No, this wasn’t an exchange between teens, this was part of a conversation between two early 30’s women, both of whom were young millennial moms based in Brooklyn, at a recent handbag launch party.
And their message was clear: The 90’s are back, complete with choker necklaces, Dr. Martens, and, yes, piercings. While these women may have grown up in the 90’s with butterfly belly rings and heavy metal bar bells, this time around they were looking for delicate, refined jewelry pieces to update their look—an influence coming straight from the runways of Rodarte, Calvin Klein and Alexander McQueen.
Paige Novick, designer and founder of her eponymous jewelry collection, calls this new look a “refined alternative” approach to jewelry and says that she “started to notice a shift a few seasons back when multiple ear piercings, ear cuffs and the like were becoming the new normal.”
Since introducing temporary septum rings [for that space right between the nostrils] to the collection, her sales mimic these women with purchases mostly being made by women in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s who want an instant cool factor.
And the list of designers expanding their collections for new piercings is growing. Ileana Makri originally introduced septum rings to her line and is now planning new styles of baguettes for ear multiples as well as ‘mini’ and ‘hug’ hoops.
One designer favored by celebrities like Beyonce, Gwyneth Paltrow and Miley Cyrus is Maria Tash, who is an alternative jewelry mainstay, offering nostril and septum rings alongside body jewelry like navel and nipple jewelry.
Retailers have also gotten in on the alternative piercing action. This month, Bergdorf Goodman hosted a piercing event with Sydney Evan. The focus was on ear multiples and was the brand’s most successful to date, according to designer Rosanne Karmes, with talks of another piercing event already in place for the fall.