therefor cost) of the cutting, drilling and threading stages. Full rings are less expensive in material costs but are more manually intense due to not being able to create batches. Part rings are generally made from coils and full rings or machines such as CNC wire benders can be used. CNC wire benders are very specialised and very expensive pieces of machinery. Curves minimise the material wastage but due to the high cost of CNC wire benders and a specialist skilled operator being required they increase the setup cost significantly. Bar blanks will be pressed into a custom jig to form them in a hydraulic press.

A CNC wire bender in action

A part ring would now be ready for drilling and threading. Coils and full rings will need to be cut down to the correct length first and this will require using specialist jigs to hold them and either a power saw/grinder or a milling machine. If a milling machine is used then it can also be used for the threading section too. All of these machines add cost. A saw/grinder setup would be the cheapest setup cost but has an ongoing cost due to the manual nature of this method. A milling machine would add a large setup cost but has a much lower ongoing manual cost as batches can be setup so the milling machine can keep running on its own.

No two body jewellery companies make their curved barbells to the same radius. As piercers this variation can be useful as no two bodies are the same but does mean stocking multiple brands.

Circulars or Horseshoes?

Just like curves, the keyword in circular barbell is circular A circular barbell will move through the piercing channel smoothly and with minimal resistance (fig 7 and fig 8). A common slang name for circular barbells is horseshoes, but a horseshoe shape isn’t ideal for body jewellery. Horseshoes cause similar issues to bent barbells as they also distort and stretch the piercing channel during movement (fig 9 and fig 10). This distortion can lead to irritated piercings. The extended legs on a horseshoe also bring the attachments closer together which gives a different aesthetic and increases installation difficulty.

Horsehoes

A horseshoe is basically an arc with extended legs on each end. The legs are a symptom of the production method and process order. A horseshoe will be drilled and threaded before it is formed. The forming can be completed in a manner of ways but the most common would be to use a custom jig and a hydraulic press. A barbell would be placed into the jig (fig 11) and then the press would apply force to wrap the bar into a U shape (fig 12). A second stage jig and/or press would be needed to push the legs in towards each other (fig 13). The initial setup cost for this method would be much less but the ongoing manual cost would be high.

Circulars

Hydraulic press 10 ton
A hydraulic press with pressure gauge.

A circular barbell would use some of the same machinery and blank shapes (albeit in a different diameter) as curved barbells. Coils and Full Rings would follow the same process as curves and Part Rings could also be produced using the CNC wire bender or by using a hydraulic press and custom jig.

Threading

Threading creates the biggest problem for high end curved and circular barbells. This is because the threading must be added after the shape has been formed otherwise the thread will be distorted and will not work (fig 14). All of the lower quality curves and circulars can have the threading added first as they have straight sections on the end that doesn’t distort during forming (fig 15). The straight end section uses faster processes, less steps and lower skilled operators so is much cheaper.

Adding a thread inside a small curved item adds an extra level of accuracy. Drilling a straight thread inside a curve doesn’t leave much space for error and can cause a weak point in the jewellery (fig 16). The accuracy required to avoid this can be achieved using machinery and skilled operators but this significantly increases the cost.

Some of the machinery that can be used to thread our circular and curved barbells is cutting edge technology. CNC 5 axis milling machines can be used to batch produce items using specialised jigs, CNC lathes can be used for single item manufacture but both of these methods are high manual intensity for highly specialised skill sets. Cutting edge technology comes at a cost though.

We love the amount of effort and perfectionism that goes into the body jewellery that we sell. Having suppliers that care as much about the jewellery that goes in your body as we do at Rogue really makes us happy. The items we use at Rogue are made to last a lifetime without harming your body, all while looking amazing. We hope that this blog has helped you see that simple looking items can be anything but simple to produce.

