Monday, 16 December 2013

Cheek piercing experience and advice!

I have been looking to get my cheeks pierced for about 10 years and because  I live in such a small town with only one reputable body piercer I had always been turned away (this is long before I discovered the modification scene and abundance of capable piercers). So I started my piercing apprenticeship and years later the feeling NEVER left me and I STILL wanted cheek piercings but the body piercer I worked for at the time refused to do them and instead offered "micro dermal implants" which I had for 4 years in place of cheek piercings but sadly they rejected and left behind some nasty scarred tissue. Years went by and here I am , still craving cheek piercings so I have bitten the bullet and went for it and this next little section is just some tips and reviews. Some DON'TS as well as "do's".
So one of my best friends is also a body piercer so it made sense to ask my friend to come to my studio and do it for me (and in return I shall offer tea and biscuits).
I started out mapping my saliva glands and doing a preliminary check around my mouth for any lurking veins or anything that might prove an issue. I then measured out the width of my cheek from inside to out. I found the best way to do this was using a pair of cheap plastic vernier calipers which were then disposed off. I took the measurement of my cheek which was 14.28 mm and doubled that to give me the length of bar I would use. I opted for PTFE bars as I felt it would move more comfortably with my face. I also opted for 1.2mm PTFE  to fit with the rest of my 1.2mm jewellery. The piercing itself was harsh and I was VERY AWARE of how thick the tissue was, the pain subsided very quickly but was none the less very sore.
Now to get to the point! So I can't give anyone much advice on what will work best for them however this is some of the products that I am currently using to reduce the pain and swelling. I take a daily Zinc supplement purely because I get tattooed and pierced often so this little supplement just gives my immune system a little boost and helps me during the healing process, I am also using a children's non alcoholic mouthwash to keep the inside of my mouth clean..... I don't feel it makes a difference what mouth wash you use, rather the only stipulation is that it is mild and non- alcoholic. To clean the outside of my piercings I use a salt soak which I make by boiling up 1 PINT of water to 3 TEASPOONS of salt. Too much salt and the solution will burn, too little salt and it will be ineffective. I also feel it is a good point to mention that when making a salt soak always use Sea salt as it has a higher mineral content than table salt and is more beneficial for your piercings. I put some of my salt solution into  a clean shot glass and hold it against the piercing (this is good for ANY piercing) you will look ridiculous but it will help clean out your piercing. I try to hold it on for 5 mins to give the solution time to work round. I also feel that it is more soothing if the solution is mildly warm so after the kettle as boiler give it plenty of time to cool. I also use BPA piercing aftercare on the outside of my piercings (don't put this stuff inside your mouth D:). The bpa is really soothing and again an aid in keeping your piercings clean. I recommend it for MOST body piercings!! You can purchase it on this fine website > and it looks like this :
It is always a good idea to check the ingredients before you purchase as it does contain tea tree which a lot of people have issues with. To reduce the swelling in my piercings I take 1 ibuprofen every 6 hours for two days (always best to check with your GP beforehand) combined with a herbal treatment called arnica tablets which you can buy in most boots stores. Again arnica may contain ingredients that don't agree with you so check before you purchase. It is always a good idea with swelling to use cold compresses however I wouldn't recommend putting anything near fresh piercings so try sucking ice or ice lollies to give yourself some relief.
Personally my first school girl error was to underestimate just how much swelling these bad boys do! I could hardly eat or talk and was in some mild pain. I will also say that the 1.2mm jewellery was a terrible idea as the balls were so small they began to sink into my cheek and I was left having to change the bars 4 days after a fresh and very painful piercing to 1.6 by 32mm. The stretching was not so bad but it is a horrendous idea to make any jewellery changes to a new piercing but sadly I had made a bad choice and it was change the jewellery or abandon the piercing.
What I would say to everyone is that some people do not have a lot of swelling however most people swell like a balloon with these particular piercings. Other than some pain and swelling they have been okay so far and I am looking forward to being able to smile again haha
My best advice would be to prepare for some mega swollen times, salt soak the piercing twice a day and keep your mouth clean! These piercings are nothing to be taken lightly and SO much can go horrifically wrong. They can take years to heal properly and will leave your face permanently scared. Not a piercing for the faint hearted or people who don't have the time to look after them! I'm approaching a week and will do a little update in a months time but be safe, get a good competent body piercer who has performed this piercing before (with success). Get some good aftercare and prepare to look like a chipmunk.
This blog is not meant as an instructional blog but a review on my experience of this piercing

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Pale girl problems. Finding a foundation to suit you!

