Monday, July 5, 2010

Lips Piercings

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Facial Piercings

Traditionally, piercings done to the face tend to be modifications made to noses and lips. Ancient people pretty much stuck to this formula, however, modern piercing techniques have brought the “if it protrudes, pierce it” school of thought to facial piercings. Piercers and piercees alike have experimented with many variations and new facial piercings seem to come into creation constantly.

Facial piercings have a greater chance of rejecting or forming scar tissue as so many of them are through areas of flat skin, in what is called a “surface” piercing. These have a very high rate of rejection as the skin doesn’t have much slack and the jewelry is a strain on the tissue. Also, any infection to these piercings are closer to vital locations and can easily travel to the blood, so greater healing care is required.

world record piercingsPiercing options for those inclined to add a bit of sparkle to their first impressions are many. None of these modifications should be done without careful forethought or by a piercer who is inexperienced. The more unusual the placement, the more the piercee should be prepared to potentially have the piercing reject, or that special extended care routines will be required.

Forehead - For those with looser skin, rings or barbells can sometimes be pierced in the area of the forehead.

Temple - A surface piercing of the face. Temple piercings have a high rejection rate due to the surface tension of the skin in this area.

Bindi - a vertical barbell done just above the bridge of the nose, in the spot where Hindu Bindis are painted onto the skin.

Bridge of Nose - Sometimes called an Earl, this is most often a barbell pierced across the bridge of the nose. Eyeglass wearers may have too much conflict from their glasses to heal such a piercing comfortably.

rosanna arquette in pulp fictionNostril - Any piercing through the curve of the nostril. See Nose Piercings.

Septum - A piercing done through the pierce of cartilage that separates the chambers of the nose. See Nose Piercings.

Cheeks - Cheek piercings can be through the face, along the surface or close enough to the mouth that jewelry passes around the corners of the mouth. Set close to the mouth and when worn with labret-style jewelry, this are sometimes called “whiskers.”

Labrets/Lips - Any piercings through or around the lips. Variations include the Monroe and the Medusa. See The Labret, or Lip Piercing.

Lowbrets - An alternate name sometimes given to labrets that are below the mouth, in the area of the chin.

Scrumper - A piercing through the webbing that connects the upper lip to the gums, right above the two front teeth. This piercing frequently leads to abrasion of the gums and other dental damage.

Mandible - Surface piercings that run along or below the jaw line.

Female Body Piercings





















However in modern piercing, reasons for any of these piercings is most likely a mix of personal reasoning. Given the intimate nature of the body parts being pierced, it is recommended that anyone wishing one of these do research not only on the history behind the piercing, but also into the skills and experience of the chosen body piercer.

Clitoral Piercing - Piercing of the knobbed nerve bundle that is related to sexual stimulation. Due to potential for damage to sexual function, it is very rare for a woman to actually have her clitoris pierced. Essentially, unless the tissue is very well developed, this piercing should not even be attempted. A clitoral hood piercing is much safer and can work pleasurably for many women.

Fourchette - Labial piercing at rear of vagina. This piercing is sometimes referred to as the “female guiche” due to the similarity in location to the male piercing. This piercing can be difficult to heal as it partially pierces the rear wall of the vagina just at the opening.

Hood, horizontal - Clitoral hood piercing done with horizontal placement. This variation is most often done when the woman’s clitoral development is such that the hood does not entirely cover the clitoris with the bead of the piercing ring just brushing the sensitive bundle of tissue.

Hood, vertical - Clitoral hood piercing done with vertical placement. This directional placement is best suited for women whose clitoral hood covers the clitoral bundle entirely. Worn with either a ring or barbell, this piercing is positioned so that the jewelry can brush or rub against the clitoris.

Labia - Female genital piercing of the vaginal lips. Depending on the anatomy of the body, it is possible to pierce both the inner or outer labia as the wearer desires. Some women’s anatomy supports one or the other, for some women, both would be possible.

Queen Christina - Name most commonly used to refer to any piercing of the clitoral hood. This piercing can be done vertically or horizontally, depending on the placement desired by the wearer, and is suited for both ring or barbell jewelry.

Triangle - This hood piercing places a ring so that it goes through a small gap that sits somewhat behind the clitoral nerve bundle. This piercing should only be attempted on person's who have suitable anatomy and by a body piercer who has training and experience with this type of placement.

Eyebrow Piercing FAQ

















Are any major nerves in the eyebrow that could be severely damaged if I pierce my own eyebrow?

Please excuse the directness of this reply, but if you can't even tell if there are major nerves in your eyebrow that could be damaged by home piercing, YOU SHOULD NOT BE PIERCING YOUR EYEBROW YOURSELF. In short, the answer to your question is possibly. However, as I am not a qualified body piercer or medical professional, I cannot speak more specifically to the actual piercing technique.

