Ear love stretching, causes and will they ever shrink down or go away?

I have a question for any plastic surgeon or doctor. I was wondering if you would always have to get surgery after stretching your earlobes. I have heard from others (whom have their ears stretched) that depending on how big you stretch them, they will shrink down but I want to make sure with a professional. I want to be able to go to 10mm max (00 gauge)because I personally want to get a job when I'm older and would like to see if my parents are right when they say that if I stretch them they can never go back down. I will attach a picture that shows the top size i would like to go to. So in other words, will they ever close up if ear lobes are stretched, if not will they ever shrink down to a normal ear piercing size like 18mm?

Doctor Answers 15

Gauged earlobes

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Thanks for sharing. The earlobes will shrink without the plugs. To what extent you will have to wait and see. I feel by 6 weeks you will get a good idea of the end result. I have patients remove the plugs for about 4-6 weeks to allow for the earlobe to contract and then do the repair.

Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

Do Stretched Earlobes Ever Shrink Back to Normal Size?

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Stretched earlobes never shrink back to normal size.  

They all require earlobe surgery to correct the earlobe deformity.  

The precise procedure varies with the nature of the earlobe deformity, but all of the earlobe repair and earlobe reshaping procedures are done under local anesthesia in the office.

Fredrick A. Valauri, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon

Ear lobe stretching

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The earlobes  will shrink back to some degree but not completely. I have had many patients undergo eventual excision of the stretched skin tell me “I wish I hadn't done it”. My suggestion: listen to your parents!

Best wishes.

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Do gauged earlobes shrink back down to normal?

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In my experience earlobes stretched with smaller gauges will shrink back down a little bit after they are removed. I find that even people with 10 millimeter gauges will require surgery to correct their earlobe after the gauge is removed.

Earlobe gauging will unlikely shrink down after a certain extent

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Earlobe gauging will unlikely shrink down after a certain extent. In my experience, these holes and gauges usually don't shrink up much.  Usually it requires a surgical reduction. Gauging definitely has an impact on your professional presentation, whether most would like to admit it or not. This is unfortunate that we are judged by our appearances but this is part of our genetics and based on our desire for self preservation. You can reduce these earlobes gauges / stretching very easily. The procedure can take about an hour or so and can be done under iv sedation and you don't have to be totally "knocked out"

Thanks for reading, Dr Young

Philip Young, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon

Ear lobe stretching and will the hole shrink down?

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If you stretch your pierced ear lobe holes and later decide you don't like this, be forewarned, the holes will probably not shrink back down.  I have a number of patients who required surgical correction of stretched ear lobe holes that they later regretted they had made.

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

The earlobe will NOT stretch back to its normal shape after a large piercing is removed

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If a typical tiny hole has been created by an ear piercing for a tiny shaft of an earring, and the earring is removed, the hole before complete healing, may heal itself by closing it off.  Larger piercings stretch the skin and the skin will not close over 100%.  These permanent skin openings would be too large to close by themselves and would need reconstruction to make the hole go away.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Best Method to Correct Stretched Ear Lobes from "Love Stretching"

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Hi Gahanna,

It would be a "Stretch" to think that your ear hole would shrink back to normal after your love stretching.  When you are ready, a ear lobe repair surgery in the office under local anesthesia will be needed.  Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Ear lobe stretching after gauge piercing

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Yes, the skin will shrink after removing the gauge piercing. However, you most likely will still have a hole and may require plastic surgery to close the hole and/or remove excess skin.

Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 89 reviews


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Do not do this.  You will regret it and require surgery to correct this distortion.  Be distinctive and stand out in a positive way.  This does not look good and will cost you multiple thousands in repaire bills later.  The insuraence will not pay to correct this deformity.   Good Luck

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.