Hoop Earrings vs. Stud Earrings: Which Are Most Versatile?

Both hoop earrings and stud earrings are an undisputed necessity in any worthy jewellery collection. However, which is more versatile for wear? We pit the two against each other to find out which of these cult classics is the one for you. 


What are hoop earrings and what do they symbolise?

Hoop earrings are bolder than the traditional stud style but have a versatility that makes them both understated and showstopping depending on the design.

They are thought to symbolise strength and international fashion and have their roots in Egyptian, African, Asian, and South American cultures. 

Today, they are worn all over the world by many for their ability to round off almost any look, giving a polished feel on a daily basis. 


The history of hoop earrings

Tradition shows that hoop earrings have been worn since Ancient times, going all the way back to 2500 BC. As such, they have been ingrained into fashion culture and tradition, and have earned some rich symbolism. 

During the Middle Ages and Renaissance period, however, the hoops declined in popularity and there are fewer accounts of the wealthy wearing them. They then circled back into fashion during the 1820s and since then we have seen them rise and grow in popularity right up until today.

They are no doubt a celebrity favourite too. We see the likes of Bella Hadid, Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, and Selena Gomez all sporting the spherical jewel regularly, showcasing that the hoop is here to stay.


Types of hoop earrings

The hoop earring comes in many forms and is not even restricted to circular shape anymore. Just as long there is an outline of a shape with negative space through the middle, consider it a hoop earring. 

The basic idea of a hoop earring is of course a classic, round, clean silver or gold circle. These are the pair that can be worn morning, noon and night, no matter the outfit or setting. Then comes bolder styles, but no less classic. These can come in the form of textured hoops, diamond hoops, abstract hoops, and coloured hoops. Each can come in an array of variations and sizes that are appropriate for several reasons. 

If you think of your hoop earrings like t-shirts, you’ll be able to find pairs to curate a perfect hoop collection. For example, you have v-neck t-shirts, round-neck, long-sleeve, short-sleeve, etc. Your hoops should have the same thoughtful input. Start with the classics and build your collection from there. 


What is a stud earring?

In any collection of essential jewellery, studs are without a doubt the mainstay of earrings. Studs sit snug on the top of your ear lobe and feature a small design that has subtle sophistication, is endlessly wearable, and will punctuate an outfit like no other. 

They are the quiet luxury in your jewellery box, and are the poster child for “good things come in small packages.” 


The history of stud earrings

The stud earrings' history dates back 7000 years, with their inception in ancient Asia. They were traditionally worn by high society men to express their class. 

They were especially triumphant during the Renaissance, surpassing hoop earrings when short hair became fashionable. Shakespeare himself is known to don stud earrings, once again showing how earrings showcased status and class. 

Today their lineage holds strong and their versatility has been demonstrated in abundance. The likes of Kate Middleton, Anne Hathaway, Emma Watson, and many more are seldom seen stud-less. 


Types of stud earrings

The choice of stud-style earrings is almost endless. While each type possesses its own quirks and perks, there is a stud earring perfect for every occasion, and each is a reference of classic style and timeless sophistication. 

If you’re looking for a pair of studs that can work seamlessly from outfit to outfit, opt for an understated design in any metal choice that you like. This way, even if they’re not the classic silver or gold, they’ll be minimal enough to be worn with a variety of hairstyles and outfit choices. A pair of small diamond studs would also be a style that will never falter, no matter the situation, and can add a touch of glamour to the everyday.

From here, you can build a collection that holds intricate designs as well as bold statement studs. 


Which is better for me?

Whether a stud style or hoop style is better suited to you will be based upon your personal preference and style. 

Many gravitate to studs because of their understated size, meaning they can be worn in almost any setting. If you’re someone who enjoys wearing their hair up and prefers minimalistic jewellery and outfits, then a simple set of studs will work well with your style. You can also achieve this look with slim hoops in either cool-toned or warm-toned metal. As long as the hoop is between small and medium size, then they will fit your aesthetic with ease.

However, if you’re someone who lives by the “more is more” moto, then studs may not be for you. Instead, going bold with diamond or large geometrical hoops will have you commanding any room. These may sometimes be impractical in certain settings, so be sure to think ahead before slipping these on in the morning.


Hoop vs stud earrings comparison

Let’s compare the two earring styles side by side to see which comes out on top for you. 



Hoop Earrings

Stud Earrings


Price range varies depending on the design. However, can cater to many budgets.

Price range varies depending on the design. However, can cater to many budgets.


Available in an array of styles and metal types.

Available in an array of styles and metal types.


Can be worn both casually and formally, in most settings, excluding those wear your safety could be compromised if the hoops could get caught and snagged. 

Most versatile earring style.


Impractical for certain situations, such as some formal and activity-based settings.

Are safe and uncompromising in most settings. Can be worn to the office and during certain gym activities. 


Whilst studs have been around longer, hoops are on par with them in terms of longevity in the fashion world and are currently a trending jewellery style.

Have had a longer history than hoops, and are always popular. 


As our head-to-head comparison shows, historically, studs come out better in terms of versatility, but hoops are a popular choice in today’s fashion trends, so it is hard to choose a clear winner. 

However, it all comes down to personal preference. We think either would make a great addition to your jewellery collection and we hope you are better informed to make your next earring purchase. If you’re still torn, you could go one step further and stack both studs and hoops together on your ears! 

Browse our collections of stud and hoop earings online and in-store today.

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