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My Piercing Adventure at “Enigma”
By Carol LeBeau
9/23/2013 12:27:38 PM


Guess what? I just got a couple of new piercings. 

Darn! I wish I’d had a camera rolling when I gave my conservative, button-down, former Navy pilot husband the news.  As he clutched his chest and gasped for air, I quickly assured him I wasn’t about to take a walk on the wild side…and I’m too old to be having a mid-life crisis!

I’ll bet Tom’s blood pressure dropped 20 points as I pointed to the tiny hoops in my ear lobes.  As he scanned my face for any other evidence of metal, I told him about my experience that day.

I actually got my ears pierced the first time in the mid-70s.  My very un-professional piercing was performed by my bright, but not very steady college roommate.   Though I survived the ice cube and needle ordeal, I’ve lived some 40 years with one hole lower than the other.  Time and the weight of heavy earrings (remember the hub caps we wore in the 80’s?!) finally took its toll on the little hole in my left ear. It finally tore through the bottom of my lobe.

So, after a simple plastic surgical procedure to sew up both holes and two months of healing, I was ready for my new piercings. But where? The mall? The doctor’s office?  And then it hit me…how about one of those piercing places?  That’s all they do, right? Pierce body parts?

So I went online and read the glowing reviews from folks who’d received positive piercings at “Enigma Professional Piercing Studios.”  (enigmapiercing.com) I figured it couldn’t hurt to learn more.

The voice at the other end of the phone sounded like a corporate CEO.  Polite, professional and helpful, Angie De Leon deftly answered all my questions assuring me a nearly 60-year-old woman who needed her ears pierced was more than welcome at Enigma.

Right next door to a tattoo parlor in North Park, I tentatively walked through the wildly painted piercing studio entrance half expecting a scary ex-con to greet me.  Shame on me!  I’m now appalled at my pathetic pre-conceived notion of piercing places.  My experience at Enigma was more pleasant and professional than most businesses I deal with.

After filling out the proper forms to be registered with the state health department, (the industry is highly regulated) Angie helped me choose a tiny pair of earrings made of a medical-grade metal alloy.  “For an initial piercing,” Angie explained, “we recommend the highest-grade jewelry to avoid infection and hasten healing.”

Covered nearly head to toe with tattoos and piercings, Angie may be a walking advertisement for her industry.  But don’t let her appearance fool you.  With professional precision, Angie placed my earrings in an autoclave to be sterilized for seven minutes then escorted me to a squeaky-clean treatment room and explained the piercing process.   Then, before I knew it, with virtually no pain, I walked out with two pierced ear lobes, a copy of strict after-care instructions and a friendly handshake from the charming and colorful, Angie.

The best part?  Walking into the small lobby as a couple of young Marines stood waiting their turn.  “Mam, yes Mam,” the polite young men said as I excused myself to walk by.  The expression on their faces as a woman who could be their mother walked out of a piercing salon? Priceless.

I’ll bet they’re still debating what exactly the old gal got pierced. Tee-hee.