The popularity of hoop earrings continued from the '60s through the '90s, and till today, remains a classic for women of all ages. As one of the oldest fashioned pieces recorded in history, hoop earrings trace back to ancient Egypt all the way to modern times and have become an ultimate statement piece.
With its circular shape, hoops represent unity, wholeness, and infinity. With different meaning in different cultures and communities, the hoop earring is more than just an accessory.
Hoop earrings were embraced by societies everywhere including the Greeks, Romans and Asians. The first hoops originated around 2500 B.C.E in the African civilisation of Nubia.
In 1500 B.C.E, hoops were worn by Egyptian men and women who believed that the hoops enhanced their beauty. Royal Egyptians wore hoops as signifiers of their social status. It was also an accessory used to identify tribal members, which later turned into religious symbols and then power.
The earrings found its way to American in the 1980s within working-class Latina and African American women. Till today, hoop earrings are more than just an accessory for these women but a symbol of their pride and empowerment as women of colour.
Hoops are a statement of confidence and boldness. With this timeless simplicity and symbolic weight, the hoop earring has adapted. Still engulfing strength and international fashion, hoops are now back in trend with its numerous unique sizes, various colours other than the classic gold and silver which can be matched with any outfit for any occasion. However, the way these earrings were worn in the past, is not necessarily the way it is worn today.
Hoops were usually worn for a night out or parties and not necessarily to formal or casual events. Hoops now come in variations of embellished styles with pearls, stones, dangling gemstones, and other ornaments adding dimension to the basic earring and making the it suitable for any kind of event. However, the key to adapting hoops in any setting is picking out the right size such that it stands out but also brings the entire attire together with elegance and boldness.
Considering the occasion and the dress code, the size for the hoops can be small, medium or large. Smaller hoops are discreet and are a fresh alternative to studs. It highlights the face without screaming for attention. Depending on the look, thicker or skinnier hoops can upgrade the classic rings. Larger hoops can vary in sizes; medium hoops dangling a few centimetres from the ear to ones, which graze the shoulder. An additional factor to consider when it comes to larger hoops is how easy it is to manoeuvre in them. These hoops call for attention to the face with oversized rings. Depending on the setting, the size of the hoops can be picked.
Previously, hoop earrings used to come in only gold or silver. Now, hoops come in a range of colours like crystal, pastel shades, emerald green or blue and many more in varying thicknesses. This allows the accessory to be flexible which can be worn to work or a party.
Hoops most commonly come in plain and simple textures. Today, hoops come in textures including ridges and charms too. Additionally, earrings featuring multiple hoops in one is a classy yet fun look. Creating an effect of a hoop within a hoop, it stands out in a gathering. These earrings are fun to play around with when one has multiple piercings alternating between sizes and designs. It creates a chic and graceful ripple effect.
The multidimensional earrings go well with almost any attire. Hoops bring youthfulness and playfulness to the most boring of clothes. For instance, it can transform a boring turtleneck sweater by adding a voguish element. It can be matched with simple everyday T-shirts for a contemporary and comfortable look. Replacing forgettable studs or tiny unnoticeable earrings with a tasteful pair of hoops can exude confidence and power, especially in the workspace.
In today's fashion world, hoop earrings transcend any other accessory in terms of both meaning and trendiness.
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed
Styling: Sonia Yeasmin Isha