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Ear Plugs: Why Teens Are Putting Big Holes in Their Ears

  Ear Plugs: Why Teens Are Putting Big Holes in Their Ears (Doll Article)

(January 25, 2010 by JeZz Send DollMail )
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Plugs, tapers and tunnels are terms a friend of mine throws around constantly. It took me a while to learn her specialized vocabulary, but whatís sheís doing is punching big holes in her ears and then stretching them to look even bigger.

Now, being of a conservative nature, Iím not sure I see the need to take the small ear piercings Iíve enjoyed forever and stretch them into holes the size of a quarter. Or even a dime. Iím okay with the small holes that hold traditional earrings, but apparently, not every teen feels that way.

Ear Plugs and Teens

While not hugely common, I do have a more friends now with ear plugs than I did just a year ago. The look seems to be catching on in popularity and suddenly itís surprisingly in the mainstream, at least in my high school, to have giant plugs in your ears.

To stretch the holes in your ears into large open circles, you start with a normal piercing and gradually stretch the holes over time. To do this stretching, you use a taper. A taper looks like a little cone that goes into your piercing. You push the taper through the hole in the ear and follow it with a plug or tunnel. You can stretch about once every month at the smaller sizes, but should wait two months or more as you reach the larger sizes.

Considerations and Concerns about Ear Stretching

Ear stretching is very similar to tattoos in that both are essentially permanent. Once you reach a certain size with ear stretching, a 2 gauge, for example, the likelihood of your earlobes returning to regular size is slim to none. A size 0 is considered the point of no return. When you begin to stretch a piercing, and really you can stretch different piercings, not just your ear lobes, be sure youíre committed to the look for the long term.

If you stretch your ears incorrectly, you might also be facing problems down the road. Ear stretching is a slow and gradual process, not one that can be done overnight or even in a year. It takes many months to go from a tiny piercing to something large enough to wear plugs or tunnels in your ears that are noticeable. Sometimes the process is rushed along.

Tapers, a heavy stainless steel tool used to help stretch out the opening are heavy, especially once you reach the larger sizes. They can pull on your ears, tearing them a bit. If you try to stretch your ears too quickly, youíll risk significant tearing as well. While the tears do heal, the scar tissue that builds up will not allow the ear to shrink back to its normal size.

Personally, Iím not going to even consider ear stretching, but for those who are already trying it, youíll be on the edge of alternative fashion Ė and rest assured that surgery can fix your ear lobes down the road when you decide youíre not into the look any more.

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Kew Gardens, NY
Posted On: April 8, 2010

I totally agree. It is important to consider the effects any body mods will have on your future. Serious employers don't look kindly upon any sorts of visible tattoos or piercings.
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Posted On: February 6, 2010
I think they're pretty sweet, and people should be allowed to do what they want with their bodies without being judged because of it.

It's like going up to someone who frequently tans and saying, "EWW DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING TO YOUR SKIN CELLS??!?!"

Let peope do as they wish. It's not your place to make the decision whether it's the right thing to do or not.
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Nashville, TN
Posted On: February 5, 2010
Oh and P.s.:

An interesting thing his mother used to tell him was that his children and grandchildren would be asking to swing on his lobes. xD
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Nashville, TN
Posted On: February 5, 2010
Wow, I never thought I'd see this topic in TDP xD

Aw, gauges, oh how I hate thee! My husband had them, key word: HAD.

He was a size 4. Don't get me wrong, when I first met him I thought they were totally s.e.x.y but after we got married and the economy turned south, those gauges caused a lot of issues with job hunting. Employers don't want to see that kind of thing on their employees. AND they don't want to see the holes they leave behind when you decide to take them out to save your career.

My hubby is stuck with size 12 holes, that's 4 times as big as an innocent piercing. What's more is they're on both ears. I've gotten used to the holes, but I'm afraid they affect him on job interviews. I warn anyone against getting them, they could ruin your financial income for years to come, or possibly your life.
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Posted On: February 5, 2010
It depends...some people can pull off the look pretty well. Like my sister, but then hers aren't really that big. They really suit her, though, because she's just got that unique personality and whatnot.
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Scranton, PA
Posted On: February 4, 2010
you right i did had one but it hurt soo bad but thank god im not geting that any more
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Posted On: February 4, 2010
They're sometimes also called gauges. Personally I do not find them attractive or cool at all, and I know I'd never do that to my ears.
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United Kingdom
Posted On: February 4, 2010
i don't get why anyone would want massive gaping holes in their ears tbh.
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