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The Power Of Piercings

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From the moment the Claire's employee at my hometown Texan mall stapled a $10 “diamond' into my ear, I was hooked on piercings. I became obsessed with rotating my studs between iridescent dolphins (from 1997—which I still have) and cartoon character heads (which have since passed on). Now that I live in New York, I'm an avid fan of NY Adorned, specifically J. Colby Smith who's pierced some visible and some not-so-visible parts of my body. My steadily growing collection of piercings has become equated with my personal identity. Because when you've found the right ones, you never feel like you're missing anything—even when you're wearing nothing.

—Ali Michael

Follow Ali on Instagram, @ali _michael, or visit her website.