For an adolescent girl (or boy), getting your ears pierced represents a new stage of self-expression and style.
Some people will make the unfortunate decision to pierce their ears themselves using ice and a needle after having watched Lindsay Lohan do it in The Parent Trap.
However, this can lead to infection.
That’s why it’s important to get your ears pierced by a professional.
However, can you get this done at Walmart?
We will cover everything you need to know about whether Walmart pierces ears and whether you should go there for this service or not.
Does Walmart Pierce Ears?
Walmart does offer safe and hygienic earlobe piercing services at more than 5,000 locations (a little less than half of their locations).
Employees in the jewelry department go through extensive training on how to perform the task properly and safely.
They may also offer to pierce other parts of your ear besides the lobe.
Some other popular places to get an ear-piercing include:
- Upper cartilage
However, for what it’s worth, it’s highly recommended that you go to a professional body piercer if you have advanced needs.
To find a store that offers ear piercing near you, use the Walmart Ear Piercing Locator to find the nearest location to you using your zip code.
The hours of the ear-piercing service vary from location to location.
However, in most cases, the services are available from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 or 11:00 p.m.
If you don’t know the hours at your favorite Walmart location, call in advance to ensure that they have someone available.
How Much Does It Cost To Get Your Ears Pierced At Walmart?
You can get your ears pierced for less than you might expect at Walmart.
In fact, Walmart has people who will pierce your ears for free as long as you buy a starter kit of earrings that range from $10 to $50, depending on the quality.
On average, the cost for ear piercing services comes to $25 at the typical store.
Does Walmart Have Age Restrictions On Who Can Get Their Ears Pierced?
Walmart abides by all local laws regarding ear piercing, so learn the laws in your area.
In most cases, as long as a parent is present and gives their approval, all ages can get their ears pierced.
Without a parent, minors may require written consent or not be able to move forward at all.
In California, however, minors require consent for all piercings except for ears which don’t require parental permission.
Many parents want to get the job done early and will bring their child to Walmart for ear piercing at a very young age, even under one year old.
While most employees will do this, Walmart does not force employees to pierce people under five years old if they don’t feel comfortable with it.
Who Should Not Get Their Ears Pierced?
While a rather innocuous procedure, some people should wait or take special precautions before getting their ears pierced, including:
- People with an autoimmune disease
- Pregnant women
- People with hemophilia or another blood disorder
- People with diabetes
It is the customer’s responsibility to make the piercer aware of any serious health conditions in advance.
Otherwise, they won’t be able to take the proper precautions.
Does Getting Your Ears Pierced At Walmart Hurt?
Getting your ears pierced only hurts as much as a mild pinch on your ear.
Plus, the 10,000 employees trained in ear piercing know how to distract you to minimize the pain even more.
Ear Piercing Process At Walmart
Step One: Pick Earrings
First, you need to pick the proper earrings for you.
One of the main causes of infection is wearing cheap earrings.
For example, you should pick a hypoallergenic material that won’t cause irritation.
Since nickel earrings cause the most irritation, you should consider titanium or niobium.
Sterling silver and solid gold also make great options.
Most people who are getting new earrings should stick to small stud earrings at first as opposed to something large.
Large earrings and hoops may become a hazard to babies (and adults).
They also tend to weigh more, adding to the early discomfort.
While very similar, it can help to pick earrings appropriately based on whether they were designed for males or females.
This is especially helpful for people who don’t have the greatest innate sense of style and want something rather standard according to common trends.
For people with a greater sense of fashion, wear whatever you see fit according to your unique personal style.
Step Two: Sign Consent Form
Once you pick your earrings and decide to move forward with putting a hole in each of your ears, you will need to sign a simple consent form.
Not only will you sign your name, but you may also have to fill out some simple identification and health questions.
The consent form ensures that you understand the minor risks involved with getting your ears pierced.
Essentially, it works to protect Walmart legally in the unlikely case that something goes wrong.
If you are a minor, your legal guardian will need to sign the consent form as well.
At this time, the employee will also verify your identification and the identification of the adult with any minor.
The minor’s legal guardian shouldn’t experience any trouble as long as the parent and child have the same last name.
Some stricter locations may require additional proof of guardianship in the case of adoption and stepparents or grandparents with different last names.
Step Three: Mark Holes
At this time, you will sit on the predesignated chair, and an employee will use a marker to mark the exact location of the holes.
The location may vary based on your final plan.
They will then perform a visual inspection to ensure that the holes look even.
You will get the chance to verify the location of the holes, too, by looking into a small mirror.
Luckily, it’s not super difficult to make earring holes even thanks to the relatively small canvas the piercer must work with.
Of course, if you do question the evenness, speak up.
