Earrings are arguably the most essential part of one’s jewelry wardrobe. They complete a look and frame the face. While we humbly consider ourselves professionals in the field, we understand that jewelry may sometimes be complicated. This month we’re dissecting the wonderful world of earrings – metals, backings, styles – the whole nine yards. 


Stainless steel, nickel, gold, silver, platinum, copper, titanium – earrings can be found in every type of metal. The one thing we suggest heavily considering when looking to purchase a pair or two is if the wearer has any type of metal allergies. Nickel-allergies are the most common amongst wearers, and may cause itching, swelling and rash.


While we admit they’re not very exciting, earring backings are what keeps your earrings in place. Their  one and only job is to prevent you from losing those precious ear babies. Generally speaking, the better the backing, the finer the jewelry.

Push backs are the most common backing type. This closure uses friction to secure an earring into place. Some are made of metal, some silicone, some a combination of both. 

Screw backs, similar to push backs, also connect to the post of the earring. But rather than using friction, screw backs literally screw onto the stud post. Screw back work very well and are usually found in higher end jewelry.

Latch back or lever backings are usually found on dangly earrings. A hook goes through the wearers lobe and is then secured with a latch or hinged lever.

French wire backings are less of a backing and more of a hook that creates balance behind the ear to secure the earring in place.

Snap-lock clasps use a hinged piece of metal that goes through the lobe and then snaps into a latch on the opposing side of the earring. This type of backing is common with securing hoops and huggies.


Hoops are a classic. Large hoops hold a young and trendy tone, while smaller hoops come across mature and elegant. Unlike huggies, which run through the piercing and hug the earlobe, hoops leave room between the bottom of the earring and the wearer’s earlobe. 

Studs may be the most popular style of earring, and create a simple, yet put together look. Diamond studs are an absolute jewelry essential and can be worn with both jeans and tee, or a little black dress for a night on the town!

Drop earrings usually fall right below the earlobe and give off very little movement, and should not be confused with chandelier earrings which hold lots of movement and make a statement.

Threaders feature a simple and elegant chain, sometimes with a small gemstone attached to the end, which threads through the piercing and hangs in balance without the use of a backing. Threaders are versatile, virtually weightless and easy to wear.

Ear cuffs do not require a piercing and can be worn over the outer cartilage of the ear. Ear cuffs are designed to slide on and off, so beware not to get yours caught in your hair or on a piece of clothing. 

Our professionals here at Heart to Heart Fine Jewelry know that jewelry shopping may be overwhelming for some. We hope this complete earring guide will help you on your next jewelry escapade. Give us a call if you find yourself in need of some extra advice, we’d love to help!