Guide to earrings and piercings

Getting your ears pierced is certainly a right of passage. In the UK the practice is extremely common, with many girls getting their ears pierced in their early teens – if not before.

earring image

While most will start on a basic stud earring, they’re likely to progress into hoops, or try many other different kinds of exotic and novelty earrings, inspired from locations all around the world.

The more adventurous types might even decide to have piercings in places other than their lobe – which is the most commonly pierced part of the ear. There are nine different kinds of piercings in total available for the ears and half a dozen or so kinds of specific earrings to suit the pierced area.

If you’re unfamiliar with the different kinds of earrings or piercings that are available for ears, then why not explore a little below? If nothing takes your fancy, then you can still always opt for clip-on earrings instead!

Traditional types of earrings

Stud earrings
The quintessential stud earring is recognisable by being one of the smallest kinds of earrings and one in which only a studded end is visible from the front of the ear. Commonly this stud is a jewel, silver/gold ball or another such object with aesthetic qualities.

It is fixed into the ear using a post which penetrates through the ear and through to the back, where a clasp of some kind – sometimes a screw-on – is used to fix the earring in place.

Hooped earrings are exactly what they sound like. They are circular in shape and hang from the ear Рin this case, always from the lobe, which can handle even the weightiest of hoops.

They are connected by a piece of secret tubing which slots into the end of the hoop, giving the impression it is one continuous circle.

Dangle earrings
Dangle earrings fall graceful downwards from the ear and are inserted into the pierced hole using either hooks or studs. In many cases the hooks are left open, but in some they clasp together to give some more stability.

The extra length available on dangle earrings allows for the most intricate and complex of designs; possible incorporating different kinds of material. For example, feathers and fabrics can dangle.

Alternative earrings

Captive bell earrings
These earrings, inspired by body piercing much like the rest of this alternative list, are a a ring that spans nearly a full 360 degrees round. They slip into the ear and are spun around until the desired angle is met. Two balls – which are able to be screwed – secure the ring in place.

Plugs might not be glamorous to some people, but they literally plug a given-sized hole in the ear with a piece of jewellery with flared ends to keep them in place. This can be very small - from around 4mm Рup to more than an inch in diameter.

Flesh tunnels
Also known as eyelets or bullet holes, these are extremely similar pieces of jewellery to plugs but they aren’t filled solid, thus a hole perforates through one side of the ear and out the other – thus their name.

Angela Jones is a fashion design graduate and is passionate about jewellery. She is fond of writing in her leisure time. Nowadays she is busy in researching on exquisite engagement rings and clip on earrings. To know more visit

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