Celebrity culture sets the trends in many areas of focus, from fashion to beauty to social media. Earlier this month, rapper Lil Uzi Vert shocked fans and followers by revealing his new $24 million pink diamond piercing on his forehead. Despite many fans' concern and a significant number of comparisons to Vision from the Marvel movies, the Philadelphia native continues to defend his new bling.
While this is one of the most expensive (and prominent) celebrity piercings we've seen in some time, public figures have influenced body jewelry trends for decades. In the early aughts, Britney Spears and Paris Hilton inspired a generation of belly button rings; more recently, tooth gems rose to popularity thanks to endorsements from Hailey Bieber and TikTok star Charli D'Amelio. As such, it stands to reason that body jewels could be the next big piercing trend, beginning with Lil Uzi Vert's fan base and then trickling out.
To get more insight on the topic, L'OFFICIEL speaks with two experts—celebrity piercer Adrian Castillo of 108 Studios and Starr Ellis, owner of Nine Moons Piercings in New York City—about where they see piercings trends going in the near future, whether body jewels are going to be the next big thing, and what piercings they recommend for interested parties.
L'OFFICIEL: Over the years we’ve seen piercing and body jewelry trends come and go. In the 2000s, everyone wanted a belly button piercing. Not long ago, people were getting gems put in their teeth. Are there any trends you’re noticing lately with your clients?
Starr Ellis: Very fancy body jewelry has already been a very popular trend for quite some time now! Many companies like Body Vision Los Angeles handmake beautiful, intricate solid gold body jewelry with ethically-sourced, high quality gemstones.
Adrian Castillo: Now more than ever, people want a more personal touch to their piercings. I find that most people that come in want what I specifically think would look good, and that's typically based on what they wear, hair color, skin tone, anatomy, or what piercings they already have. I think people want their entire ear to look like a canvas as opposed to that one chunky ring we all used to get pierced with back in the day.
L'O: Recently, Lil Uzi Vert got a $24 million pink diamond piercing on his forehead. What can you tell us about that kind of piercing? Is it safe? And have you ever been asked to do anything like that?
SE: Lots of professionals can safely do surface piercings and anchors in the forehead. These piercings are likely temporary and can leave a scar once rejected or migrated, but are otherwise not dangerous if done by a professional with aseptic techniques and proper tools and jewelry.
AC: I’m not too familiar with his piercing. Most piercings that have jewelry or diamonds protruding from the skin are created by making a pocket inside the skin and placing jewelry with a "leg" in it. These were really popular in 2008 and I have done many of these. I have stopped doing them because they are semi permanent and more often than not I was taking them out than putting them in due to them getting snagged.
L'O: Do you see jeweled body piercings (maybe not as extravagant as a $24 million diamond) becoming the next piercing trend?
AC: I don't think this will catch on. The problem with these piercings is that they really are tough to change the look of once they're in. It doesn't allow for adapting to everyone's ever-changing style.
L'O: Do you have any artistic recommendations for clients coming in who are looking for inspiration on what kind of body piercing to get and how to style it?
SE: Our best recommendations at this time is to fancy up those ear piercings! Since [Nine Moon Piercings] has been able to reopen and operate under COVID-19 safely protocols, we have been highly suggesting ear styling consultation appointments to spruce up existing piercings and customize some fun jewelry outfits. If you're looking for a new piercing that can be subtle and delicate or really make a statement, we recommend considering a conch piercing. Conch piercings are typically very easy to get [and] relatively easy to heal.
AC: I will always recommend finding an artist whose work you overall admire and letting them work with you to create your vision. This way no matter what you walk out with, you'll leave happy.