How To Take Off Earrings With Butterfly Backs

by Ultimate Jewelry Guide
How To Take Off Earrings With Butterfly Backs

Earrings have a pair of earring backs. These back pieces come in two different styles: clip and butterfly. Butterfly backs are the most common type; they’re used on most pierced ears.

Earring backs can be a vast topic of discussion, and they require vast knowledge to actually remove them. But we’ll get to that in a little bit. First, let’s go over the difference between the two types of backs.

Different Types Of Earring Backs

Butterfly Backs

Butterfly backs are designed with a tension bar that sits horizontally on your earlobe when inserted into your piercing. This design is intended to create a butterfly-shaped flap attached to the back that presses down onto your earlobe to create a seal.

The seal prevents the earring from falling out of your piercing. Butterfly backs are usually more comfortable than clip backs because they’re not digging into your skin.

Clip Backs

Clip backs are designed with two almost-straight arms that meet at an angle on your back piece. The design creates a spring effect when you insert it into your piercing. The arms snap together and “catch” onto your earlobe to create a seal against the back of your earring.

The clip style is less comfortable, but many people prefer them because they’re more secure.

There are almost as many different types of butterfly backs as there are ear piercings on the human ear. There are many different sizes, shapes, and styles. Some are round while others are square. Some have a gap down the middle while others don’t.

The size of your earring holes determines which butterfly backs will work for you. If your earlobes swell at all, you’ll need to use butterfly backs that can adjust to the size of your ear.

So you know what butterfly backs are, and you’ve got a few pairs in different sizes that might work for your piercing. How do you remove them?

How To Remove Butterfly Back Earrings?

Removing butterfly backs is more complicated than removing clip backs because there aren’t any straight lines or flat surfaces to help guide where the tension is applied to the earring.

Here are the easy to follow steps:

  1. Using your index finger and thumb, hold the earring post.
  2. Gently loosen the back by rotating it to the left side.
  3. Remove the back of the post by unscrewing it.

Why Do Butterfly Back Earrings Get Stuck?

Butterfly back earrings get stuck because the metal used to make the post has a rough, porous finish. These areas can trap moisture and dirt which causes corrosion and rusting. When your butterfly backing gets rusty it sticks to your earlobe. 

How Do You Get A Rusty Earring Post Unstuck?

To get your earrings unstuck you will need to use a few household items. Grab rubbing alcohol and cotton balls. Dab some rubbing alcohol on the back of your earrings and let it soak for a minute or two. After allowing the alcohol to set on your earring for a few minutes, rub the post with a cotton ball.

Use Olive Oil

If your butterfly back earrings are still stuck take out the alcohol and grab some olive oil. Pour some olive oil on the post of your earrings and let it sit for several minutes. After allowing your earrings to soak in the oil try to remove them. The oil will act as a lubricant and loosen the earring backing.

Apply Some Vaseline

Other people also use vaseline or petroleum jelly to get their earring backs unstuck. Apply a small amount of the lubricant and try to twist off your earrings.

If none of these steps work you should visit your piercer and see if they can get the earrings out.

How To Wear Butterfly Back Earrings The Right Way

Butterfly back earrings provide a great way for you to wear your favorite studs and posts with ease. So, let’s look at how to wear butterfly back earrings the right way!

  • Use cotton swabs dampened with rubbing alcohol to clean your earrings and the backs. You may also use petroleum jelly to lubricate the posts and back surfaces of the region that will come into contact with your earlobe.
  • Slide the earring back into the post while gently pressing down on the front of the stud earring. Gently slide it all the way to the middle of the post until it appears to be sealed in.
  • Once they’re in, clean your ears every day and don’t allow the earrings to rest in for too long.

Can A Stuck Butterfly Back Cause Infections?

While the convenience of wearing backs is great, it’s possible that your stuck butterfly earrings have caused you some discomfort or even given you an infection.

To prevent this from happening to you, keep these points in mind:

  • Don’t sleep with them on.
  • Make sure to clean your earlobes daily, especially if you are using them to support multiple piercings.
  • If you are experiencing discomfort, redness or an infection take the earrings out immediately and see a doctor.

Do I Need My Piercer’s Help Removing A Stuck Earring?

If none of the steps above work or you are experiencing discomfort or an infection, you should visit your piercer for help.

They will be able to open the back, allowing you to take it out without causing further damage to your earlobe. Do not try to pry the earring off from its front or from the side. You never know what type of unseen damage that could cause and it would be best to leave it up to the professionals.

Final Thoughts

Butterfly back earrings are very simple and easy to wear. However, they can be a bit difficult to take off once you’ve put them on. But by using the tips shared in this blog post, you’ll be able to take off your earrings with butterfly backs in no time.

If possible, try to use an anti-tarnish piece of cloth or baggie when not using your earrings. This will ensure the longevity of the metal and will prevent it from tarnishing easily. Also try not to wear them very often if you know that the metal will be exposed to a lot of moisture (like when it’s raining).

If you take proper care of your earrings with butterfly backs, they should last for many years. And removing them won’t be as difficult.

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