Stretching of ears is a process in which the diameter of the earring hole is increased to let large gauze jewelry into your ears. It’s quite an old process and can be done in several ways. In this post, I’ll discuss all the methods you can use to make your earring holes bigger.
However, there are a few things you should know before stretching your ears.
Things to Know Before Gauging Your Earring Hole
Stretching your ears has a number of pros and cons. You should be aware of them before deciding to gauge your earring holes.
Pros of Bigger Earring Holes
Unlike your first piercing, stretching your ears is almost painless. Using tapers or Teflon tape to stretch your ear piercing makes the procedure very easy and comfortable. You might feel some discomfort and itching, but it’s negligible compared to other body modification pains.
You Can Use Any Earring Size
That’s the main purpose of stretching your ears. With small holes, you are limited to using only a certain diameter earring. Gauzing your ears allows you to use any earrings available on the market.
Adds to Your Personality
Since you can use any kind of earring with stretched ears, you can choose jewelry that suits your personality and looks great with your clothes. There is a ton of amazing jewelry you can choose for stretched ears. The bigger you go, the more stuff you’ll find to choose from.
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Cons of Ear Stretching
It needs Patience
It takes a really long time to reach your desired size. Generally, it will take you a year or two to reach the size you want. Trying to speed up the process can result in serious damage to your ear lobes.
Point of No Return
Gauzing your ears beyond a certain size(between 2g-0g) would result in permeant soles in your ears. So even if you stop wearing earrings, your piercing holes won’t close. That’s called the point of no return. It’s a commitment, don’t take it if you aren’t ready for it. You might have to stitch them up later on.
Since the holes are very large, they can look embarrassing if you are not using any earrings. Furthermore, you might have to face job-related problems in certain areas.
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7 Ways to Make Your Earring Holes Bigger
There are several ways you can increase the size of your ear piercing. I’m going to mention 7 methods you can use to increase the size of your earring hole.
Some of these methods would require you to visit a professional piercer. While the rest you can use at home to make your earring hole bigger.
However, some of the options are better than others. I’ll mention that later on.
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1. Using Tapers to Stretch Your Ear
Tapers are cone or spike-shaped pieces of jewelry that are used to increase the size of an earring hole. They are perfect for increasing the piercing size between 14-0 gauze.
What Are Tapers Made Of?
The best tapers are made of stainless surgical steel. Surgical steel can be perfectly sterilized and pushed into the earring hole easily because it is very smooth. Using acrylic or stone tapers is not recommended because they cannot be properly sterilized and can result in your ear being contaminated.
How To Use Tapers?
Wash your hands and ears with soap first. If the tapers have been used before, make sure to wash them with soap too. It’s recommended to take a hot shower before using tapers. It would soften and loosen your ear tissue in addition to cleaning it.
Apply a lubricant to your ear and the taper. Clean off the excess lubricant from your hand so you can grip the taper properly.
Next push the narrow end of the tapers into your ears gently and slowly. They would usually go into your ear pretty smoothly. If it causes any pain or bleeding, just remove them and make sure your piercing is ready to be stretched. It’s probably that your earring hole has not healed properly yet. If that’s the case, keep using your current size earrings and wait a few weeks before stretching your ears.
However, a feeling of slight discomfort or a very mild pain is just normal. Once you have inserted the taper into your ear, just insert the large gauze jewelry into the ear behind it. That’s it.
Now just wait at least 4 for the piercing to heal. Don’t try to stretch your ears further earlier than that.
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2. Using Teflon Taping for Ear Stretching
This is a very comfortable method for stretching your ears beyond 0 gauze.
Is Teflon Tape safe?
Teflon tape is inert and non-reactive, which means it won’t react with your skin. Moreover, it is nonstick, so it won’t stick to your ear. Therefore, it’s pretty safe for stretching your ears.
How to Use Teflon Tape
You should use Teflon tape if you have already got your ears to 0 gauze and you want to increase the earring hole size beyond that.
First, take the jewelry out of your ears. Wash it with soap and let it dry. Cut a piece of the tape and wrap it over the piece of jewelry 2-3 times.
Now insert it into your ear gently. It would feel a bit tighter, that’s normal. However, if it causes pain and distress, it means you have used too much tape. Take it out and decrease the number of layers and try again.
Let it heal for a few days and then repeat the process by increasing the number of layers of tape until your desired diameter is reached.
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3. Switching Gradually to Larger Jewelry
This is the most natural method you can use to increase the size of your earring hole. Just start with the jewelry that fits your ears. Keep using it for a while. This would naturally loosen your earring holes.
After a while, start using larger gauze earrings. This method is slow and can take 1-2 years. However, it is the safest and easiest method to stretch your ears.
