Celebrities Who Have Gotten Extreme Body Modifications

Humans have been indulging in seemingly endless kinds of body modifications for generations. For example, individuals mark themselves with tattoos, opt to pierce various spots on their physiques, put plates in their lips, stretch out their earlobes, bind and reshape their feet, and adorn themselves with neck-lengthening (or rather, ribcage-squashing) brass rings. If you're into something on the, er, more unusual side, you could get a forked tongue, elf-shaped ears, saline injections that produce swollen areas under the skin, dyed eyeballs, or scarification, just to mention a few options.

When it comes to extreme body modifications, CBS News notes that "devotees say tattoos, piercings, and skin implants ... are beautiful — and that the sometimes painful procedures used to create them can be emotionally and even spiritually uplifting." That's certainly a positive spin on what can be a cringey situation (honestly, watch slow-motion piercing videos and prepare to shudder). On the other hand, "Some medical experts say the 'mods' can be dangerous — and in some cases evidence of mental illness." While that's surely an entirely different discussion, what we do know is that plenty of celebrities have gotten what could be considered to be extreme body modifications.

Read on to find out who's gotten what done, and decide for yourself if what these stars did was understandable and even admirable, or if they simply went too far when it came to changing their bodies.

Lil Uzi Vert had a $24 million diamond embedded in his forehead

Lil Uzi Vert is easily recognizable thanks to his many tattoos and piercings, not to mention the massive 10-carat pink diamond that he revealed he had embedded in his forehead in 2021. The stone, which had a price tag of a whopping $24 million, came from New York jewelers Eliantte & Co. and apparently caught the eye of the rapper back in 2017, according to Rolling Stone.

The process to embed the jewel into Lil Uzi Vert's forehead required having special modifications in place. Simon Babaev, a representative of Eliantte & Co., spoke to Rolling Stone about the dermal face piercing, saying, "We did everything with precious metals. We engineered a specific mounting that clips and locks in place." The expert explained that "there's a whole mechanism involved" because "it's not a standard piercing," which means that a "specific piece and part were both engineered with millimeter precision to get this put on him."

But why on earth would he pop a giant jewel into his forehead? While some thought that the rapper had gotten the stone as a nod to anime characters of which he's a huge fan, and others pointed out the resemblance to a certain Marvel character, Exclaim noted that "it appears the pricey implant inspiration actually came from Lil B" — who also has a (much smaller) jewel in his forehead. Whatever sparked the idea, Lil Uzi Vert has definitely made this face mod his signature piece.

Tameka 'Tiny' Harris' surgical eye color change

What do you do when you just aren't into your eye color? A simple solution might be to pop in some contact lenses to change up your natural brown or common blue eyes to something with a little more zing. However, Tameka 'Tiny' Harris, star of the T. I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle show, wanted to make her chosen eye color a little more permanent.

That's why she ended up going to Africa to have surgery to change the color of her eyes, telling ABC News that she "just wanted to do something different." Her eyes had been brown and she noted that after the procedure, "They are ice gray. That's the color I purchased." She also explained how it's done, saying, "They go into the eye and they make a little slit. They take an implant and it's folded up. They open it [and] spread it over your eye." According to Healthline, the procedure, which is called "cosmetic iris implant surgery, is a ... controversial practice that has yet to be scrutinized fully by medical researchers." Because of that, there doesn't seem to be any proof to back up the belief that this kind of modification is safe, which is why it's not regulated in the United States.

Despite that, according to Essence, Harris' daughter, Zonnique, also had the color of her eyes surgically changed from brown to blue, and while she "loved" the result at first, she later said that it "wasn't the best decision."

Cardi B's body mods include chest piercings

Whether Cardi B is flaunting colorful hair, elaborate nails, or a huge thigh tattoo, she's definitely not one to shy away from showing off what she's got. That's why, in June 2020, she posted videos so that her 80+ million Instagram followers could see her getting not only her lip pierced, but also getting piercings in her chest.

During the process, the rapper could be heard saying, "I don't even know why I'm agreeing to this ... Oh my God, that one hurt!" At the same time, she was trying not to crush the hand of her husband, Offset. In the comfort of her own home, she had not one, but three piercings popped into the middle of her chest, with Us Weekly noting that one "is a dollar sign-shaped stud encrusted with diamonds."

According to Healthline, dermal piercings like the ones that Cardi B got are "done with either needles or skin punches," however, "each approach involves placing an anchor underneath the skin." As pleasant as having a skin punch near someone's chest sounds, you might want to skip out on that pain, as Healthline puts it at fourth on their pain-o-meter. The outlet notes that while the "pain for a dermal piercing depends on where it's done," the simple fact is that "having a piece of jewelry thrust downward through several layers of skin can be pretty painful."

