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Essential Supplies for Starting a Piercing Shop

Basic Belly Button Rings With Inset JewelsDeciding to open a piercing shop is a huge step in a professional piercer's career. Make sure you start out on the right foot by getting things in order legally and by properly stocking your shop.

Our Piercing Safely article covers the basic legalities you need to worry about as a professional piercer, ranging from licenses and certifications to piercing waivers, following OSHA's bloodborne pathogen safety guidelines, and beyond. It also includes a full list of the cleaners and equipment you need to maintain a sterile work environment--things like an autoclave, Sharps containers, Wavicide for cleaning your tools, and Madacide for cleaning surfaces in your shop. But what essential tools, body jewelry types and sizes should you stock up on before you open your doors for business? This essential piercing shopping list will make sure you have everything you need to handle everyday piercing requests.

 

Disposables & Skin Prep

Keep plenty of the skin cleansers and disposable items listed below on hand at all times, because you'll need them for every piercing you do:

 

Essential Piercing Needles & Tools

Make sure you're prepared to perform all the most popular types of piercings by stocking your shop with the following piercing tools and body needles in these sizes:

 

Basic Body Jewelry

There are 8 basic body jewelry types you should stock initially: straight barbells, circular barbells, captive rings, bent barbells, labret studs, dermal anchors and tops, surface barbells, and piercing retainers. The sizes and materials below will get you started, but you'll likely need to expand your jewelry assortment further in short order. For instance, we haven't listed BioFlex in our essential types of basic body jewelry, but your clients with sensitive skin may require PTFE body jewelry. Keep that in mind as you shop, and add other types of body jewelry to your assortment as your budget permits.
 

Bent BarbellsBent Barbells

Captive RingsCaptive Bead Rings

  • 18g Fixed Bead Annealed Stainless Steel Rings (SKU: UR261) - Buy this type of captive bead ring in the following 3 diameters so you're stocked for cartilage, rook, nostril, eyebrow, daith, lip, tragus, and earlobe piercings:
    • 5/16"
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
  • 16g Fixed Bead Annealed Stainless Steel Rings (SKU: UR272) - 16g is a popular size for cartilage, rook, nostril, eyebrow, daith, lip, tragus, septum, earlobe, and web piercings. You'll need the following diameters:
    • 5/16"
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
  • 14g Fixed Bead Annealed Stainless Steel Rings (SKU: UR271) - 14g captive rings are commonly used in conch, lip, earlobe, septum, nipple, scrotum, VCH, HCH, and inner labia piercings. Keep a supply of 14g CBRs in these diameters on hand:
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
  • 12g Annealed Steel Captive Bead Rings (SKU: UR342-annealed) - 12g rings are popular for nipple, septum, conch, lip, earlobe, Price Albert, and scrotum piercings. Make sure you get some in each of the following diameters:
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
    • 5/8"
    • 3/4"
  • 10g Annealed Steel Captive Bead Rings (SKU: UR343-annealed) - This is a common size for Prince Albert, septum and scrotum piercings, which could require any of these diameters:
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
    • 5/8"
    • 3/4"
       

Circular BarbellsCircular Barbells - Horseshoe Barbells

  • 16g Internally Threaded Steel Circular Barbells (SKU: UR286) - Stock up on 16g circular barbells in the following diameters so that you're prepared to do cartilage, tragus, rook, daith, septum, eyebrow, earlobe, and lip piercings:
    • 5/16"
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
  • 14g Titanium Internally-Threaded Circular Barbell (SKU: UR440-anod) - You'll need 14g horseshoe barbells in these sizes for septum, nipple, earlobe, scrotum, and conch piercings; choose the "High Polish" option for a stainless steel look:
    • 3/8"
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
  • 12g 7/16" - 1/2" Internal Circular Barbells (SKU: UR314-12g-internal) - For septum, nipple, earlobe, scrotum, and PA piercings, you'll need 12g horseshoe barbells with these diameters:
    • 7/16"
    • 1/2"
    • 5/8"
    • 3/4"
  • 10g 1/2"-5/8" Internal Circular Barbells (SKU: UR315-10g-internal) - Prince Albert and scrotum piercings sometimes call for 10g circular barbells in these diameters:
    • 1/2"
    • 5/8"
    • 3/4"
       

Straight BarbellsStraight Barbells

You'll need a mix of surgical stainless steel and titanium straight barbells to accommodate different customers and piercing types.
 

Stainless Steel Straight Barbells

Titanium Straight BarbellsTitanium Straight Barbells in Multiple Colors

Labret StudsJeweled Labret Studs

As with straight barbells, you should stock both surgial steel and titanium labret studs to accommodate varying skin sensitivities and different piercings.
 

Surgical Steel Labrets

Titanium Labret StudsTitanium Labret Studs in Multiple Colors

Dermal & Surface Piercing Jewelry

Piercing RetainersPiercing Retainers

You will likely be your clients' first source for piercing retainers and regular body jewelry alike, which is why it's important to stock piercing retainers for the most common piercings from the start. Get at least a couple of each piercing retainer style in a few of the most common sizes initially, including:

 

Plugs and Tunnels for Stretched EarsSpecialty Body Jewelry

In addition to the basic body jewelry detailed above, you may also want to stock some more interesting upgrades to display in your shop and use as alternative starter jewelry. Consider checking out our selection of organic body jewelry, our Plugs & Tunnels section, our unique captive bead rings, and the handmade options in our Unbreakable body jewelry line. We carry a wide variety of unique pieces throughout our Body Jewelry section, including custom body jewelry that you can order for your clients and have shipped to their homes or your shop.

 

Ways to Save on Supplies

We understand that running a piercing shop is an expensive venture, so we strive to make it as affordable as possible for you to get the supplies you need. We offer the following options for ways you can save money without sacrificing quality when shopping for piercing supplies, body jewelry and other shop supplies:

  • Purchase products in bulk whenever possible. To find out if an item comes at a discount when you purchase multiples, look at the gray box where the "Add to Cart" button appears on any product detail page. (Note that you have to purchase a single size, color or style in the quantities specified to take advantage of the reduced price shown.)
  • Shop in our Wholesale Store to take advantage of reduced pricing offered only to industry professionals spending $100-$499.99. If you're spending $500 or more at a time, shop in our Distributor Store to enjoy the lowest prices we offer industry professionals.
  • Look at our Events tab to see what coupons we're offering this week, or sign up for our weekly emails using the email sign-up box in the bottom-right corner of your preferred store's homepage (Retail | Wholesale | Distributor).
  • Shop in our Sales & Deals section to find sale products and items we've discounted deeply to make room for new stock. (Available while supplies last.)

 

Shopping Simplified

It can be time-consuming to put together an initial order for shop supplies like the one we've outlined here. To make the process a little easier for you, we've integrated two helpful tools into this article:

  • You can click on any product name above to go right to the corresponding product detail page, where you'll be able to add that item to cart. The page will open in a new browser window or tab, so this page will remain easily accessible as you visit each product detail page and build your shopping cart.
     
  • We've also prepared a handy shopping list that you can print out or reference in Excel while you're shopping, for your convenience.

Happy shopping and piercing!