Our 16th Annual Conference and Exposition was in Las Vegas, Nevada on June 5-June 10, 2011.

We are happy to announce this year our conference returns to Bally’s for the first time since 2001! Thanks for joining us in the heart of the strip for comprehensive dining, unwavering service, and a signature style that attracts high-rollers from around the world.

Spend your time outside of conference in one of their numerous restaurants or shops. Relax and treat yourself to a day at the spa, or in a private cabana next to the Bally’s Blu pool. While still embodying the classic spirit of Las Vegas, Bally’s is centrally positioned on the Strip to keep you close to all the finest in shopping, dining, gaming, and nightlife. Located next to Paris and across from the Bellagio, Bally’s is a Vegas value in a convenient location.

Below please find general information about the Conference. Details will be presented on our Registration site as they are established. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the APP Office at 888-888-1277 or 785-841-6060; info@safepiercing.org

  • For a review of the 2010 Conference – please click here.
  • For more detailed information see: 2011 Registration Website
  • For direct link to Bally’s APP Room Block: Take me to the APP Bally’s Room Block!


If you are an APP member, you get some perks each year at Conference. For 2011, the APP will offer Members-Only classes & $50.00 off your full conference fees. If you are not yet a member, this is the time to join! Applications must be submitted and be completed by February 1, 2011 in order to guarantee processing by Conference. No if, ands or buts!


Everyone! New Piercers, Experienced Piercers, International Piercers, Apprentices, Counter People, Studio Owners, Health Inspectors, Legislators, Researchers, Retailers, Wholesalers, Manufacturers…(restrictions apply to the Exposition, see below)

What kind of classes will Attendees find at the APP Conference?


The APP provides ample course selections for both the new attendee and our returning piercers.
All are welcome to attend any classes, with the exception of the designated Members Only courses.

Expected Course topics

Aftercare Series:

#1 Wound Healing & Care
#2 Client Home Care
#3 Troubleshooting

Traditional Ritual Festivals: Part 1 The Vegetarian Festival of Thailand and Part 2: The Thai Pusam Festival of Malaysia

Head & Neck Anatomy
Anatomy: the Structure of an Aesthetic Piercing

Initial Jewelry: Size & Style
Steel & Titanium 2011
Properties & Applications of Wood in Body Jewelry
Knowing & Selling Stone

Blood borne Pathogens
First Aid

Technique: Fundamentals of Freehand
Safe & Effective Female Genital Piercings
Exploring the “O” Needle
Surface Anchors

Medical Risk Assessment Basic & Advanced
Grounding & Bedside Manner
Studio Documentation
Working with a STATIM Autoclave
Workshop: Sterilization and Piercing Room Set-Up

Marketing Outside of the Box

Spanish 101 for the Piercer
Business Management
Piercing as a Long Term Career

Members Only (must be an active APP Business/Business Member at Large to attend)
Advanced Oral Piercings

There are so many classes offered, how can I take them all?

You can’t in a single year. The APP encourages studios to send multiple representatives to maximize the number of classes and amount of education a single studio can obtain. Remember, we have many piercers who attend this Conference every year and we try to offer enough variety for everyone to have a unique experience each time they attend Conference.

What are Roundtable Discussions?

The APP believes that much of the education at Conference takes place from peer to peer. In keeping with that belief we encourage you to find time to participate in these more casual, information sharing discussions, mediated by expert piercers and/or professionals. There is no charge to attend these discussions. An attendee/vendor badge, however, must be shown in order to attend.

Expected Topics for Roundtables (subject to change based on facilitator availability):

  • Corset Piercings
  • “How Far is too Far?”
  • Professional Personal Boundaries
  • Portfolio Review
  • Shameless Self Promotion
  • Studio Ownership
  • Future of the Industry
  • Piercing with Plastic Surgery
  • When the Inspector Comes A-Knocking


  • Members Only Round table (must be an active APP Business/Business Member at Large to attend): Exploring Ear Reconstruction


What is the Exposition?

This is the largest gathering of piercing related vendors in the world. Manufacturers often utilize this event to present innovative and new products/services to the piercing community. This is the venue in which you as a piercer can meet your vendors and manufacturers face to face, and see their products up close before buying. A vendor’s presence at the Expo does not constitute APP endorsement. The APP encourages all Attendees to shop responsibly.

What is the APP doing about vendors selling products/jewelry which don’t meet APP guidelines/standards?