If you wish to become a qualified piercer, please take the time to get proper medical and piercing training. There is one formal piercing school in the US, located in California (www.bodyplay.com). Many people serve as apprentices to experienced piercers for one to two years to get their training.

What are the risks associated with getting your eyebrow pierced?

Eyebrow Piercing After-effects

















I got my eyebrow done a little less then a week ago and it's getting bruised. Is that normal at all?? It was a little bruised when I first got it done and now it's more, like a yellow bruise. The piercing place told me it would bruise but I didn't know it would be this bad.

Bruises are like Polaroid photos... they often take a little while to develop. Don't panic, eyebrows often bruise. The piercing was a major punch through the tissues and being on the surface of the face, the internal bleeding is showing. Yellow isn't necessarily bad, often a slightly older bruise will have this color. If the brow is shrinking and does not have fresh tenderness or oozing, chances are the brow is ok.

If you put a cold pack on your eyebrow (hold it gently so you don't push on the new jewelry) it may help to shrink the swollen tissues. Don't put makeup over the bruise, as it is way too close to the open wound. Many body piercings show signs of bruising for the first week or two, with intensity depending on the individual. If the piercing doesn't show any signs of infection, hang in there and the bruise should fade. If you have increasing redness or tenderness, go see your piercer or medical professional.

It can also be really helpful to try and avoid sleeping on the fresh piercing as pressure and any tugging on the jewelry can irritate the healing wound. Taking care when getting dressed is also a good idea, as you can snag a shirt on the new piercing if you're not used to it.

Eyebrow Piercing

One of the most modern body piercings is the eyebrow piercing. Coming from the “if it protrudes, pierce it” philosophy of the 1990s, the eyebrow has become rather popular, despite being a notoriously problematic piercing. This is actually a surface piercing, a placement of permanent jewelry in a part of the body that does not really have a skin fold.

eyebrow piercing with ringAn eyebrow that has a heavier “ridge” or thickness of tissue under the brow line is better suited to support the successful healing of this piercing. A very flat brow creates tension across the pierced area and will lend the healing piercing the natural tendency to rejection. Sometimes called “healing out,” this is when the body pushes the jewelry towards the surface of the body, as though it were attempting to push away the new jewelry. Most often, in cases of rejection, the piercing is highly irritated and painful, and some rejecting piercings show extreme and sudden reversal of negative symptoms immediately upon the removal of the jewelry. The basic idea response to this situation is, if you think your body is telling you that you should not have a certain piercing, your body is probably right and you should take it out.

Eyebrow piercings should be performed “freehand” with a proper piercing needle by a trained body piercer, and should NEVER be pierced with ear piercing guns. Placement along the brow line varies highly from person to person and varies with brow anatomy and aesthetic preferences. How far into the facial tissue the piercing is made also varies individually, and your piercer should be consulted as to what they suggest. If you wear eye glasses or sun glasses regularly, make sure you check the placement and size of your jewelry so that it doesn’t conflict physically or visually. If you are a woman who plucks or waxes her brows, be sure and have your brows done before getting a new eyebrow piercing. You do not want to be plucking stray hairs from around your fresh, tender brow ring for as long as you can after it is first pierced.

eyebrow piercing with barbellJewelry options include tiny barbells or rings. Whichever jewelry seems to stress skin surface and angle of the new piercing less is best to start. There are small, subtle nylon “keepers” made for wearers of eyebrow piercings who have to hide their facial piercings for jobs, families and other public situations. People who like to sleep on their faces should consider if they can change their sleep habits to facilitate healing this piercing. Eyebrow piercings can take 9 to 12 weeks to heal: consider the impact that healing this piercing will have on the next three months of your life. During the initial healing period, you will want to avoid wearing makeup or other facial products that might contaminate or irritate the fresh piercing.

Changing Nose Jewelry

Things To Know Before You Change Jewelry

New jewelry should be surgical stainless steel or 14k or 18k gold. If you know that you tolerate niobium or titanium well, you might start with that. See what you piercer recommends. Sterling silver is better saved for established piercings that don’t get irritated by the high rate of tarnish. For washing around the piercing, use a natural soap without dyes, perfumes or heavy anti-bacterials. These can all irritate the new piercing, as can over-cleaning the piercing. You will want to rinse the piercing with something like Bactine once a day, or apply a light dab of triple antibiotic ointment (if you are not allergic to it) to keep the ring lubricated and moving freely.

Aftercare and Changing Jewelry

nostril screw vs the postPiercings heal from the outside in, so what your nose is doing is growing a tunnel from the two sides of your nostril to surround the new jewelry. The surfaces can look healed whereas the inside areas might not be healed totally together, so don’t rush to change into new jewelry for the first two months or so. Once healed, some people switch the ring to a stud, or switch to a smaller, snugger ring than what they started with. A popular jewelry style is the nostril screw, an Indian-style where the short post ends in a half curl to hold it in place. Some people even find they can wear a conventional earring style post in their nostril and it will stay in place without a backing. This will depend on how “tight” your piercing and the jewelry fit. Beware, you can loose backless studs when you sneeze!

