Earrings are a jewelry accessory that adds so much to an outfit, but especially highlights the face. The right earring can brighten eyes, soften the face and add sparkle to style. They make wonderful gifts, because there is no wrong “fit.” However, there are a few factors to consider to make sure you get the best fit possible, like face shape and earring backing fit.

The Right Earring Styles for Face Shapes

Since earrings sit so close to the face, a perfect pair of earrings will take into consideration the wearer’s face shape. Ideally, the earring shape with balance the face shape. A basic style guideline is to avoid matching the earring shape to your face shape. For example, a round face should avoid wide chandeliers and front-facing hoops.

Use these earring style guidelines to help you select the perfect earring style for you:

Oval Face: every type of earring works well with oval shaped faces, so you don't have to avoid any particular earring styles

Round Face: long drop earrings, linear earrings, straight drops
Avoid: hoop earrings, button earrings, larger stud earrings

Square Face: long drop earrings, linear earrings, straight drops
Avoid: wide geometric shapes like triangles

Long/Rectangle Face: button earrings, stud earrings, hoop earrings
Avoid long: linear style drops, chandeliers earrings

Wide Jaw: Linear earrings are best,
Avoid: bottom heavy chandelier earrings, triangle shaped earrings

Earring Backs

It’s a special misery to suddenly touch an ear and realize you’ve mysteriously lost an earring. Use this earring clasp guide to help you choose earrings that stay secure for years – even generations -- to come. This is an area where quality matters, fine jewelry will generally have better, more secure clasps. Most jewelers offer several clasp options, and they’ll be able to advise you on the best back for your lifestyle.

Friction or Push back

Security: Medium
Friction or push earring backs (sometimes called “butterflies”) are probably the most common. They simply slip onto the earring post (the metal wire behind the earring). Over time, these backs can loosen, get lost, or allow the earring to slip off the ear. They come in different sizes, the larger the diameter, the more secure the clasp. Larger push backs firmly hold earrings against the lobe even if a piercing is stretched and help keep heavy earrings upright.

Screw back

Security: High
Screw back earrings look like push backs, but the earring post has ridges, and the wearer screws the back onto the post to provide a tight, very secure fit. Screw backs are more time-consuming to put on and take off, but for some it’s worth it to protect high value diamond studs and gemstone and metal earrings.


La Pousette

Security: High
This earring back is offered with high-end fine jewelry, like diamond stud earrings, because of the high security it provides. The back has two small spring-loaded clips on either side that the wearer must squeeze and release to move the earring post on and off.  Jewelers sometimes have to special order these backs.

Lever, Latch & French Backs

Security: Medium-High
These backs are usually seen with hoops or large drop earrings. The backs are connected to the earrings so you can lose them. A lever is a curved thin post, like a fish hook, that latches on behind the ear. A latch back is hinged with openings or a slit in the metal that the post pushes through to secure. A French back (also called Omega) has is shaped like a metal curve or loop that the post enters and is held in place.

Shop With Confidence

Your local jeweler has expertise in jewelry sizing and can help you find the perfect earrings to enhance the wearer’s beauty and fit their lifestyle. Visit a jewelry store near you that is a member of Jewelers of America, so you can shop for earrings with confidence. Establishing a relationship with that jeweler means that they’ll also know the perfect earrings to suggest at each visit.

Find a JA Jeweler

There are over 8,000 JA Member jewelers across America. Find a store near you:

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