This is the English translation of an Interview with PrimeGrillz from Mai 2023. The original interview in German can be found here.
This is a quasi-self-conversation, as PrimeGrillz and SZM magazine live under the same roof, but are both independent and autonomous.
PrimeGrillz, based in Munich, Germany specialise in dental jewellery, i.e. Grillz. In this interview with SZM, they explain what drives them, who their clientele is and why they also want to use their platform to draw attention to social issues.
SZM: Hello, first of all, thank you for taking the time to do an interview with SZM. Can you briefly explain to our readers what Grillz actually are?
Prime Grillz: Hello, sure. Grillz are dental jewellery. Mostly gold or chrome is used, sometimes platinum. The Grill is simply placed on the teeth and can be removed at any time. Like earrings or a nice necklace, Grillz allow you to fully express your own style.
The difference is that Grillz are more intense than a ring or necklace because they are worn in the mouth, i.e. literally in your face. At the same time, they are a little mysterious because they are often only visible when you smile. At Prime Grillz, we define Grillz like this:
Grillz are the ultimate expression of a person’s style, conveyed through a smile.
SZM: Nicely summarised. And since they are worn in the mouth, the quality of the material must be extremely high?
Prime Grillz: Yes, that’s super important. Our dental laboratory has been connected to a dental practice for over 13 years. For this reason alone, the materials we use must be safe. We use surgical steel for our chrome Grillz and an 18-carat dental gold alloy for our gold Grillz. It is also important that neither nickel, silver, copper or zinc are added to the gold or chrome, as this can trigger allergies.
We recommend anyone interested in dental jewellery and generally Grillz to find out what material is used and whether the Grillz are made in a dental laboratory or in daddy’s basement.
Photos: shutterstock, prime-grillz.com
SZM: And where do you get your gold from, for example?
Prime Grillz: From the long-established company C.Hafner in Germany. The company has been around since 1850 and is known for its precious metals of the highest quality. They are also the first and so far only refinery in Germany with a CO2-neutral recycling process and CO2-neutral gold.
SZM: I’ve never personally met or seen anyone wearing dental jewellery on the street. At least not here in Munich. How come?
Prime Grillz: It is certainly true that Munich is not at the forefront of dental jewellery. Nevertheless, Grillz now have a much broader base. In addition to the traditional hip-hop and rap scene, Grillz are becoming more and more mainstream. Also because of pop stars, athletes and actors wearing Grillz. The interest is definitely there. Even in Munich. Everything is just a bit more chilled here.
We are particularly pleased that more and more women are wearing Grillz. They often have small but stylish dental accessories made for them.
SZM: What drove PrimeGrillz to make Grillz?
Prime Grillz: We have 22 years of experience in dental technology, so naturally we look at what else we can do in the industry apart from crowns and bridges. Grillz are certainly only to be found on the fringes here, but we put our heart and soul into it. For us, dental jewellery is craftsmanship at the highest level, which is why only a master dental technician makes the Grillz here at PrimeGrillz.
SZM: So, let’s assume I want to have this wicked Grill. How do I get it into my mouth? It has to fit on my teeth somehow.
Prime Grillz: (laughs). This is our „Beast Mode“ Grill. It was originally supposed to be called „Kinski“ and be a homage to the intense acting performance of the great Klaus Kinski. The Grill divides opinion, and just like Kinski, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea.
SZM: And why is it not called „Kinski“ but „Beast Mode“?
Prime Grillz: The legal department was against it (laughs).
But to answer your question about how to get our Grillz:
You can come to us, or if you don’t live in Munich, have your dentist take a silicone double-mix impression of your teeth and send it to us well packaged.
As Grillz are tailor made, the impression must be clean to ensure a good fit later on.
If you don’t fancy going to the dentist, you can order the PrimeGrillz silicone kit from our shop and make the impression yourself. You can find an explanatory video on our website.
Then select your grill in the shop and as soon as your impression arrives at our lab, we’ll get to work.
For custom grillz, i.e. special designs, you can send us your designs by email and we will see how we can realise them. The „Beast Mode“ was originally also a custom grill, but can now be bought as a regular Grill in the shop, although it’s not cheap. A lot of love, gold and craftsmanship from Germany went into it.
SZM: Yes, Grillz can quickly become expensive…
Prime Grillz: There is no upper limit to the price of Grillz, but that is probably the case with many things. But it doesn’t have to be that expensive and Grillz don’t always have to cover both rows of teeth. We have beautiful single cap Grillz, such as the Il Solitario, the KritzKratz, Das Nest or our Leaflet Grill. They are all very simple, elegant, go with many outfits and don’t necessarily break the bank.
SZM: And do you clean Grillz with a soft toothbrush and lukewarm water?
Prime Grillz: That’s right. Or in an ultrasonic bath. Grillz should always be stored in their storage box when not in use. When exercising, eating or having sex, it is best to take the Grill out so that neither the Grill nor the real teeth underneath are damaged.
SZM: But there are also permanent Grillz, i.e. Grillz that are permanently attached to the teeth and worn like fixed braces. You are probably not a fan of perms?
Prime Grillz: Permanent Grillz are really bad. Especially with Grillz with a larger span. The real teeth underneath cannot be cleaned properly and soon you can expect bad breath, tooth decay, bacteria and other dental damage. That’s why we don’t offer permanent Grillz in the first place. I don’t even know if they are offered in Germany at all.
Changing Grillz depending on your mood is of course also an expression of your own style. If I’m not in a good mood on a Monday, I might wear „Beast Mode“ and not make any witnesses that day.
On Tuesday, I might be in the mood for a simple chrome Grill, like the Chromosome, when I go out for dinner with my partner. You can’t do that with Permanent Grillz.
SZM: Last question. On your website, you repeatedly point out social issues and even incorporate them symbolically into your Grillz. Why do you do that?
Prime Grillz: Well, because some things in this world are just so fucked up and we believe that we can bring about change by making a small contribution. Starting with the environment, of course…
But also when primary school children in the U.S. are shot with rapid-fire weapons designed for war zones, then we don’t see this as an American problem, but as a human/political problem that can be contained by exerting influence in the form of donations.
Our Remember Charleston Grill, for example, is dedicated to the nine African-Americans who were practically executed in a church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015.
However, 10% of the proceeds from the sale of this Grill go to the „Sandy Hook Promise“ organisation, a non-profit association dedicated to the issue of gun violence, especially in schools in the U.S.
Sandy Hook Promise was founded by parents and family members who lost their children in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012.
26 people lost their lives that day. 20 were children between the ages of six and seven.
Or if politicians in Uganda think they have to pass an anti-LGBTQ+ law in 2023, which is so inhumane, so disgusting, which invites the persecution, humiliation, abuse, imprisonment and in certain cases the execution of gays, lesbians and people from the trans community, then we want to shout it from the rooftops with our You&Me-Grill.
Not because it’s good marketing for us, but because we think we should all shout a little louder in the face of these abominations.
Of course it’s easier to look the other way. What do I care about America, what do I care about Uganda? But we don’t feel like looking away right now.
SZM: Wow, full Beast Mode… Thank you very much for this interview.
Prime Grillz: Our pleasure.