So, you've decided to dive into the world of lip snakebite lip piercings. Or, maybe you’re trying to decide if snakebites are right for you.
Regardless of where you are in the process, one thing’s for certain: these double piercings on either side of the lower lip have become the rebels' favorite accessory. But they're not just a trend – they're a whole statement that deserves careful consideration!
But before you rush into the piercing chair, let's talk about something crucial: the body jewelry. Choosing the right jewelry for your snakebites isn't just about aesthetics. It's about healing, comfort, and, of course, showing off your one-of-a-kind style.
So let's get down to the nitty-gritty of picking the perfect body jewelry for one of the most unique piercings out there: snakebites.
Understanding Snakebite Piercings
Like mentioned before, snakebite piercings are a group of two total piercings, one on either side of the mouth, just below the lower lip. The look of the piercing replicates the look of a real snake bite, where fangs would leave two equidistant puncture wounds.
Snakebite piercings rely on symmetry to achieve their quintessential look. That’s why it’s extremely important for your piercer to mark the locations of both piercings before actually breaking out the piercing needle. If the placement looks off, don’t be afraid to say something!
Other than symmetry, you have a few options to consider in terms of placement. Some individuals prefer their snakebites closer to the corners of their mouths, while others prefer them closer to the center of your bottom lip.
At the end of the day, the placement of your snakebites is up to you and your personal preference. When in doubt, chat through all your options with your piercer.
Factors Influencing Jewelry Selection
When you first get your snakebites pierced, your professional piercer will choose the right starter jewelry based on your anatomy. That starter jewelry is also chosen specifically to accommodate the healing process.
In most cases, your piercer will choose a 16 or 14 gauge labret stud or ring (depending on your preference) as starter jewelry. These sizes ensure there’s ample room for swelling as the snakebite piercings heal. Once totally healed, you can downsize if you prefer.
Speaking of preferences, there are several styles of snakebite jewelry, grouped into two buckets: labret studs or hoops.
Labret studs are self explanatory, consisting of a straight bar with a ball on one end and a flat disc on the other. The ball portion is what’s visible, resting just beneath your lower lip.
Hoops, on the other hand, have several variations, like:
- Seamless hoops – one continuous hoop that fully wraps around your lip
- Circular barbells – a “horseshoe” shape with two balls on either end
- Captive bead rings – one continuous hoop that fully wraps around your lip, except a ball is in the center for removal/installation purposes
A crucial consideration is to choose jewelry that is body-safe. Your piercer will know this, but it bears repeating. “Body safe” simply means it’s made of high-quality material, preferably one that’s hypoallergenic and/or biocompatible (like titanium) that won’t cause an adverse reaction.
If you know you’re particularly sensitive to some metals, make sure to communicate with your piercer to avoid any complications.
Hypoallergenic Materials for Snakebite Piercings
One of the most important parts of getting a new piercing is know your jewelry options – especially if you have sensitive skin!
Of all the body jewelry materials available to you, the following are considered to be hypoallergenic materials for piercings and safe for sensitive skin:
- Titanium The “holy grail” of body jewelry, titanium is hypoallergenic and biocompatible, meaning it doesn’t harm living tissue. It’s also resistant to corrosion and extremely strong while remaining lightweight.
- Surgical steel Otherwise known as stainless steel, this is another hypoallergenic and biocompatible option. However, it is possible that surgical steel can contain a small percentage of other alloys, such as nickel, which can cause irritation if you’re prone to metal allergies.
- Niobium A newer piercing jewelry option, niobium is known for its lustrous appearance, availability, and affordability. Like titanium and surgical steel, niobium is also hypoallergenic and corrosion-resistant (but less so than titanium).
During your search for the perfect piece of jewelry, there’s one element to avoid at all costs: nickel. The European Centre for Allergy Research Foundation actually declared nickel as one of the most common contact allergies worldwide!
Consult a Professional Piercing Studio
Any professional piercer worth their salt would have completed a series of health and safety certifications before they started piercing – it’s legally required, after all. While it varies from state to state, the fact remains that they’ve undergone the training necessary to complete safe body piercings, from head to toe.
And that’s precisely why you should trust their expertise! They’ve seen it all, pierced it all, and they know what works – and more importantly – what doesn’t.
