It’s the middle of September, and in the UK that means that people of all ages are returning to their classrooms for a new school year. That also means that a lot of new piercings are entering the education system! So, what are the main topics that we need to cover today?
Many parents and young people choose to get piercings over the long summer break. We performed many hundreds of ‘first’ piercings, and added to the collections of many piercing enthusiasts as well! However, depending on your school, Sixth Form, or College, there can be trouble ahead…
At Rogue, we always advise parents and young people to research the policies of their school to make sure that the piercings that they want are allowed. There is nothing more disappointing for everybody involved than a perfect piercing that needs to be removed due to school!
So, what do you need to consider? How can we ensure that you or your child can continue to wear their new piercings whilst being mindful of school rules?
As much as we dislike the idea of your school dictating your personal style, these policies generally don’t come out of nowhere. While researching this blog, I read dozens of school policies and found that they generally boil down to three risks:
1. Risks to health: The risks to health are entirely associated with the individual concerned, these being infection and blood-borne diseases, for example, hepatitis, HIV, AIDS. If good personal hygiene practice is not adopted, then the risk of ill health to the individual concerns is significant.
2. Potential injury: Further injury due to inadvertent contact of the jewellery with other persons, clothing, fixtures and fittings, and so on. The extent of any injury is likely to be minor and would usually comprise tearing of the flesh. The risk is deemed to be greater if rings or projecting items are used.
3. Risks to others: The risks to health and safety of other persons not subjecting themselves to body piercing are low, with the exception of PE, where injury could occur to others who come into contact with other person’s jewellery.
Reading those three risks, you can understand that the risks of body piercing, when performed by an experienced studio using high quality materials, are very low. However, most schools are very risk-averse as they are caring for the children of others. This makes them very liable! So, it is really important to read the policies of your child’s school to ensure that you can follow them.
Removing Piercings for School
Most school policies dictate that jewellery must be removable, and should indeed be removed for PE. The vast majority of schools appear to believe that piercings performed at the beginning of the school holidays will be healed enough to be removed for PE after just 6 weeks. If you have ever attended a piercing appointment at Rogue, you will know that a 6 week old piercing is still incredibly fresh and should not be removed under any circumstances!
We do not recommend removing any piercing for any period of time until they are fully healed. This can take upwards of 4-6 months in total!
When a piercing is still healing, the piercing channel only consists of very thin and highly fragile skin. This can be easily damaged, especially if your child is putting their own jewellery back in themselves. Piercings can also close very quickly before they are healed and there is a chance that if jewellery is removed even for an hour or two, it will be gone!
During the months following the return to schools, we do see an uptick in young people with very irritated piercings. This is often due to schools dictating that piercings are removed and reinserted multiple times a week before they are healed. It’s really important to discuss this with your child’s school, and see if a compromise can be found where jewellery can be left in permanently.
If your school is particularly difficult about piercings, we recommend choosing jewellery that is understated and minimalistic. If they are likely to raise an issue over a nose piercing, maybe it is not the best choice to pick a 4mm Swarovski Crystal…
Most schools dictate that the jewellery be a stud, and be relatively subtle.
The most popular jewellery we use in initial piercings for young people are the Infinite Prong-set Swarovski Crystals, the Anatometal Tri-beads, the Inari Organics Synthetic Opals, and the Neometal Cluster Ranges. These are both affordable, and quite subtle!
Some schools will recommend the use of skin-toned retainers to minimise the appearance of piercings. This can indeed be a really good option for many students who are unable to remove their still-healing piercings. However, there are many things to consider when choosing a retainer.
The vast majority of retainers are manufactured from unsafe plastic materials, which can cause irritation in fresh piercings. We do not recommend using plastic retainers such as Bioflex. We stock a wide range of Glass Retainers, which are designed to be discreet. Glass is a highly biocompatible material, so is excellent for use in retaining piercings. You can read all about retainers here!
It seems like getting piercings while still at school is a minefield! Don’t fret. There are many ways to work with your school to ensure that your piercings stay happy and healthy.
The most important thing to do is to read your school’s piercing policies. If they have a blanket ban on facial piercings, it is probably worth waiting until you are no longer at that school before getting your nose pierced!
Secondly, it is vital to know that piercings should not be removed for 4-6 months after being pierced. Removal and reinsertion whilst still healing can cause discomfort, irritation, and potentially extend the healing time. Find a compromise with your school to minimise this risk.
And finally, enjoy your piercings! Yes, getting piercings while still at school can be annoying, but self-expression is the most important thing. If you do your research and plan carefully, you can still heal a piercing that will last a lifetime and look brilliant the whole time.
If you have any questions, just get in touch with us! Make sure to follow us on social media to stay up-to-date with all of our work.