Where can I find classy belly jewelry?
March 2, 2006 7:23 PM   Subscribe

Is there such a thing as "classy" belly button jewelry? And where could I find it?

I'm considering getting my belly button pierced very shortly, but one thing that gives me pause is how ugly so much of the jewelry is. Blue rhinestones, dangling pink butterflies, etc. My taste in jewelry is very simple, classic- plain diamond or pearl stud earrings, simple silver rings- what's the equivalent in belly jewelry? What would it look like? Does such jewelry even exist? Are there jewelry designers out there designing contemporary jewelry for belly button piercings?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (25 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You mean something like this? (That site looks overpriced, tho.)
posted by trevyn at 7:35 PM on March 2, 2006

I've always liked the look of this guy's work, and he does mail order. (No connection except that I live in the neighbourhood.)
posted by zadcat at 7:53 PM on March 2, 2006

oh yes - some of what's on that site is very NSFW, but the belly button jewelry page looks safe.
posted by zadcat at 7:55 PM on March 2, 2006

No. Belly button rings are not classy.

What about getting your nose pierced? I think a lot of girls look nice with a very simple nose stud.
posted by radioamy at 8:21 PM on March 2, 2006

As far as belly button rings go, "classy" = trashy.
posted by saffron at 8:27 PM on March 2, 2006

Belly button rings aren't classy but nose studs are? That's... an odd viewpoint. Nose studs strike me as intrinsically declasse.
posted by Justinian at 8:28 PM on March 2, 2006

What about getting your nose pierced?

No. I think this can (and does often) look really classy, but it's not for me.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:28 PM on March 2, 2006 [1 favorite]

Plain silver barbell, or a captive bead ring*, once it's healed.

*Note: I am not a piercer, and I don't know if this would get rejected, or even be doable. Check with your piercer.
posted by kalimac at 9:52 PM on March 2, 2006

The body-jewelry equivalent of plain diamond or pearl stud earrings is probably the captive-bead ring, or perhaps the curved barbell.

(Also--modifiedmind has lists and reviews of jewelry suppliers. Tribalectic probably has the largest online body jewelry selection. BME is the most authoritative source of online body-modification information.)
posted by box at 10:03 PM on March 2, 2006

A long, thin, silver earring-type-thing sometimes consisting of one or more strands of silver. Sometimes the strands reach all the way to the top of a skirt. It's delicate and elegant and draws attention without shouting. I've seen it on a few women here and there and it looks good. I might not call it classy--let's face it, you're baring your midriff to the world--but it can look very sexy without looking too slutty or immature.
posted by nixerman at 10:11 PM on March 2, 2006

Call me old-fashioned but as far as piercing is concerned, classy ends at the ears. Exotic, striking, sexy maybe, but not classy. Belly button piercings, in particular, also have the same detractor as the small-of-the-back tattoo: they're sort of standard issue on porn stars.
posted by nanojath at 10:12 PM on March 2, 2006 [1 favorite]

Good taste in body adornment is a cultural matter, as this thread has already demonstrated, but you can always err toward simple designs and quality materials. It doesn't get any more simple and classic than a stainless steel curved barbell. If that's too functional, you can always swap it out for something that suits your taste better once the piercing has healed (really: changing belly button jewelry is no harder than changing an earring).
posted by Mars Saxman at 11:07 PM on March 2, 2006

Any piece of jewelry that you could/should not see while wearing a business suit is not classy.
posted by falconred at 12:32 AM on March 3, 2006

if i could bear being pierced (couldn't even manage piercing my ears) these look nice to me (i like the sunflower and the dangling diamond).
posted by mirileh at 4:32 AM on March 3, 2006

I would go with a plain silver barbell or ring if you want simple and "classy". I found one site with way expensive jewelry, but it didn't seem worth it.

(And I say this next part as someone with a slightly ugly piece of jewelry in her navel right now...) I agree with others... I don't think there is such as thing as "classy" navel jewelry, and if there is, I'm not sure why. It seems like navel piercings (and a lot of other piercings, quite frankly) are on the way out. Yeah, some people don't care about this, but I always think to myself...why do I still have this thing in my belly button? It doesn't bother me too much, but I would never think to get it pierced now. (Then again, my piercing phase came to a stop when I turned 19, 5 years ago.)
posted by jetskiaccidents at 4:46 AM on March 3, 2006

Venus has a decent line of nice (read: fancy and expensive) navel jewelry.

Other than that, I'd go with a plain curved stainless barbell. There's no need to get one of those dangly things that all the kids are wearing these days, and you shouldn't wear those until your piercing is healed, anyway.

