One of Y2K’s most controversial trends has become a 2021 must-have, and no, it’s not frosted tips. The latest blast from the past creeping back into the mainstream is belly button piercings — although, to be fair, belly button piercings never dropped off the mainstream fully. When rocking a crop top or a bikini, there’s nothing like a little extra bling to feel your most glamorous. However, it can be hard to plan for the cost a belly button piercing, especially with so many factors to consider, like location, type of belly button piercing, the jewelry, and so much more. Luckily, three professional piercers from around the U.S. shared what you can expect when you get to the shop for a belly button piercing.
The look that’s graced the likes of Britney Spears, Jessica Alba, and Janet Jackson is just as popular among Gen Z stars like Billie Eilish, Normani, and Hailey Bieber. Even the hashtag “bellybuttonpiercing” has more than 48,000,000 views on TikTok, so there’s no doubt this look ready to make a splash once again. If you’ve yet to get in on this jewelry trend, one of the most important starting points in planning is this: How much is a belly button piercing going to cost you? As this is a piece of metal that’s going to be living in your body for the foreseeable future, you don’t want to skimp on a quality piercing with a trained professional piercer. So, here’s what your wallet can expect with belly button piercings, from piercing cost to jewelry to tipping.
What’s the starting price for a belly button piercing?
According to NYC-based piercer Lady Day and Massachusetts-based aesthetician Kat Dasilva, the base asking price for just the piercing itself typically starts at $40. However, in the smaller metropolitan city of Oshkosh Wisconsin, piercer Paige Amber Holloway charges $35. This type of piercing price fluctuation is normal from location to location. Generally, these variations occur based on whether you’re getting your piercing done in a large city or in a small town. Similar to drink and food prices, you simply have to expect that you’ll pay a little more for a belly button piercing if you’re getting the service done a more populated place.
How does the price differ between different types of belly button piercings?
Surprisingly, the price of a belly button piercing stays relatively even regardless of if you opt for a lower or upper belly button piercing, a ring, or a typical barbel. If you do notice a difference in price, it often won’t stem from the jewelry cost, which is usually separate from the piercing price. Rather, a more intense piercing may cost more depending on the tools needed and your piercer’s experience and time. You should expect some slight differences in the costs of different types of belly button jewelry, but not from your piercer.
Will a double bar belly button piercing cost more?
If you want to go all-out on your first go — say, with a double bar belly button piercing — you have to expect to pay more, since it’s technically two piercings in one go. For two belly button piercings, the cost may vary between $60 to $120. “The prices vary because of the setup,” Lady Day tells Elite Daily. “The aftercare instructions have to be thorough for multiple piercings and go along with your client’s lifestyle to see if the piercing will accommodate that.” In other words, it takes longer for two piercings to heal if you get them at the same time because it's a lot for your immune system.
How much are belly button rings and other belly button jewelry?
There are a plethora of different belly button jewelry options available to you, from the shape and style to the type of material it’s made from to gem-encrusted options and more. However, both Dasilva and Lady Day say you should stick to the original, high-quality belly button ring basics, at least until your piercing heals. While you can find cheap options starting at $20, the experts suggest you opt for a higher end pierce at the beginning.
“I highly recommend starting with titanium, it’s a higher quality and works well with the healing process,” Dasilva says. At her shop, the titanium piercings start at $50, but at Holloway’s shop in a smaller city, titanium pieces can be as cheap as $25, although you should be dubious of anything less expensive. “A basic piece of implant-grade titanium starts at around $25. So if any place is selling a piece of jewelry for $10, it’s safe to say that it's not high quality at all,” says Holloway. Lady Day also warns against seemingly more luxurious gold belly button jewelry, as it's porous and harbors bacteria more easily than stainless steel or titanium options. The last thing you want is to welcome your new piercing with an infection.
Do you need to tip for a belly button piercing?
Once all is said and done, you absolutely should tip your piercer. The base expected tip is 20% of the total cost, including the belly button jewelry. If you’re happy with your piercing and the experience you had, you may consider tipping even more if you can swing it. After all, this person just altered your body forever with great care, so show your gratitude with a healthy tip, especially if you’re planning on returning for even more piercings.