Kids’ ear piercing tools and practices haven’t changed much since the early 1970s when ear piercing guns were first invented. Before that time, however, things were a bit different. Until innovations in piercing practice were made, most ear piercings were done at home using a piece of ice and an ordinary sewing needle.
Fortunately, that particular rite of passage has evolved, and today, ear piercing is much safer and more hygienic than ever. For instance, salons and piercing parlours must meet specific health and safety standards and ensure employees are trained before offering ear piercing services.
However, there are a few different piercing methods to choose from, and each comes with its own set of pros and cons. Additionally, not every option is best suited for piercing ear lobes of young children. To help families learn more, we’re looking at the different ear piercing methods and exploring which one is best for a comfortable kids’ ear piercing experience.
Spring-Loaded Piercing Gun
Piercing guns are cosmetic instruments used to puncture a small hole in a person’s earlobe and insert a sterile earring into the hole. They tend to be powered by a spring-loaded force and are reusable.
Health Canada recommends salons choose an ear-piercing gun with a disposable sterile cartridge that can be removed after each client. Before piercing the next client, a new sterile cartridge is inserted. The rest of the gun is disinfected with a solution of 70% alcohol.
Pros of Piercing Guns for Kids Ear Piercing
When used to pierce a child’s ear lobe, a piercing gun may provide the following benefits:
- A large variety of earrings to choose from.
- Low cost.
Cons of Piercing Guns for Kids Ear Piercing
When choosing a piercing method for your child’s first ear piercing, be sure to review the following cons of spring-loaded piercing guns.
- Loud and jerky. This may cause a child to move quickly and result in a more painful experience.
- If an older ear piercing gun is used, it may not be possible to replace the needle between clients, thereby increasing the risk of exposure to blood-borne contaminants and infection.
- Earrings may not be hypoallergenic.
- Sharp earring posts are exposed and can poke or prick the child’s skin.
A tattoo and body piercing parlour is another place parents can take kids for a safe ear piercing appointment. These establishments typically use a disposable piercing gun or piercing needle as their piercing instrument. When using a needle to pierce an earlobe, a sharp, hollow needle punctures the lobe. Once the needle is removed from the earlobe, a sterilized earring is put in its place.
Needle Ear Piercing Pros:
- A new needle is used every time, with no risk of contamination from poorly cleaned equipment.
- Less painful than piercing with a spring-loaded piercing gun.
- Technicians tend to have more training at a body piercing facility.
- Healing time is usually shorter.
Needle Ear Piercing Cons for Kids
Before taking your child to a body piercing professional for their first, second, or even third ear piercing experience, review the following cons:
- Takes longer and requires a child to sit still.
- It may be an intimidating environment for young children.
- Typically costs more.
- Many body piercing establishments don’t perform piercings on anyone under 9 years old.
Hand Clasp Piercing System
A hand clasp piercing system, such as ones from Inverness, is similar to the spring-loaded piercing gun but with a few differences in hygiene and quality of experience. A hand clasp piercing is powered by the technician’s hand and is typically more gentle and smooth than a spring-loaded gun piercing. The hole created by the earlobe is still made with the post of the client’s chosen jewelry piece, just as it is with a piercing gun method.
Pros of a Hand Clasp Piercing System for Kids
- More gentle than a piercing gun experience
- Less noisy
- Better for infants or young children that are easily startled.
- Pre-sterilized capsules ensure zero exposure to contaminants.
- Both ears can be pierced simultaneously with two piercing technicians.
Cons of a Hand Clasp Piercing System for Kids
- It can be painful, but not more than other piercing methods.
- It can cost more than other methods.
Kids Ear Piercing: The Safest Method
As described above, all piercing methods have unique advantages and disadvantages. And, as long as the salon follows their region’s board of health requirements to minimize the risk of blood-borne, bacterial and viral infections, each method is safe for children.
However, when it comes to addressing child-specific needs, we recommend choosing a hand clasp piercing system. We love this method because all jewelry must be hypoallergenic and of good quality. Additionally, the earring backings protect young skin from sharp earring posts, and each piercing is done with properly sterilized equipment.
These are some of the most important reasons we use Inverness’s hand clasp piercing system for ear piercing appointments at our kid-friendly salon.
Enjoy a Happy Kids Ear Piercing Experience at Lizzy Lee & Me
When owning and operating a salon that caters to children, creating an environment they can be comfortable in and have fun is paramount. At our kids’ spa and hair care center, we love creating enjoyable and happy experiences that kids and parents will remember fondly.
We offer a comprehensive ear piercing package for kids that includes free ear piercing with the purchase of earrings, a memorable photo, and a sweet treat! Our ear piercing appointments are reserved over the phone; please call our salon to arrange your booking.