Stretching earlobes is increasing in popularity, and it is important that you learn how to stretch ears properly before you damage your earlobes beyond repair. Flesh tunnels right through the earlobes are a fashion statement to many young people, but it takes a long time for your earlobes to get like that. You cannot simply walk into a salon and ask for it to be done – it will take time and money. Stretched earlobes have to be trained to get that way, particularly since your immune system is trying its best to prevent it.
How To Stretch Ears Safely
Nevertheless, it is not particularly difficult to get your ears looking just like these glossy magazines, and you can do it yourself in most cases. A lot depends on the method you choose, and the purpose here is to explain how to stretch ears safely and correctly. How can stretching earlobes at home be made safe and free from the infection that could ruin your piercing?
First, some safety tips on how to stretch ears and get beautiful stretched earlobes without infection or scarring:
1. Your original piercing should be fully healed before you start. A professional gauge 16 needle piercing is best for starting: you can do it with a 20 or 18g and with gun piercings, although the results will be slightly more difficult to achieve.
2. Have a shower or soak your ear lobe in warm water to warm up your ears and help prevent tearing of the skin and flesh.
3. Stretching earlobes takes time so do both lobes at the same time if you want two.
4. Use an unscented antibacterial soap to wash your hands and your ear lobes before and after each stretching stage.
5. Use a strong sea salt solution to soak your stretched earlobes daily until they have healed.
6. Turn the pin, ear jewelry or taper daily to prevent any sticking or crusting forming.
7. Each earlobe stretching should be fully healed without pain before starting the next.
8. Go up just one size at a time: that is down 2 gauges, e.g. 16g to 14g to 12g and so on.
Stretching Earlobes: Different Methods Used to Stretch Ears
Bearing in mind the tips above on preventing infection, sticking and crustiness around the piercing, here are some possible ways how to stretch ears:
This the most common way, used by professionals and most individuals when stretching earlobes. Basically, it involves a rod – tapered from your current gauge of piercing up to the next gauge. Thus, if you are starting at 16g, the thinner end will be 16g and the wider end 14g.
It should be lubricated with a non-petroleum lubricant such as emu oil or jojoba oil, and then worked through the piercing until the thicker end is level with the skin. You can then push a larger piece of jewelry through behind the taper and fix it. The taper size is generally stated as the gauge of the thicker end, so a 12g taper will start at 14g and taper up to 12g.
The material of manufacture should be surgical steel (or gold if the taper is integral with the jewelry), and some are of acrylic though that can harbor bacteria, so make sure it is properly sterilized. You are advised not to use knitting needles or cocktail sticks when stretching earlobes – that is not how to stretch ears safely, and can lead to infection and also non-standard hole sizes.
B. Dead Stretching
This is a way of stretching earlobes by forcing a larger piece of jewelry through a smaller piercing – it can lead to a simple tear of the skin or worse, a ‘blowout, where the fistula, or tunnel of scar tissue, is pushed right through the piercing due to the pressure used to force the larger pin though. This can cause scarring and it may then be impossible to further stretch the piercing.
It is possible to pave the way for dead stretching by pulling the jewelry up and down in the piercing, so loosening it, and making it easier to insert a larger diameter pin, but this is not how to stretch ears to achieve stretch earlobes.
C. Weights and Gravity
Some Asian, African and South American civilizations attach weights to pendant jewelry to stretch the holes in the earlobes. The resultant stretched earlobes can be of large diameters and accept large diameter flesh tunnels. However, it is not recommended, since the piercings can migrate and change position, and if you get the weight wrong it can tear right through the lobe.
There are surgical techniques available, such as cutting a larger hole with a scalpel, but the most popular are tapers, and that is how to stretch ears at home and avoid paying professionals. Stretching earlobes is in fashion, but must be done correctly or the price will be infected wounds that look anything but fashionable.