Wednesday Wisdom : Tips & Tricks for Stretched Ears
Tips & Trick for Stretched Ears
Now that you got all the basics on how to begin your ear stretching journey, we’ll share with you tips and tricks from around the web that will help the process go even smoother. There was just so much good info out there, we couldn’t fit it all in one blog.
Before we share the ins and outs (haha, pun intended) of stretching your ears, we want to invite you all personally to join us this January in Pompano Beach for the Grand Opening of Crack Tattoos as we host the first BodyJewelry.com Piercing event of the year. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for the latest updates on our piercing events. Also, don’t forget we do piercing trivia giveaway every Wednesdays on Instagram and our huge Guess, Share, Win contest is held once a month on our Facebook page. (It hasn’t happened yet this month so stay tuned, we have some really cool body jewelry included in this batch!)
Tricks of theTrade
We went around the web and collected some tips and tricks from those that have already gone through the process. We hope that this drops some serious wisdom for your ear stretching journey and maintenance to keep your ear lobes happy and healthy.
What the funk is that smell?!?
Like all parts of your body during the healing process and beyond, the body secretes fluids and oils from the skin and pores. This doesn’t necessarily mean something bad, just that your lobes need to be cleaned. Use warm water and soap in the shower or use warm salt water to naturally cleanse the ear. Even once you are fully adjusted to your desired size, be sure to take out your plug or tunnel and clean the waxy substance build up every week. Using tea tree oil is great for this as it has a nice, clean scent that has naturally antibacterial and antifungal properties to keep your lobes fresh and healthy. Also, using wood plugs can help reduce some of the strange scents your lobes may be generating. Try organic wood plugs.
Well, if you’re ears are itching, that usually is your body telling you that you are stretching too fast. Sometimes the body signals us to slow the eff down by causing some level of itchiness and discomfort. Listen up, because it won’t warn you multiple times before it gets really, really angry, really quickly. Just because you aren’t bleeding does not mean that it’s okay to rush to the next size up. Itching can be precursor to infection and blowouts. Let your lobes heal 1-2 months between sizes or longer if you experience itchy, scaly lobes.
The Point of No Return
The general rule of thumb for that point where 6 Gauge or 4 Gauge and to be super duper safe. Some say that 00 is the max but better safe than sorry might be the best option. If you aren’t ready to join the permanent stretched ear tribe, we suggest you stay around these gauges if you think you might want to revert to your original lobe.
Thinning vs. Growing
Just to be clear, when we say “ear stretching” we do not mean thinning out the rim of the ears so larger body jewelry can be fit into the piercing space. What we mean, really, is that you want to grow the lobe itself but gently stretching over time. At no point do we want the ear lobes to look thin anywhere along the circumference, most commonly on the bottom edge of the lobe that is not connected to the side of your head.
Tape It Up
There are only two tapes you should be using for this : teflon (plumber’s tape) or bondage tape (yes, the kind they sell at sex shops). The taping method helps to stretch your ears very, very gently. Once you reach 00G or ever sooner, transitioning to the taping method can be the safest way to stretch your ears. Take the tape and neatly wrap around the circumference of the plug one to two full wraps so that the overall size of the plug increases with the bulk of the tape. Since the tape is nice and thin, there is less stress on the ears.
Say Yes to Weight Watchers
Another alternative and quite possibly the oldest methods of stretching is to use ear weights. Ear weights should be used by those that have a nice, even stretch all along the lobe that is being stretched. If you have “thin” spots or the original piercing was done off center, ear weights are not recommended as they can further add to thinning.
If you find yourself totally missing how you used to wear dangling earrings, don’t fret, you don’t have to take the plugs out and hope that they revert to their original size. What you can do is use a tunnel (basically a hollow center plugs) and thread your favorite dangling earring through the hollow part. It won’t work for all earring but this method is great for hoops or earrings with hoop tension or clasp closure earrings.
Blowouts (…and not the kind you get at the hair salon)
Blowouts are never pretty… at least not this kind. How do you know if you have it? Well, you get lumps of skin, swelling and angry scar tissue around the piercing that can give your lobes the appearance of being sagging, red, and “fluffy”. The blowout can “hang” from the front of back of ear and is 100% a sign that you are not giving your poor lobes time to heal between sizes. Never, ever, shove body jewelry (dead stretch) in your lobes! Pain, itching, tearing and bleeding are all signs that your ears are struggling. Stop that insanity!!
We hope you found these tips helpful for your journey along, no matter what gauge you are at and how long you have had your ears stretched. Be sure to always, always take your time and never rush your ears to stretch. We know how tempting it is when you see all the cool plugs and tunnels that look best at larger gauges, but that’s more reason to have gently stretched ears that are healthy enough to support them. Happy stretching!