Point #60: The APP Brochures Overview Article One: What They Are and How to Use Them

By April Berardi, AJ Goldman, and Johnny Velez
with support from the Outreach Committee

There is a hefty stack of informational brochures available through the Association of Professional Piercers that can be used in a variety of ways to educate the public about safe piercing. To help you better make use of these resources, we’ve summarized a few of these helpful pamphlets below and listed a number of ways studios have successfully utilized this vital information.

This is the first of three articles about the APP brochures. In this segment, we’ll be discussing “What is the APP?,” “Picking Your Piercer,” and “Jewelry for Initial Piercings.”

What is the Association of Professional Piercers?
“The Association of Professional Piercers (APP) is an international nonprofit educational organization dedicated to the dissemination of health and safety information about body piercing.

Governed by a voluntary elected Board of Directors, the APP is a united group of piercing professionals who freely share information to help fellow members, piercers, healthcare professionals, legislators, health inspectors, and the general public get the best and most up-to-date information about body piercing.”

This newly updated brochure contains the organization’s mission statement (above) and a brief section about the origins of the association. It provides a list of the many publications, products, and educational services you can get through the APP, and there’s also a brief explanation of the different membership levels that are available. Additionally, there is a bulleted list that clarifies what the APP does and does not do within the scope of its efforts.

Studio personnel can give this pamphlet to clients, potential members, and healthcare professionals, and also use it for their own reference. Distributing these regularly reinforces credibility with potential clients and other professionals. These are also great to hand out at conventions and to leave for distribution at other businesses such as retail stores and local health clinics.

Picking your Piercer
This brochure contains a summary of suggested guidelines you should adhere to when considering a prospective piercer and studio. It includes topics such as piercer qualifications, licensing and permits, studio set up and hygiene, autoclaves, and more.

“Your safety is in your own hands, and you need to be an educated consumer. The information contained in this pamphlet can help. Members of the Association of Professional Piercers uphold the standards outlined in this brochure, and your piercer should too—even if he or she is not an APP member.”

These brochures are perfect for anyone who is considering getting a piercing, whether it be a first-time customer or a seasoned collector. APP members are encouraged to bring these brochures to local mall stores, health clinics, conventions, and schools. Members have actually reported sales increases when working with high schools and colleges. If there is a local college in your area, consider partnering with a Resident Advisor (RA) on programs to educate the students about safe piercing. To discourage minors from making uninformed, hasty decisions about their body art, visit your local high schools and drop off these brochures to nurses’ offices and counselors.

Jewelry for Initial Piercings
This brochure touches on the basics of what to look for in initial piercing jewelry. It details the importance of biocompatible materials and goes over the common options. It also discusses different jewelry sizes and styles and covers quality issues including surface finish, and what type of threading is the safest.

“Choosing jewelry for a new piercing is obviously quite different from shopping for a ring to wear on your finger. Because body jewelry is worn inside a wound and is in contact with your internal tissues, only certain products are suitable. The size, style, material, and quality of the initial piece of jewelry all affect your ability to heal. Because the body jewelry industry is saturated with substandard products, piercers and clients alike may forget that cost alone should never be the key factor in your purchase.”

Getting this valuable knowledge out to our client base is imperative for educating the general public. This brochure has been put together to help inform your clients about why they should choose your studio, and buy your jewelry. It is an ideal complement to the “Picking your Piercer” and “What is the APP?” brochures and they make a real impact when distributed together. These work really well for price shoppers, potential clients, and the general public.

Piercers often look for ways to get involved in their communities, support the APP’s important mission, and to spread the information around. We hope that you find these summaries and suggestions useful. The resources provided by the APP are invaluable, and when used by the entire membership, they help us to have a much bigger impact our communities than we could on our own.

To download these, and for more information about the APP brochures and other resources, visit the APP’s website. You can place an order on the website or by contacting (888) 888-1APP.

About the author

Kimberly Zapata holds an AA in Liberal Arts and Certificate in Creative Writing, and is currently an English major at Temple University. She has been a contributing editor for The Point since issue #49 and is the founder and editor-in-chief of Transient Publishing, an online literary magazine and writing community. She has authored several press releases, travel and tourism articles, and nonfiction works (most recently “Waterproof,” which was selected to be featured in APIARY Magazine online); was a freelance writer for Examiner.com for three years, and wrote a short film, Number 148, which was produced in 2010 and screened at the International House in Philadelphia in 2011. As a member of the piercing community, Kimberly still feels very much in her infancy. While she was the Operations Manager at Infinite Body Piercing, Inc. (from 2009–2012), she knows she still has a great deal to learn, and she looks forward to learning it alongside the rest of her piercing friends and family.

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