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The Basics Transition

At Rogue we pride ourselves on using the best jewellery, equipment and techniques that we have access to, to give our clients the best service we possibly can. A lot of our regulars will know that I (Aiden) used to be a Mechanical Engineer for the MoD and specialised in metal standards and that this knowledge lead me to be a driving factor in the creation of the Material Standards for the UKAPP. Keeping up with progression is an important part of any piercing studio and any piercers career and the time has come for us to progress again.

Since the beginning of Rogue our basic range jewellery has been produced by a UK based body jewellery manufacturer who has responded well to demands from piercers to keep improving. It has come to our attention recently that this company hasn’t been as open to progression and their quality has been dropping and this has left us in the tricky position of having to change supplier. There currently isn’t another option in the UK working to the standards we require so we are beginning to import our jewellery all the way from America.

So, What’s Different?

For us to be confident to install new jewellery into a fresh piercing we must know a lot of information but by far the most important is the grade of the material. The grade of the material is connected to a standard which tells us exactly what mixture of metals make up the alloy and the exact process for how the material was made. It is quite common for piercers and clients to get hung up on the chemistry of the material but that only tells us part of the picture.

Chemistry Test

An example of a Chemistry test for body jewellery. This example shows how only a tiny sample batch is tested.

A chemistry test is used to prove what the alloy is of a specified piece of metal. A chemistry test isn’t suitable for implanted materials because it only proves the chemistry of the single piece tested rather than the entire batch. We need a higher level of guarantee that body jewellery is safe to go in the body. In the industrial world a chemistry test is fine but as every single piece of body jewellery must be safe for use in the body we need a more detailed form of guarantee.

As the item has to be ground and damaged in order to be tested, it would be unusable after the test is complete.

In the image to the left, note the sentence at the bottom “Samples submitted by customer, results relate only to items tested.”. This means that even the testing laboratory agree that this test is only suitable for the exact test piece rather than the entire batch.

Mill Certificate

Mill certificates tell us the exact process that was used to produce the metal and guarantees that all metal produced in the process will be homogeneous (Definition: Of uniform structure or composition). This is vitally important when installing jewellery into the human body.

The UK piercing industry has been specifically requesting Mill Certificates (not Chemistry tests) from all of our suppliers since the formation of the UKAPP. The reason for these requests is that in the past Titanium sourced from certain mills around the world has been found to have falsified their paperwork for Titanium used in surgical implants. This non-compliant metal only revealed itself to be unsafe when people that had medical implants started to have reactions to the metals and in a few extreme cases the implants were rejected by the body. Legislation for Body jewellery is not nearly as stringent as legislation written for medical implants, but the body can have just as serious reactions to non-safe body jewellery as it would to a non-safe medical implant. As Piercers we want every piercing to be happy and healthy so having a guaranteed safe material is of the utmost importance to us.

Important points to note on a mill certificate are:

  • Material Country of Origin – For DFARS approval
  • Material Grade – To show the designated grade of the material from this melt
  • Melting Process – To show the process the mill followed to produce the material
  • Heat/Melt Number – For batch control and material traceability
  • Material Dimensions – To show which supplied raw material came from the batch
  • Total Material – Shown in either weight or length – To show how much raw material was sourced

DFARS

Multiple Launch Rocket System (M270) | Lockheed Martin
An M270 MLRS (Multi launch Rocket System) produced as a product between the US, UK and French defence industries. The materials used to manufacture this vehicle are all controlled y the DFARS agreement.

DFARS – Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement

Due to some Titanium Mills falsifying their paperwork and producing material not of the grade stated the Body Piercing Industry started to search for a form of guarantee that material sourced is of the grade advertised. There were very few options available for this and the final choice was the DFARS agreement.

DFARS is a system used by the US Defence sector. It was originally laid out to allow the American Defence Industry to source material from outside of the US and still guarantee that the material is of the correct grade. I used to work within a similar framework when sourcing Armour for the British military. As the American Defence sector is incredibly specific about the metals used in their products this was the perfect system for the body jewellery industry. This system may seem like it doesn’t apply to body jewellery but as there aren’t any systems for material guarantees outside for the defence world, the DFARS agreement is currently the best system we have.

