As a professional piercer involved in various industry groups and organisations there is wisdom shared among us that isn’t able to be divulged to the public due to the fact that they are approved membership only and private.
With summer nearly over and Christmas quickly approaching, semi-precious and precious stone body jewellery is a popular choice of present. In an earlier post, I mentioned that not all titanium jewellery is the same. In a group discussion with other piercers earlier this evening, photographs taken by another professional were shared. These photos were taken on the same camera, with the same settings and the same macro lens. None of the pictures have been edited save for cropping. He was kind enough to allow us to share his photographs as he has a macro lens and is able to capture images that are exceedingly close up.
Both pieces are Aurora CZ navel bars that are hand polished titanium at different price points as they are different grades of titanium.
Here are some photographs comparing the two pieces. The top piece is a cheaper piece of jewellery made with a lower grade of titanium. Notice the scratches on the crystal due to the stone being foiled on top to create shine. The wearing surface (the part of the jewellery that passes through the skin) is the most important thing to pay attention to as the rough surface of the titanium that cannot easily be seen by the naked eye can cause micro tearing within piercings which can lead to issues down the line. This is evident in some pieces of jewellery when examined at a level that the naked eye cannot see.
The bottom piece is implant grade ASTM F136 titanium with Swarovski crystals. The brilliance of the gem comes from the facets of the cut rather than foil placed over the top and the finish on the wearing surface is smooth which is much healthier for any piercing in the long run.
Without macro lenses or being a metal specialist the differences are very subtle to the eye but make an incredible difference in the body. Always ask a seller about their XRF Certificate, the settings of the gemstones or crystals, and what crystals and gemstones are being used.