So, when it comes to a snakebite piercing, don't DIY it. A professional piercer will guide you through the entire process with safety top-of-mind. They'll also help you choose the right jewelry based on your lifestyle, ensuring your new piercing doesn't clash with your daily routine.
Suffice it to say, getting a new (and oftentimes unfamiliar) piercing isn't the time to hit up a sketchy, back-alley studio. You need a studio with a reputation as solid as your resolve to rock those snakebites.
Why does it matter? Well, for starters, the quality of your piercing and jewelry depends on the studio you choose. Reputable establishments source their body jewelry from trusted manufacturers, ensuring you get top-notch options. This not only minimizes the risk of infections but also guarantees that your snakebites won't tarnish or turn your skin funky colors.
Professional piercers don’t just ensure your health and safety. They also ensure the piercing will look as fabulous as you imagined! They do this by considering factors like lip size, thickness, and symmetry before recommending a type of jewelry.
Besides, what looks amaxing on your BFF might not align with your own lip structure. Snakebites aren't a one-size-fits-all piercing; it's a bespoke experience tailored to your unique face.
TLDR: Do your homework—read reviews, check out their portfolio, and make sure the studio follows all the required health and safety protocols.
Styles of Jewelry for Snakebite Piercings
Jewelry selection for snakebites should involve your personality. From the classic appearance to edgy statement pieces, snakebite piercing jewelry styles are incredibly versatile.
This option is for those who want the classic look-and-feel of snakebites. With only one visible point just under the lower lip, labret studs deliver maximum visual impact, no matter the color or style. This titanium spike labret is a popular choice for snakebites, as the spike simulates the fangs of a snake.
Like referenced earlier, there are several ring options for the snakebite piercing. One of the most popular is a hinged clicker ring. This is a fantastic option for those who want snakebites but want something more understated. For example, this titanium hinged hoop ring is very thin, leaving no space between the hoop and lip for a laidback look.
Another option is a captive bead ring (CBR), which is similar to seamless hoops, except that there is a ball in the center that screws on and off for installation and removal. These hoops tend to be thicker, lending themselves to a more unique style. This 14kt gold captive ring puts a fancy spin on a typical CBR, using a solid gold ball as its centerpiece.
The last ring option is a circular barbell. Circular barbells are shaped like horseshoes with balls (or some other motif) on both ends, showing two visible points. This option creates an edgier look, as they are more visible than the other options. This internally threaded titanium circular barbell is perfect for someone who wants to show off their piercing.
Caring for Jewelry and Piercings
Another crucial consideration is maintaining the hygiene of your snakebite piercings, including the jewelry. Snakebite piercing aftercare isn't just for show—it's the only way to ensure a smooth healing process. Grab some saline wound wash from your local pharmacy (your piercing studio might carry some, too) and make it your new best friend!
To care for your snakebites, soak a clean paper towel in saline solution and gently clean around your piercings twice a day. Avoid cotton balls or swabs, as small fibers can get caught in the piercing site and cause irritation and/or infection.
For lip piercings specifically, we recommend rinsing your mouth with saline twice a day to keep the interior piercing nice and clean. During the healing process, good oral hygeine is key – no skipping!
Also, don’t play piercer at home. Leave the rotating and twisting to the pros. Excessive manipulation can lead to irritation, delaying in the healing process. Not to mention, your fingers can harbor bacteria, yet another reason to keep your hands off! Simply let your snakebites do their thing in peace.
At the end of the day, you know your body best. If you think something is wrong with your piercings, especially past the 8-week mark. At this point, excessive redness, swelling, discharge, and/or other irritation could be a sign that your body is rejecting the piercing, or that you have an infection.
When in doubt, pay your piercer a visit for professional guidance moving forward.
Remember, when it comes to selecting jewelry for your snakebites, it's not just about looking cool (though that's a big part of it). We've talked materials, sizes, styles, and the importance of professional guidance, further proving that it's a delicate dance between comfort and style. As you embark on this piercing adventure, we encourage you to experiment with styles that make your personality shine. And when you're on the lookout for high-quality body jewelry, Urban Body Jewelry has your back (and lips).