10 Ear Piercing Ideas You'll Love For Fall 2021

10 Ear Piercing Ideas You'll Love For Fall 2021

With cooler months ahead, fall trends are on our minds even before sweater weather begins. Especially with many of us still working from home, new piercings dress up any look for Zoom meetings and virtual events to inspire your creativity – whether you’re wearing sweatpants or a more formal outfit. Layering multiple ear piercings has become a favorite look among trendsetters in recent years. Like tattoos before them, this highly-adorned earring style has entered the mainstream while maintaining its creative yet slightly rebellious spirit. In 2021, the curated ear trend took off and is here to stay.

Piercing studios, parties, and virtual styling sessions are now widely available, making it easier than ever to explore with new styles and placements. Whether you’re looking to expand beyond a standard lobe placement or are an ear piercing veteran, there are many combinations, styles and 2021 trends to refresh your look for the upcoming season. Here are some ear piercing ideas that you’ll want to try out this fall that you can start wearing now.

Auricle Integration

Located between the lobe and helix (any piercing along the outer upper cartilage of the ear) placements, the auricle is a versatile cartilage piercing that can be styled with either a bead ring, stud or hoop to offer plenty of space for creativity. The cartilage is relatively thin in this area and places the auricle piercing the lowest on the pain scale among the cartilage placement (but will still take 3-9 months to heal). There are also many faux auricle earrings available if you want to test out the look first. This placement looks chic to wear on its own, elevate your lobe piercing (s) or complement the rest of your curated ear.

Auricle 1

Credit: Kasia Jewelery/Pinterest

Auricle 2

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Auricle 3 Revised

Credit: Studs/Instagram

Bold Hoops

This classic style has undergone a large and lean upgrade in recent years. Stacking several hoops throughout various placements is a popular look that offers a more minimalist, polished approach to the curated ear trend. You can layer them exclusively on your lobes or pair them with a conch and auricle earring. This style provides a fashion-forward way to show off all your placements that caters to many professional settings and elevates any party-ready look.

Bold Hoops 1

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Bold Hoops 2

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Bold Hoops 3

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Elevated Minimalism

For a toned-down curated ear that is suitable for everyday wear, show off several placements with small earrings in monochrome (all silver or gold) hardware. Select traditional hoops to wear with double or triple lobe piercings. You can also team these stacked placements with helix jewelry or sleek ear cuffs for a more cutting-edge take on this modern classic look. If you only have a standard lobe placement, try a statement dangling earring with a sleek pendant to achieve a similarly eye-catching yet refined style.

Minimal 1

Credit: Aurate New York/Instagram

Minimal 2

Credit: Ana Luisa NY/Instagram

Minimal 3

Credit: AMYO Jewelry/Instagram

Flat Focus

Named for its position, the flat placement is located on the flat cartilage area below the ear’s upper rim (helix) and should be worn with stud earrings that have either a flat or ball back end. There is typically room for up to three holes in this area. For a single piercing, try a statement stud to style on its own, with lobe piercings or pair with a forward helix and rook for a stacked upper ear. If you choose to get multiple flat piercings, create a “constellation” (small earring cluster) with several microstuds. Keep in mind, though, that the flat piercing is considered one of the most painful piercings and each hole requires around 3-9 months of healing time.

Flat 1

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Flat 2

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Flat 3

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Length Wise

Dangling earrings add some glamour to your regular ear rotation when worn alone or layered among other piercings for an elevated curated ear. For a more understated approach, swap out one of your huggies or studs on your lobe with a more dramatic pavé or chain link style. Stack two (or three) of these bar-style earrings for a nighttime look. These elegant pieces can be worn alone or paired with stacked helix placements, an ear cuff, or upper cartilage piercings for an edgier look.

Length 1

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Length 2

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Length 3

Credit: DRIFTWOOD Maui/Pinterest

Loaded Lobes

Don’t underestimate the ability of these simple placements to transform your look. Double or triple lobe piercings leave considerable space for creativity. Stack a few huggies or gradient height hoops for an elegant and dainty or a more modern minimalist look. Team them with chain-detailed or bar earrings (and perhaps an ear cuff, sans cartilage piercings) for an edgier style.

Lobes 1

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Lobes 2

Credit: Studs/Instagram

Lobes 3

Credit: Studs/Instagram

Mixed Studs

Embrace variety and combine studs in all shapes, styles and sizes. The combination possibilities are endless, including filling in your triple lobe placements, creating a constellation with your flat piercings or building a border around the entire outer portion of your ear. Keep it simple or let your personality shine through, depending on the day, and select options from more timeless metal or crystal studs to whimsical charm earrings.

Studs 1

Credit: Studs/Instagram

Studs 2

Credit: AMYO Jewelry/Instagram

Studs 3

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Off The Chain

Chain link jewelry has been a dominating fashion trend over the past few seasons. Small chain-link connecting details between huggies on your lobe or cartilage placement are a subtle way to try out this style with your other placements. Enhance your curated ear’s cutting-edge appeal and add one (or more) fully chainmail pieces throughout your lobes, rook or helix for an edgier look.

Chain 1

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Chain 2

Credit: Studs/Instagram

Chain 3

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Polished Pearls

While timeless, pearl jewelry is one of 2021’s biggest jewelry trends and comes in many styles to use in most ear piercings. Stud options are perfect for your lobe, auricle, helix or flat placements. Create a flat constellation or outer ear border for a contemporary look or pair them with pearl-encrusted huggies or those with a dangling pearl charm to achieve a more classic feminine style.

Pearl 1

Credit: Aurate New York/Instagram

Pearl 2

Credit: Stone and Strand/Instagram

Pearl 3

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Spiked Focus

Sharp edges offer a chic way to update a sophisticated ear party. Add earrings with small spike details to your inner conch or lobes for an everyday, minimalist look. Take your curation up a notch and layer several pieces with larger spike details – whether they’re studs, huggies or dangling charms – throughout your lobes and outer cartilage placements to lean into modern rock-and-roll style. The opportunities are endless to embrace this grunger side to tap into the multiple ear piercings’ naturally rebellious appeal.

Spike 1

Credit: Maison Miru/Instagram

Spike 2

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Spike 3

Credit: Maria Tash/Instagram

Ear Piercing Quick Facts & Aftercare

Each piercing typically costs between $30 and $85 with lobe and auricle piercings on the lower end and more complex placements, such as a snug or industrial piercing, on the pricier side. Check with your piercing studio to see whether the initial jewelry is covered within the cost of the session.

Universally, proper aftercare is key for maintaining healthy skin and ear holes.

With price and style preferences aside, your individual pain tolerance is a factor to consider when deciding which piercings to pursue. If you’re nervous about the pain, ask your piercer whether a numbing cream can be used for your session. Zensa Numbing Cream contains 5% lidocaine to minimize pain without any vasoconstrictors, making it a safe option to use before piercing procedures. This product should provide a numbing effect on the skin for 2-3 hours after application and is a vegan, steroid-free formula.

Most experts recommend cleaning the area with a saline solution twice a day during the healing process. Always wash your hands before handling the new piercing. Make sure to listen and follow your piercer’s advice precisely to prevent any infections or unnecessary mishaps during recovery.

Learn more about these placements and more popular ear piercing types here.

Back to All Entries