How to stretch your ears and do it safely can seem like quiet a mind field. There are a lot of different methods, materials and everyone has their preferred way and opinions on how stretching should be done. Stretching correctly shouldn’t hurt or irritate you ears. Throughout stretching your ears listen to your body and if you find yourself in any pain or discomfort consult your local piercer.
What size can I stretch up to and my ears still close up?
The majority of professionals in the piercing industry suggest not to stretch larger than 6 - 8 mm if you want your ears to totally close up. However keep in mind that everyone's ears and bodies are different you may find that you’re able to stretch to 10 or 12mm and no permanent stretched hole remain. If you’re thinking you may not want stretched ears in the future for whatever reasons then maybe this isn’t for you. Alternatively we have a large range of fake plugs to give the desired look without the commitment. People may criticise fake plugs but it’s your body and your decision. However if you stretch to a large size and decide you don't like the look there's the option of surgery to correct your lobe(s)
How long should I wait between each stretch?
Stretching too fast or skipping sizes can damage your lobe(s) which will result in permanent damage. Patience is the key it’s important to wait at least a month in between stretches to help prevent damage and allow your ears to stretch instead of tear. Give your ears time to heal in-between each stretch although it might be tempting to stretch faster and get to your end goal your ears will be healthier in the long run if you take your time.
Below we will explain the various methods that can be used but it’s important that you do your own research carefully in order to make an educated and informed decision. Don’t be afraid to ask a professional piercer / doctor for advice.
Some people choose to use tapers in order to stretch their ears. They come in different sizes and different materials. A taper is a straight object that is small at one end and larger at the other. Inserting a taper from the smaller end and gradually making your way to the larger end will stretch your ear. Acrylic tapers are the most affordable and arguably the most popular way to stretch your ears, however acrylic is porous and therefore cannot be sterilised. Steel tapers are higher quality and can be autoclaved and sterilised in order to stretch hygienically.
When people reach a larger size of stretched ears they could use what some people call ‘’the taping method’’. This works by using bondage tape to increase the size of your plug. Bondage tape is self-adhesive so it doesn't stick to your skin) you’d wrap the tape around your plug 2 or 3 times each week which would slowly increase the size of your stretched ears. Taking this slow will prevent healing time and issues received from stretching using tapers. Taping your ears will be slower than using tapers but will gradually increase your stretch and lower the risks.
Jojoba oil is a great product to aid your stretched ears. This products used over time will reduce any scar tissue, thicken your lobes and increase the overall health of your lobes.