Using Weights to Stretch Ears
It involves using weights/force of gravity to stretch the earring holes. A heavy earring is generally used as a weight that slowly stretches the ears.
This method is slow and a bit uncomfortable but causes the least pain.
Why Using Weights is Not Recommended
Stretching ears by using weights is generally not recommended because it does not stretch the piercing hole evenly. Most of the force is exerted in the downward direction, which can result in sagging and drooping of ears.
It can also cause thinning of your earlobes if used for too long. Therefore, wear them for short periods of time.
4. Visiting A Piercer
Just visit a professional piercer and tell him the size you want your earring holes to be. He/she will pierce your ears again with larger gauze jewelry. This is a painful but quick method to increase your ear-piercing size. Make sure the piercer is an expert and knows what he or she is doing.
Need a quick way around stretching the earring holes? Well, this method is perfect for the ones who cannot bear with the slow and steady process of stretching ear holes.
Scalpelling is a process that can only be performed by a professional. It is a body art procedure often used for replacing or enhancing piercings.
So What Exactly is Scalpelling?
Scalpelling is more like a surgical procedure performed with the aid of a scalpel. A scalpel or a sharp blade is used to cut a slit into the earlobe skin or any other piercing site, for that matter.
By doing so, you immediately get a larger hole that can accommodate larger gauge jewelry. However, keep in mind, that scalpelling is a fairly new procedure and is mostly done for ear piercings only.
Also, scalpelling can leave wounds that take a long time to heal. So it may not be the best procedure to make the earring hole bigger.
Is Scalpelling Safe?
Scalpelling is a risky procedure that should only be performed by a professional. If performed correctly with proper aftercare, the risk of long-term damage or infection is close to none. So that’s a green signal for sure!
Apart from that, scalpelling is better than other procedures in a way that it gives your greater control over the parts of flesh you’ll be playing with. Also, it can be used to balance poorly located piercings.
6. Dermal Punching
A dermal punch or biopsy punch is a technique essentially used by doctors to remove tissue for biopsy samples. But that is not our concern here so how is dermal punching related to piercings?
We’ll learn about it but first, you need to know that dermal punching is really a complex procedure that should only be performed by a trained professional.
What is Dermal Punching?
A dermal punch is used to remove a part of the flesh, mostly a circle of skin or tissue to make room for larger gauge jewelry. Dermal punching creates a large hole at the piercing site and almost destroys the ear.
So dermal punching is suitable only for people who want big gauge jewelry on their ear lobes or cartilage. Unlike small piercings that require you to wear jewelry during the healing period, a dermal punch does not.
In fact, it is better to leave the dermal punch site on its own until it heals completely. Jewelry will add a lot more trauma to the already miserable skin.
Is Dermal Punching Safe?
As much as it is common in the world today, dermal punching is not recommended. It is just like destroying a big part of your flesh which may produce long-term risks.
Dermal punching may as well lead to severe bleeding or require a long healing period. The removal of an excessive amount of tissue can create a lot of risk of infections as well.
But if you still decide to go with this procedure to make your earring holes bigger, make sure you only get it done by a highly trained professional.
7. Tapered Claws and Talons
Tapered claws or talons are used to create larger piercing holes. The use of claws or talons to make the earring hole bigger is one of the easiest and safest methods.
Claws and Talons are quite similar to tapers. But they are curved around the ends and that’s what makes them different. To be precise, a claw is a curved form of a taper.
How to Use Claws and Talons?
To stretch your earring hole, you have to gradually push the claw or a talon through the piercing until it reaches the thickest end.
The use of claws or talons doesn’t cause much trauma to the skin for it slowly increases the size of the piercing hole. The best part about them is you can use them at home to stretch your piercings.
Also, claws and talons give you the privilege to have complete control over the amount of stretch you want to make. Since you can see the earring hole as you gradually push through the claw, you’ll know when to stop.
Moreover, you can give the ears a good time to heal as you stretch the piercing slowly.
Are Claws and Talons Safe?
Using claws and talons is certainly the easiest and trauma-free process to make the piercing hole bigger. Just make sure that the material of the claws is hypoallergenic and doesn’t cause infections. Don’t forget to clean the claws before you put them in the ears and you’ll be fine.
And lastly, do not rush the process. Take the claw to its thicker end slowly and gradually, making sure not to force the stretching of the piercing.
Safety Tips for Stretching the Piercing
While stretching the piercing hole sure sounds exciting and scary at the same time, there are a few precautions that you can take to avoid any risk of long-term damage.
Here are some of the safety tips that may help you go through the process fairly easily:
- Give adequate time for healing and switching between different gauge sizes.
- Do not rush the process, else you’ll end up with permanently damaged skin.
- Use surgical stainless steel or hypoallergenic tools only.
- Keep the piercing site clean.
- Always visit a professional piercer if you opt for a complex procedure.
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