So like many other pale girls out there I have spend a number of years trawling the shelf's of beauty stores to find a foundation pale enough for my skin. I have the problem of being pale AND having combination skin and I found that some of the foundations I used where to dark and gave me the dreaded "orange jaw line" or I would find a colour match but it was unsuitable for my skin and cause it to be overly dry or overly oily. NOT A GOOD LOOK. I also found that some of the paler foundations cause any blemishes in my skin to show through ten fold and I end up looking like an extra from " the walking dead". I had some success with a "benefit" foundation but in true benefit fashion it was.....discontinued -_-. My husband actually bought me a foundation to try on a whim after his sister recommended it to him (for me hah). I decided to give it a go and I can tell you I was not disappointed! The foundation is by "Soap and Glory" called "show good face" and comes in 6 shades. I am currently using "the fairest of them all" which is the lightest shade they offer.
I am old school so I don't use a brush to apply my foundation but instead use my hand (I know, naughty naughty) but the foundation apply's very evenly, blends nicely and leaves a nice silky feeling, not the horrible "matt" feeling you can get with foundations. It covered my blemishes nicely and I found it reduced some of the oily quality in my skin but didn't dry it out. It is also a lovely base to apply powder (which I do) and looks good with a pale pink blusher. I work 9 hours a day so it was important that it did not melt off half way through the day. I didn't have to re-apply the foundation during the day and even when it is hot it does not migrate down my face like a sad avalanche. One of the best things about this product apart from its look on the skin is that it is 100% affordable and you can pick it up from most boots stores over the country. I don't believe in apply fake tan etc, not that other woman don't look good with it but its just not for me. This product is a fantastic foundation at a great price that lasts and does exactly what it claims to do!
Embrace your inner vampire!

The BIG colour change

So like most alternative people I change my hair about 10 times a year. I am constantly shaving and adding bits and primping and crimping and the dying....oh the dying. Unfortunately for me I suffer from a thyroid condition that causes my hair to be dry and brittle which had become a real problem seen as I like to change my hair colour more often than I change my socks! (I joke). I have always loved vibrant colours and so I have been dying my hair every few months from pink to blue to red, to orange to yellow etc and as you can imagine my hair was beginning to resemble straw and had that dreaded  stringy texture that all peroxide users fear. Now one of my friends is a hair dresser and she gave me some advice that I decided to take! Now for stripping my hair I have tried alllllllll manor of things including colour b4, toners, silver shampoo, fairy liquid and I have had minimal success. For me personally the only product that lifts colour is bleach. The advice my friend gave me was to use 9 % peroxide instead of my usual 12%. I must admit that I had no idea peroxide came in different percentages but apparently it does! I have a salon services card so I headed down to sally's and picked up my 9% bleach and a shampoo and condition that my friend had recommended. I cannot recommend the shampoo and conditioner ENOUGH. If you have damaged hair this is a product that genuinely works. I have had hot oils and hair masks and tried so many different products but so far this is the only one I have found to really repair the hair after peroxide and dying. The product I used and have continued to use is "TIGI BED HEAD, RESURRECTION". Its fab and I'm still using it.
I got all the products I used at Sally's BUT I know you can buy most of this at your hair dressers or online. The hair colour I started with was a bright orange before I applied the peroxide.
So I started with mixing my peroxide up as per the instructions provided on the box and applying it to my hair (which was all sectioned and pinned up). I would be lying if I said I did it myself, actually my glamorous assistant did it for me. So she brushed the peroxide mix over sections of my hair and then wrapped it in foils. It actually wasn't as time consuming as I thought it would be. I left my peroxide on for 1 hour and washed it out thoroughly. We then blow dried my hair (I've always felt that hair dye best takes to the hair when its dry). I then used Directions hair dye in "apple green". I used 2 tubs and my hair is shoulder length so make sure you have plenty as it does not go as far as your regular hair dye.
I kept the apple green in for 1 hour and when I washed it all out it was a GLORIOUS bright green and just what I had wanted!! I will also make a point of saying I have tried other greens but I found that directions applied best and was the truest to the colour shown in the websites pictures. Now I didn't intend for this post to be an instructional post on "how to dye your hair" as I know we all are aware how to colour our mops. I rather meant to review a few products that I have found amazingly helpful, having the problems I have with my hair.
The 9% peroxide was infinitely kinder to my hair than my regular 12%, The TIGI shampoo and condition have made a HUGE difference to my hair (I have now been using that product for 2 months) and I am delighted. The directions hair dye was the best green I have used so far, it didn't damage my hair, it left it soft with no breaking or horrid stringiness.
A LITTLE TIP: I added some of the left over apple green dye to my conditioner, because the dye is semi permanent I felt that it can wash out to quickly BUT when I add it to conditioner and leave my conditioner in for 10 minutes before I wash it out, it adds another little colour boost to my hair every time I wash it.

