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6 Pairs Of Earrings That Won't Turn Your Ears Green

Anyone who has bought cheap-but-fun jewelry knows the heartbreak of having it turn your skin green after just a few hours (or days) of wear. Earrings, specifically, seem unusually vulnerable to this. When you’re shopping for earrings that won’t turn your ears green, you need to know a little chemistry.

Let me explain: The naturally occurring acids in your skin (or in your lotion or perfume) interact with the metals that you wear. This is why some jewelry turns skin green. Some of us have more or less of these acids than others, which is why earrings that don’t trigger a reaction for certain people, might leave a stain on someone else. This greenish coloring is generally harmless and goes away on its own, although that doesn't mean it's not irritating to deal with.

First, it helps to understand the types of metals to avoid. As far as what metal turns skin green, there are a few repeat offenders. Copper is a common additive that is responsible for those notorious green hues, but silver can also stain your skin dark green or black as a result of the same chemical reaction. Gold may turn your skin green depending on what metal alloy it's mixed with.

The metals that are least likely to turn your skin green include options like platinum and rhodium — both precious metals that do not tarnish (platinum never needs to be replated, though rhodium will after a few years). For the budget-minded, stainless steel and titanium are nice picks as well.

In a hurry? Here are the best earrings that won’t turn your ears green:

1. A Pair Of Classic Cubic Zirconia Studs For Extra Sparkle: Amazon Collection Round-Cut Stud Earrings

2. These Easy-To-Wear Hoop Earrings That Fit Any Kind Of Ear Piercing: Gabry&jwl 316L Surgical Stainless Steel Huggie Hoop Earring (6 mm)

3. A 6-Pack Of Simple Hoops To Dress Up Your Everyday: Cuicanstar Hoop Earrings (6 Pairs)

4. A Pair Of Expensive-Looking Earrings You Can Wear Day & Night: Mariell Pearl Drop Earrings With Cubic Zirconia

5. A Set Of Dainty Studs With 9 Versatile Shapes: FIBO Stainless Steel And CZ Stud Earring Set (9 Pairs)

6. Some Show-Stopping Drop Earrings From A Cult-Favorite Designer: Kendra Scott Elle Drop Earrings

I hunted down some of the best earrings that won't turn your skin green, including some studs and hoops for everyday wear, plus some attainable investment pieces. None of them will turn your skin an unsightly hue, but all of them will make you shine.

These high-wattage cubic zirconia studs are a piece you'll always be glad to have in your jewelry collection. Cubic zirconia (CZ) is a quality budget alternative to diamonds that doesn't skimp on sparkle. The earrings' sterling silver posts are plated in platinum, which is an economical use of the precious metal in a way that reaps its never-tarnish, never-replate benefits. As far as the gold-plated options for these earrings are concerned, your mileage may vary depending on skin sensitivity. If you want earrings that won't turn your skin green, your best bet is to opt for the platinum-plated posts only.

Rave review: “I used these as a middle quality upgrade to see if I could keep a nicer pair of earrings without losing them prior to buying a diamond and platinum set. I haven't been disappointed. The metal is true and hasn't turned my ears green. The backings stay on even though I literally never take them out. The stone stays shiny and sparkly. For the price, I'd definitely go for it because they stay looking gorgeous.”

If you're looking for the best everyday earrings, this low-profile infinity huggie hoop earring is a perfect choice. With a small diameter that won't bother you at the gym (and that's more comfy to sleep in than a stud), these stylish earrings are worth every bit of their affordable price point. Made of 316L surgical stainless steel, these earrings won't tarnish; but if you're allergic to nickel, be aware that this set does contain small amounts, despite being considered a relatively hypoallergenic material. Shoppers report that the hoops are easy to take on and off but still wear securely (and comfortably) over long periods of time; and since they come in a wide range of sizes, they’ll suit all types of ear piercings.

Rave review: “These are PERFECT. I have 8 piercings on one ear and I have been searching for affordable, cute, comfortable huggie earrings forever. These are super easy to put on & take off, the perfect size to fit close to your earlobe, and the best part is they don’t tarnish, discolor, or turn your ear green! I have had these in for over a month now and I never take them off. I leave them in to sleep and shower and they still look and feel good as new! Highly recommended these!!”

A set of hoops earrings in two different polishes and three distinct sizes has you covered for a ton of different looks based on the same classic concept. These have a 316L stainless steel pin, while the rest of the earring is plated. This is important to note because the pin is what will come into contact with your skin — in this case, from a material that is known for being tarnish-free. Several Amazon shoppers called them out for being lightweight and easy to wear, noting the sets were a great value for the money.

Rave review: “Love these. I’ve already lost one of the pairs but that’s literally why I bought them. They look super expensive and haven’t turned my ears green so that’s awesome. The sizes are perfect and the gold and silver are really rich in color.”

These formal drop earrings with pearl and cubic zirconia are a delicate accent to dressy looks, but they fly under the radar at school or work thanks to their understated elegance. The posts are made of rhodium-plated brass, which is a less expensive way for jewelers to create the premium look of platinum. (Remember: Rhodium will need to be replated in a few years, so when the plating does wear away, your skin could eventually take umbrage with the brass underneath). That said, the dainty cubic zirconia is a high-quality stone that easily catches the light, and the pearl is simulated from glass so it's affordable and cruelty-free, too.

Rave review: “Stunning. These are very beautiful, look wayyyyy more expensive than they were, are light and comfortable and can easily be dressed up or down. The size is very tasteful and sophisticated and the quality is great- not cheap looking or gaudy in the least.”

Whether you skew classic, minimalist, or edgy, you're guaranteed to love several styles in this delicate stud earring set. The nine-piece set includes an assortment of metal and CZ studs, dainty bars, discs, and celestial shapes in silver, yellow, rose, or black chrome tones that feature 316L stainless steel posts. However, the material for the backs of the earring designs couldn't be determined, so people with metal allergies, proceed with caution. That said, the brand advertises these as both nickel-free and lead-free.

Rave review: “They don’t turn your ears green!! I adore these earrings.”

These gorgeous drop earrings by cult-favorite designer Kendra Scott flaunt sculpted semiprecious stones that are a worthy splurge to celebrate a promotion, a birthday, or a Wednesday (why not?). The silver options on the Elle earring feature rhodium plating that won’t tarnish or turn, but does need to be redone eventually for a nominal fee. The post material for this design varies by color, so double-check when you're narrowing down the final choices to make sure you pick one that's skin-friendly for you (the gold-plated options might not be if you're sensitive to alloy blends). This is a great style that you can seriously wear to so many events, day or night. That sophisticated versatility coupled with high-quality stones and metals make these and investment that will definitely net you major wearing mileage.

Rave review: “These Elle Abalone earrings are simply lovely in person! The unique markings and colorful sheen are joyful to behold. The size, shape and weight of the earring is just right and it hangs perfectly from your ear. The seller shipped very quickly and the earrings were wrapped up as if they were a present arriving. I am thrilled with my purchase!”

This article was originally published on March 4, 2020