Ear Piercing Experience (Claire's) | CharlotteBehappy

Back in October I got my ears pierced (yes at 17 years of age).
I originally wanted to get my ears pierced at a Jeweller's but apparently they don't do that anymore. The only other options that I could see was either a proper piercings place or Claire's. I was advised to go to Claire's as they would use a piercing gun there which would be less painful and quicker, as opposed to a needle.

So I went to Westfield Stratford to the Claire's Accessories and we went to the till to ask about piercings. There was weirdly a woman sitting behind the till on the floor on her phone who reluctantly got up when we asked - it didn't seem like they got many for piercings, I'd never seen it done in the shop.
I had to sit in the shop window which was embarrassing for sure, with my back to everyone else on a little stool. The woman got out all the equipment and sterilised all of it and asked me to pick some earrings. I should some dark titanium ones that were pretty simple. She then asked me to sign some forms that basically said Claire's were not responsible for any infection. She took her time to draw dots on my ears for where she would pierce and made sure to get them correct. She then took out the gun, everything was sterile and clean.

The actual piercing experience was not too painful. It was very quick and the piercing was put in so quick. It literally feels like what you'd imagine stapling your ear would be like. It's quite awkward getting it done literally on the shop floor instead of in a more private room and literally the whole of Westfield can see. There was another customer watching and waiting so it's a good thing I didn't cry (although it wasn't that painful).
Overall the cost was £35 for the piercing, earring and a antimicrobial lotion to clean your ears with. So the cleaning process was to clean your ears with this cream twice a day (and after you wash your hair). You also had to twist your earring twice a day for three weeks (although I kept doing this for longer). The pain lasted only a few hours and was mild when trying to sleep. After six weeks you can take the piercing out. So I did this. Big mistake.

I took the piercing out and immediately put in these cute cat earrings from Pia. However these were too uncomfortable to sleep in so I took them out at night and did not put anything else in. The next day I went to put the earrings in again but it was vert difficult. It was painful and they struggled to go through but they didn't. My ear actually bled a little but I disinfected everything with the antimicrobial lotion they gave us.
I wore them again that day but took them out at night. The next morning my piercing had closed up at the back. I got put earrings in at the front but they would not go through the back. After a lot of painful trying, my Mum got some ice, and using the original earrings I got pierced the back of my ear (she used these earrings as they were pointed unlike the cat earrings). Again everything was disinfected.
She then gave me some gold earrings were the bar was quite thick and I've kept these in for a while and I am continuing to turn these in order to harden and widen the piercing. I was careful to keep everything clean so I've no problem with infections or pain.

So let me know what you think! How was your experience? Any tips? What did I do wrong?