Jewelry Insertion Guide

Alright so you've got some fancy new jewelry and you're ready to put it in! Let's do this!

We're going to help you get a little prepared first. Putting in your own body jewelry can be a little intimidating, especially if it’s your first time trying. But remember: you can do anything you put your mind to! This handy guide will be your ticket to frustration-free jewelry insertion.

What you'll need: 
Soap + water
Large towel
Paper towel
lube or ointment
Optional: nitrile or latex gloves
...or any other metal tools!


Before Inserting Your Jewelry

Set up an area with good lighting and an area to place your items. We suggest draping a clean bath towel over your working surface. If you drop anything, you'll be very glad that you were prepared. If your jewelry drops onto a towel, it will be kept clean and easy to find. Tile floors are a completely different story.

Next, wash your hands thoroughly with warm soapy water. Gloves are optional, but they can be a helpful tool when you’re putting in jewelry. They do help with grip, but can sometimes feel a little cumbersome for those who aren’t accustomed to using them. If you plan to use gloves, make sure they fit. If they are not snug, they will only make things tricky, so ditch the baggy hands if they feel too big. 

Threaded Jewelry

If you are working with any threaded pieces, try practicing by screwing the end gently (don’t cross those threads!) into the post BEFORE putting it into your piercing. This can help get the feel of how to thread your ends on while the jewelry is in front of you. Thread it a couple more times, slowly threading the end on and off the post. Thread your end completely onto the post, but avoid screwing it down tightly until it’s in your piercing. The trick with working with body jewelry is practice and muscle memory. You will feel it getting easier the more you practice.  

Hinged Rings / Clickers

If you are working with a hinged ring, you can also do a practice run before it’s in your piercing, just to make sure you know how the jewelry looks and feels when it is properly snapped in place. Those little little gold hinges are durable with responsible use, but too much pressure and squeezing can damage the tension and alignment of the ring, so do be gentle.

Seam Rings

The exception to our suggested “practice run” is if you’re working with a seam ring (aka continuous ring). This style of ring is inserted by bending it open and closed—however one shouldn’t mess around bending it too frequently, because it can warp and become weak over time. If you have a seam ring and aren’t familiar with how to put it in, we suggest getting the help of a piercer to swap it out for you! 

Inserting Your Jewelry

On we go to the next step! Remove any jewelry you are currently wearing, and clean the area in which you will be putting your new piece. You can use plain warm water, a warm sea salt solution, or saline. Thoroughly dry the area with a clean paper towel. 

We suggest slightly lubricating the jewelry at the insertion point. A little goes a long way! You can use a water based lubricating jelly, or an ointment such as vaseline or aquaphor. Never go in dry! This step makes inserting your jewelry a lot easier—just don't get your fingers slippery here.

Our 18 gauge flatbacks have a disk fixed to the post. If you have an 18 gauge flatback, you will be inserting the post from the opposite side that you plan to wear your featured end. If you have a 16 gauge flatback, the disk and post are separate so it might be easier to thread your front end on first, insert the jewelry from front, and then screw on the back disk. There is no right or wrong way--just do what feels easiest for you.

Gently guide the end of your jewelry into the piercing. This shouldn’t require any force, especially if you’ve already been wearing jewelry in your piercing. If the jewelry is not going in easily, make sure you are following the angle of the piercing channel. This can sometimes seem tricky if you can’t see the other side of the piercing, such as in a nostril piercing. You can feel the other side of the channel by placing your index finger on the opposite side. You can apply pressure with that finger to “thin out” the tissue, making the piercing channel feel shorter and easier to find. Be patient and go slowly.

If you find that the jewelry is still not going in easily, please resist the urge to force it. Using force while inserting jewelry into a piercing can cause swelling and irritation. If your patience is running short, stop where you are and ask a piercer for help.

Securing Your Jewelry

Once the post is in, you can now secure your jewelry. If you are working with a hinged ring, align the end of the ring with the snap closure, and carefully apply pressure until it snaps closed. Easy!

If you are threading an end on, grip the opposite side of your post by pressing or holding onto it firmly. Align the threads (the screw part of the end) to the post, and carefully screw it in clockwise while applying slight pressure into the post. Don’t let go of your end until you know for sure it has started screwing down. Continue threading that end until you feel resistance--success! Check where the end meets the post, and make sure that it is flush. Check one more time that your end is secure by giving it one last little twist. 

Please check your ends for tightness on a regular basis! Keep in mind that BODY jewelry is frequently exposed to movement, friction from clothing, soap, topical products, and oils from our skin and hair. These are all factors that can lead to your jewelry coming loose over time if it is not routinely checked, so please secure your investment and keep your ends tight! We are also happy to check your jewelry for you—next time you’re at Somatic, just ask us and we can assist you!

If you have any questions about jewelry insertion or removal, you can email us via or call us at (562) 438-6406. We have a staff of piercing and jewelry experts on deck to guide you through the process!