A PROFESSIONAL piercer has revealed some of the most weird and wonderful requests he's ever received from clients.
Ben Harris, who runs Metal Morphosis in Soho after taking over from his father Matthew, has pierced the likes of Kate Moss, Rihanna, Little Mix, Kelly Osborne and Gordon Ramsay.
From eyelid piercings and a triple septum to the back of someone's knees, Ben and his employees have spoken exclusively to Fabulous Digital to share some of the most bonkers piercings they've done in the last 30 years.
"We had a Hells Angel 6’7 big German customer come in giving it the biggen," Ben explains. "He was covered in tattoos and wanted a lobe piercing."
"After we did the piercing he started crying and passed out…then was moaning about the pain and never came back!"
Recalling another particularly memorable moment, Ben says: "I had a customer ask for the needle back once in case we cloned him.
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"That was a bit odd. What a weird thing to say!"
He continues: "I also had one person come in with an infected piercing and asked he'd been doing to clean it."
While Ben expected him to say "saline," the customer had a very different response.
"He said he'd been cleaning it with his own urine so I told him that might be the problem!”
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Elsewhere, one of Ben's employee's named Matthew recalled piercing a Rabbi’s nipple back in 1995, which is against the Jewish faith.
Another told how he pierced both nipples of an 88-year-old man.
"He found a younger girlfriend and wanted to impress her," the piercer explains.
"He couldn’t even sit on the bench properly and took him 20 minutes just to take off his shirt – poor thing!”
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A further employee adds how one of his clients had 48 piercings in six months at the age of 60-years-old, while another had a guy who came in with problems after he'd tried to pierce his own septum with a leather punch. Ouch!
So it's little surprise that Ben claims his dad, who has been piercing since 1991, has seen it all.
"From the original store in Soho my dad has pierced rabbis, priests and politicians," Ben says.
And that's not to mention over 300 festival goers a day at Glastonbury, Reading and Leeds.
"Navels were so popular at festivals at this time (1995 – 1998)," he continues. "It became robotic for him."
"So one day he pierced a guy's nipple accidentally as he assumed that’s what he wanted (and letting him do it after marking it, showing him if he liked the position before piercing, cleaning it etc).
Then the guy turned to dad and said 'Oi mate, I wanted my nipple done not my navel'.
My dad replied, 'Why didn’t you say earlier? I put a pen mark on it and you said ok!'"
Considering Ben's dad has been piercing for 31 years, it may come as a surprise that he's only ever had a lobe piercing.
"He must be the only piercing business owner in the globe without a passion for piercing and in it for the business purposes," Ben jokes.
"I think he would say he’s seen it all and pierced pretty much every body part that can be pierced."
Ben, who says "everything is all about ears and stacking at the moment," adds that while you can technically pierce anywhere, problems may arise later down the line.
I had one person come in with an infected piercing …he said he'd been cleaning it with his own urine so I told him that might be the problem!
"They wouldn't last long if there was a lot of bacteria – like on the hands," he says. "We actually used to get a lot of requests for web piercings (in between thumb and index finger)."
"Senior piercer Julian Rigott did an elbow surface piercing – the customer wanted something different even after being made aware that it would eventually be rejected by the skin and be slightly awkward day-to-day.
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The piercing lasted two years before being removed."
Discussing another unusual request, Ben shared a snap of a lower back surface piercing and explains: "This was for a model for a different look. She wanted it to feature in some of her up and coming shoots."
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