To make it easy and painless (as far as possible) to stretch your piercings, there are now a plethora of different stretch jewelry you can use.
How do I stretch my ear?How to go about stretching your piercing is very personal, for some it is very easy, while others can hold on for a long time before they reach the size they want. The easiest way to stretch your ear holes is to use a stretch piece of jewelery that extends over several sizes, such as a spiral or stretch stick. You can also go from size to size, but it is usually a greater strain for the piercing.
Quick tips for stretching piercings
Do not stretch an earlobe or other soft tissue faster than 1mm per at least 6 weeks.
Do not stretch any cartilage piercing faster than 1mm per at least 2-3 months.
Do not skip sizes or force a piece of jewelry into a piercing.
Do not stretch with externally threaded jewelry, plugs with larger outer edges, or silicone.
If the jewelry does not slide in easily, then your piercing is not ready to be stretched.
Properly applied stretching should not make holes in the skin. If it bleeds, the skin has cracked.
No matter what material you use during stretching, an allergic reaction can always occur. Human bodies are all unique and always changing. They can react to basically anything, even if it is low allergenic, even if your friends can use it, even if you could use it last year. Changes in your health, environment and lifestyle can also affect your body's tolerance to foreign materials. As long as you keep track of your piercing and are aware of it, you should quickly notice what works for you and what does not.
Should your piercing suddenly start to itch, swell up, get a rash, become red, hot or secrete clear liquid, take out your jewelry immediately and change! Instead, insert something less reactive if possible (glass, 316L steel, titanium) or leave your hole empty if your body feels it is best. Soak your saline piercing a couple of times a day until it gets better (1/4 sea salt and 2 dl warm water in a glass). This helps to extract any fluid or chemical residues in the skin while soothing the tissue and helping to speed up healing.
Avoid chemical soaps (antibacterial included) and solutions if you have an allergic reaction. Adding extra chemicals can make the problem worse. Try rinsing clean with saline solution. Some people have had some luck with cortisone creams for allergic reactions; others get more problems from them. Use your judgment and listen to your body's own reactions.
Keloids / Blow-outs
If you tear a hole in a piercing during stretching, you usually know right away. It usually bleeds and that part that was so difficult to push through a while ago suddenly slides through with ease.If this happens, soak your piercing with saline (see description above) for a few days or until it gets better. When scabs no longer form, you can massage the skin with jojoba oil, vitamin E or cocoa butter a few times a day. This accelerates healing and also softens any scar tissue during development.
A blow-out is an uneven distribution of skin and / or scar tissue that arises from stretching too far and too fast. It may look like your piercing has turned in and out. The methods of soaking and massage described above can be helpful, but you can still get permanent scar tissue. Once it has healed, start your stretching from the other side, so that you "stuff in" the excess tissue.Should you tear holes or get a blow-out, take it as a reminder to stretch slower next time.
Some tips that can help you along the way
Heat. The best time to stretch is after a hot bath or shower, or after using warm compresses on the area. The heat causes the tissue to expand and soften, which makes your skin easier to stretch and makes it much more comfortable. It also helps increase circulation, which speeds healing.
Lube. By lubricating a handrail or a piece of jewelery, you facilitate insertion and minimize both pain and wear. Water-based / soluble lubricants have the least risk of irritation and are easiest to wash off afterwards. Silicone-based lubricant may be more effective for piercings in or near mucous membranes.Oil-based agents, such as Vaseline and olive oil, can also be used but can leave an oil film that can keep oxygen supply and cleaning fluids away, so wash thoroughly afterwards. We sell Smelly Jelly which helps with both stretching and bad smells.
Cleaning. It is of utmost importance that you keep your piercings clean while stretching. Just because it was healed before does not mean you can leave it dirty without risking irritation or infection. The procedure during a stretching creates irritation and small, tiny tears in the skin, leaving openings for bacteria. Antibacterial soap in the shower not only kills these bacteria, but also removes dead skin cells that make your holes itch and smell bad. You can find all our cleaning products HERE.
Patience. Take it slow! Patience and time are the key to healthy and successful stretching. This is not a competition for speed and size, but an interactive experiment with your body's limits and how to expand them. Find what works for you and stick to it.
Caution. Never assume that it is reversible. There is no set size or time limit that distinguishes what can shrink and what can not. For most people, their holes begin to contract immediately after the jewelry is removed, especially if they are irritated. However, you should never undergo any form of body modification without forethought and the realization that you and your body will not be the same again.Fashion-wise as it is at the moment, body modification is not a trend but an essential way of being.
All measurements stated are the largest measurement, ie where the jewelry is thickest.