• Paula


When I was a young whipper snapper, I begged my mum for my ears pierced. She gave in when I was seven, but we lied to the jeweller (it was the 70’s - that is where you went to get your ears done and you needed to be 10). I remember it so well - I felt like a million dollars and so grown up.

Mid eighties, aged fourteen and wearing more bangles and jangles than an emtombed Nefertiti I had my second holes pierced. Sadly it turns out I‘m alergic to anything other than gold (story of my life) and my ears swelled up, oozing puss and sticking to my curly perm. The eighties plastic smartie earrings for 50 pence off of Wigan market didn’t a good earring make. So I let them heal and became a one earring hole, diamond stud type of gal forever. The end.

No. Not the end actually. When my daughter started getting a few more ear piercings (we won’t mention the nose ring aquired in Thailand aged 18 that gave her father angst, worrying about blood poisoning and infectious diseases for weeks), I kinda liked the look on her but I hated the choices of jewellery. It all seemed limited to coloured metal, titanium or chunky silver - never delicate or pretty or precious. And anyway, I was far too old for more piercings, wasn’t I?

Then a few years ago, along came the ‘curated ear‘ courtesy of Maria Tash.

Darling of Instagram in what felt like 30 seconds, I started to see images of women my age having their helix pierced, or their rook... (by the way, I never knew any of these terms or earring positions even existed, let alone you could buy beautiful jewellery to put in them). Based in New York, it still felt somewhat out of reach with nothing similar in the UK, until Maria did a pop up event during London Fashion Week and fashionistas of all ages queued around the block for a bit of pain and a whiff of precious stones.

When her brand eventually became resident in Liberty and after much incessant stalking on Instagram and her website of the looks and jewellery available, I plucked up the courage to book an appointment for my helix to be pierced.

I ended up having three piercings that day, all in the same ear! My helix which is the top of your ear and I had a second and third hole in my right lobe done (second picture below which is not my actual ear but what it looks like).

Did it hurt? The piercing team are amazing and it’s super quick and really efficiently done with minimum discomfort, all done with needles - never guns. I went for plain gold small studs which heal quicker and are easier to clean - they even had extra long stems so to let the piercing swell and not restrict it. Most people try and go for the most elaborate earrings they are allowed so I am in the minority apparently but thankfully common sense prevailed!

It still took about six months for my helix not to make me wince if I caught it (going to the hairdressers was sometimes dicing with pain from a rogue comb). So once I was no longer sore, when I went back to Maria Tash to buy some more elaborate jewellery as my Christmas present.

Sadly, like having a tattoo, it seems that it is addictive, and late last year I was back there wondering what else I could have done. The picture above is my ear as appeared on the Maria Tash instagram (border line wet myself with joy at this btw) with two shiny lobe piercings with tiny baby rings. This was a birthday treat from the husband who likes them but thinks I’m mad. (I had the holes done and used my original gold studs whilst they healed before I went back after 6 months for the rings to be fitted).

It’s £15 to have your ear pierced at Maria Tash plus the cost of the jewellery you choose (which can be the expensive bit). Many jewellery designers are now copying the look so the availability of beautiful earrings at more affordable prices are everywhere. Check out Astley Clarke, Heavenly Necklaces and Buckley London for ideas.

So still think you’re too old? You’re never too old for anything. It’s how it makes you feel. And I feel earring-tastic....

Pictures courtesy of Maria Tash Instagram - first picture is of my ear as taken by Kevin the Piercer....

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