Are you ready to start stretching your healed ear lobe piercing? Check some of our FAQs below.
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Tunnels & Plugs
Is ear stretching painful?
If you want an honest answer, it’s yes. However, as with any piercing, it all depends on your individual pain tolerance. In order to stretch ears you need to continue to increase the sizes of the tapers and plugs you accessorise with, and in turn, this stretches your ear lobes. While a reasonable amount of pain can be caused from stretching ears, it’s safe to say that if you’re not careful you can cause your ears to tear, and in turn, become infected.
Want our advice? Take it slow and keep on top of your cleaning routine! Ear stretching is a slow process, so think twice before skipping gauges.
Stretched Ear Blow Out: What To Do.
An ear stretching blowout is when a red ring of scar tissue begins to form around the stretched lobe piercing. No matter what type of piercing you choose, as it heals your body will produce a tunnel of skin known as a fistula. If you over-stretch your lobes, the irritated scar tissue can cause the stretched ear lobe to look as if it is turning inside out or is torn.
If you do experience this, the best advice is to stop stretching. You can reduce the size of your tunnel or plug to 2-3 times your current size, but we would always recommend going completely cold turkey so that the piercing can fully heal itself.
Ear Stretching Aftercare Tips
The easiest bit of advice we can give is to ‘Leave It The Hell Alone’ and to take your time. Ear stretching should be a slow process so you can know your limits and how far you want to take it. Once you’ve stretched your ear you can stop, but understand that your ear will not be able to shrink back completely. It is possible that if you decide to stop stretching your ears that they will return to a reduced size, but it’s highly unlikely that they will completely recede.
Nevertheless, if you’re ready to go and continue stretching your ears to a higher gauge there are a few tips that we can provide that may be useful. As mentioned previously, leave the stretched area alone and avoid any unnecessary contact. These stretched areas can be delicate and contain open sores if stretched too quickly. Avoiding any unnecessary contact will help to reduce the spread of infection. During stretching it is also advised to bathe the area in a saline solution made of approximately ¼ teaspoon of salt to 1 cup of water at least twice a day.
Body Piercing Jewellery Range:
Picking Out Tunnels & Plugs
If you’ve successfully stretched your lobe piercing or are ready to ‘gauge up’, it’s time to pick out some new plugs and tunnels. Plugs and tunnels come in a variety of shapes and sizes ready to fit your lobe with the perfect accessory.
Depending on how far you want to take your ear stretching experience, you can choose sizes starting 2mm wide, and continuing up to 52mm. Although tunnel piercing jewellery is thought to be how you stretch your ear lobes, it actually only retains their size. After using an ear stretcher and getting to your correct desired size, ear tunnel jewellery can be used to retain the exact desired fit.
The important thing to understand with this type of piercing is that it can cause lasting damage to your ears. Therefore you should always be 100% sure before ear lobe stretching further. Luckily though, it is still possible to dabble in ear stretching if you’re convinced you’ll want this piercing long term, but maybe not forever. Many professional body piercers suggest that you should not stretch your ears further than a 0 gauge(6.00mm), but preferably no more than 2 gauge(8.00mm), if you’re hoping for a chance for your ears to shrink back gradually.
Inserting/Removing Tunnels & Plugs
If you’re only just beginning your ear stretching experience, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with how to use ear tapers. Ear stretching tapers are your gateway tool into increasing the diameter of your ear lobes safely. When your lobe piercing is fully healed and cleaned you’ll need to gently but firmly push the taper into your piercing. Once your ear piercing has healed, you can start to use tapers to gradually increase your ear lobe size ready for a new plug or tunnel. Depending on how far you want to go with ear expanders you can choose a variety of different taper ear stretching kits to get your desired size. It’s important not to rush this process as doing so may cause damage, due to the area being unable to heal properly.
Once you’ve reached your desired size you can gently remove your taper. While doing so, be cautious to be gentle so as not to irritate the area before inserting your new tunnel. Although your new ear stretcher should be the same size that you have stretched to, you may experience some discomfort during insertion. If you need to, you can lubricate the area first to help but don’t be afraid to stop. If you find that you simply cannot insert the plug and it causes pain, stop and gradually stretch a little further. Plugs, tunnels, and tapers come in gauge or mm sizes, so it should be relatively easy to find an ear stretching kit to suit your needs.
Where Can you Use Tunnels & Plugs?
In case you haven’t realised already, there is really only one type of piercing that utilises tunnels and plug piercing jewellery; and that’s ear stretching. Although there are a variety of different other facial body modifications that may use this type of jewellery, at Blue Banana we only offer our services for the use of ear stretching. Are you ready to start your ear stretching journey with us? Check out our full range of Tunnels, Plugs, and Tapers today or visit your local store to get your piercing.
Other Guides & Ranges
- Find Your Local BB Studio
- Age Restrictions & Prices
- Aftercare & Cleaning
- Piercing Size & Gauge Guide
- Inserting, Changing & Removing Jewellery
- Piercing Pain: The Ultimate Guide
- Piercing At Blue Banana
- Piercing Laws Around the UK
Please Note: Blue Banana piercing information is based on knowledge from our experiences as one of the UK's top piercing studios. All details provided should be read alongside professional advice. Please see our full Piercing Articles Disclaimer, here.