While the APP encourages vendors to attend who meet or exceed our suggested jewelry standards, the APP does not and cannot screen any or all of the vendor’s entire product line. The APP has struggled with this issue for years. Overwhelmingly the majority of our attendees and vendors like the open floor policy of the Exposition. The APP requests all its attending vendors to select products or services that comply with the APP standards and mission for display and sale on the Expo floor. Please review all products thoughtfully and remember that, in many cases, the Conference and Expo are a learning experience for vendors as well.

How much does it cost to attend the Expo? Can anyone attend the Expo?

If an attendee pays for the full conference package price, admission to the Expo for all four days is included in their fees. Daily fees vary, please see registration materials for details. Admittance to the Expo is restricted to those affiliated with the industry as it is considered to be a trade show floor. These restrictions protect our vendors, who are selling to retailers at wholesale prices. Attendees who purchase an Expo pass will be asked to show proof of industry affiliation (business license, business card with name, other documentation). The APP will refuse entry to this event without proof of industry affiliation.

I am a vendor, how do I book a booth for the show?

Please select vendor registration from the menu to the left. This will take you to all the information you need to know to book with our Exposition.


What does Full Conference or “the package” mean?

What are the advantages of paying this way?

Full Conference or buying “the package” means that you receive an Attendee Badge which allows you into any of the classes (Members Only restrictions apply) and into the Expo Hall for all four days. If you are going to be at Conference for more than a day or two – this is the most economical choice. You also can easily change your class choices right up to the start of the class.

I can only attend the Conference for a limited amount of time, or I have limited funds…can I pay less?

Absolutely! The APP offers the option to pay on a per class basis. See the class listing for the individual class prices. Be careful when selecting classes this way so that you don’t sign up for classes which are scheduled at the same time.

I am a Health Inspector, can I attend the Conference? How much does it cost me?

Yes, and for the 7th year in a row the APP invites Health Inspectors to attend the Conference free of charge. The only requirement for this offer is that the person(s) attending reserves and stays in a room in the host hotel within the APP room block. Book early to get your room. If you need documentation confirming this offer, contact info@safepiercing.org or 888-888-1277

How can I register? How can I pay?

Registration can be done online or by mail. Conference Registration will  start in January.

Mail in (with a credit card) registration is possible using the registration form. However we encourage all attendees to take advantage of the online registration system when possible. Checks should be made payable to the Association of Professional Piercers or APP.

We accept Mastercard and Visa only.

What are the actual costs?

  • $400.00 – Early Full Conference includes unlimited classes/four day expo pass
  • $450.00 Onsite Full Conference*:– includes unlimited classes/four day expo pass
  • Banquet Dinner: $40.00 (not included in Full Conference fee)
  • Exposition Passes: (included in Full Conference fee)
  • $20.00/single day
  • $30.00/two day
  • $35.00/three day
  • $40.00/four day
  • Individual Class Prices are posted on the Conference Registration Website. They range from $35.00 to $65.00 per class depending on the course (You do not pay these fees if purchasing the full conference pass).  Individual Classes Prices will increase by $5.00 per class if you wait to register onsite.


APP members with paid dues for 2011 will receive a $50.00 discounts on Full Conference passes.
International attendees will receive a $50.00 discount on Full Conference Passes.
Scholarships are available on a limited basis, see detailed information below.


Prior to May 14th the APP will refund 50% of Attendee Registration fees if the Attendee cancels.
May 14th or later the attendee will receive no refund. Please plan accordingly.


I have a disability. Can you help me?

The APP wants Conference to be a great experience for all its Attendees. If you have a need for special services or concerns about access etc. please do not hesitate to contact us. 1-888-888-1277 or 785-841-6060 or info@safepiercing.org

I have no money. Can you help me? (the deadline for scholarships for the 2011 Conference has passed)
The APP has a limited number of scholarships available. Before he passed away in February of 2001, Al D. Sowers devoted much of his piercing career to the education of piercers. It is only fitting that this scholarship be named for him. This is funding for eight piercers in need of financial assistance to attend the APP conference. Accommodations and Conference registration are included in the Scholarship. Scholarship recipients are expected to share a room with other recipients and work more than 30 hours during the Conference. In addition, they must provide their own transportation to and from the conference. 2011 application forms can be obtained by calling or emailing info@safepiercing.org after November 1, 2010. Applications must be submitted January 1-February 29, 2011. Scholarship recipients will be notified no later than March 31st, 2011. Please contact Caitlin with any questions!

