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Removing & Inserting Jewellery Correctly

There are three basic styles of body jewellery and many variations on those styles. The three styles are a bead ring (fig.A), captive bead (fig.B), and circular barbell/barbell (fig.C).

There is never any need to cut body jewellery for removal. Even momentary removal of jewellery from a healing piercing can result in amazingly rapid closure of the piercing, and make reinsertion difficult or impossible. Removal of jewellery in the presence of an infection may result in an abscess. In the event there is a localized, draining infection, quality jewellery should be left in place to allow for passage of matter to the surface.

Fig. A

On a bead ring, the bead is attached to one side of the ring. To open the ring for removal, simply twist the ring open. Grasp the ring on each side of the bead, pull gently and one end will pop out of the bead. By pushing one end away from you and pulling the other end toward you to open the ring like a spiral.

Fig. B

On a captive bead ring, the bead is held in by the tension of the ring. Grasp the ring with one hand as close to the bead as you can and with the other hand grasp the bead. Gently pull the ring and bead in opposite directions and the bead should snap out of the ring. Twist the ring a little (as in opening a bead ring) and rotate the jewellery to remove the ring.

Fig. C

Barbells and circular barbells have threaded ends which can be unscrewed. Like most threaded objects, they tighten to the right and loosen to the left. On this type of jewellery one or both of the ends will come unscrewed.

Ring Expanding Pliers or External Snap Ring Pliers can be used to spread a ring open enough to pop a bead in or out. Place the head of the pliers inside of the ring and gently squeeze on the handle to spread the jaws outward, opening the ring just enough to pop the ball out.

Gem's Body Jewellery is happy to order Expanding Pliers for customers for our customers.  We do not keep them in stock but we can usually get them in around 28 days.  They cost ?25 each.

Other Useful Piercing Information Pages

General Piercing advice and information

Problem Piercings

Body Piercing aftercare

Oral Piercing aftercare

Measuring your jewellery or piercing