I kept going back and forth on whether or not I wanted to pierce my first daughter's ears. I had heard the best time to do it was at 3 months (you can swaddle them during the piercing, breastfeed or bottle feed immediately, they wont pull or tug on their ears afterwards). Her 3 month milestone came and went with no piercing! I just couldn't bring myself to put her in unnecessary pain. But I also didn't want to wait too long! And here is why....
My mom took me to get my ears pierced at 5. I remember waking up and her telling me "today is the day...let's go to the mall and get your ears pierced." I was so excited! We went to a jewelry store in the mall. They sat me down on the chair after choosing a cute pair of diamond studs. I closed my eyes and they pierced the first ear. I can still remember the burning and buzzing in my ear! And then I wouldn't let them pierce my other ear! I absolutely refused. Apparently, there was no convincing because we left the store and the mall with only one ear pierced. I wouldn't get the courage to pierce the other ear for another year! I walked around with just one earring and when I finally did allow the other ear to be pierced, they completely botched the hole placement and my piercings are completely off.
I thought about the fact that my girls could have an "experience" and a memory if I waited longer. But mine was awful so why not get it done now and enjoy their cute little ears with earrings in them that I get to choose. I made the decision. Ella was 2 and Charlotte, 6 months old. They weren't ideal ages but young enough not to remember whether or not it hurt. And it still gave me anxiety thinking about them being in pain. Here's what I did:
1. I talked to other moms whose daughter/s had their ears pierced. I knew I did not want to go to a Claire's or other mall experience so I specifically asked about other options. I got the BEST advice from another mom to find a place that would pierce both girls' ears at the same time. GENIUS!
2. I found the place that would do both at the same time. If you are local to Orange County, you should go here. It was such a good experience. Merle Norma in Tustin:
I would have never thought Merle Norman does ear piercings, but they do. And the earrings are 14k gold and packaged in sterile, single packaging. I really wanted to avoid infection so I made sure not to use any other material but gold.
The two women who pierced their ears were so nice and friendly. They were patient with me when I rolled into the studio with my double stroller and 2 kids. They let me be involved in marking their ears for the earring placement. Clearly, I was a little neurotic when it came to making that decision due to my mismatched ear holes. We started with Ella because I knew I would need to breastfeed Charlotte after hers were done. Ella sat on my lap. The two Merle Norman angels were on either side of us. They lined up their guns and 1, 2, 3 and DONE! Ella cried a bit but they were quick to distract her by opening up a sample lipgloss drawer in the store. She immediately stopped crying and couldn't get enough lipgloss on her entire face and hands.
Charlotte was just as quick and fairly painless. Again, I held her in my lap while the Merle Norman ladies shot their guns at the same time. They let me breastfeed her immediately after in one of their treatment rooms while Ella was still enthralled with the lipgloss. Here is a pic of us AFTER the piercings happened.
And Ella with the lipgloss (clearly happy camper)
3. Aftercare is huge! Merle Norman gave me a solution to use to clean their ears. I made it a habit at every bath time and every morning. It was easy. I just poured the solution directly onto the piercings while they were in the bath. In the mornings, I would use a q-tip. I occasionally moved the piercings around when they would let me. But that honestly did not happen very often. I was careful not to catch the earrings on anything when putting clothes on them. I also used a tea tree oil based soap in the bath to clean and avoid bacteria. We had ZERO issues.
I am so happy I got the courage to go through with it. About 6 months later, I replaced the little gold balls with 14k gold huggy hoops. They will be available in the shop soon! We get so many compliments on them and the girls never tug or pay any attention to them. And now for birthdays and holidays, we can buy heirloom baby earrings they will have forever instead of more toys they don't need.
Would love to hear from you! Are you considering piercing your child's ears? How old are they? When do you plan on pulling the trigger?