10 Cool New Takes on the Classic Pearl Earring
Before any formal event growing up, my mother used to escort me to her closet, reach into the depths of her jewelry drawer, and hand me a velvet pouch. Inside was a pair of pearl stud earrings intended to make a lady of me.
I met this routine with ambivalence, because I never liked those earrings. The simple style bored me. I didn’t feel like myself; I felt like my mom, or my grandmother. I felt “classic” — not a word that a 12-year-old girl has yet earned the right to call herself.
Though now, as fashion has evolved over the last couple of decades in fun, individualistic ways, even pearl earrings have come along for the ride. We’ve taken athleisure out of the gym and lingerie out of the bedroom as we work to broaden the bounds of conventional style. These are not necessarily trends my mom or grandmother understand, but they’ve come to define our generation of liberated, outspoken women.
And this season, designers injected that spirit into the pearl earring, giving both faux and freshwater a cool, modern upgrade. No longer are they reserved for white tablecloth dinners; instead, we can wear them to elevate our Saturday sweats (I’ll explain later, Mom).
Given the pride I have for my South American heritage, I was overjoyed to find hoops — a jewelry style that I feel so whole-heartedly defines me — decorated with pearls in a variety of shapes and colors of my choosing. Some designers played with oversized pearls or showcased a strand on a single earring, as opposed to a set.
With so many ways to wear pearl earrings, there’s a style to suit you no matter who you are, where you’re from, or what occasion you’re dressing for. Here, a round-up of 10 we love.
Beck Jewels Pearl Hoop-throughs
To buy: beckjewels.com, $230
Mateo 14-karat Detachable Pearl Hoops
To buy: mateonewyork.com, $475
Mizuki 14-karat Gold Pearl Ear Cuff
To buy: net-a-porter.com, $275
Balenciaga Silver-tone, Crystal and Faux Pearl Clip Earring
To buy: net-a-porter.com, $285
Faris Nica Earrings
To buy: needsupply.com, $189
Simone Rocha Gold-plated Sterling Silver Earrings With Pearls
To buy: stylebop.com, $265
Lizzie Fortunato Cosmic Earrings
To buy: shopspring.com, $210
Joomi Lim Mini Hoops With Pearl Drops
To buy: shopspring.com, $98
Miu Miu Silver-plated, Crystal, and Faux Pearl Earrings
To buy: net-a-porter.com, $330
Gucci Gold-plated, Crystal, and Faux Pearl Earrings
To buy: net-a-porter.com, $410