What Kind of Earrings are Good for Sensitive Ears?
Some earrings look fantastic, but after a couple of hours of wearing them, your ears become red and irritated. It can be both annoying and painful when that happens as it means that the "perfect" pair of earrings will be consigned to the jewelry box for the rest of eternity. How do you choose the right earrings for sensitive ears when there is so much choice on the market?
Know What You Are Allergic To
The first place to start is knowing what you are allergic to. Nickel and cobalt are two of the main materials that cause people irritation. These metals can be found in a lot of costume jewelry, but gold or silver earrings can also contain these metals. This happens when earrings are gold or silver plated rather than solid gold or sterling silver, so it is worth knowing exactly what you are allergic to and check that the earrings you are buying do not contain metal that reacts to your ears. That way, you won’t have any unpleasant surprises on a big night out.
Once you know what you are allergic to, it's time to find yourself a beautiful pair of earrings in a material that won’t hurt your ears.
Opt for at least 14-karat gold when buying gold earrings. The lower the amount of gold, the more likely the metal has been mixed with another metal you may be allergic to, such as nickel. It might be more expensive to buy 14-karat or above, but it's definitely worth it if you have sensitive ears.
White gold can look very beautiful, like these Classic White Gold Plated Hoop Earrings. It's made from yellow gold that has been mixed with silver metal to give it a white appearance. It is normal for the gold to be mixed with either palladium or a combination of nickel, copper, and zinc. Choose a palladium mix if you want to be sure your ears won’t be sensitive to the metal the gold has been mixed with.
Sterling silver must be 92.5% silver to obtain its hallmark in the U.S. This means that only a small amount of other metals will be mixed in with it. Silver itself is hypoallergenic, so it is good for sensitive ears, like these Purple Sterling Silver Aurora Borealis Color Changing Earrings. However, it can be mixed with nickel to make up the other 7.5%, so it is worth checking before you buy. You should also be careful if you are buying abroad as sterling silver can contain a smaller amount of silver in some countries and still receive the hallmark of that country. Some earrings could contain more nickel as a result and may not be as good for sensitive ears.
935 sterling silver
This is a modern type of silver that must contain 93.5% silver to get its hallmark. This makes it a purer and therefore more hypoallergenic type of silver. It is mixed with germanium rather than nickel so your ears are less likely to react to it, although it can be more expensive.
Titanium is hypoallergenic, and you are not likely to be allergic to it. It's also a very lightweight metal, which makes the earrings easy to wear and comfortable as the weight will not cause irritations.
If you are allergic to metal, plastic can be a good, low-cost alternative. Make sure the post is plastic rather than just the earrings as this is the part that will have the most contact with your ears. Be careful when choosing plastic earrings as you do get what you pay for in terms of choice of style and quality.
What If I Am Allergic to A Great Pair of Earrings
It can be very disappointing to buy yourself a fantastic pair of earrings and then find you are allergic to them. However, there are a couple of home remedies you can try that may help.
Nail Polish - Coat the parts of the earring that will come into contact with your ears with a couple coats of nail polish. This will create a barrier between your earring and your ear and will stop the allergic reaction from hurting your ears. It will not affect how the earring sits in your ear or the overall appearance. Remember to reapply the nail varnish every few weeks or it will wear off.
Vaseline - This will also create a barrier and stop your ears from becoming sensitive. It may feel more natural than nail polish but it wears off more quickly, so you will need to reapply it every few hours.