From Healing to Styling: A Comprehensive Guide to Tragus Piercings

The tragus piercing is one of the most popular types of ear piercings. It’s not an intimidating style and is one that most people feel they can pull off. It can be downplayed with simple, minimalist jewelry or emphasized with dramatic designs.

In other words – it’s a stylish, versatile piercing. But what type of jewelry should you choose for a tragus piercing, and is this the right type of piercing for you?

Let’s take a look.

What is a Tragus Piercing?

The tragus piercing is located in the little outcrop of cartilage just above your ear canal. It’s not in the ear, like the daith piercing for example, but just at the start of it, on the pointy bit that can be moved when you wiggle it with your fingers.

what is tragus piercing
Location of tragus piercing

The tragus is a small location and often only one piece of jewelry can be worn on it. But some people have larger tragi and can have multiple piercings on the spot.

Tragus earrings
Tragus earrings. Check price here.

The tragus is quite versatile and looks great with simple studs or hoops. It can be a complicated piercing but it’s worth the effort because it shows off the jewelry perfectly.

Origin and History of Tragus Piercing

Tragus Piercing

Many see the tragus piercing as a modern body modification, but it has roots in ancient civilizations. It’s hard to say exactly when or where tragus piercings began, but humans have worn body piercings for millennia. Ancient Egyptians, Romans, and tribes from places ranging from the Americas to Africa wore ear and body piercings to show their status, spiritual beliefs, and beauty.

In the 20th century, especially during the 1970s and 1980s, ear piercings that weren’t just on the lobe became popular in Western cultures. Subcultures first embraced the tragus piercing and other cartilage piercings. These styles then made their way into mainstream fashion by the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

Now, many people see the tragus piercing as both a stylish accessory and a way to express themselves. A wide variety of jewelry designs exist to highlight its distinct position.

What’s the Best Jewelry for a Tragus Piercing?

The tragus gives you many jewelry options to decorate it and style it up. Here are some of the best options you could go for.

1. Labret Studs

Labret with Clear CZ Gems
Labret with Clear CZ Gems. Check price here.

Many people prefer labret studs when they first get their tragus pierced. These studs have a flat back that sits comfortably against the ear, preventing unnecessary movement and reducing irritation during the healing phase. The decorative front, which everyone can see, can range from simple gems to detailed designs, letting wearers express their personal style.

2. Curved Barbells

Titanium Curved Barbell
Titanium Curved Barbell. Check price here.

Though most people use curved barbells for eyebrow or rook piercings, their popularity for tragus piercings has grown. Their design features a subtle curve with two removable ends. This design suits those with unique ear shapes. Plus, you can easily swap out the ends, letting wearers change from a discreet to a bold look.

3. Captive Bead Rings (CBRs)

Titanium Captive Bead Ring
Titanium Captive Bead Ring. Check price here.

In the piercing world, many choose CBRs. These rings have a bead or ball that connects the ring ends. Their unique look differentiates them from regular studs. Users value the ability of the ring to rotate, making cleaning a breeze.

4. Hoop Earrings

Diamond Hoops Earrings
Diamond Hoops Earrings. Check price here.

Hoop earrings have a timeless charm, especially for those with healed tragus piercings. Their simple design offers a neat, minimalist appeal. They come in various sizes, thicknesses, and materials, catering to diverse tastes. Whether you want a subtle or standout look, there’s a hoop earring for you.

5. Horseshoe Rings

Horseshoe Tragus Earring
Horseshoe Tragus Earring. Check price here.

The U-shape of horseshoe rings gives them their name. These rings stand out for their adjustability. You can tweak the fit, making it tight or loose. They resemble full rings but are easier to put in and take out, ideal for those who like to switch up their jewelry.

6. L-Shaped Studs

L-Shaped Studs
L-Shaped Studs. Check price here.

Crafted to resemble the letter “L”, these studs ensure stability. This design keeps the jewelry in place, especially vital right after piercing. The L-shape also looks sleek, perfect for those who lean towards understated accessories.

7. Screw-On Ball Rings

Screw-On Ball Rings
Screw On Ball Rings. Check price here.

These rings are similar to captive bead designs but with a difference. Both their ends have screw-on balls for a tight fit. This design means they’re less likely to come loose, giving wearers added confidence during activities.

8. Seamless Rings

Gold Seamless Clicker
Gold Seamless Clicker. Check price here.

Seamless rings champion simplicity. Without any clasps or beads, they offer a clean, continuous appearance. Their twist-open design makes inserting and removing them straightforward. If you’re after a polished, fuss-free look, these rings are the way to go.