As for Cardi, after all was poked and done, the end result did (arguably) look fabulous, but at what cringey cost?

It's a neck piercing for Perrie Edwards

In 2013, Little Mix singer Perrie Edwards showed off a new addition to her seemingly ever-growing piercing collection. At a fan show that she and her Little Mix crew put on at a California shopping mall, Edwards was spotted with a piercing on the back of her neck (which was kind of like a barbell with two sides poking out of her skin). When asked about it, she admitted to the Daily Mail that, "Yes, it really hurt!" At the time, she already had "her tragus pierced on her left ear," had her nose pierced when she got her neck done, and later followed that up by getting her nipple pierced, as well — the result of which was captured by the Mirror.

Unlike Cardi B's chest dermal piercing, which was done with a skin punch, Edwards' neck piercing was created using a different method. According to Healthline, "Surface piercings have an entry and exit point that's made through a small portion of the skin using a needle." After that, what's called a "surface bar is then pushed in one end and out the other."

Hopefully, Edwards has taken care of her neck jewelry, because it turns out that surface piercings like the one she got "are notorious for migration and rejection," because they're so close to the top of the skin. Regardless, the star has rocked through the pain and seemingly knows how to take care of her many body modifications.

Cassie Ventura has both neck and throat piercings

Singer, dancer, and actor Cassie Ventura — who appeared in Step Up 2: The Streets, as well as on Empire, per IMDb, and had a lengthy relationship with Sean "Diddy" Combs — has plenty of artful body modifications. That includes tattoos of a star, an Egyptian hieroglyph, the Latin phrase "Post tenebras lux" (meaning "after the darkness comes the light"), her surname, and some white ink with the words "No Regrets." Ventura also has a lot of ear piercings and is another star who has had her neck pierced ... twice! Along with a dermal piercing on the back of her neck, which, unlike Perrie Edwards' barbell-like adornment, looks more like a diamond stud, she also has a dermal piercing on the nape of the front of her throat that seems to put her in a different class of body mods.

According to the Body Art Guru, "The neck or collar bone piercing is also most commonly known as Madison piercing." When it's done, the piercing is popped in at "the front of the neck, most often in between your collarbones," where it's fleshier.

Ventura, who has starred in music videos for Kanye West, Wiz Khalifa, and Nicki Minaj, pulls off the unique look very well (if you're into that kind of thing). Frankly, it's kind of like wearing a necklace all of the time without the pesky chain.

Lenny Kravitz's pubic piercing was revealed in a wardrobe malfunction

Thanks to Lenny Kravitz's rockstar ways, it may not really be surprising to find out that he has a piercing, um, down there. However, it certainly was a surprise when it made an appearance while he was on stage, per the Daily Mail. At a concert in Stockholm, Sweden, Kravitz was feeling the energy of his electric performance and gyrated himself into a sweet little rock-squat-bounce that ended in an inconvenient tear in his leather pants ... which caused the singer to bear his bits. Apparently, Kravitz prefers to keep it light and breezy below the waistline and ditched his underwear for the day, so when his pants said "no more," he exposed his member and showed off his unique piercing in the process.

During an interview with Mashable, the actual piercer responsible for Kravitz's nether region addition (and author of The Piercing Bible), Elayne Angel, explained, "What Lenny has is a pubic piercing. It's where the penis hits the torso at the natural juncture where it joins the body." But you might be asking yourself why would he get a piercing there? Angel said that it's not just for show, but serves a greater purpose as "it hits the woman in the clitoris during intercourse. He's definitely a giver."

Kravitz also gave Elle another explanation for what motivated him to pierce his privates, saying, "I just wanted it. And I also had a diamond that my mother had left me, so I thought, What better place to put the family jewels than by the family jewels?"

Pete Wentz eventually got rid of this extreme body modification

Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz is another star who is heavily pierced. E! reported that in 2014, he told FHM "he's had piercings in his septum, nose, ears, lips, tongue, and nipples." But what happens when you run out of pokable places in rather normal spots on your body? While chatting on Watch What Happens Live (via E!), Wentz claimed he hit that point, saying, "I've had basically everything pierced in my entire life." Indeed, he even had his penis pierced. The musician explained his reasoning for that one by saying that he "was young and dumb and full of wisdom."

