Not all earrings are created equal. Some of them are made of inferior metal which can irritate your ears. Even if your earrings are of high quality, you may be sensitive to certain types of metal. With a bit of attention you can figure out what type of earrings you can wear without irritating your sensitive ears.
Metals are, by far, the most prevalent earring material. There is a large variety in the types and quality of metals used to make earrings, and some are more likely to cause irritation than others. Nickel is the most common earring material that causes pain and irritation. Pure silver and gold are far less likely to cause a reaction. If wearing real silver or gold earrings causes you ear pain, try wearing earrings made of platinum, titanium or niobium. They are more expensive than low-quality metals but are unlikely to cause any pain or irritation.
Plastic earrings may bring to mind the chunky heart and bow earrings worn by little girls in the 1990s, but today there are plenty of grown-up earring styles that use non-irritating plastic. They are made with high-quality medical plastic, which is the same material used to make medical sutures. Plastic earrings are ideal for those with severe metal sensitivity.
Wooden earrings are ideal for those with metal allergies. They are typically made of kiln-hardened wood that is free of varnish or any finishes that might harm delicate skin. Wood earrings have an organic look and are extremely well tolerated by people who are unable to wear any type of metal jewelry.
Coating your existing earrings with a hypoallergenic barrier may allow you to wear your favorite earrings without the need to replace them all. Products such as Super Surface and Nickel Solution are painted right onto the earrings. After the product is dry it puts a protective layer between your skin and the metal, preventing irritation.
Delana Lefevers has been a writer since 2007, covering art, technology, parenting, health care and other topics. She writes regularly for the WebUrbanist and Dornob websites and is the managing editor of Gajitz. Lefevers is pursuing her bachelor's degree in communication arts.