The septum piercing was once the exclusive domain of rebellious teens and punk rockers. Now, it is the latest accessory that millennials are looking for to be fashionable. These sartorial risk-takers are more inclined to describe the style as elegant, even dainty, than edgy.
Justine Carreon (26 years old), an associate market editor at a website for women, said that she doesn’t see it as an alternative. She had her septum pierced last year. It was a shock to my mom, but everyone else thinks it was beautiful.
Septum rings are a way to separate millennials and non-millennials. This is why they are so attractive.
Amy Astley is Teen Vogue’s editor-in-chief. The magazine featured Willow Smith, a septum-bedazzled Willow Smith on its May 2016 cover.
While you see a lot of older people with septum piercings, whereas everyone’s mother may have a few tattoos or several holes in her ears these days, it’s rare to see many older people with them. It’s something that millennials feel they have the right to claim.
Teens from the Nineties can still have their tongue piercings and belly-button rings; millennials are breaking new ground in self-expression.
Six young New Yorkers share their reasons for getting and keeping a piercing.
Lace Miller, 26
Cook & Culinary School Students
“I just kind of go on a whim. I do it randomly when I feel like it or if my looks are boring. I think I enjoy the freedom to do whatever I want with my body. The piercing was just done a few weeks ago. It was something I was afraid of so I decided to try it. It was hard, but I managed it. It was very painful, however.
Cipriana Quann, 28
Model & Writer
“I have an identical twin sister and wanted to do something special together. My sign is Taurus, the bull. I felt a special connection to getting this piercing. It’s a kind of special agreement between us. It’s about freedom and being different and not caring about what others think.
Sunny Shokrae, 32
“I had my septum pierced 14 years ago, because I wanted to rebel and didn’t want my parents to know about it. You can put septum rings in your nose without anyone noticing.
It was disgusting and a strange bull ring when I first got it. My mom was very upset when she found out and was disgusted by it. It was too large for me at the time so I gave up on wearing it.
It was too embarrassing to show the world. It’s now a really beautiful ring and I have started to wear it again. septum piercing has a new meaning.”
Lizz Jardim, 27
Face jewelry is “for me a constant.” As with all other jewelry, I change it often depending on my mood and outfit. It’s a constant expression of myself with my facial piercings.
It’s something I cannot imagine myself doing without. Although I don’t have a septum piercing myself, I do wear a fake one. The look is great and I love the delicate chains they are making. However, I feel that I have too many holes in my face. I know I can make it better later.
Steven Wakabayashi, 27
Advertising Experience Designer
It was about a year and a half ago when I got it. My primary motivation, I think, was to have something pierced. But I also wanted something different than what everyone else had. It’s funny because there aren’t enough places to pierce. It’s also very pleasingly symmetrical, which I think is a plus.
It can be used in many different ways. It can be flipped up to hide it or worn as a necklace. Sometimes, I wear earrings in it. You can use any type of hoop that you want.
Justine Carreon 26
Associate Market Editor
It was purchased in 2013 in the East Village, in one of those random shops along with two of my friends. It was because I had just moved, and wanted to make a change in my appearance. It was while I was working for Interview magazine. One of the girls I met had one.
I mentioned to her that I had thought about getting one but had only flirted with it and never considered it. She was enthusiastic and said, “You should get it.” The next day, I approached her.
We hadn’t hung out in a while and I asked her if she would come along to get it. After work, we went to the East Village. I probably had a lot to drink to get some liquid courage. It was there that I found it.
It’s now a part of me. It’s not something I see as an alternative. It’s not surprising that people still find it intriguing, but it isn’t anymore.
It was something my mom didn’t know about for the first few decades, and she was still amazed by it. Everyone else thinks it is beautiful.