When my mom was younger, her sister pierced her ear with a needle and a potato. In college, she had a roommate do the same. Although it works, it runs the risk of infection and can be more painful than having it done in a store that has trained ear piercing workers.
However, you can save money doing it on your own, particularly if you have multiple ears to pierce. Beauty supply stores often sell the piercing gun and earring cartridges for a fraction of what the earrings would cost at a store, and the piercing gun is reusable. I pierced both of my daughter’s ears for the cost of one piercing at the mall jewelry shop, and if they ever want second holes, or friends want it done, it’ll cost half the price.
There is still some concern about reducing infection risk, so do the same things that should be done at the mall shops. Wash your hands with soap and water before handling the supplies, wipe the ears with alcohol to remove any possible bacteria and dirt, and be sure to clean the ears and turn earrings frequently for the first few weeks. And, of course, if there’s any sign of infection, be extra vigilant – if the infection gets worse, you may have to remove the earring and try again at another time.
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