For what it's worth, I have a curved barbell in my navel with titanium beads on the ends. I wouldn't call it classy, but it's subtle and comfortable.
posted by bedhead at 5:19 AM on March 3, 2006

Whatever piecer you go to, unless it's in a mall where young Brittany Spears wanna-bee types shop, will probably have a wide range of suitable and non-obnoxious jewelry to choose from. They aren't going to put one of those glitzy and dangly things in when they pierce it anyway ... they'll probably want to use a captive ball ring. You'll be wearing the same piece until it heals, so choose something neutral in tone. That's what mine was originally fitted with, and I wore that simple ring for the first two years until I later bought some plain banana bars and different colored rings (and one really industrial piece, because I do have my moods). The best place to buy jewelry for piercings, in my opinion is at a piercing shop. Everyone's piercing is a little different, and they can help you decide which may or may not work for yours.

Your tastes and opinions on what is "classy" may vary from mine, but there are two on Amazon that I have been thinking about. One somewhat tribal but simple ring, and one banana bar with a small curved shield.
posted by Orb at 6:05 AM on March 3, 2006

Is there such a thing as "classy" belly button jewelry?

It depends who you ask and who you are. If your audience is older and we're talking about standard western culture, all piercings except modest earrings are fairly vulgar, as is baring your belly unless you're at the beach or otherwise in a setting that precludes "classy" and the like.

So consider your age and the age of your audience. If you or the people you want to impress are much older than 21, "classy" probably isn't the first thing people will think when you walk in with a bare belly, never mind whether you've got a piece of metal embedded in it.

The only belly jewelry people generally might consider "classy" (if you mean something like elegant, not vulgar) would be a small, fine jewel (maybe a good diamond in a good setting), and then only in certain rare circumstances -- perhaps you are a visiting Indian princess? -- in which a bare and bejeweled belly button might be seen as elegantly exotic rather than street vulgar.

[I exaggerate, but not much. If you are at all worried about appearing "classy," think twice about piercing anything but your ear lobes, and keep your belly covered.]
posted by pracowity at 6:06 AM on March 3, 2006

Find a (gasp) pawnshop with a jeweler whose work is respectable (read, you like their stuff). He or she will have plenty of decent gold or silver to melt into shapes that you find appealing and probably a stone that won't cost you an arm or a leg. If you know anything about stones, this is a good way to find yourself some quality. If you don't, it's a good time to bring along a friend who does, so they can find you some quality.
posted by bilabial at 6:16 AM on March 3, 2006

Just for another vote, earrings are about where it ends for me and classy piercings. Course, as Pracowity remarked, I am over the age of 21....but not yet thirty!
posted by Atreides at 6:30 AM on March 3, 2006

Thank you everyone for your input. I'll admit I was hoping that someone knew of some secret ultra-hip high-end belly jewelry designer (and maybe that knowledge is still out there, who knows), but I appreciate everyone's thoughts and suggestions.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:39 AM on March 3, 2006 [1 favorite]

decent gold or silver to melt into shapes

No, no, no. This is almost certain to cause a terrible infection that will cause you to lose your piercing. Silver oxidizes (i.e. tarnishes.) Gold is hypoallergenic, and you can get body jewelry in gold, but it's made with attention to the surface of the jewelry being extremely smooth -- little pits or scratches harbor bacteria.

All of this is why surgical steel is the most common material for body jewelry. Titanium/niobium is fine, too.

The jewel thing might sound classy in theory, but having known people who went to great trouble and expense to find something like this...save your money. Still looks tacky. And the stone tends to unbalance the jewelry and put pressure on the piercing.

Curved barbell. Mine's been comfy for ten years.
posted by desuetude at 6:46 AM on March 3, 2006

Sorry, I didn't mean to get pierced with gold or silver. I thought that any decent piercer would tell the poor girl to wait the nine months in the ugly thing they stick in her to heal and then switch to something classy. you're not going to start in something classy. ever with a navel ring. And I do still have a blue rhinestone thing after, uh, six years.
posted by bilabial at 8:39 AM on March 3, 2006

No, really, you shouldn't use regular gold or silver jewelry in your belly, ever. And a reputable piercer would install a captive bead or curved barbell immediately after piercing.
posted by desuetude at 8:47 AM on March 3, 2006

Follow-up: I ended up getting my belly button pierced on my vacation in FL at this really great place. I got a curved steel barbell that has a little diamond on each ball. I figure, you're all right, belly button piercing is pretty trashy.... so I'm going to embrace it! I've bought some ridiculous barbells on eBay for when my piercing heals- one with a dangly hot pepper, one with a dangly chihuahua that looks just like my dog. Thanks for all your input.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:47 PM on March 16, 2006 [2 favorites]

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