In ancient Indian cultures men can also be found wearing wonderfully elaborate earrings. In the western world by the 20th Century earrings were no longer seen as the province of men although they did become permissible for women soldiers in the USA to wear. A report in the New Times in 15 Sept 1983 headed, ‘Army Women Prevail On Earrings on Duty', reported that:
"The Army has decided that women in uniform may wear earrings as long as they are not gaudy and ''fit snugly against the ear.''
Since 2500 BC earrings have come in and out of fashion and have been worn by both men and women over that time. For instance, in the 1920s sailors who had survived a shipwreck typically wore a gold hoop to symbolise their adventures at sea.
It’s odd with such a gendered history that earrings in the 21st century are so strongly associated with women. What a fun world it might be if more men took up earrings again. It’s hard to imagine the armies of the world expecting them to wear them as part of their uniform but given the huge range of shapes, colours, materials and sizes that earrings are made from perhaps men should be encouraged to reconsider adding earrings to their wardrobe. They can be fun, fab, dramatic, colourful, weird and wonderful just like their history.