Monday, 9 December 2013

Wildcat Body jewellery review!

So I have been away for what seems like forever due to SOOO many things!
New job, New shop, yet MORE cats and many other things that have changed since last year and unfortunately blogging had fallen by the way side BUT I am back and readier than ever to be opinionated about things hah!
So As a body piercer I wanted to do a little review on Wild cat body jewellery for a number of reasons. I always want my customers to get the best out of their piercing experience and high quality jewellery makes every difference. Now, I normally order my jewellery from "" , its great priced, amazing quality and the staff are great to deal with BUT of recent I have seen companies like "wildcat" coming more and more to the fore front of the piercing community because they offer a great variety of different products. Variety is the spice of life and I like spice so I thought "I'm having me some of that"! I trotted off on a windy autumn day to see a friend and body piercer who just so happened to stock a range of wildcat jewellery, while I was in the studio I decided to treat myself to some new facial bling! So I purchased 2 horseshoes (1.6 x 10mm), 4 labret balls with pink gems in "injecto black" and a large piece of garish jewellery for my husbands long suffering P/A piercing. I was given a half price discount and even then the jewellery was EXPENSIVE to say the least but who am I to price other peoples merchandise. I also made a point of checking that the labret balls would fit my current jewellery which I was told they would (and I checked the catalogue to make sure they would thread onto my 1.2 labrets, because I'm suspicious like that hah). I got home and I changed all my jewellery over for a face of new shiny injecto black, pink gem goodness and I was happy, the kind of happy that every pierced person feels when they refurbish their hardware! Two days into my jewellery overhaul one of the pink gems comes out of my labret. I wasn't overly bothered and sometimes you do just get one in the batch that has a little rogue gem that's trying to escape. I continued plodding along having changed over the little gem ball for a plain injecto black ball until around a week later when I woke up and found another TWO little gems on the pillow beside me. Now I do move about in my sleep but I definitely had not moved enough to warrant yet more gem casualties. I got into the studio in the morning and reluctantly changed over more jewellery to plain injecto black with a saddening lack of gem goodness. Now at this point I am pretty miffed having paid the income of a small country for some cute pink face adornment that had bailed out on me. I didn't think anything more of it and 2 weeks later I was piercing a customers nose when I heard  the dreaded "tink" on the laminate floor which only comes from jewellery on a kamikaze mission away from the body. This time I had lost one of the balls off my septum ring and had made the decision to give up and change all of the jewellery back over to my original standard unamazing titanium. I never bothered to contact the other studio back to complain because well... he didn't make the jewellery, however I have no problem in telling you that the next time I see that body piercer I will make a point of saying a foul word under my breath.........and far away from them (he's a scary guy). To sum up my experience with Wildcat jewellery I would say that although the jewellery was gorgeous it was not of the hard wearing, high quality standard that I am used to and I am not being a snob in saying that but I have had jewellery from many companies and Wild cat is the only wholesaler that I can whole heartedly say I would NEVER order from. Now I can only speak from my own personal experience but for me the jewellery was substandard, the threads (although converted to metric) did not wind well on the labrets, the gems where not secure and the whole experience was expensive and disappointing. Sorry for any of you Wild cat fans but I will be sticking with my usual supplier and keeping my jewellery securely on my face and out of my customers lap!