These Earrings Don't Make My Ears Freak Out

For me, so much as trying on an earring makes my ears blow up into sensitive red balloons that won't calm down for days. Even the "hypoallergenic" pair of earrings I got pierced with at Claire's in the mall inflamed my lobes. So, needless to say, I've stayed away from earrings altogether since. My thinking: If hypoallergenic earrings would make my ears a raw mess, any other ear adornments are definitely out of the question.

My sans-earring life was peachy, that is, until hoops and geometric metal earrings became a trend, and that trend started calling my name. I felt like if I could wear gigantic hoops or mismatched metal earrings with my favorite T-shirts, everything would be right in my life. But, at the end of the day, every trend has its limit, and monster ears wasn't worth either spending oodles of money, or scouring the web for a pair of aesthetically pleasing earrings that were also hypoallergenic, and had a higher chance (read: still a chance of failure) of keeping my ears happy.

So, I gave up again. That is, until I stumbled across Justine Clenquet, who made my dream earrings: a gold hoop adorned with smaller silver hoops (hooray for mixing metals), for under $100. Pus or no pus, I had to have them — I decided to go for the (plated 24 karat) gold, and try 'em. They were just that good.

mom r u proud I'm wearing earrings

A photo posted by RACHEL BESSER (@rachelbesser) on

Since the earrings are made up of 24-karat gold plated brass, I expected inflamed ears. But it never happened. I can't tell you why these specific earrings work with my body chemistry, when every other pair doesn't, but I can tell you that it probably means you should give them a shot, too.

While my specific style is sold out, I've rounded up the best of Justine Clenquet's amazing earrings below. I urge you to give this brand a try. Whether or not you have allergy issues, it doesn't even matter. These earrings will win you over on aesthetics alone.

Justine Clenquet Alice Earrings, $101.47, available at Justine Clenquet.
Justine Clenquet Sasha Hoop $84.41, available at Justine Clenquet.
Justine Clenquet Sinead Earrings, $50.56, available at Justine Clenquet.
Justine Clenquet Joan Hoops, $50.56, available at Justine Clenquet.

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The Throwback Trend Your Closet Needs

Illustrated by Alex Marino.

It's no secret that the '90s are continuing to trend hard right now. And while we love that we can simultaneously rock a slip dress and a tattoo choker without strangers asking us if we're going to a themed party, we'll admit that many of the trends from our favorite decade aren't exactly tried and true.

But after perusing the new nostalgic '90s collection at Macy's, we're convinced that one popular silhouette that likely dominated our childhood closets (and began peeking into our wardrobe sometime last year) is still one of the most versatile silhouettes worth investing in this fall: the mock neck. It's the middle child of fashion — not quite a crewneck and not a full-grown turtleneck — but it's the perfect transitional piece. Think about it: You get a few extra inches of warmth for the fall, and you don't have to prematurely commit to the sometimes-stifling embrace of a turtleneck.

The best part is, this throwback layering piece is actually super practical and provides tons of styling options that feel much more café than cafeteria. Ahead, we're showing you the five freshest — and most grown-up — ways to do it.

Work, Work, Work, Work, Work

Sure, the mock neck was a real crowd-pleaser in elementary school yearbooks but, when paired with the right accessories, it has a mature feel. Throw on an iteration with a pair of flared jeans, some statement slip-on heels, and a pair of bold hoops. No one will ever question your preparedness to adult.

Lotfi bag, Reliquia hoops.

Indigo Rein, $49.00, available at Macy'sTibi, $265.00, available at TibiJeffrey Campbell, $130.00, available at Jeffrey Campbell ShoesIllustrated by Alex Marino.

Errands & Such

Your never-ending list of errands is perhaps one of the worst parts of being a grown-up, and when you're schlepping all over town, comfort is top priority. Achieve those athleisure goals with a simple mock-neck crop, comfy pajama-esque pants, practical sneakers, and a backpack (so your hands are free to carry more grocery bags, obviously).

In Awe of You by AwesomenessTV, $29.00, available at Macy'sOak + Fort, $28.00, available at Oak + FortBaggu, $280.00, available at BagguValentino, $2100.00, available at Net-A-PorterAcne Studios, $500.00, available at Acne StudiosIllustrated by Alex Marino.

Movies With Your Crush

You don't need to sneak off to a double feature to snuggle up to your S.O. anymore, but you can still maintain a coquettish look on date night if that's your style. Try a mock-neck bodysuit with a high-waisted skirt, a solid ankle boot, and a trendy bomber the next time you catch a flick.

Material Girl, $39.50, available at Macy'sNew Revival, $82.00, available at Pixie MarketMaje, $480.00, available at Net-A-PorterBaubleBar, $34.00, available at BaubleBarIsabel Marant, $620.00, available at Net-A-PorterIllustrated by Alex Marino.

Livin' For The Weekends

Weekends don't get any less exciting the older you are, so why not keep your off-duty look playful, yet refined? Put a mock-neck shirt under a jumper and pair it with whimsical accessories for a sophisticated twist on a classic '90s combo.

In Awe of You by AwesomenessTV, $29.00, available at Macy'sIn Awe of You by AwesomenessTV, $59.00, available at Macy'sCatbird, $44.00, available at CatbirdGucci, $750.00, available at Saks Fifth AvenueLoeffler Randall, $595.00, available at Loeffler RandallIllustrated by Alex Marino.

Backyard Barbecue

As the heat dies down and your pals realize that the days until the first snowfall are finite, invitations to rooftop drinks and boozy park picnics are sure to pile up. For an outdoor-hang session, put a casual spin on a mock-neck dress with a jean jacket, sneakers, and a roomy tote to carry all the snacks.

Jessica Simpson, $89.50, available at Macy'sCRAP Eyewear, $58.00, available at CrapAlice + Olivia, $295.00, available at Alice + OliviaCalvin Klein, $69.00, available at Macy'sBaggu, $36.00, available at BagguIllustrated by Alex Marino.

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