Once the piercing happens, it will become extremely difficult to fix things if they don’t seem even.
Step Four: Apply Antibacterial Solution To Ears
Next, the piercer will apply an antibacterial solution to your ears.
The antibacterial solution usually consists of alcohol and other disinfecting substances.
This solution will ensure top-notch protection from infection throughout the piercing process.
However, this is more of a precaution than anything else.
Step Five: Pierce Ears Using FDA-Approved Gun
Walmart uses the Inverness piercing gun, which is considered one of the safest products on the market.
The gun sends the stud through your ear with so much force that it pierces it using the earring.
It also uses very precise technology to help ensure that the earlobe gets pierced in the exact location.
The enclosed system keeps the earring sterile the entire time.
Of course, the piercer will disinfect the edge of the stud before putting it into the gun.
You should experience very minimal pain and very minimal blood if any at all.
Step Six: Go Over Aftercare Procedures
After the employee finishes piercing your ears, they will go over tips for aftercare to prevent you from developing an infection.
Some of the most common aftercare procedures include:
- Keep earrings in for six weeks.
- Avoid touching earrings.
- Clean with solution two to three times a day.
- Avoid dirty water and water with high chemical or mineral content.
The biggest problems people encounter are infection and allergic reactions.
However, in some cases, people may receive a bloodborne disease if they’re not careful.
Unattractive keloids can also develop, making ear piercing aftercare especially important.
After six weeks, you’ll get the opportunity to change your earrings for the first time, which can be a very exciting moment for someone with a new ear piercing.
Recognizing And Treating An Infected Ear
You work hard to clean your earrings and your ears so that you don’t get an infection.
However, you can’t always prevent a problem.
How do you know if you have an infected ear?
The first sign of an infected ear is pain.
Of course, you may recognize an infection thanks to the redness and swelling.
You definitely have an infection if you notice excessive amounts of rustiness or puss oozing out of your ears.
If you do have an ear infection because of a new piercing, don’t panic.
You have options when it comes to treating your infected ear after a new piercing.
Leave your earring in and clean as normal.
However, it may be wise to take a quick trip to your primary care physician to have the infection checked out if it doesn’t subside on its own after a couple of days.
In most cases, doctors prescribe antibacterial cream or antibiotic medication.
Tips For Getting Pierced At Walmart
1. Bring A Friend With You
Having a friend with you can help relax you, especially if you have a fear of needles.
Your friend can tell you how painless the experience truly is.
They can also help keep you distracted throughout the process of getting your ears pierced.
While it can be beneficial to have companionship, kids don’t make great companions at this time.
In fact, while you want to bring a friend, it’s best to leave the kids at home.
2. Eat First
While rare, some people experience lightheadedness or nausea when they get their ears pierced.
Eating in advance can ensure that you don’t faint or throw up, especially if you are prone to these reactions when you see needles.
3. Verify Sanitation Of Piercing Location
Visually inspect the location where you plan to get your ears pierced to ensure that everything looks up to your satisfaction, especially when it comes to sanitation procedures.
You will also inspect the behavior of the piercer themselves.
Did they wash their hands before working with you?
At Walmart, you know that you will always have a clean environment when you go to get your ears pierced.
Walmart Vs. Piercing Studios
1. Piercing Gun Vs. Hollow Needle
Walmart uses the highly recommended piercing gun while most piercing studios use a simple hollow needle.
Piercing studios use hollow needles because most piercers consider them more hygienic since they have to clean the gun after every use.
Employees who pierce ears at Walmart typically have multiple other tasks to perform throughout the day, being more focused on general retail duties such as stocking products and helping customers.
Piercers at piercing studios, on the other hand, specifically pierce people all day and night.
Since they perform so many more piercings and so many different types of piercings, they tend to have more knowledge about piercings.
Walmart typically works with younger clients.
Piercing studios tend to have more experience with adults and their needs.
This expertise comes in handy when you need something more than an introductory earring in the earlobe.
Piercing studios vary greatly when it comes to procedures and quality.
However, with Walmart, you know what you are getting each and every time from one location to another.
All employees get the same training and use the same equipment.
A piercing studio will cost significantly more than Walmart.
However, they will have a far larger selection when it comes to products and piercing services.
This can be especially important for picky people who can never seem to find a pair of earrings they want.
Walmart really does do it all, including ear piercing.
It is perfectly safe and hygienic to get your ears pierced at Walmart.
They will even do it for free if you buy a pair of their designated starter earrings.
It doesn’t hurt that you can pick up some groceries and basic household goods when you’re done.
However, if you can, it’s best to go to a professional body piercer instead, especially if you have more advanced or complicated needs.