What Are Leverback Earrings?

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

Leverback earrings are a kind of earrings with a hook that fits through a pierced ear and meets with a clasp on the back side of the earlobe. The clasp connects with the hook, partially covering the part of the hook that extends through the pierced hole in the ear and out behind the earlobe. Some people wear leverback earrings because they like the look of these kinds of earrings. Others wear them because they are a kind of hook earring that is well secured on the ear. Most other kinds of hook earrings can slip out of the ear if they are not fixed with a special post, which is uncommon.

Having one's ears pierced is needed to wear leverback earrings.
Having one's ears pierced is needed to wear leverback earrings.

The sort of hook that is used to make leverback earrings can be paired with dangle earrings of various lengths. They can also frame small jewelry elements such as glass beads, pearls, semi-precious stones, and precious stones. Leverback earrings, however, cannot be stud earrings. This is because stud earrings must be affixed on posts and are meant to fit right over the pierced hole. With these earrings, the jewels are fitted below this hole or even hang below the earlobe.

Leverback earrings fit through a pierced ear and meet with a clasp on the back side of the earlobe.
Leverback earrings fit through a pierced ear and meet with a clasp on the back side of the earlobe.

Even though there are various ways in which leverback closures can be used in jewelry design, there is one silhouette typically connected with this closure. This silhouette includes a leverback closure from which a single jewel or bauble hanging right below their earlobes. These jewels or ornaments might be pearls, glass beads, faceted semi-precious stones, and faceted precious stones. There are many jewelry companies that sell earrings that follow this classic silhouette. Just as with all kinds of earrings, the cost of leverback earrings varies depending on the quality of metals and stones used to make the earrings.

There are a few variations that have to do with the closures that define leverback earrings. In some cases, the embellishments may be fitted into the front of the leverback closure. In other cases, the closure itself is plain and contains a small loop at the bottom. This loop is positioned to fit just below the earlobe. From this loop, chains, beads and be hung.

Stones that are fitted within settings can also be hung from this loop. This kind of leverback closure is the most common kind that is found in stores that sell jewelry-making supplies. This is because this kind of leverback closure allows for the most design variation.

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

In addition to her work as a freelance writer for wiseGEEK, Diane is the executive editor of Black Lawrence Press, an independent publishing company based in upstate New York. She has also edited several anthologies, the e-newsletter Sapling, and The Adirondack Review. Diane has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.A. from Brooklyn College.

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Discussion Comments


Whenever I wear an expensive pair of earrings, I always make sure they are leverback. I don't want to take the chance of losing them.

For the earrings that I wear every day, most of them are secured with posts, but I really love wearing leverback earrings because they are much more comfortable.

I have a pair of leverback diamond earrings that I love to wear on special occasions. I would be sick if I ever lost these, and with the leverback clasp I feel much better about wearing an expensive pair of earrings like these.


I find myself looking for leverback earrings more all the time. I have lost too many pairs of earrings I loved because they were not secured with a clasp.

It seems like I never lose the earrings that I don't care for as much, but every time it has been one of my favorite earrings. I had a beautiful pair of sterling silver hoop earrings that did not have a clasp or a post, and I ended up losing one of them.

I didn't even realize one of my earrings was gone until I went to remove them when I got home from work. Since this was not the first time this has happened to me, I now make sure that my earrings are held in place, and leverback earrings are the most comfortable for me.


My favorite pair of leverback earrings are very long and dangly. They are made of fake pearls and diamonds, and the setting is sterling silver. They look so elegant that it would be hard to tell them apart from the real thing.

Four strands of imitation pearls hang down from what looks like half of a disco ball. It is a silver cap covered in imitation diamonds.

This cap connects to the front hook by a silver ring. The hook is covered in imitation diamonds, also. So, the entire front part of the earring is decorated. The leverback clasp is sterling silver, and it is able to bear the weight of these earrings without coming loose.


My dragonfly leverback earrings have a unique clasp. The basic design is the same as a regular leverback, but instead of having a hook that pokes down inside of the closure, it has a free moving post that locks in place when you push it down into a horseshoe-shaped holder. The back underside of the closure looks just like a regular leverback, though.

If you were to look at these earrings while they were in my ears, you would not be able to tell them apart from the usual leverback style. The front part from which the dragonfly charm hangs looks like a hook, but the post is hidden inside of my pierced hole.


The best part about leverback earrings, I think, is the fact that you can wear them with everything. I have four pairs and I've worn them to everything from special occasions, evening dinners to shopping with the girls. You can match them with dresses, skirts or jeans and it it will never look sketchy or out of place.

There are not many types of earrings I can do that with. It's also great on business trips. I can take one pair of leverback earrings and wear them during the day at meetings and at night going out. It saves me from having to think about and taking multiple earrings and having to match them to my outfits.


I have a beautiful pair of diamond leverback earrings. My husband bought them for me for our anniversary, and I am glad they have a secure closure, because I would feel horrible if I lost them.

The front part of the hook leading up to the hole in my ear lobe is covered in tiny diamonds. A big diamond encased in a silver setting lined with more tiny diamonds hangs below the hook.

The leverback itself is sterling silver. I think that this type of clasp offers more support than a hook or a post, because these earrings look like they should feel heavier than they do.


I wore pearl leverback earrings on my wedding day and it was perfect. I had a very classic wedding dress, you could say a little on the vintage side. I wanted simple but very classy earrings to go with it and eyed a pair of the most beautiful pearl leverback earrings at one of the jewelry shops.

I knew that leverback earrings had become more popular recently but it hadn't occurred to me to look at them for my wedding. It worked out beautifully though. I got so many compliments on them from family and friends.


Leverback earrings are awesome because they are so easy to click together in the back. I never have to worry about them falling out, because I can feel it when the parts fasten together.

On the other end of the spectrum are french hook earrings. I have several pairs of these, and I have lost so many of them. If I wear them anymore, I have to put a rubber stopper on the back of the hook to keep them in place.

Leverbacks require no extra parts for security. They have their own lock system. I think that all french hook earring makers should switch to using leverbacks.


All of my earrings are leverback. I love the design of leverback earrings, I think it looks very elegant and royal, especially if they have precious stones and jewels.

I also think that it's the most secure earrings. I used to wear stud earrings before but ended up losing several of them because the backs would fall out. I think it happened mainly when I was on the metro to work.

I have never had this happen with leverback earrings. It's very difficult to get them unhooked unintentionally and even more difficult for it to fall out without you realizing. I love them!

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