I’m sure you have seen the Aborigines with huge lips hanging out, but have you ever thought about stretching your existing piercings?
All piercings can be stretched. Skin is a very resistant material that can withstand some serious abuse. Your skin stretches naturally with your daily activities, so it is no surprise that stretching a healed hole in your skin is just as easy.
Why Should I Stretch My Piercing?
Some cultures pierce and stretch their skin for cultural or religious reasons. Here in the USA most people stretch their piercings for an aesthetic effect.
So why should you stretch your piercing? There is no real reason, other than to be different and unique. Aside from spiritual or religious beliefs there is no cultural significance to large gauge piercings.
How To Stretch A Piercing
Stretching a piercing is actually an easy thing to do. Since your skin is extremely flexible it tends to stretch easily.
Most tattoo and piercing shops offer to stretch piercings for a nominal fee (usually $5-$10). They will simply add some lube to a taper (a simple cone shaped piece of metal) and slide it through your existing piercing and insert larger jewelry into the hole. You may feel some tightness for a day to a week, but the process is painless and within a month you can stretch your piercing even further.
Once a piercing gets to a large enough gauge (diameter) it is not necessary to run a taper in order to stretch the hole. I have had excellent results just hanging a padlock from my piercing for an hour or two. This is usually enough time to go up at least one gauge.
What You Need To Know
It takes time to stretch a piercing along with tender loving care. If you attempt to stretch a piercing prematurely you will risk tearing healed skin, which could even lead to keloids (massive scar tissue that doesn’t stop growing).
Stretching takes time and realize that your skin is only so flexible. Don’t take your favorite paint brush and stab it through a fresh piercing, you will only do more damage to yourself.
What Could Happen
You must realize that with stretching a piercing comes some risk. Many piercings are just beneath the surface of the skin. When you stretch a piercing which is close to the surface, the skin on top may stretch more than the thicker skin and flesh below. Stretching can make a piercing grow out, especially eyebrows and nipples.
My Two Cents
I enjoy stretching my piercings and looking like a freak. I say tweak it, stretch it, and “F…” it up. Just be careful with anything you do to your body. You will need to deal with it forever.