Hoop VS Stud Earrings (4 Important Differences)

Wondering what kind of earrings to get for yourself ? Perhaps for your small child ? Two of the most common options are hoop and stud earrings, and both come with their pros and cons. Which you end up wearing is up to your personal taste, what you’re looking for in earrings, and also your general aesthetic. So let’s compare the two, shall we?

Hoop vs stud earrings

Hoop earrings tend to be safer in the ear than studs due to the way they close, but larger hoops may snag onto clothes while studs are much less likely to be ripped out. Studs are smaller, lightweight, while hoops tend to be larger and thus heavier than most studs.

What are hoop earrings ?

Hoop earrings are circular in shape and typically have a clasp closing mechanism, forming a perfect circle. There are also hoop earrings with a post backing (like studs), but those are very rare. Hoop earrings range in size from tiny hoops that hug the ears (like sleepers), to large circles that touch your shoulders. They can be simple, embezzled, textured, full of gems or not, and they can be very light or very heavy.

examples of hoop earrings

These earrings are some of the most varied, but their key characteristics are their hoop shape, and their clasp closing mechanism.

What are stud earrings ?

Stud earrings are needle-like posts with the front featuring a jewel or a larger piece of metal, and the with a stopper that is either pushed or screwed onto the post to keep it close to the ear. Stud earrings tend to be small, and some can be downright tiny.

examples of stud earrings

This kind of earrings is easy to put on, easy to take off, and may require the occasional check to see they’re still in place. Chandelier and drop earrings may also have a stud backing, but they are not classed as stud earrings. Stud earrings are generally small and simple.

Hoop earrings (small) are safer to sleep in than studs

There are plenty of hoop earring styles, so if you’re looking for something safe, comfortable, and easy to sleep in, then small hoop earrings are a better choice. Do not sleep in the medium or large ones !

There are small ones, called sleepers/huggers/cuffs, that are just a very small hoop that hugs your ear lobe. This makes them safe to wear for small children, since they won’t be easy to pull off or snag onto clothes.

925 sterling silver cuffs with 14k gold vermeil. See them on Amazon.

Personally I grew up with this kind of earrings, then as I grew older I expanded my collection of earrings to feature mostly stud chandeliers and drop earrings (all of them with studs or hooks). But those are for going out, in the house I only wear sleepers and I do sleep with them. I do take off all my jewelry when showering and working out.

Stud earrings are not a good choice for something you want to sleep in or lay on the couch in. This is because of their backing, which digs into your neck and the back of your ear when you lay the side of your face on the pillow. They are no problem at the office or in places where you are on your feet or working.

Read also: Halo VS Cluster Engagement Rings 

Stud earrings may fall off, hoop earrings are more secure

There are two kinds of stud earrings, the push-back kind and the screw-back kind. The push-backs have a backing that is simply pushed onto the post, until it sits flush against the ear. The screw-backs have a backing that is screwed onto the post until it’s flush against the ear. Screw-backs tend to be safer as in they have a smaller chance of randomly getting loose and falling off, but they are no the most common form of stud earrings.

Hoop earrings have a clasp closing, so they will stay in your ears far more than studs. However these can prove difficult to unclasp sometimes, so it’s best to practice your technique.

Hoop earrings may snag on clothes, studs don’t touch clothes

If you’re getting larger hoops, you may notice that they can snag onto things. You clothes, your hat, your purse, your hair, quite a few things. And the very large ones, the ones larger than 2 inches, will almost always hit one thing or another, so it’s best to be mindful when wearing these.

Princess-cut moisaanite screw-back studs, set in 14k gold. See them on Amazon.

Studs are less likely to snag on anything since they’re so small. This means you can safely wear stud earrings if you’re wearing your hair down, you’re wearing something with a high neck, something flowy and lacy around the shoulders.

Stud earrings are simpler, lighter than most hoop earrings

Looking for something simple, more delicate ? Perhaps something even lightweight ? Then stud earrings may just be the answer, since these earrings don’t have very large fronts, so they don’t end up weighing your ears down. Most of the time stud earrings feature just one item, such as one diamond or diamond simulant, one pearl, or one interesting shape.

Hoop earrings, especially if they’re not sleepers, will feel very obvious since you’ll feel them dangling and moving about ever time you move your head. And if these are large hoops, they can become very heavy, especially if they have gems or extra metal on them.

Are hoop earrings classy or trashy ?

Hoop earrings can be very classy when the rest of your outfit, makeup, and hair are sleek and downplayed. A pair of 3 inch hoops with CZ on them can look really nice if you’re wearing a simple, one color dress with your hair pulled back into a high or low bun. Make sure you’re not wearing a necklace so you don’t turn the look into too much.

But what about that same pair of earrings with a plain white shirt, denims, white sneakers and soft, wavy hair ? Also a great, smooth look.

So when do hoop earrings look trashy ? When they’re paired with too much jewelry, very flashy clothing, and exaggerated makeup. In short, hoop earrings when up looking trashy when you’re trying too hard to impress or draw attention to yourself. Go with an understated or neutral outfit and your hoop earrings will make you look put together, rather than underdressed.

Are hoop earrings out of style ?

No, hoop earrings are not out of style, especially simpler ones without too much going on, regardless of their size. Sleepers will always compliment everyone’s looks, and they may even have a small jewel dangling right under them.

Are hoops or studs better for new piercings ?

Stud earrings are better and safer for new piercings, since they are much easier to take of and put back on. The flesh around the puncture is still tender, so dealing with a clasp close isn’t easy. Most of the time the earrings you get your pierces done with are medical-grade steel or silver or gold, so they should be sharp and clean.

Most piercing salons recommend keeping the piercing earrings in for 1-2 weeks constantly, so the hole doesn’t heal closed. With constant wear the pierce will stop being sensitive after a few days. If you take off your piercings for a few weeks the hole may close back up completely.