Flat-Back Earrings Are The Viral Trend That Won't Hurt You When You Lie Down

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Have a love-hate relationship with your earring collection? You're probably not alone. Earrings are a wildly popular form of jewelry. In fact, Statista reports that in 2017, 84% of women had their lobes pierced — and the current number may be even higher. But these staple accessories can also be fiddly and downright inconvenient.

For one thing, most earrings are ill-suited to many everyday activities, from jogging to napping. If their hooks aren't bouncing and sliding out as you exercise, then their posts are digging into your neck when you lie down or slip on headphones. And — especially if you have multiple piercings — it can take precious, annoying minutes out of your day to continuously put them in and take them out.

It's no wonder that jewelry fans have had enough. Enter the rise of a game-changing alternative to traditional earring styles: flat-back earrings. Promising a delightful blend of sophistication and ease, flat-back earrings are popping up all over social feeds, from TikTok to Instagram — and one brand seems to be leading the charge. A nearly inescapable online presence, Maison Miru offers an array of so-called "nap earrings," which are designed in petite, flat-back styles that are both chic and practical.

Chances are good that you've already seen or heard about these trending earrings. But if you've yet to try the flat-back style for yourself, then you may be wondering what all the hype is about. To put it simply, flat-back earrings are reimagining jewelry for daily wear, sitting at the perfect crossroads of comfort and flair.

What are flat-back earrings?

Traditionally, there have been many different styles of earrings and earring fasteners. At this very moment, you probably have multiple types sitting in your earring collection. From hoop earrings' simple latches and dangling earrings' fish-hook-esque wires to straight posts with silicone plugs or "butterfly" backs of looped metal, the variety is extensive. But none of these classic designs have been intended with continuous, comfortable wear in mind. Flat-back earrings address this issue directly by using fasteners that lay flush with the back of your earlobe, leaving no protruding parts to dig into your skin or get tangled in your hair.

One style of flat-back earrings is achieved by sliding the thinner post of the earring into a hollow back post that's just larger in diameter. Envision sliding a bar into a pipe, and you've got the general idea. Sometimes, these flat-back earrings are also called "threadless post" or "labret post" earrings, and unlike traditional designs, they are usually worn by sliding the back through your piercing first, then plugging in the front.

That said, there are a few different other styles of flat-back earrings, as well. Another popular variation is a flat, screw-back option. These earrings feature minutely threaded posts that screw into a small, disc-like back. This makes them petite and comfortable but still very secure for everyday wear.

Flat-back earrings are low-profile but high-impact

We love a pair of dramatic statement earrings, but we don't always love the messy, utilitarian fasteners required to keep them safely in place. Even putting comfort aside, chunky or obtrusive earring backs can mess with your carefully coiffed hairstyle and detract from the overall glamor of your ensemble.

However, flat-back earrings effortlessly elevate your style game while maintaining an understated profile. Crafted to sit perfectly in line with your skin, their backs are supremely out of the way and unnoticeable. So whether you're donning a daring updo or simply throwing your hair into a messy bun to run errands, flat-back earrings create an elegantly streamlined profile. And with no hanging hooks, clunky backs, or cheap-looking silicone to spoil the effect, your earrings can shine to their utmost. Plus, the sheer simplicity of their design makes them versatile companions for any ensemble and occasion, from casual brunches to glamorous soirées.

Flat-back earrings are a game-changer for comfortable, 24/7 style

Most flat-back earrings are stylish and adorably petite. But their biggest draw comes from a more practical angle — namely, that flat-back earrings are comfortable for continuous wear all day and all night, even when sleeping. Flat-backs are crafted to embrace your earlobes in a gentle, snug embrace, which means no more sitting up in the dark, fumbling and half-asleep as you belatedly remember to remove the earrings currently poking you while you attempt to nod off. Instead, you can leave in your flat-back earrings worry-free as you drift into a peaceful slumber.

And as for bathing, who says you have to part with your earrings? Whether you're enjoying a steamy shower or a revitalizing swim, these earrings add a touch of luxury to your aquatic escapades. Just be sure that they are made of a water-friendly metal that won't rust or corrode. Otherwise, flat-back designs are comfortable and easy to wear without getting tangled in your wet locks as you shampoo or towel off.

And for the modern multitasker or music-lover, flat-back earrings play well with both phones and headphones. If you've ever been stabbed in the neck by your earring posts during a long call or while trying to wear noise-canceling headphones, you know how uncomfortable the sensation can be. But with flat-back earrings, this annoyance is eradicated. From work calls to podcast marathons, your earrings integrate seamlessly and painlessly into your daily rhythm, enhancing their contemporary allure.

Cleaning your flat-back earrings

Wondering how to keep your jewelry sparkling and clean, flat-back earrings included? You're absolutely correct that cleanliness and hygiene are major considerations to keep in mind, especially since flat-back earrings lend themselves to being worn for days at a time.

On the upside, Pierced points out that most flat-back earrings have fewer crevices to clean than in other designs, such as in looped "butterfly back" earrings. As such, they may be more hygienic and easy to keep clean. Threadless styles, in particular, should be easy to wipe down, while screw-back earrings may need occasional detailing to keep debris from getting caught in and around the point of connection. When in doubt, there are specific tips to keep your earring backs clean so your piercing doesn't get mucky — or worse, infected.

As with any other jewelry, the method and cleanser you use on your flat-back earrings will depend on the materials they're made from. Some metals and gemstones are heartier and easy to clean with simple cleansers like dish soap — i.e. stainless steel. But other, softer materials like gold can quickly be scratched or degraded by the wrong cleaning technique. So before you whip out the rubbing alcohol or steel wool, be sure to cross-check your earring's composition with the proper, safe cleansing method.

Buying your first flat-back earrings

Maison Miru has positioned itself as a leading name in the flat-back earring game, and the brand's jewelry is certainly worth browsing if you want to invest in a few staple pieces. The Colette Nap Earrings are a favorite choice with their sparkling, dewdrop-shaped crystals and elegant chain. And the Little Bar Studs are versatile enough to pair with any aesthetic.

However, as covetable as they are, Maison Miru earrings also come with a steep price tag. If they're out of your budget — or you want to dip a toe into the pool of flat-back earrings before shelling out the big bucks — you may want to start with a more approachably priced option. For instance, Pavoi offers a number of inexpensive styles, such as these cute, sunburst-design Flat-Back Stud Earrings with Cubic Zirconia, which are available with silver, gold, or rose gold finishes.

Whichever brand and design you choose, when it comes to the convergence of elegance and comfort, flat-back earrings reign supreme. From sunrise to moonrise, these earrings are the embodiment of refined versatility, with an unassuming charm that allows you to effortlessly exude style. Better yet, their comfort-first ethos and minimal-effort styling embrace the ebb and flow of your dynamic lifestyle.