Earring Types Guide: What Are The Most Popular Earrings Called?


At the tender age of 15 is when I not only pierced my ears and got myself my first imitation diamond stud earring jewelry. It was also the day I shocked my parents because I was up to then a good boy, ouch!

What about you?

Earring types for women and men exist since Egyptian civilization or even earlier up to today in all styles from metal, pearls, to gemstones as well as for different functions. 

Today I’m going to educate you in-depth while succinctly about classic hoops to edgy barbells and the real pros and cons of earring piercings.

10 Most Popular  Different Types of Earrings And Function Guide

Earring Type Name Location & Function
#1 Studs Bottom earlobe – Most common earring for ear-piercing starters, traditional to classic metal or gem studs (unisex)
#2 Huggies Bottom earlobe – Popular circle earring type for female and some male, often combined with diamonds or simple gold/silver jewelry
#3 Hoops Bottom earlobe – Trendy low-hanging circular earrings with various sizes and metals, back closure like huggies
#4 Dangles, Drops & Chandaliers Bottom earlobe – Fashionable and formal ear jewelry for women with a free swing drop, stackable materials from gems to glass pieces at different lengths or designs
#5 Threaders Bottom earlobe – Swings left and right of the ear, usually thin, sophisticated metal appearance with or without diamonds/gems
#6 Tassels Bottom earlobe – combo of a hoop earring with beads, feathers, etc. for bold women with a yoga lifestyle or free spirit
#7 Crawlers, Cuff-Climbers Bottom to helix/cartilage ear top these “climbing” earrings are statement jewelry for confidence wearers at work or official events like birthdays, graduation, etc
#8 Ear Cuffs (Clip-on, Magnetic) Non-pierced – designed to fit any ear location or length without piercing for bold boys and girls as a statement, fashion jewelry like white gold plated sterling silver
#9 Cartilage Top pierced – Edgy earrings for millennials and alternative lifestyles typically barbells, flesh tunnel plugs
10# Other Earrings (Bajoran, Spikes, Jacket) Bajoran (inspired by Star Trek series), Ear Spike (long thin nail lookalike) unisex alternative/punk jewelry, Jacket earrings that look like a boat anchor with a star (edgy)

Boys and girls, this is of course an incomplete guide on the earring tips list. However, these are nevertheless the most popular earring types and names today from the Americas to Asia, Africa, and Europe.

The function and use of the top earrings depend on:

  • Historical Background and Tradition
  • Occasion and Event
  • Current Earring Jewelry Trends
  • Personal Taste and Budget

When buying earrings for yourself or someone you care about you should ideally, therefore, consider these 4 buying earrings criteria.

While women can unfairly wear any earring in fact, any fashion jewelry or cloth, including traditionally male ropes from suites to hoodies, men are limited by availability and social norms that are often hard to ignore.

However, more and more designers and brands are discovering that men, too, have needs when it comes to wearing the latest jewelry creations ranging from perfect necklace length to ideal ring finger accessories in the increasingly everything-goes fashion industry. 

Types of Earrings for Men: Top 5

Men wear earrings since the days of old Persia when male slaves were identified by wearing jewelry on their pierced ears as the Ancient History Encyclopedia cites on their Persian culture jewelry subtopic.

Men Ear Studs

Studs are the most used earring types for guys as they are rather minimalistic in design and appearance, though Hip Hop and Rock stars like to show off with diamond-stud of how much money they own with their bling-bling. 

A 925 sterling silver or tungsten earrings for him are widespread.


As the name suggests, clip-on earrings can be worn by males without the painful need of a piercing along with your ears from the earlobe to the middle (snagus) or upper side rook or even higher (cartilage). 

The advantage is obviously the ability to try different styles without a piercing mess like swollen ears.


Magnetic earrings for guys is a kind of clip-on advanced jewelry development, whereby the front and backside of the earring is being held together by a magnet while your earlobe sits in between.

Magnetic jewelry ear designs are like studs best used for subtle everyday wear with a glowing gemstone often attached.


A huggie earring for men is a safe bet after studs as this is another popular body piece of jewelry for guys.

The benefit of huggies is that, though they are shaped like bangles, they tend to be of tiny size and do not look girly or feminine in comparison.

 Even gay men tend to prefer these, though tastes vary independently of gender classification, obviously.

Alternative Earrings (Novelty & Flesh Plugs)

Bold boys who prefer something out of the ordinary may opt for bold statement earrings like novelty or flesh plugs. The former is practically designed like a combination of a stud and a spike earring with a unique head on the front side. 

The head can be anything from a diamond star to a skull head.

Types of Earrings for 7 Common Face Shapes 

Naturally, people have come in different sizes and shapes. This is true when it comes to our face forms.

Therefore there is a need to guide some of us on which earrings best fit our face type for maximum compatibility, impact, and beauty accentuation.

common face shape and jewelry
  • Oval Face

Type: Oval-shaped face with outstanding cheekbones whereby your forehead and chin indicate the oval form, think egg. This oval shape is according to statistics actually the most common in the United States of America (Source).