I am easily stressed. Can you help me?

The APP encourages all participants to take care of themselves during Conference. Due to long hours and the excitement of the event, many attendees find themselves overwhelmed. Daily morning Yoga classes are free to all attendees. The Friends of Bill W. have meetings during the week. The staff and volunteers at Conference are available should you need assistance in finding emotional support, medical care, or a quiet place to rest – please let us help.

I want to Volunteer – how can I help?

Volunteers made a big difference in 2010 – if you are interested in joining our team in 2011 please contact Caitlin in the office at 888-888-1277 or info@safepiercing.org Hours and schedule can be modified to fit your needs…


Where can I stay? Do we get a reduced rate at the host hotel?

Bally’s Las Vegas is our host hotel, and the APP reserves a block of rooms for attendees of the Conference. When making your reservation, request rates for The Association of Professional Piercers. By booking in the APP room block you are supporting our event. The APP is able to expand its budgets for Conference instructors, perks, and events when the room block is filled. Staying in the host hotel fosters a bigger sense of community at the event and keeps you close to your “home base” for the week!

Please support our Conference by staying at Bally’s! If you plan to stay at the hotel the weekend before or after conference book as soon as possible, weekend rates are subject to availability.

Our room block expires on Tuesday, May 10, 2011 (after that date, there may be rooms still available but there’s no guarantee as they are released to the general population…be smart and book early!)

APP Reservation link: Take me to the APP Bally’s Room Block!

Or contact Bally’s at 800-358-8777 – before the room block cut off date!

ROOM RATES are per guestroom, per night, single or double occupancy. Rates are subject to Clark County Room Tax, currently twelve percent (12%).

  • South Tower Rooms $69.00 (any day of the week) – Save a little money but a little further away
  • North Tower Rooms $79.00 (any day of the week) – Closest to the Conference area
  • N. Grand Suite $450.00 (any day of the week)
  • N. Celebrity Suite  $850.00 (any day of the week)

Please note that special requests such as non-smoking room, connecting or adjoining rooms, room location, king or double-double bed type, etc. are subject to availability at the time of check-in.

Rates are net, non-commissionable and will be subject to Clark County Room Tax, which is currently nine percent (12%) – subject to change.

ADDITIONAL PERSON (for above double occupancy)
Additional persons will be charged at a rate of $30.00 per person, per night, with a maximum of four (4) persons per guestroom.

Important Hotel Policies:
Individuals must identify themselves as part of Group to receive the special Group rate. All reservations must be guaranteed with a deposit for the first night’s guestroom and tax charge.
If reservation is guaranteed to a credit card, the first night’s guestroom and tax charge, per guestroom, will be billed immediately to the cardholder’s account.

Hotel allows individual cancellations without penalty up to seventy-two (72) hours prior to the attendees’ scheduled arrival date. Hotel shall charge the individual attendee one (1) night’s guaranteed guestroom rate plus tax for cancellation within seventy-two (72) hours of the scheduled arrival date or failure of the individual to check-in on the scheduled arrival date. Any remaining nights of a “no-show” reservation will be canceled. It is policy to require a credit card or cash deposit for incidental charges.

Hotel accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, or Diners Club.

Check-in time is 4:00 PM and check-out time is 11:00 AM. Any departures after 11:00 AM are subject to the full day charge.

Each guestroom must have at least one registered guest twenty-one (21) years of age or older.


Can I get pierced at the Conference or do piercings in my hotel room?

Absolutely not! To maintain space in our host hotel and comply with insurance requirements, absolutely no piercing, scarification, branding or implants; or any other form of body modification from hotel rooms will be tolerated. Any APP members participating in these types of activities risk losing their membership. Any member or non-member risks expulsion from the hotel and/or Conference. This type of behavior contradicts everything the APP represents and promotes in its educational outreach and mission.

Smoking Policy:

Clear Air Act now prohibits smoking in all public spaces except for the casino proper, bars in the casino area, and designated outdoor smoking areas by the pool. No smoking is allowed in any of the Convention areas, or any of the corridors, lobbies, restaurants, special meeting rooms in the Hotel. The APP supports this policy and encourages all attendees to comply with the regulations.


Opening Party: Please join us poolside on Monday evening for the opening social event of the Conference. Food and a Cash Bar provided.

Banquet Dinner:Las Vegas Glitz theme and a Celebration of Jim Ward’s Birthday!

