December 25, 2009, Newsletter Issue #180: Belly Button Ring Sizing Basics

Tip of the Week

When considering belly button jewelry sizes, there are two basic types, each with varying sizes. The jewelry you'll receive for a first piercing will probably be a barbell -- a tiny stick made of a non-allergenic metal or plastic with two balls screwed onto either end to keep the stick in place. These barbells are sized by thickness and length. If you're not getting a barbell, you'll most likely get a circular ring. The size of rings is determined by diameter and thickness.

Typical lengths include:

5/16 inches (7.9 mm) - usually the shortest

3/8 inches (9.5 mm)

7/16 inches (1.11 cm) - standard size

1 inch (2.5 cm) - longest

The thickness of either a barbell or a belly button ring is measured by gauge. A 14 gauge barbell is most common. Other commonly available thicknesses include 12, 10 and 8 gauges. If you're new to the piercing world, remember that the lower the gauge, the larger the hole.

Bonus Tip: If you're looking to eventually stretch your piercing, you can begin with the lowest gauge your piercer thinks is best for you. In the long run, it will be easier to gradually increase the size of your piercing.

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