How To Tell If Your Earrings Are Hypoallergenic Or Not?

Silver, gold, and stainless steel jewelry is all very common, and practically just about every woman across the globe has her own little collection going on.

But even though all of the three metals above are generally a good bet for someone looking to buy hypoallergenic jewelry, sometimes they still contain allergens and other compounds that will irritate your skin and ears.

So how can you tell hypoallergenic earrings apart from earrings that might make your ears swell up and itch, especially if you're buying online? You've come to the right place - here are a few proven guidelines to keep in mind to make sure your new earrings don't give you swollen and itchy earlobes.

What Causes Allergic Reactions When You Wear Earrings?

Nickel - The Typical Suspect
Typically, the first culprit that most of us think about is nickel. It's one of the most common metals in the jewelry industry because of two things. Firstly, it's very beautiful and can add a nice bit of extra whiteness and shine to any pieces made from precious metals like silver. on top of this, nickel is also incredibly cheap, making it pretty much the perfect way for the industry to cut down its costs by diluting precious metal compounds with nickel. However, while nickel can very easily irritate your ears and cause an allergic reaction, there are a few other metals to watch out for.

Other Metals & Compounds
Metals like copper and even some silver/steel compounds can be just as dangerous, as some people develop fairly rare but very specific allergies to these particular metals. While these metals are generally nowhere near as irritating as nickel can be, they're a lot more widespread.

You can find copper in a lot of popular jewelry pieces, especially if they contain gold. For example, most rose gold earrings are made using a gold-copper alloy, which gives them that unique rose tint we all love so much.

However, normally, the concentration of allergens and compounds that can irritate your ears or cause an allergic reaction is really low. In fact, it's so low that metals like copper can even be found in hypoallergenic jewelry (for example, we make our Nos earrings with a silver-copper alloy). This means they're generally not a cause for concern unless you have a very specific allergy.

Grime, Dirt & Oxidation
In addition to the metals we've discussed, sometimes it's the oxidation, corrosion, grime, and dirt that gets on your jewelry during daily wear that can irritate your ears and even cause an infection in some cases.

It's not really surprising - just think of all the pollutants and gross stuff your jewelry picks up while you're out and about in any modern urban environment.

But, despite it being kind of obvious when you think about it, most people don't regularly clean their earrings. This can lead to corrosion or grime buildup (think dirt + sweat and skin oils), which is a great recipe for a dermatological nightmare.

Our Thoughts
Having covered some of the typical causes behind allergies associated with regularly wearing earrings and what you can do to minimize the risk - it really boils down to two main things.

First and foremost, be sure to keep an eye out for whether or not any potential piece you're thinking of buying has any metals you might be sensitive to. And once you do buy something you like, try your best to keep it clean, in an effort to avoid annoying allergies and nasty infections.