You may believe that you just happen to have weak skin and that’s why your earlobe tore. However, whether you have weak skin or normal skin, a torn earlobe can happen to you. Typically, earlobe tearing occurs when an earring gets yanked out, or when an earring gets caught on clothing or is even pulled on by a child. Dr. Schultz says, “You can have normal strength skin and still get a tear. If you have weaker earlobes, then you’re more prone to getting a tear of some sort. And many people even get stretched or torn earlobes without even recognizing that there’s been any trauma.”

In addition to a stress caused when earrings are suddenly pulled out, a split earlobe or stretched pierce hole can also be the result of regularly wearing earrings too heavy for your earlobe(s), which gradually creates the tear. In some cases, the shape of your earlobes may even be altered due to previous facelift surgery.

There are two different kinds of torn earlobes. The first kind is an incomplete tear and the second kind is a complete tear. An incomplete tear results in an enlarged, vertically stretched out pierce hole, but the rim of the earlobe is still intact, which gives the appearance of a slice or long vertical gash. When you have a complete tear, the tear extends from the site of the piercing and through the bottom of the lobe.

If you’ve been walking around with a torn earlobe for awhile, don’t worry, you can still have it fixed. Dr. Schultz says, “It doesn’t make a difference whether the tear happened two days ago or twenty years ago. To repair it, my technique will change based on the age and type of the tear, but the resulting outcome won’t be affected.” You should visit a dermatologist right away to fix your torn earlobe, especially if it’s a complete tear.

When healing a tear in your earlobe, you will want to both repair the tear and correct the shape of your earlobe. Dr. Schultz will first utilize local anesthesia so that the procedure is of course painless, and then he’ll surgically correct the tear.

He does this by removing the lining of the enlarged pierce hole or the complete tear, and then sewing the fresh earlobe skin back together with tiny plastic surgery stitches. Because of his precision and attention to detail, there is rarely any scarring. If there is a fine line, he can treat that line with Filler or Laser to give you the best result. After a few months of healing, your earlobe should be strong enough to be repierced.

If you’ve waited awhile to repair your earlobe, your skin may have become stretched, saggy, or even wrinkled. Fortunately, if this is the case, all of those conditions can be helped with Laser Treatments, injectable Fillers, or a combination of the two.

With Laser Treatments, you can get a contraction of the over-stretched tissue. This contraction can cause a plumping of the earlobe and improve the wrinkles and shape of the earlobe. There is often a week to two weeks of healing, but the results will last for years. If you’re using Fillers to rejuvenate and reshape your earlobes, a variety of them can be used. Fillers, like Restylane and Juvederm, are used in the earlobes just like they are used to replace lost volume in other places on the face and body. These injectable Filler treatments take ten to fifteen minutes. They will plump up the earlobes, help remove wrinkles, and help restore the shape of your earlobe. While there is no recovery time from these Filler treatments, they do need to be repeated every four to eight months to maintain your desired results.

Virtually everyone with a torn earlobe is a candidate to have it repaired. There is no real age limit precluding you from having this procedure done. Unless your earlobes are infected or you have a tendency to form keloids, you are a good candidate for this simple repair.

The short answer is: yes you can. However, Dr. Schultz recommends waiting four to five months before you re-pierce. This is because you need to give your tissue enough time to heal and form the strong bond keeping it intact.

Once healed, your earlobe usually does not tear again. In very rare circumstances, spontaneous retearing like that which occurs from suddenly getting your earring caught on your sweater and yanking it out, could happen. However, if you wait the recommended period of four to five months to heal, even that shouldn’t happen due to how the earlobe is reinforced from the healing after the repair.

Dr. Schultz has a specific technique that makes his torn earlobe repair succeed with cosmetically superior results. The way he configures the repair, in terms of how he cuts out the hole that needs to be repaired, generates excellent results. You’ll get a very nice shape to the repaired earlobe because Dr. Schultz will cut some tissue out and and reposition the remaining tissue which helps to recreate a more natural shape to the earlobe. In addition, the length of time he asks you to allow the repaired tear to heal allows the earlobe to become stronger than ever.

When the stitches come out, he asks you to resist repiercing for four to five months and we’ve seen a tremendous difference in both immediate appearance and long term results because of this process and wait time. Between the actual technique of surgery and the recommended healing protocol, you can be sure that you’re getting the best, most natural looking repair you can for your torn earlobe.

When you come in for your appointment, there is nothing to prepare. Dr. Schultz will take a look at your injury and then inject a local anesthetic so the procedure is painless. He’ll perform the surgery to heal the tear. An earlobe procedure takes approximately twenty minutes. After the surgery and repair, ten days later, you’ll return to the office to have the stitches removed.

As previously mentioned, we recommend waiting at least four to five months to allow the torn earlobe to properly heal and strengthen before re-piercing your ears. You may however wear clip-on earrings one month after the stitches are removed. The entire procedure is painless, but afterwards, you may decide to take some pain medicine like Tylenol or Advil if you feel a slight ache at the repair site. Any discomfort typically disappears within 2-4 hours. After your twenty minute procedure, you can go about the rest of your day without downtime.

Also note, during the healing process, you can wash your hair, but avoid using a blow dryer for the first two to three days when your earlobes are still sensitive. And be careful to treat your ears gently and avoid pulling on them.

