Self body piercing where you attempt to pierce a part of your body yourself. It is not advisable for amateurs with no experience of piercing. As well as the usual risks associated with body piercing, a DIY body piercer faces a heightened risk of infection, which could lead to septicaemia, which can be fatal. In addition, self body piercing can accidentally pierce a major artery, inflict permanent nerve damage or risk permanent scarring or disfiguration.

But it looks easy, huh? Well, taking the self body piercers out of the equation, did you know that almost 1/3 of all professional piercings develop some kind of complication? Doing it yourself, in a non-sterile environment significantly increases the risk.

Have you ever tried to rip off a wax strip in a painful area and had to stop or ease off? Well, have you considered what happens if you decide to self body pierce and get the needle part way through and can't continue? Having someone do it to you is a lot easier than doing it yourself. You're far more likely to freeze or panic once the pain hits, and run the risk of a botched job. Don't kid yourself that piercing doesn't hurt – it does. With a professional, the pain lasts seconds. As a self piercer, if that needle doesn't sweep straight through, it could last a lot longer. And some of those buggers take quite a shove to get through the skin.

Do you know where the needle should go? Have you studied it extensively? Some piercings may look flat, but actually arc under the skin in some way. Are you really going to know how to do that, and what angle you should be piercing at? Do you know what size ring fits what size piercing? You cannot just pick a piece of jewelery and hope it fits the piercing. It won't work and all kinds of complications can arise from using jewelery that is either too small or too big.

Do you have the right equipment? Not only do you need topical anaesthetic and needles, but, depending on where the piercing is, you may need clamps or grips to position the skin. Is your piercing ring or bar of high grade surgical stainless steel or gold? The DIY kits that are available online are not suitable for body piercing (except ear lobes) and should not be used for other types of body piercing. Often the enclosed jewelery is not of sufficient quality for body piercing, leading to serious infection.

Perhaps you think going and getting a professional piercing is too expensive, but if you can't afford it, perhaps you are better (and far safer) going without – for now at least. Paying for an expert who knows what he or she is doing and has done it time and time before is inevitably going to give you a better result, minimize the risk of infection and give you a piercing to be proud, not ashamed of.