Best earrings

Jewelry

Whether you’re going for a classic, timeless look or are feeling bold, the right pair of earrings can make you feel confident and breathe life into any style.

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Which earrings are best?

Personal preference is one of the biggest factors when it comes to choosing earrings. Whether the earrings are for you or someone else, it’s entirely up to the individual’s style and what makes them feel confident and beautiful.

Other important factors to consider are the type of earring, whether they come in a set and the location of the piercing. If you want a pair of cute gold earrings that pair well with any outfit, then consider Tilo’s 14k Yellow Gold Round Hoop Earrings.

What to know before you buy earrings

Earring type

Here are some of the most popular types of earrings.

  • Hoop earrings: Hoop earrings are circular and designed to loop around the earlobe. They usually have a simple but elegant design, which makes them perfect for a sophisticated event or a romantic occasion. Some hoop earrings are thick, while others are thin. They may have either a double or a singular hoop. In some cases, the hoops may be twisted or have an understated pattern.
  • Dangle earrings: As the name implies, dangle earrings dangle from the earlobe and swing from side to side when worn. They may be long or short, depending on the length of the chain. Dangle earrings may be adorned with beads or gems.
  • Drops: Unlike dangle earrings, drop earrings fall just below the wearer’s earlobe. These earrings either don’t move or have a limited range of movement. Drop earrings are often understated, but they may have a singular gem or pearl to help them stand out.
  • Studs: Many people choose studs as their first pair of earrings because they are small, versatile and go with any outfit. Studs often have a mounted gemstone, pearl or another simple ornament. Most men who wear earrings go for this type.
  • Chandelier earrings: Chandelier earrings are bold, dangly and have a cascading shape that may consist of several jewels, gems or beads. Most chandelier earrings have a gold or silver wire.

Popular designs

Earrings come in many designs and can be simple or elaborate. Earrings that have a more minimalist, elegant or understated appearance tend to complement nearly any wardrobe for any occasion. On the other hand, earrings that are flashier or have multiple dangly parts are more suited to specific events.

When picking out earrings, ask yourself whether you want to wear them alone or pair them with a matching necklace or other jewelry. Depending on the company, you may be able to purchase these pieces individually or as a set. For instance, popular brands like Ross-Simons offer separate pearl earrings that work perfectly with pearl necklaces, rings or bracelets.

Matching set or multipack

Sometimes, earrings come in multipacks that include other earrings. These earrings may be similar in design or they may be quite different. For example, a multipack may have an assortment of studs, dangly and chandelier earrings. Most multipacks come with four to eight pairs.

If you want variety, or if you’re getting a gift for someone and aren’t sure about their style, then a multipack is the way to go. However, if you want something for a specific occasion, then you may want to choose a matching set.

Ear sensitivity

Some people have highly sensitive ears, which can make wearing certain earrings difficult or even painful. People who are allergic to certain metal alloys in the earring, like nickel, may develop a rash or, in extreme cases, an infection in the surrounding area. It’s possible to develop an allergy to metal later in life, especially with frequent or ongoing exposure to it.

If you have sensitive ears or a known allergy to certain metals, the best thing you can do is choose earrings that don’t contain those metals. There are some hypoallergenic earrings designed specifically for highly sensitive ears. Sterling silver or sterling gold earrings are usually also a good choice.

What to look for in quality earrings

Piercing location

The two main areas you may pierce are your earlobes and the cartilage. Cartilage earrings are typically thinner and smaller than earrings that go in the earlobe.

The location of the piercing will determine the type of earring or earrings you get. There are several cartilage piercing locations, including the auricle, inner and outer conch, anti-tragus and helix.

The auricle is best for studs, small hoops and curved studs that go along the outer part of the ear. The conches are ideal for small and wide studs, tiny dangling earrings and chain earrings. Both the anti-tragus and helix are good locations for small studs, while the helix is also good for cartilage shields.

Size

Earrings range in size. Cartilage earrings are generally between 2 and 8 millimeters in size, while earrings in the earlobe may be a little larger. Some chain earrings and dangly earrings go just beyond the earlobe, while others may reach the shoulder.

Backs

Here are the most common types of backs to earrings.

  • Posts: Post backs, or butterfly backs, are thin pieces of metal that hold the earring together. They are standard in most stud earrings.
  • Screw: Considered one of the most secure options, screws come in various sizes and consist of a nut and post. Many types of earrings use this type of back, including studs.
  • French clip: Sometimes known as Omega backs, French clips consist of an open clip that connects with a post to keep the earring in place. They also prevent the ear from folding over from the weight of the earring.
  • Open: Some earrings, such as hook earrings, do not have a back. Instead, they go through the piercing and stay in place due to their curved shape.
  • Latch back: This is a hinged back that connects the two parts of the earring. It’s common in dangling and hoop earrings.

Ethically sourced

Some earrings and other jewelry are ethically sourced, meaning that they don’t use materials that harm the environment or the people involved in making them. If you’re an avid supporter of fair-trade production, look for earrings that mention ethical sourcing on the packaging or manufacturer’s website.

How much you can expect to spend on earrings

The cost of earrings depends on several factors, including the quality of the earring and the materials used. For example, a high-quality pair of dangling pearl earrings could cost between $130–$350. On the other hand, a pair of 1/2 carat diamond earrings cost upwards of $700.

Gold earrings with a single gemstone cost around $150. Casual, cute earrings from stores like Claire’s typically range from $10–$30.

Earrings FAQ

Can I use earrings on other parts of the body?

A. Earrings are meant for the ears only. However, you can get jewelry specifically meant for certain piercing locations, such as the eyebrow, lip, nose or belly button.

Can I sleep in earrings?

A. It’s fine to sleep in studs, especially for the first few weeks after the initial piercing. You can also sleep in gold earrings or pearl earrings, provided you are able to take them out and clean them and your ears regularly. It may not be comfortable to sleep in certain earrings, such as dangling earrings or hoops. If the earring has a large back, it may also press uncomfortably into your skin if you lay on your side.

What’s the best earring to buy?

Top earring

Tilo’s 14k Yellow Gold Round Hoop Earrings

Tilo’s 14k Yellow Gold Round Hoop Earrings

What you need to know: These gold hoop earrings are elegant enough for the workplace, classy events and romantic evenings.

What you’ll love: Available in several sizes, these 14k gold earrings are safe for sensitive ears. They use a secure click-top hoop closure and are lightweight enough for all-day wear.

What you should consider: The closure is not as secure as it could be.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top earring for the money

Gem Stone King A Set of 7 Pearl Earrings

Gem Stone King A Set of 7 Pearl Earrings

What you need to know: These sterling silver pearl earrings are cute, classy and stylish enough to complement any outfit.

What you’ll love: Available in seven color options, these freshwater pearl earrings are unique, versatile and the perfect gift. They even come in a lovely jewelry box.

What you should consider: Some of the colors differ from the pictures online.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Honora Freshwater Pearl and Diamond Stud Earrings

Honora Freshwater Pearl and Diamond Stud Earrings

What you need to know: Wrapped in elegant 14k gold spirals set with diamonds, these pearl earrings are the perfect, understated accessory.

What you’ll love: These delicate earrings have a post back that secures them in place when worn. They are lightweight, high-quality and timeless.

What you should consider: They’re a little smaller than they appear.

Where to buy: Sold by Macy’s

 

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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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