When ranking the pain involved in a penis pricking, Healthline puts the excruciating factor right at the top of the list. According to the outlet, "Genitals are among the most nerve-dense areas on your body" thanks to the fact that the "penis contains about 4,000 nerve endings that branch off from the pudendal nerve."

When it comes to Wentz, he noted that his penis is "not pierced anymore." But does that mean that the popular pop-punker has been left with permanent holes where there shouldn't be? Author of The Piercing Bible, Elayne Angel, wrote on her website that "unlike most piercings, once the PA [Prince Albert] is healed, it is usually there to stay." Apparently, even if you don't use it anymore, "you can probably reinsert jewelry later," and if "the piercing was stretched, the hole could remain open enough to leak after you remove your jewelry."

Christina Aguilera thinks piercings are 'euphoric'

When Christina Aguilera hit it big in the pop music scene in 1999 with her song, "Genie in a Bottle," we were introduced to a fresh-faced teenager sans tattoos and sporting socially acceptable earlobe piercings. Things have changed since then for the singer, who "once had 12 body piercings, including her vagina, navel, tongue, lower lip, ears, and right nipple," according to AP. Granted, Aguilera then flipped things again, explaining, "I'm rebelling against myself. I've taken out all of my piercings apart from one in my right nipple. That's for me. I had piercings when I was down. There's a comfort to me in pain."

However, the singer then got back into piercings in 2018, when she took to Instagram to share a photo of herself getting her ear done and writing, "Forgot how much I love getting pierced ... so euphoric for me ... wonder what else I should get done again." The post also included an illustrated "Piercing Road Map" to guide you through Aguilera's multiple former adornments.

With regards to her genital piercing, she reminisced about it while talking to Rolling Stone in 2006, saying, "I have a high tolerance for pain. But that one brought me joy." However, the outlet noted that while the star "hasn't lost those defining qualities, ... the diamond dazzler between her legs has since been removed — it sits in storage, 'cataloged' alongside the a**less chaps and risqué stage lingerie of her dark, introverted 'Dirrty' phase."

Lady Gaga's pierced genitals made an appearance

Lady Gaga has a fair share of body modifications, including plenty of tattoos, which range from a peace sign to a heart with "dad" in it, as well as multiple references to the albums that she's created and released. But her body art isn't limited to mere permanent ink. The star also has a number of piercings, such as a septum ring and ear piercings. However, it was her genital piercing that seemed to get the most attention.

That's because, in 2011, the Mother Monster wore a (careful, there's an NSFW image at the following link) dress that appeared to show that she had her genitals pierced. Now that the proof is up for public display, we can only wonder how painful the process was for the pop icon and whether or not she had a "Million Reasons" to get her business bedazzled. On the pain threshold, Healthline puts piercing your vulva at the top of their "Most Painful Piercings List," stating that "even if you're pretty tolerant to pain, a clitoris piercing may hurt many times worse than any other piercing pain." As it turns out, the piercing can have a pain-for-pleasure tradeoff, as Healthline notes that "clitoral glans and hood piercings can enhance arousal and pleasure during personal or partner play or sexual activity — and even when you aren't getting frisky."

Whatever Gaga's reasons for the piercing, this body modification just seems to be another very on-brand accessory to her unique lifestyle.

Quavo dropped $250k on his extreme body modification

In 2018, rapper Quavo spent a quarter of a million dollars on grillz from celebrity jeweler Johnny Dang, who has done work for major stars like Beyoncé, Katy Perry, Lil John, Kanye West, and Travis Scott, just to name a few of his clients. In a 2018 Instagram post, the member of the popular hip-hop group Migos showed off his sparkly new look. Dang told TMZ that the mouth-based masterpiece was "the most expensive pair of grillz he's ever made!!!" The dental adornment features "125 flawless baguette-cut diamonds — 17.5-carats each — settled in 18-karat white gold with an invisible diamond set." The set even required six months of work, because Dang had to make sure that every diamond was perfectly shaped to match the star's teeth.

In 2019, TMZ reported that Lil Pump followed in his buddy Quavo's footsteps, and got himself his own pair of $250,000 grillz. Apparently, it was the first time Dang had made an "18-carat, rose gold, baguette grill." For his pricey investment, the rapper received "a flawless baguette made of 165 hand-picked diamonds — each 16-carats and cut to fit a specific tooth."

But alas, it was Quavo who helped to pave the path for the expensive style, as Lil Pump's set only took about a month to complete, compared to Quavo's half a year to finish the original project. It was hand-delivered to him by Dang, who flew "from Houston to L.A. for the special delivery."