Rather than have individual companies or metal mills be compliant with DFARS, different countries will claim compliance. This means that any material sources from these countries will have a guarantee it was produced using a process specified in the material grade. Current countries in the DFARS agreement are:

AustraliaGreecePortugal
BelgiumIsraelSlovenia
CanadaItalySpain
Czech RepublicJapanSweden
DenmarkLatviaSwitzerland
EgyptLuxembourgTurkey
EstoniaNetherlandsUnited Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
FranceNorway
GermanyPoland
Notable nations missing from the DFARS agreement are China, India and Thailand.

The UK is a DFARS compliant nation, but as we have no Titanium Mills here we must source our Titanium from elsewhere. Currently the vast majority of titanium is produced in China but as China isn’t a DFARS compliant country we CANNOT accept this as safe for use in body jewellery. Currently most verifiable implant grade Titanium is sourced from US or Italian mills.

Polish

SHOP TIPS #293 Surface Roughness Finish 1 of 2 tubalcain - YouTube
A Roughness Scale used in industrial applications to compare surface finishes

At Rogue we are constantly shouting about surface finish. This is because there is a direct link between the quality of the surface finish, the ease of healing and the long term health of a piercing. The suppliers we are switching to achieve a much better polish so this will be a big improvement on our current basic range. A better (more shiny) surface finish improves your healing process. We discuss this in lots of details in our dedicated Surface Finish blog!

A super-shiny mirror finish on an Anatometal 18k Dome is a perfect example.

Thread Quality

Screw Thread Terminology Explained | Assembly Fasteners, Inc.
A Diagram of the dimensions required for a screw thread to be produced

The new suppliers we are moving too also have a much tighter Quality Control system. this means that there will be less issues with jewellery coming unscrewed, being lost or being damaged. We would love to live in a world where products are 100% perfect all the time but sadly this isn’t realistic. The companies we are switching to also want to live in a world where products are perfect 100% of the time and we are excited to be working with companies that have such pride in their products.

Cost

With higher quality Titanium, better quality control, international shipping, import tax, inflation and the damage to the supply chain that COVID has caused we will be seeing a price rise on our basic options. We never like having to put our prices up but during this time we are going to have to. We will give all of our clients plenty of notice so we can all prepare for the change.

We are not in the business of changing prices without giving you plenty of notice! We are aiming to change our basic range jewellery to new, higher-quality basic jewellery in January. Any appointments after this day will have a different cost for basic jewellery – Our high-end prices are staying the same!

As always we will be striving to be the best piercers we can be and will continue to do the best we can for our clients. That’s it for this week. We’ll be back next week with a blog all about circular barbells. Have a good week everyone!

Thank you for reading. If you have any questions, you can contact us via email or instagram.

Aiden

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Precare for Piercing

As Piercers we talk a lot about aftercare and rarely mention precare. Precare is just as important to your health and the short and long term health of your piercing.

What is Precare?

Precare is all about making sure you are healthy, rested, hydrated, well fed, free from intoxicants and certain medication. We will discuss each of these different aspects in this weeks blog.

Healthy

It might seem an obvious point to make but being healthy is imperative to your piercing healing well. At any given moment your bodies immune system is fighting to keep you healthy. In everyday life we are exposed to bacteria, fungus, viruses and debris that can be harmful to you. The vast majority of these foreign bodies are dealt with before they even have a chance to harm your body. When healing a new piercing you are putting stress on your immune system; if your immune system is already under stress from something else then this will extend your piercings healing time and increase the risk of rejection and migration. It is best to give your body a chance to heal before adding new piercings.

