Whether to remove the plastic backs found on some earrings has launched a huge debate.
There are some debates of such great importance they have the power to divide the nation. This is one of them: Do you take the plastic backs off earrings or keep them on?
On Monday, 19-year-old Chelsea Smith tweeted an innocuous-sounding revelation: “After my nineteen years of living i have now realized that you are supposed to take the plastic part off.”
Smith was referring to that flat, circular plastic piece often found attached to the backs of earrings, which hug the ear when worn. In a photo posted on Twitter, she showed how she removed the plastic piece.
But the teen could have never predicted the insane response to what seemed to have been an offhand tweet: 43K retweets as of Tuesday morning, and news coverage everywhere, from Today.com to PopSugar to BuzzFeed.
Alas, no one seems to agree whether or not Smith’s style tip is bad advice or common knowledge. For example, Twitter user Jo Anne Smoot says, “helps distribute weight on heavy earrings and makes it more comfortable.”
User eaglearmcandy implored others “to keep it on to stabilize the earring” so it doesn’t accidentally fall out of larger holes. (For those of you without pierced ears, with lots of wear, the holes enlarge slightly over time and therefore hold the earrings less snugly.)
— IG: eaglearmcandy (@luvnshuzmelissa) August 2, 2015
User selenasbuteraa spoke for the my-mind-is-blown contingent with her incredulous tweet, “I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW WTF”:
— baneen🛸 (@revivaIsbutera) August 2, 2015
Ultimately we like the point made by Twitter user Paul Michael Bierker, that the plastic bit guards those with sensitive skin from an allergic reaction on their ears:
@Chelsea__Smithh great tip but be careful of metal allergies as the extra penetration of the base metal back can inflame sensitive ears
— Paul Michael Bierker (@pmichaeldesign) August 4, 2015
Of course, no one will see the plastic backs of your earrings anyway, so the debate seems pretty moot. Still, let us know in the comments where you stand on this debate: Take the plastic backs off earrings, or keep them on?