WHICH EARRINGS ARE HYPOALLERGENIC?
Most people don't realize that their ears are delicate and sensitive. In fact, many earrings on the market today actually say "hypoallergenic" on the package. But what does this mean? Do they really offer some protection against allergic reactions? The answer isn't exactly straightforward, but it's important to know what you're getting into.
Here's a look at some of the factors surrounding hypoallergenic earrings and whether or not they really help to prevent allergic reactions.
What are the Best Earrings for Sensitive Ears?
Since nickel sensitivity is the most common reason for allergic reactions, it is best to avoid wearing earrings created with nickel. Don’t just assume that earrings marked hypoallergenic are nickel-free. Although this implies they are less likely to induce an allergic reaction, the term "hypoallergenic" is a fuzzy one in jewelry manufacturing.
Surprisingly, some earrings marked "hypoallergenic" contain nickel in their posts. The nickel is coated with a protective substance, but the coating may come off over time. Thus, repeated wear can still irritate your ears.
The best earrings for sensitive ears are generally made with gold, platinum or silver. If you're shopping for jewelry, it's best to stick to 14 karats or above and 925 sterling silver to avoid possible nickel contamination. However, pure 24k gold is best avoided because the metal is so soft and pliable.
Other materials that work for sensitive ears include stainless steel, titanium and plastic. However, plastic can crack or discolor over time.
In conclusion, there is not a way to completely prevent the risk of allergic reactions when wearing earrings. Hypoallergenic can refer to any number of factors such as metal type or coating material used on earrings. The best thing you can do is research what materials are used in a specific pair and try them out for yourself to see how your skin reacts.