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  • Writer's pictureBody jewellery Shack

How To Measure Body Jewellery !

Updated: Mar 27, 2020

At Body Jewellery Shack we get lots of emails asking -

“ What size nipple bar do I need? ”

“ What length of tongue bar should I get ? ”

“ I want to change out lip piercing, but I'm not sure what size I am ”

It is very important to choose well fitting body jewellery, too loose and it may snag on clothing and can pull at your piercings too tight and it may cause inflammation and irritation to the pierced area which could lead to infections.

Most good piercing studios do explain to their customers about the different sizes that body jewellery comes in and what size they recommended when you get pierced. But as people are too excited or just forget here are some basics to help explain the sizes of body jewellery.

In general piercing jewellery uses standard 2 measurements -

FIRST ! – Thickness or Gauge

You will normally see 2 measurements related to the Jewellery thickness – Millimetres (mm) which tends to be used in the UK and Europe, and Gauge (g) which is more commonly seen in the US.

" So how do I know what my labret studs thickness is ? "

" Is it a 1.2mm (16g) or a 1.6mm (14g) ? "

A quick tip to help check is a UK 1 penny coin or a US 1 Cent coin is approx 1.6mm (14g) thick. So you can measure it next to your bar to compare thickness.

  • Labret studs are usually 1mm (18g), 1.2mm (16g) or 1.6mm (14g)

  • Nose Rings/Studs are usually 0.8mm (20g) or 1mm (18g)

  • Eyebrow Bars are usually 1.2mm (16g)

  • Nipple Bars are usually 1.6mm (14g)

  • Tongue Bars are usually 1.6mm (14g)

  • Belly bars are usually 1.6mm (14g)

  • Ear Piercings vary depending on the piercing itself and can be between 0.8mm (20g) to 1.6mm (14g). It goes without saying that people who have stretched their lobes will be much larger.

The word “usually” is the key here as it all depends on the size of jewellery used in the piercing, as this will vary from person to person.

Another difference can be how long ago you were pierced.

For example, years ago piercing guns were used wrongly to pierce the Helix and Tragus, so the jewellery used was thin 0.8mm (20g). Now days this should only be done with a needle and a more common size is a 1mm (18g) or 1.2mm (16g).

SECOND ! – Length or Diameter

  • Labret studs can vary hugely in length from 4mm (1/8 ") up to 18mm (1/2″) as they can be worn in so many locations, from Ear Piercings like Helix, Tragus and facial piercings like Munroe, Madonna or Lip Piercings.

  • Eyebrow bars usually are approx 8mm (5/16″) but again can be shorter or longer depending on style and preference.

  • Nipple Piercings again vary in size with the "average" being 14mm (9/16″) to 16mm (5/8″)

  • Tongue piercings possibly have the largest amount of size ranges as it's all about personal taste and comfort, most prefer 16mm (5/8″) but can be any size from 8mm (5/16″) up to a massive 22mm (7/8")

  • Belly bars – With Navel piercings again it comes down to comfort and style as it can depend on clothing worn with the "average" size 10mm (3/8″)


Its normal for piercers to use jewellery that is slightly longer at the time of piercing to allow for swelling, this is nearly always the case with a tongue piercing as the tongue can swell dramatically when pierced.

When the swelling has reduced and the piercings has fully healed, then the standard size item of jewellery can used.

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