By: A.K. Heller

Summer is here and fashion – or the sweltering weather itself – calls for fewer layers and showing more skin. Think cool. Flaunt your summer lovin’ aka love of summer with some sea-theme jewelry. Silver octopus plug hoops, mermaid ear plugs, seahorse dangling belly rings, anchor design barbells and cartilage earrings, 9-Karat gold dolphin nose studs and more.

Ah the delightfully carefree days of summer.

Or, there are those who equate sun with premature aging and sand in the shorts.

For them, the lull and lure of the sea may be the beliefs, myths and superstitions of pirates and sailors of old. The days when piercings weren’t swashbuckling fashion statements. Earrings, for one, actually served several useful purposes. Sailors believed earrings prevented evil spirits from entering their body through the ear. They also believed that earrings were a charm that protected them from drowning. Of course, the former has never been proven and the latter has been proven sadly not true. Though, for the seamen that died at sea or in a foreign port, gold earrings worth their weight in gold, often ensured that the cost of a proper burial was covered. Some seamen even engraved the name of their home port on the inside of the earring so that their bodies could be returned to their families.Anchor Belly

In addition to purpose, piercings had meaning to those who set sail. Earrings were sported as a mark of a seaman’s travels and voyages. Young sailors were gifted earrings to commemorate their first crossing of the equator, or when they rounded the particularly treacherous waters of Cape Horn, the southernmost tip of South America. A black pearl earring was only to be worn by a sailor who was a sole survivor of a sinking ship.

hinged ring

For many people today, piercings have meaning. However, there are no specific meanings behind individual piercings. Nowadays, piercings mean something different for everyone. Some people get piercings to enhance their physical appearance, but there are plenty more reasons to get pierced and get new body jewelry – all year round.


What pirates would have thought of the wide range of piercings today is anybody’s guess. It’s incredible the many ways body jewelry allows you to self-express yourself. Sun worshipers, beach babes, weekend surfers and buccaneers unite, all in your own unique way.