Left Continue shopping
Your Order

You have no items in your cart

You might like
From $1299
Show options
From $2799
Show options
Free Fedex Express Shipping @ $200 (Domestic & International)

Gauge Sizes

Gauges Sizes

Gauge earring sizes (Gauge Sizes) for body jewelry are the standard in sizing and is the preferred unit of measurement in the United States. Gauge (g) Notation is easily convertible into millimeters (mm) and inches (in) by referencing gauge size charts.

Gauge Sizes range from 20g to 00g in size charts, with 20g being the smallest gauge size, and 00g being the largest size in the Gauge Size Scale.

Though it should seem straight-forward, questions arise regarding gauges sizes, nose piercing gauge sizes, gauge plug sizes and more. Those are answered along with topics such ashow gauges work, the different gauge piercing sizes for initial piercings, how to use gauge size charts, and more are covered in this sizing resource diagram


The gauge size of your piercing hole can significantly impact the aesthetics and longevity of your piercings.

Since our establishment in 2006, Plug Your Holes has been dedicated to not only providing high-quality, stylish stretching jewelry but also to empowering our customers with the knowledge they need to make informed decisions about their body modifications. So whether you've already begun stretching your piercing or just starting to explore the world of body piercing stretching, we're here to help you with the jewelry along the way. Let's go on this journey together, with safety, style, and confidence in mind.


Table of Gauge Sizes in Order:

20g 0.03" 0.81 mm
18g 0.039" 1 mm
16g 0.047" 1.2 mm
14g 0.063" 1.6 mm
12g 0.079" 2 mm
10g 0.094" 2.4 mm
8g 0.118" 3 mm
6g 0.157" 4 mm
4g 0.197" 5 mm
2g 0.258" 6 mm
0g 0.325" 8 mm
00g 0.365" 10 mm
0.438" 11 mm
0.5" 13 mm
0.563" 14 mm
0.625" 16 mm
0.688" 18 mm
0.75" 19 mm
0.813" 21 mm
0.875" 22 mm
0.938" 24 mm
1" 25 mm
1.125" 28 mm
1.188" 30 mm
1.25" 32 mm
1.375" 35 mm
1.5" 38 mm
1.563" 40 mm
1.625" 41 mm
1.75" 44 mm
1.813" 46 mm
1.875" 48 mm
1.938" 50 mm
2" 51 mm

Measurements refer to the external diameter of the jewelry. These conversion charts provide equivalent thicknesses measured in both millimeters and fractions of an inch for measuring each gauge size.

How do Gauge Sizes Work?

The greater number the gauge, the thinner the diameter -- that's how Gauges work, as it being the standard US measurement of thickness for body jewelry. Understanding how gauge sizes work is important when both stretching your piercings, and selecting body jewelry.

Gauge size notation originated from other industries used to measure wire thickness. The size notation measures the thickness of body piercings and stretches, with lower numbers indicating thicker piercings. The gauge number represents a level of thickness on a standardized scale, which starts at 20 gauge (.03 inches or .81 millimeters). As the gauge number decreases, the thickness of the piercing hole increases. This notation is used both for earlobes and septum holes.

In body piercing stretching, gauge sizes work similarly to the American Wire Gauge (AWG) system used for measuring the thickness of electrical wires. Below are the 3 main points how they work with piercing stretching:

  • This system is based on the diameter of the wire of jewelry, with thicker items having smaller gauge numbers and thinner items having larger numbers

  • The process of stretching a piercing involves gradually increasing the size of the jewelry, and you start with a thinner piece (higher gauge number) and progressively move to thicker pieces (lower gauge numbers).

  • The thickness or diameter of the jewelry, indicated by the wire gauge size, impacts the progress and safety of your stretching journey.

The range of different gauge sizes typically starts from 20 (the smallest) up to 00 (the largest) on the standard gauge charts. Beyond 00G, measurements transition to fractions of inches in the US and millimeters internationally.

For example, the gauge system starts from 22G, the smallest size, and progresses to larger diameters such as 20G, 18G, 16G, and so on, with each step representing a thicker piece of jewelry.

This system applies to gauge wires, plugs, and body jewelry alike.