Illness

Precare - Illness
Nobody likes being ill so lets try to minimise spread

If you are ill then getting a piercing is going to a very unpleasant experience for you as your body is under stress and your senses will be heightened. We don’t want to put you through undue pain or trauma so strongly advise you wait until any illness has passed. As well as protecting you we also need to protect ourselves; We really don’t enjoy being ill so much prefer it if you are able to give us enough notice to move your appointment.

Rested, Hydrated and Well Fed

Again these might seem like obvious points but a rested, hydrated and well fed body will both handle the piercing better and heal better. Our immune systems are constantly working hard and they are fuelled and kept in working order by the rest we get and what we put into our body. When you have rested, hydrated and eaten there is a much lower risk of feeling faint; this is because when you get pierced your body will release adrenaline and start using up the sugar in your blood. Our blood sugar is the fuel that keeps our bodies going, as it gets used up the body will divert blood flow and sugars to prioritise different systems. The upset tummy feeling that can occur after a piercing is because the body is focussing resources towards your muscles and healing. Hydration is just as important as food because the liquids that we drink eventually end up in our blood stream and help us to move nutrients and white blood cells around our body. When you are dehydrated you can feel light headed and lethargic, neither of these are good for going into a piercing session.

As Piercers we will look after you and guide you through your piercing but making sure you have a good energy resource is super important.

Intoxicants and Medication

Precare - No Alcohol before piercing
No Alcohol before piercing

There are several reasons why being intoxicated before a piercing is inappropriate. Intoxicants include alcohol, cannabis, cocaine and many other legal and illegal drugs that effect your mental state. Aside from health issues, in the UK you cannot consent to a piercing when intoxicated and this means we cannot legally pierce you.

Intoxicants can cause a lot of changes to your body such as:

Raised Blood Pressure – This will cause you to bleed more and will extend your appointment time. Here at Rogue we wont send you home until we have stopped bleeding as we want to make sure you are fine and healthy. Intoxicants that cause raised blood pressure include stimulants such as cocaine.

Lower Blood Pressure – This will cause you to feel faint and potentially pass out. Rogue is staffed by a full team of first aiders so we can care for you in the case of an emergency but it is a much more pleasant experience all around if our skills aren’t required. Depressants such as Diazepam can cause these effects.

Thin Blood – Much like raised blood pressure, blood thinning will cause bleeds and extended healing times. Blood thinning medication such as Warfarin can make a piercing become a serious issue as the bleed will not stop due to not clotting. This can lead to hospitalisation and causes undue stress to you, your piercer and the hospital staff who will care for you. A very common blood thinner is Aspirin. It is VERY important to tell your piercer if you are taking blood thinning medication.

Heightened Sensitivity – All piercings carry an element f pain. Your piercer will do everything they can to make the piercing experience as smooth and comfortable as possible and minimise any pain. Intoxicants such as Cannabis can increase the sensitivity and therefor a more painful piercing experience. Surprisingly to a lot of people, most piercers don’t enjoy inflicting pain and see it as the worst part of our job.

Increased Heart Rate – Much like blood thinning and raised blood pressure an increased heart rate will cause an extended bleed and a longer appointment. A common causes of increased heart rate is caffeine. We are all caffeine junkies here at Rogue but its important not to over caffeinate before getting pierced.

Even one glass of beer or wine is enough for us to refuse service. We promise you don’t need Dutch courage to get through your piercing, we will be here to help you. If you are unsure if your medication will have an effect on your piercing then it is worth speaking to your piercer and medical practitioner before booking a piercing.

As always we are happy to help you with any stage of your piercing and if you would like more help with precare then you can get in touch with us in the comment box below through Instagram or email hello@roguepiercing.co.uk

Have a good week everyone!

Aiden

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Nick Martin – BVLA -Interview

Nick Martin - BVLA Marquise Fan
The Marquise Fan is one of our favourite pieces by BVLA due to its versatility.

This week we had the privilege to interview Nick Martin, the founder and owner of Body Vision Los Angeles.

