Looking to start stretching your ears, but don't want to spend a ton on itty-bitty tapers? Here's how I made a set of 12g tapers with household things.
NOTE: These are NOT jewelry, and should never be worn as such. These tapers are for temporary use and should be replaced with real jewelry within a few hours of insertion.
Step 1: Gathering Supplies
What you'll need:
-2 wooden toothpicks (I used square picks but round ones are easier on your ears)
-A few inches of electrical tape
-A whittling knife (any pocket or other small knife is fine)
-Emu oil or other gauging salve (I like Holey Butt'r)
-Heavy-duty scissors (kitchen shears work)
To start, you're going to want to exaggerate the taper of your toothpick by whittling away at one end, but maintaining the length. I compared my toothpick to a 10g taper, but uncooked spaghetti and wire hangers are closer to 12g.
Next, you're going to cut a small section of tape to wrap around the carved end of your toothpick. You'll want to cover the entire wearable section of the toothpick with tape to protect and stretch the skin.
You'll need to taper the tape as well. With a knife or pair of scissors, carefully trim away the excess tape so that what remains is flush to the wood.
After massaging your ear with oil, slowly push your taper through a fully healed piercing. It's important to listen to your body and stop if insertion is too painful.
Let the taper sit for a few minutes, then rotate slowly. This will allow your ear to adjust to the foreign object. Once your swelling and redness has gone down a little, tightly grip the back of your taper with one hand while you snip the excess toothpick in the front of your ear with a pair of scissors. Be sure to leave enough length to secure the taper with a rubber band or O-ring. Repeat with the back if you like.
Secure with bands and enjoy!