Patient Reviews

I've been seeing Dr. Schultz for the last 8 years and during that time, I've recommended him to countless friends for both cosmetic and medical dermatologic help. I trust him completely both diagnostically and aesthetically. When I had shingles, he was wonderful, incredibly supportive and kind. And when I eased into doing more cosmetic dermatology, he was– and continues to be– patient, careful and cautious. He listens to concerns and really hears what your goal outcome is and works with you to make it happen. I wanted to maintain a natural look while keeping my skin looking fresh and that's just what he's done for me. I always leave his office feeling prettier and well-cared for! If you have a medical concern or something about your skin you want to upgrade, you can't do better than Dr. Schultz and his wonderful team. And the products are amazing as well!

- Laura B.

Dr. Schultz is the most thorough and good natured dermatologist I have ever seen. I have been a patient of his for more than 20 years. He has taught me everything I know about the value of taking care of my skin, a gift that keeps on giving. He also takes the time to listen to me, to see me as an individual and doesn't treat my needs as a one size fits all doctor. I really appreciate his kindness, patience and expertise. I absolutely love his product line and have definitely reaped the rewards from using it, especially his glycolic peel pads and moisturizer, which I can't live without. My skin feels softer, smoother, appears more translucent and actually looks younger! He helped me to see beyond the lines and wrinkles, although he so good at helping to keep those at bay while maintaining a very natural appearance. His staff is outstanding. They make you feel welcome, like family, from the moment you walk through the door. Angela, Monika, Deborah and all of the support staff are extraordinary at what they do. Thank you Dr. Schultz and everyone at Park Ave Skincare. You're the best!

- Laura M.

Dr. Schultz has truly transformed my skin, so much so that I can confidently leave the house without wearing makeup now. During my first meeting with him, he intently listened to my skin concerns, we discussed what my goals were, and he explained pragmatically what treatments and products he recommended for me. I truly appreciate his fantastic bedside manner and conservative approach. I am a perfectionist in every aspect of my life, including my skin, and he understood this and was committed to helping me achieve every skin goal I had. The entire staff is just so fantastic and friendly, from reception to the PAs. They make you feel welcome and extremely comfortable, which to me is very important when visiting any doctor’s office. As someone who works too much and never gets enough sleep, my skin was looking very dull and lifeless. My skin is now full of life again and has an incredible glow to it which I have never had before. And I owe it all to the incredible Dr. Schultz.

- Kelly D.

My partnership with Dr Schultz began more than 30 years ago. As a generous friend, advisor, skilled surgeon, and superb cosmetic diagnostician, he has enabled me to look my best. He has kept me abreast of the most sophisticated procedures and in so doing, has maximized my appearance, always guided by what will be most beneficial for me. He is someone I go to for advice and care and his staff is another manifestation of this care. I don’t know many patients who can say this, and I feel fortunate to be among them.

- Ellen R.

In the four years that I've been a patient of Dr. Schultz, my acne-prone skin has gone from constant breakouts to smooth and clear. These days, I feel confident and comfortable enough in my skin to wear minimal makeup, if any—which I never would have done in years past. He and his warm, friendly staff always go above and beyond; he takes the time to listen, talk with me, and create the best plan for my skin. It's clear he has my best interests in mind, and I trust him wholeheartedly. I would highly recommend him to friends, family, and frankly, anyone who asks.

- Deanna P.

Each session with Dr. Schultz is a mini education in skin care. He approaches each patient as a unique individual with different needs. I’m Asian and he’s explained to me how that impacts treatment in a clear manner that a layperson can understand. At each examination, he recites detailed notes to his staff which he then refers back to at each future appointment, adjusting and tweaking treatment plans when necessary. Over the past two years I’ve seen a remarkable improvement in my blemishes and overall complexion and wholeheartedly recommend him to anyone looking to enhance their appearance.

- Sherry G.

I have been a patient of Dr. Schultz for many years, and I continue to be amazed at his medical approach, patience, and professionalism. He takes the time to listen to my health concerns, explains how and why he would like to issue a treatment in a way that I understand , answers all of my questions, and all of his procedures and painless and thorough. He is very attentive, results-oriented, and extremely knowledgeable. He follows up and is committed to my health and satisfaction. The Park Avenue Skincare is a calm environment and the staff are all very friendly, warm, and respectful. It's easy to get appointments at a time that works for me and they are always on time and considerate. I think so highly of him and his practice that I sent my mom to him, and continue to go to his office even though my life is based in midtown west! I have great confidence in the care that he gives.

- Katrina A.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How are torn earlobes repaired?

    Local anesthesia is applied, then the damaged tissue is cut out. Stitches Read More

  • Will I need stitches to repair my torn earlobes?

    Yes, you will receive stitches.

  • How long will the stitches stay in?

    For about one week.

  • How long does it take for the earlobes to heal?

    About two weeks: stitches are removed after one week, and the reinforcement Read More

  • When can I re-pierce my ears after torn earlobe repair?

    No sooner than two months after the procedure. It’s usually done around Read More

  • How will my earlobes look after repair?

    Since the damaged tissue is cut out during repair, your earlobes will Read More

  • How do I repair a torn earlobe at home?

    A dermatologist is the best person to repair a torn earlobe, especially Read More

Rejuvenate Your Skin

Make your skin care a priority with leading-dermatologist and New York Magazine’s “Top Doctor”: Dr. Neal Schultz.

Private Practice, Not Private Equity