Shiny Metal Between My Boobs (Or MIcrodermal Implants)
Just over a year and a half ago I got two surface piercings; bars on both my upper arms, just below my runic text tattoos. These were intended to be the start of a larger surface project but unfortunately things didn't go to plan and, in April of last year, I took both bars out. I regretted losing the surface piercings as I really did like them, and I always intended to get them redone, but the usual problems of time and money (or the lack of them) coupled with the fact that me and boyfriend split up and I went through a pretty rough few months, meant that it never happened, and my arms remained surface piercing less.
A few months before I had my surface piercings I'd had to retire my bridge piercing and so when I went to the Cardiff Tattoo Convention last October I decided to get my bridge repierced, and my cheeks done, rather than waiting to see my piercer, Sean, at Pierced Up in Bristol and get my surface piercings repierced.
But, as luck would have it, I ended up having some problems with my cheek piercings, leading to the right one being removed, and when I eventually called in to see Sean to talk about surface piercings (I wanted discs rather than balls on the next set) he said I would have to wait until the wound from my failed cheek piercing healed up a bit and went down before I got my surface piercings back.
Time went on and work, and my social life, got busier while money got less and less, then two friends of mine, Mike (iam:scaredycat) and Laura, opened a piercing and alternative clothes shop in Bath. Called [ab]normal fashion the shop is full of gorgeous clothes and the studio clean and sterile. Having been pierced by Mike before he had the studio (nostril and industrial) I couldn't wait to get something done at the shop. But what to get and when to get it?
My surface project, which had always been sitting at the corner of my mind, came back to haunt me. I missed having them and really wanted them back; I'd seen surface piercings that Mike had done and while Sean was a great piercer he was in Bristol, which was increasingly harder to get to. I knew Mike could get me the bars I wanted (internally threaded with flat discs instead of balls) and I knew he'd knock some money off for me. So I ummed and ahhed for a bit. I couldn't really afford to get anything done, but it had been almost 6 months since my last piercing, one of which had failed horribly, and I was itching to get something done again.
Then I started talking to a friend in work who had a bike and, I found, wanted a tattoo. He liked mine and wanted to know who'd done it. 'Sean,' I replied, 'Owns a studio in Aberdare. I'm thinking of getting another tattoo with him soon, I can book you in as well if you want?'Which was true - I'd been considering a new tattoo for a while, it being over a year since my last one, and I had an idea for two half sleeves on my upper arms. Only problem was, the surface project that I so badly wanted wouldn't work with the tattoo I was going to get. It was back to the drawing board in terms of surface piercings.
While out with friends one evening I bumped into Mike in the pub. We started chatting about body mods, as usual, and I noticed that he had a new piercing; a microdermal implant where a madison piercing would normally go. Immediately my brain went 'oooh'. A few days later I texted Mike. 'I want to get some microdermals but I'm not sure if they'll be ok where I want them' I wrote. 'Come into the shop and I'll have a look' came the reply, so the next day, walking home from work, I called into the shop.
'Microdermals,' I said. Mike nodded.
'I'm thinking of getting some but, like I said, I don't know if they'll work where I want them.' Mike asked me where I was thinking of getting them. I wanted the just below the centre of my chest piece, in the area where a sternum piercing would normally go. My trouble was I have rather large breasts and I wasn't sure that the implants would a) sit there properly, and b) heal up with no problems. Mike asked me to pull down the top of my vest top had a look at my chest. He didn't think that there'd be a problem, but if I came in I could get marked up and we'd have a proper look. Only trouble was that Mike had done a few already, and had a few more lined up, which meant that if I wanted the piercings I'd need to pop in fairly soon to get them done, or have to wait until Mike got some more in. Not a problem - I had a credit card and could come in whenever Mike was free.
Then I came down with a cold.
Not just a normal, everyday cold though. This lasted for weeks. I got sent home from work ill, which never happens, couldn't talk properly, couldn't breathe properly, couldn't hear properly (which I feared would cause some problems while I was doing my compulsory basic training to ride my bike) - there was no way I'd be able to get any piercings done in this state. So I sent Mike a text to tell him I'd have to put off the piercings for a while, at least until my immune system was back on track.
Finally, when I'd stopped spluttering and coughing quite so much, I called into the studio. Mike and Laura, as well as a few other people I vaguely knew, were sitting at the back of the shop chatting and browsing through tattoo magazines. I wandered over and had a chat for a few minutes, then told Mike I was there for the microdermals. He needed to autoclave the jewellery before we did the piercing, but first did I want flat discs or balls? I loved the way balls looked, but I'd had a lot of trouble with them catching on things when I'd had them on my arms. Granted the sternum was a less prominent area, but I still had my bra and other clothing to worry about, so I decided to go with discs. Mike popped them into the autoclave and I hung around reading magazines until Mike said they were ready.
I followed Mike upstairs to the studio and perched on the edge of the bed while Mike pulled on his gloves and sorted out his tools and the jewellery. Grabbing a sharpie Mike asked me where I wanted the implants. I had toyed with having the top one in between the bottom point of my tattoo but on marking it up I didn't like the look of it; the tattoo I have isn't totally symmetrical and I thought the implant right in the centre would accentuate that. We decided to place the top implant a few millimetres below the chest piece, with the bottom implant about 5 millimetres below that. I was a bit worried that this would place the bottom implant right between my cleavage, which could cause problems in healing, but Mike assured me it would be fine. Marked up, I was ready to go.
As Mike changed his clothes I hopped onto the bed and lay down. This meant that I wasn't really able to see what Mike was doing, but he talked me through it, telling me that it would hurt far less than a piercing and shouldn't bleed. I slowed my breathing and concentrated on taking deep breaths in and out. Mike asked if I was ready, telling me he'd insert the needle on the next out breath. I nodded, breathed out and Mike pushed the needle under my skin. I could feel the needle going in, no question about that, and felt it as Mike inserted the back of the microdermal under the skin, making sure it sat in place. He stood up, and that was the first one done.
Mike asked if I was ok, to which I nodded, and he moved round to my left side to insert the bottom implant. The process was the same as the first one and while more painful than I thought (I'm sure the majority of my piercings have hurt less) it was definitely quick. Mike mopped up some blood before letting me sit up and check the jewellery in the mirror. I was immediately pleased at what I saw. While I had bled a bit it was minimal, and the redness wasn't that bad either. Nodding in satisfaction I went back downstairs to show them off.
Just over a week old and looking very good I've now had the implants for just about a month and I'm amazed at how well they're doing. The initial redness and bruising (where Mike had been holding the skin) went down very quickly, though the top hole continued to have some slight redness for about two weeks. The piercings do look as though they're sitting a bit crooked, though I'm hoping this will change as the piercings settle down. I'm not too worried about it if they don't though - while I do tend to be a perfectionist I am getting used to it.
Looking straight and nicely healed
For the first few weeks I bathed the piercings in a sea salt solution, as I do with all my piercings. I was worried about catching them on my bath puff spongey thing when washing in the shower, but doing that twice soon made me more careful when cleaning the microdermals. I find that lying on my side can sometimes be awkward as the weight of my boobs do affect the implants in some positions, but this happens pretty rarely. All in all I'm extremely pleased with the end result and am planning my next set already. They've been great to heal and have got a lot of compliments, as well as the usual, occasional, strange look.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 06 June 2007
in Surface & Unusual Piercing