Surface piercings refer to any piercing through the surface skin of the body. These can be done two different ways. One is with surface barbells, a staple shaped bent barbell often flattened out in the middle. The other is a surface anchor or microdermal, which is a small base that sits under the skin and a single top that rests above (hence sometimes being called single point piercin
gs). Which will work best is very dependent on the part of the body you are piercing and the clients own anatomy and desires. Surface piercings can be done all over the body, but that doesn’t mean that it’s an intelligent idea to just put them anywhere. Hands and feet are impossible to
heal and keep clean, and arms and legs aren’t much better. Most of the torso is also too high movement. Surface piercings fair best in areas of flat, low movement skin. Common lasting placements for these include the forehead, around the eyebrows, under the eyes, nape of the neck, beside the ear, collarbones, hips, and back dimples. These placements are still anatomy dependent between individuals, so it’s important to come in and discuss with our piercers where exactly will work best for your body. Surface piercings are often considered long term temporary, in that they do often eventually work their way out. If caught early enough in rejection we can redo or reset the piercing for you, free of charge as long as it was done by us.
Does it hurt?
These definitely feel unlike any other piercing, but they are not any more painful. They mostly feel like an intense pressure as the jewelry is inserted, and after that feel normal. Anyone planning on multiple in one session or close to each other should expect that may be a bit more intense.
Why won’t you pierce my finger/wrist/toe?
Sure, technically you can put an anchor or surface bar virtually anywhere. But that doesn’t mean that those placements will last more then a few months, heal well, or leave a small scar. Often times we have already see what can happen with these piercings in unrecomended placements and that’s why we won’t offer them. We like to only offer piercings with a 10/10 success rate for our clients.
But I really want it there, and I saw a photo of one!
Unfortunately even if you want it, if it’s a bad or unsafe idea our piercers still don’t feel comfortable doing it on you. The tricky thing with surface piercings is you can put them anywhere, and initially in photos they look fine. This leads to many people seeing photos of piercings that are generally bad ideas and thinking they can safely get them. We have been doing this a long time, and both of our piercers have experimented with varieties of surface work.
I heard these have to be surgically removed?
Urban legend. Removing them is actually quite simple. For a Microdermal, usually just a tissue massage and the anchor pops right out like unbuttoning a button. Sometimes they can be a bit tricky to work out, but they should never require a scalpel or surgery. A surface bar just slides out of the skin, with only a small pinch. Both are easy to remove.
What about scars?
Like any wound, surface piercings do leave scars on the skin. As long as you cared for them well scars left behind should be very minimal. If you are unhappy with the look of your scars we can recommend a local dermatologist we work with who can help reduce them.
Will you pierce me with tygon/ptfe/a curved barbell?
NO! These are all very very outdated methods of doing surface work and they do not heal. These styles cause too much pressure on the sides of the wounds, and eventually push out of the skin as seen in this diagram.