Understanding Metal Allergies


Understanding Metal Allergies


Body jewelry is a great way to express your personal style and add some flair to your look. Picking out your jewelry is one of the most fun parts of getting a piercing. However, certain metals used in body jewelry can cause allergic reactions in some people. Here’s a closer look at metal allergies and how to avoid them when choosing body jewelry.

What is a metal allergy?
A metal allergy is a reaction that occurs when your body’s immune system mistakenly identifies a metal as a harmful substance or something foreign. This can cause a variety of symptoms, including redness, itching, swelling, and even blisters or sores. Your piercing may seem like it’s “weeping” meaning that it may be dripping a clear-ish liquid. The severity of a metal allergy can vary from person to person, with some people experiencing only mild symptoms while others may have more severe reactions.

Which metals are most likely to cause allergies?
Some of the most common metals that cause allergic reactions are nickel, cobalt, and chromium. These metals are often used as alloys in other metals, such as stainless steel, and can also be found in other types of jewelry, such as earrings and necklaces.

How can I avoid metal allergies with body jewelry?
The best way to avoid metal allergies with body jewelry is to choose jewelry made from metals that are less likely to cause reactions. Some good options include titanium, niobium, gold, and even quality surgical stainless steel.

How do I know if I have a metal allergy?
People often come in and believe that they have a metal allergy because their ears get sore and/or itchy when they wear certain earrings. If this is the only indication that you have, it’s best to not assume. Earrings come in a multitude of different materials ranging from costume jewelry, to high end diamonds, and everything in between. For this reason, we don’t think it’s the best way to judge.

What if I do have a metal allergy?
One of the first questions we ask is if a person breaks out from watches or belt buckles. If the answer is yes, we typically have you choose from titanium jewelry. Titanium is considered ”hypoallergenic” so it is safe for anyone. If the answer is no, it’s still a good idea to only put quality jewelry in your piercings but you’ll have more of a variety to choose from.  

When it comes to jewelry, especially the kind that you wear in your body at all times rather than the kind you wear on your body for bits a time, it’s good to understand what will work best for you. We also know that it always feels good going into a piercing having all of your questions answered. We’re here to help with that! We write up blog posts on many different topics that pertain to getting pierced, taking care of your piercings, even on body jewelry. Feel free to read through until you’re feeling confident that you have all the information you need. If you still feel like you need more, that’s okay! That’s what we’re here for. You can email us at [email protected], call any of our 8 store locations, or message us on any of our social media platforms. You can also stop in and talk directly to a piercer!  

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