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My nape piercing- losing my virginity to surface piercings

With my business just taking off, as well as my addiction to piercings, I had to work to find more "hide-able" piercings. Before today, I had my lobes stretched to 0g, helix-helix industrial, standard tongue, and 2 already retired- naval and tongue web. My choices at this point were nipples or 'below the belt'- neither of which i wanted do to the inability to show them off tactfully- and septum, other ear piercings, and various surface piercings. Septum was avoided because I really love my nose the way it is, and other ear piercings were just... not 'new' to me. I wanted something different, so I began to dream of surface piercings. I chose nape because I could easily hide it under my hair, but show it off by wearing my hair up or lifting it up to show my friends. It also was one with a somewhat decent chance of healing, with the right jewelry and piercer.

The next step was to decide when this was going to happen. My tongue had just been done a week ago so i decided to wait at least another week. I wanted it done before winter came, and along with it, coats and scarves to irritate a fresh piercing, and I didn't know any piercer in DC who were especially famous for their surface work, so I knew I'd be traveling at least a bit.

After deciding that the week of September 12th would be ideal, I started my research. I read everything I could find about the procedure, the jewelry, the aftercare, and just people's experiences with napes on BME. I asked the "piercing" and "bodymod" communities on livejournal who they'd recommend. My decision was made up by recommendations of Zak and by browsing his online portfolios at piercing.org and BME. I checked the calendar to see when I could make the hour-long trip to Edgewood, MD. It was then I realized that I'd have my period during the initial healing time if I was pierced the week of the 12th, so I decided that my tongue would be fine if I moved it up to the week before. To be safe, I would go the 10th, which was only a couple days earlier than I originally planned.

The 10th came. I woke up, showered, and went to lunch with my amazing, but un-pierced boyfriend. He decided he'd come with me for moral support, although he loathed watching the procedure. I told him it would be fine if he waited in the waiting room. We drove up and around Baltimore (I live in Annapolis) to Edgewood and found the shop. I walked in and observed a girl filling out paperwork at the counter. By a bit of spying, I noticed she was also getting a surface piercing. I felt even more comfortable after realizing that Zak really is the guy to go to for surface work.

I waited for her to be done talking to the guy behind the counter, and then told him I was here to get my nape pierced. He nodded and took out the form. Then came the "ID, fill this out, sign here" instructions. He told me they usually do napes with disks, because they get knocked around less. This made total sense to me, but I still wanted the beads because I knew I wasn't going to be changing the jewelry for while, and I liked the beads so much better than the disks, in fact, I probably wouldn't have even gotten the piercing if I couldn't get beads. Luckily, this didn't seem to be a big deal, and we went with the beads. I was then showed a bunch of beads with gems in them, which were beautiful, but the standard ones were fine for now, plus I was going for the simple look anyway.

I then told him I wanted about a 5/8" long surface barbell. This proved to be a problem. The smallest they'd go was 1-1/4", and that seemed like a major difference to me. I was really sad, because I felt like it would be way to big. The guy behind the counter wasn't pressuring though, he just told me that any smaller would reject, and left me to make up my mind. He then brought me a book full of Zak's piercing to show me how the 1-1/4" barbells looked on napes. And I looked at a few pictures for about 20 minutes. Feeling discouraged, I began to flip though the rest of the book, full of other piercing. I looked at a couple of suspension pics of Zak and his girlfriend, when I saw her nape. It was amazing. It was perfect. I then asked the guy at the counter if her's was 1-1/4", and he said it was. The decision was made- I'd do it- with the 1-1/4" barbell.

Then the waiting. Jason (boyfriend) and I sat and talked, and I watched the girl before me go back. 20 minutes later, she was out with an amazing surface piercing horizontally below her bellybutton. I felt even better when I saw it. 10 minutes later, I was walking back to the piercing room.

I sat on the table while Zak began to mark my neck. I asked him questions like "do you do a lot of napes", to which he replied that he does a lot of surface piercings in general. He drew out just how the procedure was going to work for me on his glove (dermal punches, then joining the two openings under the skin with a taper, then putting the surface barbell in), and after I was feeling even better about it, he went back to marking my neck. After about 15 minutes of figuring out the perfect spot, with plenty of double-checks from the guy behind the counter, as well as one from Jason, we started the whole piercing process.

I laid down, but then Zak had me sit back up- I guess being the "round" girl I am, I have too much neck fat for the first position. (haha, I'm not obese, just trying to be honest here) He pressed the surface bar to get the exact spot for the dermal punches, and then tucked some paper into the back of my tank top (to catch the blood I assumed). He then told me to breath normally (no "1, 2, 3 like I was used to), and he would work in the rhythm of my breathing. "It's used when mothers are in labor because it really works" were his exact words. He was right.

The dermal punches came first. Painful, but no worse than a standard piercing, and that was the worst part. He then slipped the taper though one hole and under the skin to the other hole. The bad thing about this part was that I kept waiting for it to really hurt, so I kept staring at the floor wishing it was over, but honestly, it wasn't very painful. The jewelry came next, which hurt more than the taper, but not by much, and in under a minute, he was screwing the balls on. It was over, and it looked great.

At the moment, its 8 hours later. Still looks great, even with my neck still marked up. Now all I hope for is an easy healing time. Zak told me not to do anything to it- "If its not broken, don't fix it" he said. I can't feel it now, not in the least, and I hope it remains that way!

Details

submitted by: Anonymous
on: 13 Sept. 2004
in Surface & Unusual Piercing

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Artist: Zak+Zito
Studio: Main+Street+Tattoo
Location: Edgewood%2C+MD

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