How to Sterilize Body Jewelry

You may think that a piece of body jewelry you just bought online or from a piercing jewelry shop is ready to wear, but actually it’s important to take the time to clean it first! There are several ways you can clean your body jewelry with a piercing shop’s help or at home. Because you don’t want to introduce anything nasty into your piercing that might cause infection!

For New Body Jewelry or Jewelry Already in Your Collection

This process is for cleaning non-organic materials only. Non organic materials include everything from titanium, acrylic, glass, stainless steel, etc. Basically the harder materials that can stand up to a good cleaning! This is a good option for jewelry bought online or at a piercing store because often times these will still have leftovers of production dust and bacterial from handling and packaging on them.

You Will Need

You’ll need anti-bacterial soap (make sure it’s fragrance free), a sink with running water, a sink plug or face washer, and paper towel.

The Process

First, wash your hands with the soap very thoroughly to get rid of anything that might be hanging on there. You might be surprised with how much bacteria we pick up with our hands on any given day with everything that we touch whether at home or while out of the house!

Washing Hands

Next, if your jewelry includes different compartments like a barbell with the length and the balls, unscrew them all and keep them apart. It’s important to clean the entire thing, especially all the little crevices that may be hiding dirt and bacteria.

In your sink, block the drain! The last thing you will want is to drop your brand new jewelry down the sink for it to be lost forever. Use either a sink plug or a washcloth.

Plug the drain while washing body jewelry

Piece by piece, using the anti-bacterial soap, soap up the jewelry as much as possible. Work it thoroughly so that no part it is left out for about 2-3 minutes.

Rinse it off, and set it on a clean piece of paper towel to dry off.

Dry with a paper towel

Repeat this process for every piece of jewelry and every segment within each piece.

Once every piece has been cleaned properly, towel it off well with the paper towel and then it’s ready to be inserted into your piercing!

For Previously Used Body Jewelry

When it comes to cleaning body jewelry that has been previously used by someone other than yourself, you can’t just use the antibacterial method. Rather, pop down to your local piercing shop and usually they’ll be more than willing to autoclave it for you.

An autoclave is a machine used by piercers and often other medical professionals that will heat your jewelry to a high point where it will be completely sterilized of bacteria and dirt.

Speaking of heat, this means this process cannot be done on all jewelry. It is only available for jewelry that won’t melt or break down under high temperatures like titanium, stainless steel, glass and some kinds of high-grade medical acrylics. 

In case you want to watch a short video on all this information, press play below

There you go! There’s no reason to use unclean piercing jewelry when cleaning it is so easy. Would you want to risk using jewelry when you don’t know where it’s been?