Be prepared to be entertained, eat, and mingle! The Conference’s awards presentation, open meeting, and top prize raffle selection will be held after 10pm, and the hall will open to non-ticket holders at that time.

Innovators Award & Silent Auction

Launched in 2009, the Innovators Award proved to be a welcomed addition to the APP Exposition. The Innovators Award program and the Silent Auction – have been altered slightly for 2011 – please read the new policies carefully!

In the past the Innovators Award program has been a chance for Vendors to showcase new and innovative designs they want to promote at the show – test at the show – or gain recognition for from the people in our Industry. We now open this opportunity up to any Attendees at the show!
Whether it is a single item showpiece, an introduction to a new line, or a new idea an amateur jeweler has developed – we welcome your submissions!

If the submission comes from someone other than a (paid) full conference pass Attendee, or a Vendor (with a booth on the floor) – there is a submission fee of $300.00.

The vendor or attendee who wins an Innovator of the Year award, in addition to the formal recognition of their contribution will be given an interview in the Point.

Each Vendor/Attendee is allowed one entry into each of the two categories: Technical Innovation & Creative Innovation.

Innovator Award entries can be put into the Silent Auction. For entries which sell for more than $600.00 the proceeds will be split 50/50 with the donating vendor/attendee. Reserve limits on all items can be adjusted by the Association.

Items which are not part of the Innovator Award program can also be donated to the silent auction but all proceeds on these items will be retained by the APP.

Vendors/Attendees will need to fill out the enclosed descriptive form. Submission of this form will be the confirmation of the vendor’s participation. The confirmation must be received by May 15th with no exceptions. This form will include creator’s name; whether it is submitted as a technical or creative innovation; materials used; name of design, piece, or product; and the suggested starting bid amount. This information will be used to fill out the Silent Auction form which will be numbered and displayed on a table. Items will be displayed in cases with the item reference number. Bid increase amounts will be determined by the APP based on the starting bid amount.

Vendors/Attendees will need to bring their items to the APP Raffle/Auction Booth – before the floor opens on Tues June 7th. It is not the responsibility of the APP to collect the item from the Vendor/Attendee.

Award Ballots will be issued at the time of registration with each individual badge. Voting will be allowed by anyone who is issued a badge. A ballot box will be located by the display and the ballots tallied at 3pm on Thursday; the winner(s) will be announced at the Banquet Dinner.

The Silent Auction will close at 5pm on Thursday. Auction winners will need to pay for their items prior to pick up. Winners of Auction Items which are not paid for prior to the end of Conference will have to pay for shipping of the item in addition to the bid amount. Items not bid upon will be returned to the Vendor/Attendee.


Want the chance to win thousands of dollars worth of goods and services? The APP raffle continues to be the best gamble in Vegas. The APP can never thank its Vendors enough for their continued generosity with raffle donations.

This fundraiser for the APP continues to sustain the organization in a huge way. Tickets are $2.00 a piece. .

Yoga – Available daily to all attendees free of charge.

Members Annual Meeting

Open to APP Members only. Members who attend will receive a special gift!

International Attendees Meeting

Open to all international attendees and those interested in international issues.

Vendors Annual Meeting

Open to Vendors only. The APP requests that all Vendors attend this informative meeting and open discussion with representatives of the APP Board of Directors.


Onsite registration/check in: Sunday Evening

All attendees must check in before attending classes. Registration/badge pick up is open throughout the week.

Expo, Classes & Roundtables

  • Monday: Classes/Roundtables – Vendor Move-In Afternoon
  • Tuesday: Classes/Roundtables; Expo Opens
  • Wednesday: Classes/Roundtables/Expo open
  • Thursday: Classes/Roundtables/Expo open
  • Friday: Classes/Roundtables/Expo open

Opening Party

Monday: 8pm-midnight

Banquet Dinner

Thursday: 8pm-midnight

One more thing…

The Point: The Quarterly Journal of the APP

With its new format, heavier stock, and full color cover, the Point is now an even more valuable resource for every piercer. APP members receive a free subscription with membership, or subscriptions can be purchased at Conference or through the APP office for $20 for 4 issues. (Additionally, donations towards the expense of producing The Point are always welcomed) Don’t forget to subscribe when you register!

A California-based, international non-profit organization dedicated to the dissemination of vital health and safety information about body piercing to piercers, health care professionals, legislators, and the general public.