How to Remove Earrings From Newly Pierced Ears for Sports

Portrait of a football player

Newly pierced ears require special care for about six to eight weeks after the piercing. During this time, situations may arise that make it necessary to remove the piercing studs. Such situations may involve a particular dress code at school or work and athletic activities. Removing the piercing studs from the ears too early, however, can increase the risk of infection and irritation. If left out too long, the hole may heal shut. Consult the piercing professional before removing the studs early for a sports activity.

Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water. Dry the hands with a clean towel.

Soak the tip of a cotton swab in saline solution or use an after-piercing solution if applicable.

Rub the piercing stud and surrounding skin with the wet cotton swab. Repeat this step on the back of the ear lobe as well.

Twist the piercing studs one complete turn. Do this slowly. This insures sections of the skin have not grown tightly against the stud.

Grasp the front of the piercing stud with one hand and the back with the other hand.

Pull the front of the stud away from the back. This can be painful since the piercing has yet to heal fully. If the ring is a different type, follow the instructions given by the piercer to remove it. This can include twisting a ball-tipped stud until it comes off or loosening a ball enough so that the ring is no longer intact and then sliding it through the ear hole.

Soak a fresh cotton swab in saline solution and gently wipe the piercing. Soak the earring in a separate container of saline, rinse and place in a safe container to dry before using again.

Return the studs to the ears as soon as possible. The piercer may recommend an alternate earring if the type of stud used initially can't be reused. Be sure to wash your hands with soap and water and cleanse the piercing with saline before handling the earring.


Avoid having to remove a new piercing by discussing alternatives with sports officials or the professional piercer. The piercer can recommend metal-free piercing studs. Medical tape may be placed over some pierced ears for protection instead of removing the stud.


Removing the piercing stud before it has healed will likely cause discomfort and increase the risk of complications. Attempt any other alternatives instead of removing the stud early.