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What is a Retainer?

by Hadas Milrod on January 02, 2024

Body jewelry retainers are specialized pieces of jewelry designed to keep a piercing open while being less noticeable than regular jewelry. They are particularly useful in situations where you want to maintain a piercing but need to conceal it, such as during work, job interviews, medical procedures, or other situations where visible body jewelry might not be appropriate. Here are some key points about body jewelry retainers:


  1. Material:

    • Retainers are typically made from clear or flesh-toned materials, such as acrylic, glass, or bioplast. This makes them less noticeable compared to traditional metal or brightly colored jewelry.
  2. Design:

    • Retainers are often designed to be low-profile, with a simple and discreet appearance. Some common types include flat discs, L-shaped retainers, or bar-style retainers.
  3. Types:

    • Flat Disc Retainers: These are often used for labret piercings and are designed to be nearly flush with the skin.
    • L-Shaped Retainers: Commonly used for nostril piercings, these retainers have a short post that sits inside the nostril, and an L-shaped curve that keeps the jewelry in place.
    • Bar-Style Retainers: Used for tongue or nipple piercings, these retainers have a straight bar with flat ends.
  4. Hiding Piercings:

    • Body jewelry retainers are particularly useful for hiding piercings in situations where you may need to conform to dress code policies or cultural norms that discourage visible piercings.
  5. Sizes and Shapes:

    • Retainers come in various sizes and shapes to accommodate different types of piercings. It's essential to choose the right size and style for your specific piercing.
  6. Comfort:

    • Well-designed retainers should be comfortable to wear and should not irritate the piercing. It's important to choose high-quality materials to minimize the risk of irritation.

Tips for Use:

  1. Cleaning:

    • Clean your body jewelry retainers regularly with a mild, non-alcoholic saline solution to maintain good hygiene.
  2. Sizing:

    • Ensure that the retainer is the correct size for your piercing to prevent discomfort and promote proper healing.
  3. Professional Assistance:

    • If you're unsure about the type of retainer or how to use it, seek guidance from a professional piercer.

Remember that while body jewelry retainers are excellent for temporary concealment, it's crucial to use them responsibly and to follow any workplace or cultural guidelines regarding body piercings. Additionally, retainers are not suitable for all types of piercings, so consult with your piercer to determine the best solution for your specific situation.