Famous Oval-Shaped Celebs – Beyoncé and Jessica Alba

Recommended Earrings – From square studs to long hoops or teardrop earrings. The oval beauty can wear almost any jewelry that can support her face shape perfectly.

Especially when mixing it with gems like red-hot ruby or elegant green sapphire as well as various color pearls.

  • Round Face

Type: Round-faced girls and boys have more or less the same length and width with standout cheeks. Their jaw too is rounded and gives girls that youthful Lolita looks that many Russian models and US celebs possess.

Famous Round-Faced Celebs – Selena Gomez or Tatjana Ali

Recommended Earrings – Circled faces go with circle hoops or sparkling huggies that complement their wonderful face shape as well as clip-on that are round-shaped.

  • Square Face

Type: Square-faced people are characterized by their wonderful triple symmetry width of jaw, cheek, and forehead. 

Famous Square-Faced Celebs – Rosario Dawson, Lucy Liu

Recommended Earrings – Jaw-softening round dangles, elegant, thin hoops, and the likes accentuate and balance your perfect square shape.

  • Heart Face

Type: Heart-faced angels have typically a forehead that is wider than the chin part and the jawline flattens. 

Famous Heart-Faced Celebs – Jennifer Love Hewitt or Rashida Jones

Recommended Earrings – Long drop and dangling earwear fit well with this magnificent face type in order to counter-balance the inverted pyramid form and highlight their best facial parts.

Long Face

Types: Long-faced sweethearts visibly come with a long face shape, albeit a rather thin width.

Famous Long-Faced Celebs – Hillary Swank or Tyra Banks

Recommended Earrings – For long-face gals medium or short huggie earrings and hoops are great for accentuating the mid-part of the face without focusing on the face length, though being attractive.

Other Face Types (Diamond, Pear)

They are, besides these common TOP 5 face shapes across the world, other faces literally worth mentioning.

Albeit not as widespread as the above ones. Remember, this is not true science, but the best guesses to support and inform you on the popular earring jewelry in combination with your face type.

Commonly attractive people like wide cheekbones, Oscar-winning actress Halle Berry belongs to the diamond face category (preferably tassels drops, etc.).

While Minnie Driver completes the list of great pear faces with wide bottoms and thin foreheads in comparison (studs, chandeliers, crawlers, threaders, and jacket earrings suit).

Note: No face shape is better than the other and of course, you can, at the end of the day, wear or gift whatever you like. These are just open earrings’ jewelry guidelines when seeking purchase assistance, ´cos what looks great on Becky might not work for Rhonda!

Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, as the saying goes!

Types of Earrings for Sensitive Ears

The best earrings for sensitive ears are generally precious metals like 18K gold studs, platinum hoops or 925 sterling silver huggies, surgical stainless steel, and rhodium-plated resulting in hypoallergenic.

Meaning no skin irritation like inflammation,  itching, or soreness as a result of mostly nickel allergy.

For full disclosure, there is no 100% guarantee that your earlobe won’t experience swelling after your newly unpierced ears have stunning but painful bajoran ear jewelry for the first time. Every so often beauty is pain my beloved.

High Priced vs Affordable Earrings for Sensitive Ears

The downside with 18-karat gold teardrops or hoops and so on is that these types of earrings require deep pockets since they are costly and many consumers just want costume ear jewelry to wear occasionally over time.

Sterling silver (stamped 925 ), surgical stainless steel, and rhodium-plated are inexpensive alternative dangles or earrings etcetera as a budget-friendly, but healthier solution.

Why Earrings Cause Skin Irritations?

That’s because even everyone’s skin reacts differently from natural materials like metals, gems, and wood or artificial fashion jewelry.

However nickel-based dermatitis seems to be a common allergenic including sensitive kids’ ears, though in rare cases even solid gold jewelry like 22 or 24K ear accessories may irritate some.

Types of Earrings Guide (Conclusion)

In essence, sterilized earrings made from e.g. surgical stainless steel and nickel-free precious metals, either expensive fine gold or affordable gold alloys like gold-filled, are a viable ear infection solution that works for most of us.

If I knew back then I would have also opted for the above hypoallergenic earrings, instead had to suffer for 3 days with an inflamed earlobe, but it was worth it, though my parents won’t agree on the latter.

Seeing my parents shake their heads at a seemingly clueless oval-faced teenager and the girls at high school giggling, though some rather smiling, at this flaking ear fool of a boy. I prefer not to miss these moments in life.

What about you?

To me, that’s the reason we buy and cherish earrings and all the other statement jewelry to show our ever-changing moods, self-love, or as a gift, that we care about and want to connect with a memorable, sparkling present.

Bill Dominic

Bill is an art history and business graduate. Moreover, he loves to test, compare, shop jewelry & fashion items for his 5 sisters, girlfriend, nieces when not enjoying a great novel.

Related Posts