Published 07/04/2022 by Megan Engle

While some trends come and go, we’ll always be hooked on hoops. We can’t imagine a more versatile and timeless go-to earring. From big, bold beauties to marvelously minimal masterpieces, there’s a hoop for every style.

What Do Hoop Earrings Symbolize?

Not quite sure about all this hoop hype? Well, let’s break down the hoopla for you.

At first glance, the hoop seems so simple, but there’s so much meaning and potential locked in those little loops. The circle gives this piece a sense of eternity and constancy. Wrapping perfectly around and around, we could get lost in those curves all day. 

And while different cultures and time periods have given the humble hoop different meanings, one thing has always rang true for this ring-like bling. The hoop is power. The hoop is strength. The hoop is here.

What is the History of Hoop Earrings?

Are you ready for us to blow your mind? The earliest pair of hoops we’ve found so far dates back to 2500 B.C.E., and they came from what’s now modern-day Sudan. That means this fabulous fashion staple is almost as old as written language. And today, we honestly can’t imagine a world without either ingenious invention. 

By the 1500s BCE, this iconic piece had spread across the globe. Men and women both sported the hoop as a symbol of beauty, strength and status. Egyptian pharaohs, Greek noble women, Roman elites and Persian soldiers all embraced this fierce look. While the hoop never really left the scene, it did take a step back for a long stretch after that. With extravagant European hairdos, headpieces and collars, earrings unfortunately didn’t have much room to shine. 

The 1800s brought the world electricity, photography, steam power and more hoops! Dainty hoops were celebrated for their romantic and Roman look. By this point, most men left the hoop-loop, leaving all the fun to the ladies. 

Skipping ahead to the twentieth century and setting our sights on the United States, things got a little complicated. Here, the hoop was a symbol for many Indigenous and immigrant groups. As both a heritage and heirloom, the hoop united people across time and space.

With this cultural connection, many white Americans began to see this piece in a different light and moved away from the style. This is where the stigma around the hoop took root. But the hate was no match for the hoop. This bold beauty has remained a mainstay in Latino, Black and Indigenous fashion. It came to represent resistance and resilience. 

The 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s relit everyone’s interest in this iconic piece. From petite and polished to bodaciously bold, these decades were filled with the hottest hoop remixes. And thanks to the exploding media landscape, these trends just took off. You couldn’t flip through a magazine or channel surf for too long without stumbling across a pair. 

Today, when you choose the hoop, you’re choosing to be part of something so much bigger. You’re joining the ranks of queens, soldiers, activists, divas and strong women everywhere and every-when. 

What Kinds of Hoops Are There?

Okay so now you may be saying to yourself “I want to be in the hoop loop, but I don’t know how to start.” Don’t stress, cause we got you covered. 

Let’s get the low-down on these loopy legends. 

Hinged Hoop Earrings

These bad boys are off the hinge. This kind of earring features a hinge at the bottom of the circle. While the hoop itself is often thicker, you’ll find a thinner metal piece at the top that passes perfectly through your piercing.

The hinged design makes these earrings particularly sturdy and secure. But, if you’re looking for something extra extra large, keep in mind the bigger the hoop the more stress is on your hinge. We’d recommend this style for medium to light-weight-large looks.

Huggies Earrings

Sometimes you need a good hug–like a really good, comfy, cozy, can’t-get-enough kind of hug. That’s where huggies come in handy. These precious baby hoops are the perfect little something to add just a touch of spunk and spice to your look. 

These guys get their name from the way they hang close to and hug the lobe of your ear. They have their hinge at the top where the hoop meets the wire. If you’re looking for something that’s never going to weigh you down or get in your way, pamper yourself with some huggies today. 

Wire-Loop Earrings

Are you over hinges? Don’t get tired, get wired! 

Unlike hinged hoops and huggies, wire-loop earrings don’t have a hinge at all. Instead, they are made from a single wire. One end of the wire passes through the front of the ear and is secured by a loop in the other end of the wire. 

Because these hoops are made from a single piece of material, they tend to sport slimmer shapes. 

Captive Bead Ring

Those of you who have body piercing are probably familiar with the captive bead ring. This style breaks down into two pieces; an almost complete circle and a bead piece. The bead piece closes the circle and locks down the loopy look.

This kind of hoop is usually used for more permanent piercing pieces.

How to Style Hoop Earrings

The best thing about hoop earrings? They can be worn with anything, anytime, anywhere. Seriously! Whether you are going for that chill boho look with small gold hoops or looking to make a statement with bold silver hoops, hoop earrings will always leave you feeling inspired. 

Try something new with hoop earrings, and stop jumping through hoops to find great looks. If you're getting ready for that much-needed GNO (girl's night out), be sure to pair your playful gold hoop earrings with a stunning bracelet or chain to tie your look together. Just find the hoop earrings that speak to you and let them pull together your outfits - it's that simple. Wanting something that feels a little more work-appropriate? Pair your work outfits with a pair of silver diamond hoops for a sophisticated look. 

If you struggle with studs, give hoop earrings a try instead. Because hoop earrings don't have the backing that studs do, it makes them easier to take in and out. They also hold in better for people with thick earlobes. The hoop earrings design also prevents the earring from tangling in hair or stabbing your head, so they are perfect for children. A tip for understanding hoop earring sizing: the hoop earring measurements are the inner diameter of the hoop - not the outer.

Hip Hip Hoop-Ray!

At the end of the day, we have just one word for you. Hoops.

Those five little letters hold absolutely limitless potential. Imagine your next favorite part of hoops. Are they big, bold and gold? Maybe subtle, shining silver? Lush lucite? Marvelously milgrain? Whatever you decide, we can’t wait to see you rock it. Stay in the hoop loop with Jedora.

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