For years, the body jewelry world has leaned toward cheaper materials. Body piercings were associated with punks, rebels, and young people coming of age. Stereotypically, these groups don’t have a large budget for their fashion choices. While steel remained an inexpensive material that was deemed safe for body piercings, it still contains nickel, which can cause irritation for those with metal sensitivities.
Enter: bioplastics. Bioplastics provided a cheap alternative to metals that were safe to use in body piercings, and they didn’t cause skin irritation. But what are bioplastics, and are they actually as good a body jewelry material as they claim to be?
Here’s what you need to know about bioplastic body jewelry.
What is bioplastic jewelry?
The term “bioplastic” combines the words “biology” and “plastic.” This is because bioplastics are designed to be biologically compatible with our bodies. Unlike other types of plastic jewelry, bioplastic jewelry can be sterilized using an autoclave sterilizer, which means that, once sterilized, it won’t spread germs to your piercing. It’s also a plastic approved by the Association of Piercing Professionals, which is essential.
What are the pros of bioplastic jewelry?
Some people prefer bioplastic jewelry because it’s flexible, so it offers a comfortable wear, and it’s a cheap alternative to other nickel-free jewelry options.
Since it’s plastic, it also comes in a variety of fun colors. If you like your body jewelry to be colorful, then bioplastic jewelry offers a plethora of options.
It’s quite inexpensive, so it’s fairly easy to fill your jewelry box with bioplastic jewelry even on a budget.
What are the cons of bioplastic jewelry?
Bioplastic jewelry might be biocompatible, but it’s still plastic. Let’s face it: plastic simply looks cheap.
Bioplastic may be a great option for an 18-year-old on a budget looking for tons of pieces for their brand new piercing, but if you’re looking for something that’s timeless, bioplastic won’t do the trick.
Additionally, bioplastic tends to make your piercing smell a little bit and contribute to excess discharge. A slight odor and discharge are normal in any piercing—it comes from dead skin cells that naturally build up within the piercing hole—but metal jewelry allows dead skin cells to more easily exit the piercing hole, keeping it relatively clean.
Bioplastics tend to suction to your piercing, causing a buildup of these dead skin cells that get smelly and look pretty terrible.
Bioplastics aren’t built to last. They’ll yellow with time, and eventually, any bright color will fade. Buying jewelry made from bioplastics is a bit like buying a ring from a vending machine; it’s cheap and fun, but it’s not something that you’ll want to wear in every setting (or even more than only a few times).
Bioplastics vs. 14k gold
Whatever your reason for wanting bioplastic jewelry, you should be able to find a suitable alternative that looks amazing and will actually last.
Perhaps you’re on a budget and don’t think that you can afford high-quality materials.
You might be surprised to find out that 14k gold isn’t always as expensive as you might think. While intricate designs and expensive gemstones can make gold body jewelry a bit of an investment, a simple hoop or flat back stud won’t cost more than a dinner for two at a mid-level restaurant.
If you opt for less expensive gemstones, like cubic zirconia, you can even get beautiful, sparkly, gold pieces of body jewelry for as little as $40. And, let’s face it, you could easily spend that on a girls’ night out.
For a piece of jewelry that looks amazing and will last decades, the extra cost is worth the much higher quality than bioplastics, and it truly won’t break the bank.
Colorful body jewelry
Maybe you were drawn to bioplastics for the bright neon colors that it can attain.
We’ll be honest with you. Gold will never be that bright neon color. However, even though new bioplastic jewelry might be bright, its brilliance will quickly fade.
Instead, choose 14k gold body jewelry that’s decorated with bright gemstones. Mother Earth knows how to create color, and gemstones achieve an amazing tone that will last for years. On top of that, when they’re carved expertly, they capture the light in a way that refuses to be ignored.
While rose gold isn’t as bright as some bioplastic colors, it does achieve a pink tone that offers a subtle splash of color while remaining classy. It might not glow a neon pink, but it’s a color that you can wear at the club or at the office.
Just because your body jewelry is high quality doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice fun and color. But, it does mean that you’ll have a piece of body jewelry that will stand the test of time.
Comfortable body jewelry
A big draw for bioplastic jewelry is the fact that it’s flexible. This adds to the comfort of the body piercing, even if it’s located in areas that see a lot of movement.
It’s true that 14k gold won’t be flexible, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not super comfortable. FreshTrends’ gold body jewelry is hand polished for the ultimate in shine and comfort. Furthermore, it’s solid gold—not plated—which means that the plating won’t chip or reveal any rough edges, making for a comfortable fit.
A big part of comfort is feeling good in your jewelry. Bioplastics tend to make your piercings smell, and it’s fairly clear that they’re made from cheaper materials. When you rock your 14k gold cartilage earring, you’ll feel when you don it, which will make you feel more than comfortable wearing it; you’ll feel gorgeous.
Yes, bioplastics offer an inexpensive material that won’t irritate your skin. But, the jewelry won’t last; it will make your piercing smelly, and it simply doesn’t look as good as high-quality options. Check out the rest of our body jewelry collection, and you might be surprised that 14k gold can be more affordable than you think.