Lots of people get body art, like piercings and tattoos. But before you decide to get anything done, there are many things to consider.
One of the most important things is that with any kind of tattoo or piercing, there is always a risk of infection from a blood-borne virus (BBV).
Choosing to have a tattoo or body piercing is a decision that lasts a lifetime – while tattoos may be removed if you change your mind later, your skin will never be the same and removal is very expensive. And while piercings can be removed, they can also leave a scar.
Ask yourself these important questions before you make your decision.
Body piercings are holes in different parts of the body (for example, ear lobes, nose, eyebrow) made so jewellery can be worn. The holes are made with a piercing needle or stud gun.
Important: stud guns are designed for one body part only. Stud guns that are designed for ear lobes should only be used for the ear lobes. Guns that are designed to be used on the nose must only be used to pierce noses, etc. Do not allow anyone to use a stud gun to pierce a part of your body for which it is not designed. It is against the law in Western Australia to:
- carry out intimate body piercing (nipples, genitals, anal area, perineum) on a person under 18 years of age, even with parental or legal guardian consent
- carry out non-intimate body piercing (such as belly button but apart from ears) on a person under 18 years of age without written parental or legal guardian consent
- carry out piercing on the ears of a person under 16 years of age without parental or legal guardian consent.
An operator can go to jail or be fined for illegally piercing a minor.
A note on ear piercings
If you’re getting your ears pierced with a stud gun rather than a piercing needle, ask the operator to confirm it is a stud gun designed for ear lobes, and that they are using a sterile, single-use, cartridge model.