Yes, You Need To Clean Your Earrings

by Julia Musto

You've had your ears pierced for years, so how often should you clean your earrings? You went through the process of blotting the piercing with saline solution, and eventually everything healed. You've been wearing earrings for a while and consider yourself pretty much a professional when it comes to the process. Maybe you don't even think about it anymore and wear whatever the heck you want to, whether it's 14-carat gold, stainless steel, or those addicting $3.95 pairs at Forever 21. However, you may want to invest some time and consideration into your ears for their safety — and so you don't end up with a gross earring story on the Internet.

Earrings, like any jewelry, best serve you if they don't irritate your skin. Even if you're using 14-carat gold or stainless steel, the metal can still be contaminated. This is discounting the fact that your piercing will be irritable for the first few weeks before it heals. When you get pierced, the store will most likely sell you saline solution and give you instructions on how to clean your ears then. They say to do the same routine every night for a few weeks, however, that seems dramatic for every day life.

Cleaning your earrings may not come up, but it is a process that is similar to cleaning your ears. You should clean your earrings as often as is possible, but you don't need to stress too much unless your ears and skin is hyper sensitive; everyone is different. To remain safe and sound, clean your earrings once a week especially if you wear the same pair all week. In order to prevent infection, there are a few steps you can take. Here are some things to keep in mind for when you do decide to clean.

1. Clean Your Ears

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Whenever you're about to put in or take out a new pair of earrings, swab them with rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide.

2. Disinfect!

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Additionally, disinfect objects that you hold next to your ear, like your headphones or cell. Clean them with antibacterial soap or rubbing alcohol once a week. For regular every day jewelry use warm water, cleanser, and a toothbrush. Pearl jewelry should be cleaned with mild soap and warm water as well.

3. Be Cautious

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Remember that the environment you're in will affect the life of your earrings. Wearing earrings to bed, working out, during a shower, or while swimming can cause a reaction between the jewelry and the skin. If it's costume or silver and nickel-plated jewelry, it can tarnish on your skin. This isn't something you may think of often unless you're seeing signs of infection.

4. Be Smart

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Don't wait until it's too late and you're cutting off your earrings. I, too, am addicted to a good cheap pair of costume earrings. Not everyone can buy Tiffany's. However, there is no way I will sacrifice my ear health for laziness.