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Johnny Pearce: Changing the Public Perception of Piercing

Johnny Pearce: Changing the Public Perception of Piercing

Mainstream culture is becoming more and more accepting of piercing and other forms of body modification. The percentage of people with body art is rising as the stigma surrounding it lessens. Piercings in particular are on the rise, especially for women; it has been estimated that 7 out of every 10 women in the US have some kind of piercing. Some forms of body art (such as tattoos) are more popular within specific demographics, but people from all different backgrounds are getting their bodies pierced regardless of their level of income, education, or social status. 

Johnny Pearce is a Voice for the Piercing Industry

Originally born Jonathan Lawrence Pearce of North Carolina, Johnny Pearce began his piercing career in 2010. His recognizable piercing style and comprehension for photography eventually gained him notoriety among the international piercing community and became a key foundation for his success. He’s an active member and passionate advocate of The Association of Professional Piercers, a non-profit international health and safety organization dedicated to the dissemination of information about safe body piercing. Johnny Pearce attends and teaches at the APP’s educational conference in Las Vegas each year, where thousands gather to 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. 

Featured on The Today Show and even as a special guest on Impractical Jokers, his client list includes recognizable names such as Cardi B, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Savannah Guthrie. After settling into a permanent role at Manhattan’s very own Nine Moons Piercing in 2019, he remains a New York City resident, actively piercing in SoHo.

Surviving the Business of Piercing

According to Johnny, working in piercing is like anything else in life. “There are always challenges,” he says. Though there are (and have always been) challenges in almost every aspect of body piercing and the industry, the important thing is that you don’t give up. “You can’t let yourself be defeated by the hurdles that life puts in your way,” he advises. “Even if something doesn’t work out the way you planned, you can’t be deterred. If you fall, you pick yourself up and try again.”

Success is Different for Everyone

Johnny believes that success is entirely relative to the perspective of the viewer. “For some people, success is being the head of a prosperous Fortune 500 company. For others, success is making it through another day at work, just keeping lights on and stomachs full, while simultaneously finding the willpower to put on a collected face for their kids. The truth is that the degrees of success are infinite, with none more valid than the other,” he explains. This is a poignant and powerful message, one that Johnny hopes will inspire others to reevaluate their own values and vision of success.

Johnny’s measure of success is simple: applying yourself to the task in front of you and doing the very best job that you can. “Even if you fall short of your goal, you can learn from the experience and grow, which is success in itself! No one can ask for more than that.”

The Practice of Piercing is on the Rise

Piercing is here to stay, and if the rising social acceptance of the practice is any indication, it is likely to become even more common. Johnny is hopeful for this outcome, as he believes that the world at large is becoming more open-minded and accepting. “I think piercing is definitely going to become more popular,” he says. “Now that the tides of public perception are shifting, I think the industry is bound for a bright future. I’m just happy that people will feel more comfortable expressing themselves in this bold and unique way.” Pearce will continue to share his love of piercing with the world through media appearances, professional work, and a new book showcasing his collected works.

About Nine Moons Piercing

Nine Moons Piercing is an acclaimed body piercing studio in Manhattan. It exclusively carries BVLA, a top-quality gold body jewelry brand, and offers custom options for every piercing service. The studio’s sterilization process is state of the art and its stylist’s jewelry curations are unparalleled. Nine Moons prides itself on providing a safe and luxurious experience for each of its clients.

Learn more about Nine Moons Piercing on the official website. Follow Johnny’s work on Instagram (@johnnypearce).


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