Different types of ear piercings: These days, body piercing has become all the rage and among all types of body piercing, ear piercing is considered as the most subtle yet effective way to hop into the world of quirk and sass. Whether it is in your culture or you just want to stay fashionable by opting for it, ear piercing can make you look different in all ways.
However, with so many types of piercing for ears in trend, it is really crucial to know about each of them beforehand in order to make a well-informed decision.
Here, we have come up with a comprehensive guide to different types of ear piercings along with their handy quick views so that you know what you want and what exactly you are going to get. Read our full list below:
1. Standard Single Lobe Piercing
The simple yet elegant piercing needs no introduction. This is the first piercing we have for our ears as kids or teens. A standard single lobe piercing is the most basic and common form of ear piercing that features only one hole right in the centre of each earlobe.
The procedure is absolutely simple and yields least amount of pain as the lobes are comparatively softer than rest of the ear. The piercing takes 4 to 6 weeks to heal completely and then, you can choose any metal earring to add to your glam quotient.
2. Earlobe Stretching / Gauging
Want to look a little different with your lobe piercing without going too overboard? Stretching or gauging can be your way to uniqueness! It is basically a modification of the standard single lobe technique that is done by upgrading the size of the earring gradually.
While the original method is intended for wearing 20 or 18 gauge jewellery, the gauging involves manipulating the elasticity of the lobe skin and coaxing the hole to be stretched over time in order to fit bigger earrings. The gauge number can eventually go to 00 to fit you the biggest gauge jewellery.
3. Upper Lobe/ Double Piercing
You can double up your earlobe piercing game with this simple style with the right amount of twist. The double piercing, which has grown immensely in popularity, is nothing but having two distinctive piercings in each lobe. The first one is the typical single lobe piercing whereas the second one is done at the upper section of the lobe.
Just like the standard style, it also causes very less amount of pain and has almost the same healing time. Go sophisticated with your regular earring and adorn the upper lobe with a gorgeous stud or something of a geometric shape.
4. Helix Piercing
Getting a helix piercing is all about reliving the ‘rock-star’ and ‘metal-head’ styles, which were in vogue in the ‘90s as well as early 2000s.
In this type of piercing, the outer rim of the cartilage, which is located at the top of the ear, is punctured. If you are ready to take it to the next level, choose to get 2 or 3 holes and arrange them one after another in a shapely manner.
The procedure can lead to excruciating pain based on the extra pressure exerted for the perforation and the number of punctures. It takes anywhere between 2 and 12 months to heal the wound fully.
5. Forward Helix Piercing
As the name suggests, it is a modified version of the helix piercing and can give you an equally punk look. In the forward helix piercing also, the target location is the cartilage present at the upper section of the ear. However, the difference lies in the position of the hole(s) as it revolves around the piercing of the inner part of the cartilage.
If you just do not care about the terrible pain involved, you can go for a ‘double’ or ‘triple’ forward helix with two or three piercings placed at regular intervals. Also, such piercings take a lot of time to heal.
6. Auricle Piercing
How about embellishing the outer rim of your ear with a dazzling silver ring? Auricle piercing is exactly the same in which the mid-section of the outer rim (in between the helix and the lobe) of the ear or the ‘auricle’ is pierced. Being a cartilage piercing, it actually takes pretty longer to heal.
Moreover, the auricle has plenty of nerve endings, which make it an extremely aching procedure. So, as long as you are not afraid of the pain of getting ripped apart just to look spunky, you can go for it.
7. Conch Piercing
Ever noticed how much the large area of cartilage forming the back of the ear looks similar to a conch shell? Let us tell you, this can be perforated as well!
This is usually called outer conch piercing as it is found in the ‘dip’ in between the helix and anti-helix of the ear. The piercing can also be positioned at the cup-shaped ‘dip’ next to the opening of the ear canal, which is known as the inner conch piercing.
The process hurts a lot and the wound takes around 8 to 16 weeks to heal. But, it looks hot like hell with a labret stud or a circular barbell ring on!
8. Tragus Piercing
Tragus is the small, oval, flap-like inner piece of cartilage that is located right at the opening of the ear canal and a little above the ear lobe. Being fleshy enough, it is one of the thickest areas of the ear and hence, getting it punctured can be extremely hurtful.
The healing time for this style can vary from 16 weeks to 1 year based on the thickness of the tragus in individuals. It also influences the type of jewelry (6 mm. or more in length) you are going to choose. However, make sure that you are taking care of your tragus properly after piercing as it is pretty infamous for causing irritation and developing infections easily.
9. Anti-Tragus Piercing
It is quite clear from the name that it is reverse of tragus. Precisely, it is a style in which the little bit of cartilage present on the outer ear, right above the lobe and exactly opposite to the tragus, is punctured.
You might not get to see anti-tragus piercing very frequently as it is one of the smallest areas to get pierced on the ear, but it can actually give quite a captivating look with a sleek earring or any other smart micro-jewellery. Though the pain and healing time associated with this piercing are similar with those of the tragus one, it is not that prone to stretching, irritation, and infection.
10. Snug / Anti-Helix Piercing
Consider the area in between the ‘helix’ i.e. the outer rim of cartilage and the anti-tragus on your ear and that is exactly where the ‘snug’ i.e. the inner rim of cartilage is located.
Being the ‘inner ear counterpart’ of the helix piercing, it is also termed as the ‘anti-helix’ piercing.
Though the cartilage halfway down the outer rim looks pretty tough to get pricked, it actually is not very thick and can be gone through easily. The wound at that small, shallow area takes 8 to 16 weeks to heal initially while the complete cure can take around 12 months. Find a hanging ball ring or a super stylish hoop to add oodles of glamour to your piercing.