9. Push-In Studs

Push In Leaf Stud
Push In Leaf Stud. Check price here.

People love push-in studs for their ease of use. They have a decorative end that stays put, and a removable push-pin on the other. This feature makes frequent style changes a snap. And for those who love detailed jewelry, many of these studs come with intricate designs.

What are the Best Metals for Tragus Piercing Jewelry?

When you pick metals for tragus piercing jewelry, always choose hypoallergenic materials. These materials reduce the chance of allergic reactions and help the piercing heal smoothly. Titanium is a top choice because it’s light, strong, and doesn’t react with body fluids, making it great for sensitive skin.

Niobium is another good option, especially if you want colorful jewelry that’s skin-friendly. Many people recommend surgical stainless steel, especially the 316L and 316LVM grades, for new piercings because it’s affordable and has very little nickel. But if you’re sensitive to nickel, be careful with it.

If you want something more luxurious, you can go for 14k or 18k gold, either white or yellow, but make sure it doesn’t contain nickel. Stay away from plated metals because the coating can wear off, and the base metal underneath might irritate your skin.

Remember, always go for hypoallergenic and top-quality metals when buying tragus piercing jewelry to ensure safety and durability.

Read more about the best metals for piercings here.

Tragus Piercing Pain

Tragus Piercing

The tragus is one of the more painful types of ear piercings because it deals with thicker cartilage. Feel your tragus and you’ll notice that it’s thick and hard – then imagine a needle having to go through that.

While it might not be as painful as it seems, tragus piercings do require pressure and takes time to complete. While some people find the tragus piercing very painful, others don’t. Because pain is subjective, it’s difficult to say what the experience will be like for someone.

Here’s what some of our readers say about the tragus piercing:

Mandy: Based on my experience, I found it terribly painful, but it only lasted a few seconds. I was sore for a couple of days but then it seemed to heal really quickly.

Chiara: It really doesn’t hurt all that much. It’s just a sharp pinch and then its over. That’s the worst done!

Tragus Piercing After Care

Tragus piercings can take between 3 to 6 months to completely heal and need to be looked after carefully during this period. Some people say they feel pain up to 8 months after, but as mentioned above, this is all subjective and differs from person to person.

The most important thing is to keep the piercing clean and follow the instructions given by your piercer to ensure that you avoid infections.

Avoid sleeping on your tragus piercing at least for the first month or two to avoid prolonging the healing process.

Can Tragus Piercing Help with Weight Loss?

Girl with Tragus piecing

Some people believe that tragus piercing can help with weight loss, a topic that pops up now and then in popular culture. This idea comes from auricular acupuncture, a Chinese medicine practice that targets specific ear points to treat health issues, including weight loss.

Supporters think that piercing the tragus can hit a special acupuncture point that affects appetite. But there’s no solid scientific proof that tragus piercing (or any ear piercing) aids weight loss. Most doctors and researchers say that diet, exercise, and metabolism directly impact weight more than anything else.

So, while a tragus piercing looks amazing, you shouldn’t get one just for weight loss. If you’re serious about shedding pounds, it’s best to talk to a healthcare professional for proven methods.

Where to Buy Tragus Jewelry

If you’re buying tragus jewelry online, we recommend starting your search on Etsy and Amazon. There’s a wide range of options and you’ll surely be able to find what you’re looking for.


If you are looking for a handmade or unique option, Etsy is probably the one place you shouldn’t skip. You can find multiple independent jewelry boutiques on Etsy, each with their own assortment of tragus  jewelry. Each Etsy shop has its own polices so it might take some time to review all their details ahead of making a purchase, but that’s usually time well-spent.


As it is one of the biggest online retailers worldwide, it’s not surprising that you can find all kinds of tragus jewelry on Amazon. Many different jewelry vendors offer their products via Amazon and you can use the site’s extensive rating and review sections to gauge the quality of each product.

Wrapping Up

Tragus piercings connect old traditions with modern fashion trends. More people are choosing them today because of their unique appeal. However, it’s crucial to pick the right hypoallergenic jewelry and take good care of the piercing. If you love the distinct look of the tragus piercing or want to connect with its historical significance, it could be a great way to show off your personal style.

Dani Rhys

Dani Rhys has worked as a writer and editor for over 15 years in the jewelry niche. She holds a Masters degree in Linguistics and Education. She has always been interested in expression through fashion and accessories, and her extensive experience in the field has made her a respected voice in jewelry trends and education. As the chief editor of Jewelry Shopping Guide, she not only leads the content strategy but also shares her insights through engaging articles. Her passion for storytelling is reflected in every piece she curates, exploring the intricate relationship between jewelry and personal identity.

Jewelry Guide