BVLA are one of our favourite jewellery makers here at Rogue as they produce some of the highest quality body jewellery in the world from precious metals and a huge range of gemstones. We discuss the beginnings of BVLA, the modern business, their Future Stars Apprenticeship Scheme and their huge range of jewellery and gemstones.

Many thanks to Nick Martin for taking the time out of his busy schedule for this interview.

If there is someone you would like us to interview or a subject you would like a video about then drop a comment below.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel to make sure you don’t miss out on future videos. To browse our collection of BVLA for sale click here.

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YouTube Channel!

So this week we decided it was about time we start adding some YouTube videos to our weekly blogs. We have created a YouTube channel here, so why not pop over and give us a like and a subscribe? Our lovely Jess has made our first video and it is all about cleaning your piercings. If there are any videos you would like us to make then get in touch with us. You can comment on YouTube, this blog or our instagram but the best way to contact us is via email at hello@roguepiercing.co.uk

So, without further ado, here is Jess’s first video:

YouTube Neilmed Saline Spray

If you would like more information about aftercare then click here. To purchase Neilmed sterile saline solution click here.

That’s it for this week but we’re back next Friday. Have a good week and stay safe everyone!

Aiden

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Labret Posts – Simple Right?

Neometal Threadless Labret
A photo of the Neometal threadless labret available here

Labret posts seem like humble little pieces of metal but they are the true workhorses of the piercing world. This week we will be looking at the importance of labret posts, why they are the shape they are and why we love them so much!

So to start with lets refresh on what a labret is. It is a Post with a disc on one end. The disc can be fixed or removable and they post can be threaded or threadless. The labret post is the part which passes through your body and the part that holds all the beautiful ends in place. Many different manufacturers make labrets but sadly not all are made equal. For a refresh on all of the different aspects of high quality jewellery then take a look back at our High Quality? Series of Blogs here.

Importance

Labret posts are one of the key reasons we have so many piercing and jewellery options available to us. Before labret studs the only options were rings and barbells. By changing the ball on a barbell to a disc, piercers were able to offer piercings in much smaller placements e.g. forward helix, with less space at the back e.g the labret piercing and for more comfort e.g. sleeping on lobe piercings.

Design

A CAD drawing of a threadless labret by Aiden

While they may seem simple there are a lot of design constraints. A labret must be sized correctly in post length and gauge, connection choice and disc diameter and thickness.

Length

NeoMetal: Threadless Titanium Labret Post - POST ONLY (16g and 14g posts  for 16g and 14g ends) - Body Jewelry
Labrets are available in an array of sizes, gauges, disc size and style

The length of the post for a jewellery maker is more than the piercer approach of ensuring the jewellery is long enough to not embed and not too long so it snags. The gauge of the post must be thick enough that a suitable thread can be placed inside with enough metal left to support the thread without breaking. 1.6mm/14g barbells were already around when labrets were invented but as demand grew for 1.2mm/16g and 1.0mm/16g jewellery the labret was ready to take the top spot.

Connection

Press-fit Jewelry
Threadless example from Neometal

Connection choice might seem simple. Just drill a hole either small enough for threadless or large enough to tap a thread. But threadless has been under patent since the early 90’s and has only just entered public license so this wasn’t an option for most manufacturers. For threaded pieces large taps could easily break the labret and smaller thread patterns can be weak and easily stripped. The solution was to settle on an unusual thread pattern for the smaller bars. 000-120 for 1.2mm/16g and 1.0mm/18g. For the larger 1.6mm/14g and 2.0mm/12g a much more readily available thread pattern of M1.2 is used. To top all of this off if the labret has got a removable disc then the post has to be long enough the the holes drilled for threadless of threaded don’t meet in the middle. Since threadless has become public domain we have seen a lot of advancement in the miniaturisation of jewellery and a rise in the popularity of smaller piercing sites such as forward helixes.

Disc Size

M&M Ends
An M&M Disc by Anatometal shown here

The Disc on a labret has 3 main dimensions; diameter, thickness and angle.