11. Rook Piercing
Now, here comes something highly technical that revolves around the perforation of two different cartilages at the same time. Start from the snug and go to the other end of anti-helix along the cartilage and you will find the thick fold i.e. rook right on the upper inner ear.
It is considered as one of the most painful ear piercing techniques, which needs almost 1 year to recover fully. In fact, rook piercing should always be done by a pro as it needs very high level of precision and can get stretched or inflamed easily if not done the right way. But if you have the passion, it will be worth trying for sure!
12. Orbital Piercing
Thinking of an ear piercing that will make your ear look not only gorgeous but also super sexy? The orbital piercing is the answer for you! Though it can be made on any part of the ear, the most common choice is always the helix.
Generally, two separate holes are made at the same part of the ear (for example, two opposite sides of the cartilage where helix meets anti-tragus) and a hoop jewel piece (a circular or heart-shaped ring) is passed through both of them from front.
The pain associated with such piercing is not so terrible and the recovery time is comparatively quicker than many other types. All you need to do is to decorate it with some dazzle and elegance.
13. Daith Piercing
Daith is the innermost fold of the cartilage and is located right above the tragus. To be more accurate, it is found at the end of the helix and falls in between the rook and the ear canal.
The picture of a daith piercing might be enough to give you some chill down your spine but the truth is that it is not as horrendous as it looks! In fact, it is much easier than others, causes lesser amount of pain, and does not lead to nasty irritation often.
The initial recovery takes 8 to 16 weeks while the time required for complete healing is nearly 1 year. You can either pick a ball closure or a curved barbell to pass through it. Just make sure that the jewellery is made of thin wire.
14. Industrial / Scaffold Piercing
When it comes to ear piercing, nothing can make you look as cool as an industrial or scaffold one. An industrial piercing is unique, captivating, and absolutely cool! The basic concept of this style might be similar to that of the orbital as both of them include two distinctive holes, however they are different from all other aspects.
In this piercing, the upper cartilage of the ear is punctured twice (or, sometimes even more) – once on the inner side and then on the outer side. The most popular style features the first hole adjacent to the head and the second one down on the outer rim, thereby perforating through the anti-helix and helix.
The holes can be connected by using a long piece of jewellery, which is wired and horizontal in shape. A long barbell or a beautiful arrow can add the perfect touch of drama to your piercing. The healing time for an industrial piercing might take anywhere between 3 months and 1 year.
15. Transverse Lobe Piercing
Do not love your regular ear piercing anymore? Feeling a little adventurous? How about giving this ‘transverse’ look a try? The best thing about a transverse piercing is that it is one of the coolest things you can ever try as a piercing! Furthermore, it does not involve cartilage, which makes the procedure surprisingly pain-free!
Unlike all other piercings, the skin of the ear lobe is punctured horizontally in the transverse lobe piercing. In fact, the biggest difference between a standard lobe one and a transverse one is that your ear is pierced front to back in the first technique while the hole in the latter is made at a certain horizontal angle.
Usually, a barbell jewellery is inserted through both of the piercings to create a symmetrical look, which can be made even more eye-catching by changing the angle as per the preference of the person.
Even though a transverse piercing is a lobe piercing, it takes considerably more time to heal. Make sure that you clean the entire earlobe (focusing on the holes) with saline water at least twice every day. Otherwise, it will get infected and cause extreme discomfort.
16. Graduated Lobe Piercing
If you have a passion for ear piercing, you will find this graduated lobe piercing not only mere stunning but also to die for! In fact, the style is so versatile yet so classy that people cannot help but keep looking at it!
Being a graduated piercing, it combines three or more holes beautifully arranged on the ear lobe. The first perforation is made at the lower lobe and then, the needle goes up along the edge of the lobe gradually.
The piercings are of same design but different sizes and are placed at regular intervals. Ideally, the size of the holes become smaller as you go up along the ear lobe.
Needless to say, you will have to get your hands on a series of attractive earrings in order to adorn your graduated piercing and shine among the crowd. Choose pretty golden hoops for a glam girl look or thick black rings for a rock chick appearance. Twinkling crystal jewellery can also be used to doll up. However, you must ensure that the jewels are of same design but are different in sizes based on the size of your piercings.
17. Ear Weaving Piercing
Last but not the least; opt for this enigmatic weaving piercing for your ears and stand apart from others easily. Well, the name as well as the picture of the ear weaving piercing might appear very complicated but in reality, it is a simple technique providing spectacular results.
As the name implies, it is a style in which the bejweled ears seem to be woven. Basically, the ear is pierced multiple times and the holes are connected to each other by using a single piece of jewellery, which is essentially a spiral one. The most popular location to get a weaving piercing is the helix of the ear as the spiral-shaped jewellery looks the best on it.
This piercing yields a lot of pain and takes a long time to heal completely. But the jewellery adds such an enchanting appeal to the ear that you will find it absolutely worth the pain.
A Few Tips To Remember…
Finally, here are a few important tips that you should always keep in your mind before going under the needle:
- Always get your ears pierced by a well-trained and extensively experienced professional. It needs great expertise and high levels of precision to come up with a perfect piercing that would not cause distress and discomfort in future.
- Pick your jewels carefully. While most of the people think that finding an earring in line with the size of the piercing is enough, you should also consider the healing factor in order to avoid irritation and infection.
- Aftercare is tremendously important for any piercing and you should never ever forget it. Keep your piercing clean and follow all other instructions provided by your piercer for safe and fast healing.
If the aforementioned things are remembered well, an ear piercing can turn your otherwise boring outlook into a sassy and jazzy one in minutes. Just choose the most charming option for your ears and look drop-dead gorgeous.
So, are you game for it?