What Are Ear Jackets and How Do You Wear Them?

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Earring jackets are surprisingly subtle but can have a big impact on your overall look. They defy the stereotype that minimalist jewelry means small and delicate designs and bold jewelry means chunky and colorful.

Ear jackets offer something for every taste and style with their high impact architectural look. Let’s take a look at what ear jackets are, how they differ from other types of ear jewelry and how you can rock the ear jacket look.

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Ear Jackets vs. Ear Crawlers

Sterling Silver Ear Jacket Earrings etsy
Sterling Silver Ear Jacket Earrings. Check price here.

Ear jackets come in a few different versions. However, the main principle of the earring jacket involves an extra component that goes on your earring post, usually behind the ear lobe. It is held in place with the earring backing. It hangs down behind your ear lobe, as a part of your earring, giving that extra oomph to your look.

An earring crawler or climber is typically a piece that slides up your ear and often don’t require a clasp to hold it in place.

As multiple ear piercings have been moving into the mainstream, ear jackets offer those with a single ear piercing to have fun playing with styling options and multiple combinations. This makes them collectible as you can mix-and-match your earring jacket sets with various stud sets.

When Did Ear Jackets Begin?

Ear Jacket Earrings etsy
Ear Jacket Earrings. See them here.

You might be wondering, are earring jackets a new thing?

Well surprisingly not. Earring jackets have been around before, but in a different way.  Previously, earring jackets could mean a circular ring that you wore around a stud to give it a halo effect. Unlike the modern earring jacket, these jackets could only be worn with a specific stud as you had to fit this inside the jacket.

However, modern designs sweep under your ear lobe adding some sparkly embellishment. Under-lobe jackets are most commonly paired with a simple round stud, leaving the jacket to do all the talking.

How to Wear Ear Jackets

Ear Jacket Earrings etsy
Ear Jacket Earrings. Check price here.

Ear jackets are such versatile pieces that they can be worn in several ways. Here are some tips on wearing the ear jacket:

  • Some sets come with a few jacket and stud options so you can mix and match to your hearts content. They are a great way to upscale studs.
  • Ear jackets are the perfect way to convert your day look to evening. For example, you can embellish a diamond stud earring by adding an ear jacket with a semi-circular row of diamonds around you ear lobe as well, giving a halo effect.
  • For those that want to embrace the earring jacket trend at your next formal event, swap your diamond studs or chandelier earrings for a dramatic stud and jacket combination.
  • Wearing jackets with pearls gives a fresh approach on timeless classic gemstones whilst still looking sophisticated and feminine. But they also work well with spiky jackets and minimalist studs for that rock chic vibe.

Top Designs for Ear Jackets

1. Hoops

girl with earrings etsy
Hoop ear jackets are stylish and modern. See these here.

Whilst under-the-ear lobe styles have remained the most popular, more complex designs are showing up each day. Ear jackets that use hoops are turning heads as the front facing hoop placement makes people look twice to try to work out how these are being worn.

The hoops are often hollow which will keep them much lighter on your ears. Another form of hoop enhancer is a hoop earring which has a small charm you slip on which dangles from the hoop. If you’re searching for hoop jackets you might get a few different results compared to hoop earring enhancer.

2. Pearls

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Dangling pearl earring jacket. See this here.

Most edgy jewelry trends often use feminine twists as a juxtaposition and what could be more feminine and delicate than pearls? Whether you prefer the double-sided pearl jacket or the simple pearls that decorate your ear lobe both designs look quirky and different from a simple pearl stud earring.

3. Spiky

girl with spiky earring etsy
Spike earring jacket. See it here.

Take your piercing to the next level with the popular spiky ear jackets. Keep the studs simple and let the jacket do all the talking. The spikes remind us of sun rays and give a nod back to ancient styles of jewelry.

You can opt for dramatic spikes that radiate from your ear lobe, or a more minimalist design, like the one pictured above, featuring just a single spike.

4. Chains and Hangers

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Dressy ear jacket with chain. See this here.

Chains and hanging charms are a good way to add drama and movement to studs. The chains are light which means the earring won’t be too heavy to wear. The hanging section can even cascade all the way down to your shoulders for elegant evening jewelry.

There’s also something unexpectedly vintage looking about them. If you want a contemporary earring jacket with a chain try one with a short chain or where the chain is attached to both the front and the back of the earring.

What to Know When Buying Earring Jackets

Each of us has different needs when it comes to fitting an ear jacket. Fortunately, most earring jackets come with a few settings so you can adjust the length to fit your ear lobe. Here are the top things you need to consider before you buy an ear jacket.

Earring Jacket Weight

Weight is the biggest consideration when buying any earrings but even more so for earring jackets. Heavy earrings are usually uncomfortable and by the end of the day taking them off resembles the feeling you get when you kick off high-heeled shoes. If you’re not used to wearing heavy earrings or if you normally just wear studs then earring jackets will feel a little different.

To reduce the weight and cost, earring jackets are often made from costume jewelry materials such as glass, plastic, and brass. Edgy and trendy jewelry trends often don’t take off in the fine jewelry world as people are less likely to be looking for trends and will want something much more timeless if they are planning to spend more money on this purchase.

Earring Jacket Metal

As always, check which metal the earrings are made from to make sure you’re not allergic to them. Always wear non-reactive metals such as surgical steel and no nickel on all parts of the earring that will touch your skin. If you have a sensitivity to some metals look for jackets and studs that are made from high-carat gold, sterling silver, or gold vermeil as these are less likely to produce a reaction.

Earring Jacket Plate

girl with earring and long hair

The eagle-eyed among you will notice that the jackets often have very different flat plates. The plate is the part of the earring that sits alongside the back of your ear lobe which you should never see from the front.

A thicker plate will be sturdier as you’re helping to distribute the weight on your stud post however consequently others might spot them behind your ear. Vice versa, thinner plates will mean there is less weight distribution but the back of the earring will be very discrete.

As a rule of thumb, it’s best to buy the jacket and stud from the same place as these two components are designed to be worn together. The stud post will fit the jacket and the metal colors will also be a match.

Understandably you may want to add an earring jacket made from costume materials onto a pair of fine earring studs. If you’ve got some white gold studs it may be a lot easier to find a suitable matching earring jacket from a mall rather than a fine jewelry shop.

To keep the synergy between the two pieces, make sure you take the studs with you when you go shopping so you can hold them up to each other for the best comparison. Depending on the jacket it may be obvious that these two pieces of jewelry are made from completely different materials but that isn’t necessarily a problem.

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Wrapping Up

Ear jackets have always been in style, but now more than ever. Choose a pair that speaks to you and represents who you are. You’re going to love dressing up your ear with all the different ear jacket options out there!

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