Metals

 

What we use:

Platinum

This hypoallergenic, rare precious metal is ideal for piercings and body jewellery. It does not oxidise, tarnish or discolour; it is very hard and durable; it is extremely resistant to wear and is not affected by body fluids. Platinum is inert and does not produce any allergic reactions. It is naturally white and does not blacken in piercings. Even chlorine, perfumes and acids will not affect it.

 

14ct White Gold

This is 58.5% pure gold and 41.5% alloy. White gold is in fact gold with white metal added to it - metals such as silver, zinc and nickel are predominantly used for the whitening of the yellow gold. Most white gold, which is sold in shops around the world today, is rhodium plated - this does not mean that it isn’t real white gold.

White gold which is required for implantation use, should be made with no nickel. Nickel can cause skin disorders and problems with our immune systems which can become a serious problem in a contact blood spore situation.

Our white gold is mixed using pure gold and a white metal called palladium plus a small amount of silver. Palladium has similar properties to platinum and is considered its sister metal. Having spent 3 years researching and testing to find the perfect white gold mix, we now keep the exact formula a closely guarded secret.

 

14ct Yellow Gold

This is 58.5% pure gold and 41.5% alloy. 14ct is considered and proven pure to maintain a healthy piercing especially when–as with our pieces–no nickel is used in the alloys.

Our 14ct gold is produced with the hardening properties required to maintain the thread of a banana bar (belly bar). We favour this for its purity and hardwearing abilities.

 

18ct Yellow Gold

This is 75% pure gold and 25% alloy. 18ct is proven pure when produced nickel free. As it is softer than 14ct gold it is not appropriate when threaded ends are used, unless internally threaded. Over a period of time an external thread may deteriorate making the securing balls work loose. 

Captive bead rings which are less than 1.6mm gauge (USA 14 gauge) or larger than 10mm may suffer as the properties of 18ct give it less strength than 14ct gold.

 

22ct Gold

 

18ct Rose Gold

 

Palladium

Palladium has been officially recognised as the fourth precious metal and now has a hallmark to guarantee its fineness. On 22nd July 2009, the four UK Assay Offices began marking Palladium articles with a legally recognised Hallmark, applied under an amendment to the Hallmarking Act 1973.

Palladium, which is a platinum group metal, is slowly replacing the use of white gold as it wears better than white gold and does not tarnish or lose whiteness when worn.

Wear testing has revealed a 15 percent longer wear ration, similar to how platinum wears in comparison to white gold. In fact palladium wears like platinum. As with any piece subjected to daily use, both platinum and palladium jewellery will show surface wear over time. The original finish is easily restored by cleaning and polishing.

Palladium is comparable in weight to 14k white gold, making it very comfortable to wear, even in larger pieces. Palladium is considered to be hypoallergenic, however, some very rare reactions have been detected possibly due to the use of white gold solders that may have contained nickel.

 

What we rarely use:

Silver

Although a popular choice for surface jewellery, silver is unsuitable for use in body piercings because it corrodes, causing contamination. Silver is also the most heat conductive metal and exposure to extreme heat, for example the sun or sun-beds, can cause problems.

When used on a large surface area with a low blood flow, such as an ear lobe, many people can tolerate silver. We have been experimenting with the use of a lacquer that covers the silver so it does not come into contact with the skin. You may have noticed our ear flares: these have quite a large surface area wrapping the inside of a healed but stretched ear lobe, making it almost the opposite of wearing a finger ring. After trials we now make this product and have had no reports of any reaction.

 

9ct Yellow Gold

This is only 37.5% gold and 62.5% impure alloy. Low gold alloys corrode significantly and release metallic ions directly into the blood stream, contaminating the wearer. Dental gold is regulated by ISO 1562, stipulating specific alloying elements. 9-ct gold does not meet this standard and is not considered suitable for implantation. Recent dental research is pointing to low grade gold being responsible for the development of a permanent gold allergy.

Where there is a larger surface area of healed skin and the gold has a lacquer applied it should be safe enough, but should be immediately removed if there is a reaction.

 

What we don’t use:

Nickel

In a body piercing, nickel gets into the bloodstream causing the immune system to react against it. Once this reaction occurs, every time the skin comes in contact with nickel it causes the skin to erupt. As a result, an allergy develops. This entire process may happen within few weeks or even take a couple of years.

It has been reported that up to 10% of the females and 1% of males suffer from nickel allergies and this is far more prevalent in the western world making the statistics more concentrated in Europe and the USA. All of our products comply with the European Nickel Directive, now part of the REACH regulation.

 

Plated gold

Generally speaking, plated gold products should not be worn in any piercing. The gold can deteriorate and peel off exposing the raw material underneath. The product can disperse harmful metallic irons and sometimes, adhesive films directly into the blood stream.

 

Hallmarking

In the UK, a hallmark consists of three marks which give you the following information:

 

  • - who made the article - Sponsor’s Mark
  • - what metal it is made from and what is its standard of fineness - Standard Mark
  • - the Assay Office at which the article was tested and marked - Assay Office Mark

 

All of our jewellery with a weight over 1g have the following Marks:

  • BMG, our registered sponsored hallmark. This guarantees that the item is a genuine, handmade BMG piece.
  • The mark for gold, platinum, palladium or silver, depending on what the item is made from, and the relevant number, to indicate it’s purity.
  • The Leopards head. This is the Mark of Goldsmiths, the worlds oldest and most respected assay office for precious metal verification.

 

These marks will now be on every piece both sold internally within in the UK and overseas, regardless of any lesser regulations required outside of the UK.

 

If you have purchased an item such as a nose stud that is too small to be marked, and needs to retain a smooth surface, the attached letter act as your guarantee and certificate of authenticity.

 

Stones

 

Diamonds

The white diamonds we use have a clarity grade of VS1, which means they have no imperfections visible to the human eye. Unless otherwise stated, their colour grade is G/H, which is rare white to white, or colourless.

Our coloured diamonds are VS1, with a similarly high colour grade.

All of the diamonds we use are guaranteed conflict free.

Other Gemstones

We use a range of gemstones including emerald, sapphire, pink sapphire, ruby, topaz, amethyst, moonstone, peridot, tanzanite, garnet, tourmaline and tsavorite. Like the diamonds we use, all of these gemstones are ethically sourced and are of high quality.

 

Cubic Zirconia

We have recently added white and coloured cubic zirconia to our list of materials. They are a great ways to add a bit of sparkle without the price commitment of a diamond or precious stone.