joeth77 asks:
Hi Dylan, Just wondering where you get your collars from? My new collar is too big to wear 24/7, and the smaller ones in the UK that I've found are not good quality and end up giving me a rash (I assume nickel allergy). Any advice? -Joe

Picking a hypoallergenic collar for your sub

My previous guide to buying a collar is out of date and not very helpful.  It doesn’t even address hypoallergenic options.  There have been tremendous advancements in collar technology in past two years since I wrote it.

HUGE advancements in collar technology.

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Hypoallergenic Collars

Pup beef / @innerbear​ has a metal allergy.  Found out the day after I collared him when he woke up with a rash under the collar.  (Sidebar: This was an incredibly embarrassing, rookie-Dom mistake; I should’ve known because he reacted to the hardware in his leather harness).

Most folks are allergic to the nickel used in cheap chrome plating.  There aren’t allergy safety requirements in America for metals, so finding hypoallergenic jewelry can be a little difficult.  But for folks like @joeth77 who live in Europe, nickel-free jewelry is labeled with the “EU nickel directive.”  Just search for that.

Without proper labeling in America, it is possible to buy something advertised as “hypoallergenic” but is an alloy that still contains nickel…which would still cause an allergic reaction.

My best option was to buy a selection of chains, cut them to size using bolt cutters, and have beef test them for reaction.  We’re having success with a titanium chain and brass padlock.

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Stainless Steel

With over 100+ alloys of stainless steel, there are only a couple that meet the EU nickel directive: 430 and XC45.  The chemical composition or alloy is rarely listed on Amazon, so I gave up.  Don’t even bother.

If the allergy isn’t so bad, you can use the very common 304 alloy, used in dog collars.  Highly recommended product link here.  Just, please be a decent Dom and cut the giant O-rings off before collaring your sub.

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Titanium

Pros: Hypoallergenic, rarely mixed with nickel, and easy to find.
Cons: Very expensive, hard to find in thick gauges, light-weight does not convey feeling of ownership. 

Here are some options:

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White Gold and Platinum

Pros: Hypoallergenic, easy to find, many styles exist
Cons: even more expensive than titanium. 

I can’t really provide much advice here, so here’s an amazon link to white gold search and one for platinum

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Non-metal options

I really like the cable collars from RECON EUROPE.  About £24 - £30.  The metal cable is wrapped in clear rubber, which most folks aren’t allergic.