Using the correct tools is crucial in any profession. Professional body piercers use specific tools for their craft that are borrowed from the medical field. Body piercing tools differ in size and material, primarily consisting of either stainless steel or plastic in construction. The stainless steel forceps, ring opening and closing pliers (shown), and the various tools used in dermal implants are made to withstand the pressures and temperatures of repeated autoclave cycles for sterilization and re-use.
Plastic body piercing tools are designed to be used once and discarded, and come sterilized and individually packaged for immediate use. Although some plastic forceps can be autoclave sterilized and re-used, most piercers will use them once and discard them. Sterilized and disposable tools are recognized by the Health Department as a viable alternative if a body piercer does not have an autoclave. If you are re-using steel tools, you must use an autoclave to sterilize them.