Exotic Ear Piercings

Ears can be pierced just about anywhere from the lower lobes to the thin rim that runs around the entire shell of the ear. Modern piercing techniques allow for easy piercing and more successful healing, especially for cartilage piercings. In order to distinguish one type of ear cartilage piercing from another, a wide array of new piercing names were born.

The ear is the part of the body that is the most accepting of the "if it protrudes, pierce it" school of piercing. Many individual parts of the ear can be pierced and healed successfully. In the picture shown here, the red letters indicate the location of a wide variety of ear piercing variations.

A - Anti-tragus - This piercing is through the thicker cartilage piece adjacent the tragus, attached to the rim of the ear.
multiple ear piercingsC - Conch - also, conk. This term refers to any piercing through either the inner or outer shell of the ear.
D - Daith - This inner ear cartilage piercing is just above the opening into the ear canal. The name comes from the Hebrew word meaning "wisdom."
H - Helix - Outer cartilage ridge piercings. This is a popular location for multiple rings, which can be set around the rim, or through the ridge itself.
L - Lobes, stretched - These are bigger gauge holes, usually lower down on the lobe. The smaller the jewelry gauge number, the larger the hole. Jewelry for these can be like tiny tubes or plugs and go up to about an inch and a half in the more commonly found largest sizes. Authentic, tribal jewelry is wearable in these sizes with elaborate, hand-carved pieces crafted from materials such as bone, stone or wood.
R - Rook - These ear piercings goes through the stiff ridge in the fold of the shell of the ear.
T - Tragus - This piercing is through the cartilage chunk just next to the opening of the ear canal. If you are fond of ear bud style head phones, be careful how you set this piercing, as placement deeper into the tissue or a larger gauge ring can interfere with how the buds seat themselves in the ear conch.

An Industrial is when multiple ear piercings are aligned so that one piece of jewelry, usually a barbell, is worn through the two holes. Helix piercings are easily paired this way, especially when the piercings are done specifically for this purpose but any two adjacent piercings that can be comfortabley connected will work. This style has also been called an Ear Orbit when it is done so that a ring is worn through the two holes.

A Transverse piercing runs across the length of the lobe, rather than through it, like a surface piercing on the ear. Placement of this unique piercing usually works best on the lower lobe where the tissue is both flat and flexible

Ear Piercing

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One of the most widely accepted body modifications found in cultures all over the planet is the pierced ear. Modern piercing techniques allow for easy piercing and more successful healing, especially for cartilage piercings. The modern primitives movement has brought the stretched ear loop to Western culture after a long low-profile existence in the South Pacific and Africa over the last few thousand years.

the author's left earEar piercing is very straightforward. A tiny hole is made through the ear tissue, usually in the fleshy lobe at the bottom of the ear. Permanent jewelry is worn in the holes, allowing the holes to heal “open”, giving the person “pierced ears.” Modern techniques are usually either a piercing gun or a hand technique using a slant-tip needle. The hand technique is more precise and utilizes a sharper instrument which is much less traumatic to the tissue. Most modern piercings studios utilize the new sterile hand techniques, but ask how the person performing the piercing received their training and what methods they prefer and why. All tools should be sterilized and “single-service”, meaning they get used on only one person and then properly discarded.

The jewelry worn in pierced ears falls into a few categories. Stud earrings are usually tiny decorative fronts attached to short posts, held in place with a small earring back that slips onto the post. Hoop earrings are either the loops worn through the ears themselves, or any earrings the utilize such a wire as the foundation for the earrings. Hook earrings come in many shapes and styles, all based on the idea of a bent wire that hooks into the hole in the ear with some sort of dangle supported from the wire. Tiny hoops with decoration are best for newly pierced ears, as they are light and allow for ease of movement for healing and cleaning. Well-established piercings can support heavier dangles comfortably.

multiple ear piercingsEars can be pierced just about anywhere from the lower lobes to the thin rim that runs around the entire shell of the ear. Newer piercings include large gauge holes in the conch of the ear, or rings through the ridges of the conch. By slowly increasing the gauge of the ear jewelry, soft tissue piercings can be stretched to form ear loops, much like the style of the Dyak people of South Borneo.

Not all cultures encourage the pierced ear. When I was in graduate school, several Chinese classmates told me that no Chinese girl would get her ear pierced all the way around the edge like I have as they believe that there is a spot on the ear that controls all your luck. They were afraid that if they hit that spot, they would become unlucky. To pierce or not to pierce then becomes a very individual decision.

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