Jewellery standards

Although implant standards address biocompatibility of a given material when used for surgical implants, they cannot be directly applied to the use or required finish for body jewellery. 

Agencies that determine these designations and standards do so for both material quality and end usage. Implants rest permanently against in
ternal tissue unless surgically removed or replaced, and are sometimes designed for bone or tissue adhesion.  Healing piercings, however, form tissue against the smooth non-adhesive surface of the jewellery, and this jewellery can be changed when appropriate. For these reasons we list designation compliance as it applies to material content only; the finish requirements are described separately below.

Products with an ISO or ASTM designation are so noted and a statement specifying the finish requirements particular to body jewellery has been added. In addition, several materials designated for applications other than implants have been proven through historical and practical application to be suitably biocompatible for initial piercing.

UKAPP Minimum Standard for Jewellery for Initial Piercings is as follows:

  • Steel that is ASTM F138 compliant or ISO 5832-1 compliant
  • Steel that is ISO 10993-6, 10993-10, and/or 10993-11 compliant [Note: The EEC Nickel Di
  • rective is a regulation that requires a low rate of nickel release for all materials used for costume or fine jewellery, belt buckles, watches, or other metallic accessories with direct skin contact. It does not specify nor prove that a material is safe to wear in the body; therefore, compliance with this directive alone is not sufficient for meeting the UKAPP initial jewellery standards.]
  • Titanium (Ti6Al4V ELI) that is ASTM F136 compliant or ISO 5832-3 compliant
  • Titanium that is ASTM F67 compliant
  • Titanium (Ti6Al7Nb) that is ASTM F1295
  • Solid 14 karat or higher nickel and cadmium free yellow, white, or rose gold
  • Solid nickel-free platinum alloy
  • Niobium (Nb)
  • Fused quartz glass, lead-free borosilicate or lead-free soda-lime glass
  • Polymers (plastics) as follows:
    • Any plastic material that is ISO 10993-6, 10993-10 and/or 10993-11 compliant and/or meets the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) Class VI material classification.
    • Tygon® Medical Surgical Tubing ND 100-65 or ND 100-80
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) that is ASTM F754 compliant
  • For body jewellery purposes, surfaces and ends must be smooth, free of nicks, scratches, burrs, polishing compounds and metals must have a consistent mirror finish.
  • Changing 2022 – All threaded or press-fit jewellery must have internal tapping (no threads on exterior of posts)