The diameter is important because it is used to balance the weight of the end placed on the labret. If the disc doesn’t balance then gravity will pull the jewellery down and the edge of the disc will start to irritate the piercing site. Diameter is also especially important during the initial healing phase as it prevents the body swelling over and embedding the jewellery. Conversely a disc that is too large will be pulled down by gravity and can pull the end into the body. It is all a balancing act.

Thickness of the disc can help to minimise any irritation of the jewellery in the body. If the disc is too thin it will essentially be knife edge scraping and cutting the piercing site all day. If it is too thick then it creates a corner that acts the same as a thin disc. The key here is ti find the balance in the middle and then polish the edges so that there are no sharp points that could hurt the piercing.

By angle of the disc we mean the angle from the post to the edge of the disc. We don not mean the angle of the post coming out of the disc. An easy visual of this is a Flat Disc compared to an M&M Disc. The reason for different angles is to allow space between the piercing and jewellery for drainage, to minimise sharp edges in soft tissue e.g. tongue piercings and to give more weight to balance larger ends.

When your piercer selects the labret post for your piercing they are taking all of this and more into consideration. No two bodies are alike and so our body jewellery has to be as unique as we are. Just remember that your piercer will pierce you with initial size and for comfort and a happy, healthy piercing you will need to go back for a downsize.

So hopefully we’ve shown you that we love labret posts. Without this humble piece of jewellery the world of piercing would be a much duller place! We’ll be back next week with another lockdown blog. Stay safe everyone!

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High Quality? Part 20 – Gem Settings

Gem settings are how jewellery manufacturers make sure the gems in jewellery don’t fall out. There are different types of gem settings and each has its pros and cons as well as bringing a different style to the final piece. This week we will show some of the different settings and their pros and cons.

Bezel

An Industrial Strength Bezel Set Synthetic Pink Opal – available here

Bezel settings give one of the simplest and cleanest styles of all the gem settings but don’t let their simple look hide their hidden complexities. Simply put a bezel setting is a cup or box that a gem sits inside, and the top lip of the cup or box is rolled over to hold the gem in place. This could be something as simple as a standard round gem or something more complex like an asymmetric piece. Bezel settings are great for initial piercings as they have less snag risk than other options and, when well-made, will have nowhere for crusties to build up and dull the gems shine. As the gem is enclosed in the setting, bezel set gems don’t shine as much as other options. When mass manufactured bezel settings require calibrated gems (gems cut to tight measurement tolerances) and a high level of quality control to ensure gems do not move or spin.

Pros

  • Minimal snag risk
  • Can hold asymmetric gems
  • Cleaner for initial piercing

Cons

  • Gems can spin if not set correctly
  • Gems aren’t as bright due to being enclosed
  • Jewellery has to be deeper to enclose the gem

Prong/Claw

A Neometal Prong Set Ocean Grey Swarovski – Available here

Prong and Claw settings are two names for holding a gem in place using small pieces of metal around the gem like claws. Prong and Claw are interchangeable terms. These settings are perfect for making gems shine and sparkle as the light can enter the gem from all sides. Prong/Claw settings are capable of holding both large and small gems but at smaller sizes the gem can get obscured by the setting or not have enough metal for a strong setting. Due to requiring less metal to hold the gem securely, prong set jewellery can be made smaller so are perfect for daintier options.

Pros

  • Lots of light play
  • Can hold asymmetric gems
  • Gives a lighter and daintier look due to less metal

Cons

  • More attentive cleaning regime required
  • Can obscure smaller stones
  • More expensive due to highly skilled practitioner required

Pavé

A BVLA Pavé set Swarovski Snowflake – available here

Pavé settings are pure decadence as an entire surface is covered with gemstones. To achieve this lots of small settings halfway between a bezel and a claw must be made. This is the setting choice for those that really want their jewellery to stand out and to show off the gemstones more than the metal. By embedding the gemstones into the jewellery the jewellery will need to be slightly deeper. Snag risk is low to medium with this setting as the settings are low to the metal surface, but there are lots of them.

