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Tonight's Entertainment - a bridge piercing!

I'm a regular at my piercing/tattoo studio. They see me at the very least every couple of weeks, but recently it's been more like once a week as my artist Sam works on my big leg piece tattoo. Anyway, the point is – we all know each other, which makes it so much more fun! Tonight when I walked in, the shop girl looked up and right away said "Hand on a minute – let me get Sam". I had to stop her with "Actually, hang on, I want piercings – is Block here?" Block is the main piercing guy, but he wasn't there yet. "But Drew can do it!" the shop girl piped up. Drew is actually the half owner and prefers to just tattoo. He does, however, have 15 years of piercing experience under his belt – nothing to sneer at – so I opt to just go ahead with Drew.

I already have my belly button, left nostril, ears stretched to 6 gauge, and 3 retired labrets. My body just never cooperated with the lip rings, and I wanted to both be more symmetrical, and have more face decoration. I figured a bridge and my right nostril would round out my look nicely, but I have never had more than one piercing done at a time – I was a wee bit nervous.

Drew walked up and started chatting. "Alright, what is it today?" he joked. "Bridge and my right nostril – I want the whole sore face thing over with in one go" I replied. This brings a few raised eyebrows from some customers and one of the other artists, as they don't know me that well, and they were probably thinking 'is this chick a little crazy or what?' In any case, Drew didn't even flinch, and started setting up his jewelry, needles, etc. (Standard disclaimer – all done with gloves, autoclaved jewelry/needles and aseptic technique.)

While he's doing this, I get to stand around with my skirt hiked up to show my thigh piece tattoo to all the artists at the shop, as they want to see the progress Sam has made. After lots of oohing and aahing at the pretty colors and much technical discussion that I totally zone out for, I am called back to the piercing corner. "Which one first?" he asked. "Uh, whichever order is easier for you, man. I figure they're both gonna hurt." He opts to do my nostril first, and dots me up. We only have to move the dot once, and only a tiny bit, and then we proceed with a 16 gauge needle. He told me when to inhale, then exhale, and stab! Honestly, I think it hurt like a bitch. I wasn't expecting it to sting so much, but it seems like a tough piece of cartilage (on me, anyway). In any case, he put in the jewelry very smoothly, and I held a paper towel on it for a few minutes while it stopped bleeding. As soon as it was done, it stopped hurting – a few hours later, it just fe els a tiny bit sore.

On to the next! By the time we got ready to do the bridge, we had the shop girl, 2 of the other tattoo artists and an artist's friend gathered 'round to watch. I'm not sure how many people actually came over to watch, since I closed my eyes when he layed the chair down. I should mention that this is a small town, and a shop that specializes in tattoos rather than piercings, so I guess most of them hadn't seen a bridge done. I knew that Drew had done tons of them though, so although I felt totally safe with him, I also felt a bit like this evening's entertainment.

I got dotted up – right spots on the first try – amazing! We had some hilarity when we asked Ian (another artist) and Sam to come check the dots. Ian pronounces them even, and Sam goes "Yeah, they're even – just the blood makes that one look off." I laughed "Dude, not the nose – the other dots! But thanks for the feedback, now that it's too late to change that one!"

Next up, it took Drew a little while to get the clamps on just right. I've heard lots of people say the clamps hurt worse than the piercing – as far as I'm concerned, that's total BS. The clamps just feel kind of funny, and on the bridge they do feel like they are trying to pull your whole face up/off, but no pain. I felt him line up the receiving tube and 14 gauge needle, and give me the "deep breath in, deep breath out" and then pierce. It was a ... different feeling. It stung when it entered, and stung when it exited, but I could hardly feel the needle going through the flesh in the middle. It just felt a bit foreign to have something under the skin, and some pressure, but that's it. Then there was the jewelry follow-through, which was smooth and again just felt a bit weird. Drew was also busy trying to get the clamps off and stem the blood at the same time – it was a minute or two before I could sit up and open my eyes, and then about 5-10 more minutes before the bl eeding stopped completely.

While I was laying there and Drew was fiddling, I heard someone finally say "Well?!? How bad was it?" I just sort of shrugged as much as one can when trying to hold very still, and replied "Eh. I was totally expecting worse." I heard the shop girl over at the counter say "She's a trooper – she doesn't whine." which made me laugh a little. I would say it hurt a bit more than the nostril (although maybe we can attribute that to the endorphins?) and it definitely hurt a lot less than my 14 gauge labret did. Anyway, after sitting up I was handed a mirror and almost freaked out a little, thinking it was crooked. Turns out the blood smears/sharpie points/iodine stains were totally uneven, but the piercing itself is very straight.

It makes me laugh that I have a bit of an obsession with symmetrical body art – all of my tattoos are centered or matching pairs, and now all my piercings are symmetrical – and yet the bridge almost draws attention to the fact that my face is a little crooked (which I already knew). They say that every face is a collection of misalignments, but at least I can make sure that my decorations are balanced! Overall, I'm extremely happy with my new face holes, and pleasantly surprised at how easy it was today. Thanks to Drew and the great group at The Tattoo Co!

Details

submitted by: Anonymous
on: 21 Dec. 2008
in Eyebrow Piercing

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Artist: Drew
Studio: The+Tattoo+Co.
Location: Las+Cruces%2C+NM

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