Is it really Surgical Steel? - possibly!
Is it really Nickel Free? - no - that would be IMPOSSIBLE while still being genuine Surgical Steel!
If you have any sort of reaction or allergy to metals that you know of, or can't even wear fashion earrings for short periods without some sort of itching, redness or irritation occurring, the chances are that your body doesn't want that metal in it. Whether that was gold, sterling silver, rhodium plated over (usually) brass, etc. you may find that wearing an inert material such as Bio Plast, Bio Flex or PTFE would be more suitable. Solid Titanium might also be an option for you.
However, if you do want to wear Surgical Steel, and this is highly advisable for fresh piercings and every day wear, then you should at least know what it is ...
Firstly, surgical steel can be identified by its colour - silver.
Shiny, highly polished is what you can normally expect, although the shininess itself can be different from manufacturer to manufacturer.
Surgical steel is also known as stainless steel, an iron-based alloy with several elements, including one main element, Chromium. It is the Chromium which makes steel rust-proof allowing the wearer to leave the jewellery in place while showering, swimming etc. However, steel also contains nickel, which gives the steel a smooth finish, contrary to many sellers who claim to have Nickel Free surgical steel. It's actually a contradiction in terms - you can't have one (surgical steel) without the other (nickel). Molybdenum is another element used in stainless steel allowing the piece to be more resistant to corrosion.
So is all Body Jewellery steel the same?
Usually you will find a seller offering either 316, 316L or 316LVM steel. The "L" indicates a low carbon (.03%). The "LVM" indicates a low carbon vacuum manufacture.
So why do some sellers say they have Nickel Free surgical steel?
Because it is the nickel which most often causes reactions or allergies, some sellers will try to convince you that THEIR surgical steel is better than someone else's by having no nickel.
To the best of our knowledge and research, and advice from our own independent laboratory testing (which is quite expensive!), "Nickel Free" is - impossible! What you as the wearer should be more concerned about is the level of nickel that has been used.
Lindy's Goodies have had their body jewellery independently tested in Australia - not relying on anyone else (even our factory) to 'promise' correct lowest level nickel content. We are quite confident with the products we sell.
On a final note, the term 'Surgical Steel' comes from the very use for which this steel was originally used - in surgery!
Disclaimer: Lindy's Goodies have offered this information to readers as a guide only. If specific metals cause reactions or allergies, or any pain whatsoever, then a Doctor's advice should be sought without delay.
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