Pros

  • Lots of gems can be placed tight together to create a unique style
  • Minimal metal is visible for a more gem based style

Cons

  • An extremely skilled stone setter is required
  • If the setting becomes damaged multiple gems can be lost

Channel

An Industrial Strength Channel Set Clear Swarovski End – Available here

Channel settings involve cutting grooves into a channel so that multiple stones share the same setting. This is a very secure method of holding gems but requires very accurately made gemstones and jewellery. As the gems and setting are completely enclosed the snag risk is very low with these. Due to the open space between the gems channel settings allow a fair amount of light play and sparkle but can allow build up of crusties so require careful cleaning.

Pros

  • Lots of sparkle
  • Minimal snag risk
  • Durable design for high friction areas

Cons

  • Cleaning can be tricky if crusties build up
  • Not many manufacturers available for body jewellery
  • Calibrated gems are required

There are many variations on these settings and some jewellery will contain multiple different types of setting. If you are unsure about which settings will work well for you and your piercings then get in touch and let us know what you’re thinking. We will be glad to help you find the jewellery of your dreams.

That’s all for this week but we’ll be back next week with more piercing and jewellery knowledge.

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COVID-19 Update 4/08/2020

COVID Update - A fresh Nose piercing featuring nose rings
COVID Update – A fresh Nose piercing featuring nose rings

COVID-19 restrictions have changed and the time has come! We are able to offer facial piercings again! This includes nose, tongue, eyebrows etc.

Our store protocols were already higher than Government COVID-19 recommendations and we will continue to go above and beyond. As a reminder here are just some of the protocols we are currently following:

  • All Customers must wear a mask upon entry to the store. For facial piercings the mask will be removed at the last possible moment and replaced as soon as possible.
  • Piercers will wear a medical face mask and a visor as well as gloves or sterile gloves.
  • Piercers will wash their hands and arms at the start and end of every procedure.
  • The piercing room will be decontaminated between every customer using medical grade surface disinfectants.
  • The shop will have all door handles decontaminated between customers using medical grade surface disinfectants.
  • Consent forms will be filled in on customers phones to prevent contaminating the shop tablet.
  • Our waiting area is closed and we ask clients to come alone (apart from minor’s piercing and intimate piercing where a chaperone is required)
  • We will be operating by appointment only but you can book an appointment online as little as 1 minute before your appointment time!

As usual we will be using single use sterile needles, sterilising every piece of jewellery before use and keeping the highest hygiene protocols.

Bookings for facial piercings will be open from 5pm Friday 14th August 2020 and facial piercings can begin from Saturday 15th August 2020. To book head to roguepiercing.co.uk/book-now

Thanks!

Love from Rogue x

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Famous Piercing Enthusiasts

It might seem today like piercings are commonplace on a lot of people, but that is a relatively modern development. Piercings being seen on celebrities has really driven that change so this week we’re going to look at some famous piercing enthusiasts.

Famous Piercing Enthusiasts - Dennis Rodman
Dennis Rodman shows the attitude he’s famous for

Dennis Rodman

Whether it’s his piercings, tattoos or brightly coloured hair, Dennis Rodman always makes an impression. Famous for his time in the NBA playing basketball for the Chicago Bulls, LA Lakers and Detroit Pistons in the late 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s. Noted piercings on Dennis are paired nostrils, labret, earlobes and nipples. His unusual style and attitude made piercings visible to large groups of people who may never have come across them before.

Famous Piercing Enthusiasts - Erykah Badu

Erykah Badu

Erykah Badu has been called the Queen of Neo-Soul. She is a Singer, Songwriter and Actress. With her main influences being R&B, 70’s soul and 80’s hip-hop. She is just as comfortable on stage as she is in front of the camera and has an unmissable style. As jewellery she has worn many different “fake” piercings but is currently rocking a bridge and some cheek piercings that are a personal favourite of mine. I’ve posted a video below of one of my favourite songs by Erykah.

