The practice of body piercing has been prevalent since the ancient times, when wearing body jewelry either signified authority or was used to beautify the body. In the present times, exhibiting strategic body piercing has become a fashion statement.
Cultural Beliefs Associated With Popular Body Piercing
The interesting background to some of the most popular types is:
Ear piercing: This most popular form of body piercing has been in practice since the primeval times. The ancient tribes believed that metals in their pierced earlobes would ward off evil spirits.
Nose piercing: The practice of piercing one's nose has been prevalent since the biblical times, as "nose jewels" finds mention in the Book of Genesis. Native American tribes of the Pacific Northwest like the Nez Perce viewed Septum piercing as a status symbol among males. Moving eastward, nose piercing has been common among the Middle Eastern nomadic tribes as well as married Indian women.
Tongue piercing: Civilizations of the pre Columbian era such as the Aztecs believed in injuring one's tongue to be able to establish communication with the gods. The blood that was drawn from their tongues transported them to a different state of consciousness. They believed that in this state they would be closer to God.
Lip piercing: The reasons for lip piercing have been diverse among different tribes of America and Africa. While the Pre-Columbians of North America considered the labret as a status symbol, the Makololo tribe of Malawi used lip piercing for beautification. Similarly, the Dogon tribe of Mali had spiritual reasons for piercing their lips.
Body Piercing: What's in Store?
Choices in body jewelry comprise:
Body piercing jewelry such as nose rings, earrings, tragus rings, lip rings and studs are available in different materials, such as gold, silver, titanium, plastics and stainless steel.
Titanium is a popular metal for body piercing. Titanium body jewelry in the form of barbell, closure rings and 'banana' eyebrow rings are in huge demand.