Always ensure you're using the correct size for each step. Remember, thicker isn't always better - it's about pacing and allowing your body time to adapt to each new size.


What are the different gauge sizes for body piercings?

Gauge sizes for piercings vary, with a higher number meaning a thinner bar. The size of your piercing is measured by basically how thick the bar is when selecting jewelry to insert into your piercing.

Below are the standard gauge sizes for the 2 most popular types of piercings to stretch.

Table of Standard Gauge Sizes for Initial Piercings:

Piercing Type Standard Gauge
Ear Lobe Piercings 20G or 18G
Septum Piercings 14G or 16G

Gauge sizes for piercings are crucial in understanding the diameter of your jewelry as the size indicate the thickness size of your jewelry. To accurately understand the size of your jewelry, consider using the piercing gauge chart (above) to get an actual size as this tool gives you a life-size representation of different gauges, allowing you to visualize the diameters of various pieces

The conversion of gauge to inches, mm or millimeters (mm) can be achieved using a conversion chart. Beyond the gauge system, sizes continue in fractions of inches or millimeters or mm.

Remember, piercing gauges working on a counter-intuitive scale where a smaller gauge signifies a larger diameter.

Always consult a reliable conversion chart or a professional piercer when in doubt to ensure comfort and prevent potential complications.


What are the common gauge sizes for different types of piercings?

A nose piercing usually rocks a 20G or 18G with lengths of 1/4" or 5/16". An industrial barbell often goes for a 14G (or a slightly thinner 16G if you're feeling fancy) and measures about 1-1/2". For Stretching Septum piercings, they commonly sport a thicker 14G or a slimmer 16G, with lengths ranging from short to as long as 5/8".


What is the typical progression of sizes when stretching ears?

The process of stretching ears involves gradually increasing the size of the piercing hole to larger sizes depending on how far you want to stretch the lobes. You progress through sizes with ear stretching one size at a time. 

These charts outline the diameters of different plug sizes, often in both gauge numbers and millimeters, making it easier for you to select the right size. At smaller sizes, an earring size chart for gauges can provide a visual understanding of these sizes, detailing both gauge numbers and their equivalent sizes in millimeters (mm).

This progression outlines the standard measurements from smallest to larger sizes. You gotta take it easy and let your body adjust to bigger ear gauge sizes without any drama. When purchasing jewelry, plug size charts are equally essential, especially if you're considering stretching so you can get the right size.


How to Use a Gauge Size Chart When Choosing Stretching Jewelry?

Jewelry bought that is too large for your piercing may cause discomfort, jewelry that is too small can cause issues, too, when wearing.

When choosing stretching jewelry, the size of gauge plays a crucial role:

  • Measure your piercing hole accurately to find the perfect gauge

  • The type of jewelry, tunnels, plugs, and use of tapers, also makes a difference

  • Material design and ease of insertion are crucial for a comfy stretching experience

No pain, all gain is the goal.

Body jewelry sizing may vary slightly between brands, especially when it comes to brands of plugs. Always refer to the specific sizing guide provided by the brand when selecting your jewelry.

A body jewelry gauge chart can assist you in understanding the standardized sizes and their conversions to millimeters. Charts offer you a detailed body jewelry size guide that helps you pick the correct size jewelry for your piercing.

Choosing the right size for your stretching jewelry is a crucial part of the body modification process. A gauges size chart can be incredibly helpful in this regard, providing a visual guide to the different standard sizes used in body jewelry.

When selecting your stretching jewelry, always refer to these charts to ensure you choose pieces that fit comfortably and safely.

View Plug Your Holes Jewelry Sizing Chart


Can I downsize my current gauge size?

Yes, depending on the type of piercing and the piercing site's current condition, you can downsize your gauge size. You can downsize as long as you don't go beyond the point of no return with stretching, however, nasal septum stretches typically don't downsize well.


Where can I Learn to Gauge my ears?

Learn more about Piercing Stretching 101 with the guide.


Gauge Takeaway

When it comes to stretching piercings, gauging is an important consideration. and choosing the right gauge for your piercing is essential for a comfortable and safe stretching experience.