Scarlett Johansson

Famous Piercing Enthusiasts - Scarlett Johansson
Young Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson today

Scarlett is a world famous Actress and Singer and is the world’s highest-paid actress since 2018 but she has always had her wild side too. She has always been at the cutting edge of style and this shows in her piercing and jewellery choices too, from her younger days where she had an eyebrow and septum piercing to today where she has a curated ear and enviable jewellery collection. I was unaware that she has a septum piercing before writing this blog and I think that makes her even cooler.

Keith Flint

Famous Piercing Enthusiasts - Keith Flint

Braintree’s very own firestarter, Keith Flint was the frontman for the band The Prodigy and brought piercings to every household in the UK in 1996 with the release of the song Firestarter. Famously wearing tongue, septum and various ear piercings, Keith is cited as the reason for many peoples tongue and septum piercings ever since. Sadly Keith took his own life in 2019 but continued to release music upto 2018 and was still a staple of British radio. RIP Keith.

It was fun writing this weeks blog and I could have easily listed many more people and will return to this subject in the future. Thanks for reading everyone!

Aiden

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COVID-19 Plans

Hi Folks!

COVID-19 has caused a wave of messages from our lovely clients asking when we will be able to reopen. At the time of writing this (28/05/2020) we only know that we won’t be in the first wave of businesses reopening. and that we may be allowed to reopen in July. We thought we would help put your minds at ease about safety at Rogue by letting you know what changes we are implementing in store for reopening time.

COVID-19 - Appointment Only

Longer Appointment Only – We work mainly by appointment but to allow time to clean more of the studio before and after each client we will be solely appointment based. Each appointment will also be longer than normal.

Single Client – To minimise contamination we will only be allowing one client per staff member. For piercings on minors and intimate we will allow a parent/legal guardian or a chaperone. Make sure to select which staff member you want to visit on our booking screen.

No Waiting Area – We will temporarily close our waiting area. Our comfy sofa will be back soon!

COVID-19 - Gloves and Masks

Mask and Gloves For Clients – Each client will be given a face mask and nitrile gloves as well as having access to hand sanitiser when they enter the store. This will help us create a clean bubble.

Cashless Payments – By paying with card you help us not having to hand cash and change between ourselves and our clients.

Webstore – If you know exactly what you want you can use our webstore here or contact us at hello@roguepiercing.co.uk

Remote Consent Forms – When you book your appointment you will be emailed a link to where you can fill out your consent form. We will check the info on our shop PC so we aren’t sharing tablets or pens.

Masks and Visors for Staff – Our staff will be wearing more PPE than usual. We understand it can look scary but we promise we’ll do our best to ease the tension with bad humour and even worse dancing.

COVID-19 Social Distancing

Social Distancing Markers in Store – We will create zones around the store so it’s easier to keep distance between everyone.

Front Desk Screen – A perspex screen will create a barrier at our front desk to protect us while we serve you.

Increased Cleaning Schedules – We already use medical grade disinfectants regularly throughout the store but we have increased how often we clean public surfaces such as door handles etc.

Limited Piercing Range – We will be holding off on Oral and Nasal piercings for a short while. This takes away some of our favourite piercings but we’ll bring them back as soon as it is safe to do so.

Training – As well as all of these changes we have also been working on our knowledge behind the scenes and taking WHO courses in Infection Control, Decontamination, Hygiene and COVID-19.

Thanks to the UKAPP for putting out some great guidelines that can be seen here

We love what we do and we love sharing it with you. As soon as we know when we can reopen we will post on our social medias and open our booking system again. Thank you to everyone that has locked down, quarantined or continued an essential service. We will do our very best to keep everyone safe from COVID-19 at Rogue when we are allowed to reopen. But for now Stay Safe everyone!

Aiden x