Gauges For Body Jewelry
Plug Gauges Made Easy

Plugs are known to be worn by many people to enable stretching of their earlobes. Earplugs also acknowledged as plugs are now very popular in the piercing industry especially to young people. Currently, there are varieties of plug gauges made for body modification procedures. They are commonly made in forms exhibiting short and cylindrical jewelry pieces, though larger gauges for body piercings are also created. These pieces are significantly thicker than conventional wire earrings. The plugs can be manufactured from any material, though the most common components are wood, metal, bone, acrylic glass, horn, stone, silicone or glass.


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How to Wear Plugs

Generally, plugs are used in the ears, but today they are also placed in any piercings of the body. Plug gauges stay in the right place because the end points of their cylindrical shapes are commonly flared out. At times, o-rings are being used to fasten the plugs in their proper position. Some of these jewelries may use both methods in securing the ear plugs. Other types of ear plugs are the doubled flared designs, wherein the plug wavers away on both ends and becomes thinner in the middle part. These types do not require o-rings to maintain the plugs in the body part that is pierced, but the fistula should be broad enough to accommodate the flare when the plugs are worn.

Types of Plugs

There are also plugs that do not have flared ends. These types are known as straight plugs, which are maintained in the right place by means of sliding o-rings alongside with the plugs. ends. Variations of these pieces are recognized as grooved plugs that make use of grooves incorporated in the material to clutch the o-rings securely.


Because of the popularity of huge gauge body jewelries for piercing and the usual craving to widen and stretch the piercings beyond their size, it's essential to learn about the recommended size of piercing jewelries for various parts of the body. Though, the ultimate decision will rely on the person who will get pierced and the professional piercer who will perform the procedure. When considering piercings and using gauges, one should gain knowledge of the suggested plug gauges and jewelry styles.

Things to remember about sizing is that the smaller the gauge number the thicker the gauge. Hence, a 8g (or 8 ga) barbell will require a smaller piercing than a 0g plug. The smallest common gauge is 18 gauge (approximately 1 mm); the largest common is 00 gauge(10mm). Smaller and larger sizes can be found however, so we included them in our chart.

Here is a table from the smallest to the largest sizes:
General Gauge Sizing Chart




22 Gauge.0197"0.5 mm
20 Gauge.032"0.8 mm
18 Gauge.041"1.0 mm
16 Gauge.051"1.2 mm
14 Gauge.064"1.6 mm
12 Gauge.081"2.0 mm
10 Gauge.102"2.4 mm
8 Gauge.128"3.0 mm
6 Gauge.164"4.0 mm
4 Gauge.204"5.0 mm
2 Gauge.250"6.0 mm
0 Gauge.312"8.0 mm
00 Gauge.375"10.0 mm
00 Gauge.433"11.0 mm

Fake Plugs

If you want the look of a large piercing, but don't want to stretch as far as one would need, there are "fake plugs". These have the appearance of needing a large piercing while using a much smaller one. You can create the look you want without the additional stretching and time required for a larger opening. Generally, they will look like a 00 gauge (00g) to a 8 gauge (8g) piercing while only needing a 16 gauge (16g) piercing.

Recommended Gauge Sizes for Eyebrows and Belly Piercings

For eyebrow piercing, the size of the plug should range from 16 to 18 gauges; however, a 14 gauge is becoming more and more popular for eyebrow pierce lovers. For belly button or navel piercing, the best size of plugs is the 14 gauge. One can go for a smaller or larger gauge, though many prefer to go for the above size that best suits the navel piercing because almost all rings and plugs are made suitable for it. Keep in mind that the extent and length of the piercing will chiefly depend on the person's overall size. Most navel piercings lengths range from 3/8" or 9 to 10mm to 7/16 or 11mm. These sizes are what most navel pieces accommodate with an ease.

Gauges for Nose Studs

Plug gauges made for nose piercings are generally in 18 to 20 gauges. These measurements will permit a broad range of wonderful and greatly designed nose screws and studs. One thing a person who would like to get pierced in the nose should remember is to avoid any piercing shop or parlor that utilizes a gun in performing piercing procedures. Some shops make use of guns for 20 gauge piercings for the nose, which may lead to health problems.

Septum Piercings

Septum piercings are positioned between the openings of the nostrils draw on often use 14 gauge body jewelry. The 12 and 10 piercing gauges are also slowly becoming popular. Monroe or labret piercings are performed with 14, 16 or 18 gauges. A 16 gauge can be the best choice because it offers the widest varieties of labret piercing jewelries and accessories.

Changing Plugs

When changing plugs, it's vital that the pierced area is healed and doesn't exhibit any problem. This is because stretching an infected pierced body part may lead to a more serious health quandary.

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