It’s August, and it’s six trillion degrees outside. If you’ve got hair that is long enough to go up, you’re wearing it up more than ever. Now, I love a show-stopping necklace as much as the next gal, and ditto that for the oversized, clunky bangles, but when my hair (which I personally consider an accessory) is wound up in a demure chignon, I sometimes feel the need for a little compensation up top. So, considering we all have our ears out on such display during this steamy eighth month of the year, badass earrings are clearly the way to go…

But, you know what’s annoying? Heavy-ass earrings that make your ears bleed. And, sometimes (correct me if I’m wrong), it seems like a fair share of the gorgeous statement-making earrings out there, once put on, somehow manage to morph into demonic hanging anvils set on making each turn of the head a skin-stretching nightmare. Also, what about all those lovely lobes out there that are not pierced? Are they to eternally wallow in the mind-numbing sea of vintage clip-ons? Never. The solution: the ear cuff.

It started when I stumbled upon this amazing Spine Earpiece by FELIKS + ADRIK, but ultimately decided I needed something a bit more budget-friendly. Well, did I ever hit the jackpot–who knew there was such an array of affordable earcuffs out there? We’ve got your needs covered, from the more subdued to downright extravagant. All I have to say is: God bless you, ASOS.

So, without further ado, we present to you eight adventurous ear adornments–all under $40–for the pierced and non-pierced alike.

1. Etsy Plain Gold Heart Cuff Earring, $4
2. Urban Outfitters Hanging Chain Ear Cuff, $18
3. Anni Jürgenson Ear Cuff w/Pheasant Feathers, $38
4. Anni Jürgenson Ear Cuff w/Rose-Gold Spikes, $37
5. ASOS Rose Gold Leaf Ear Cuff, $18
6. ASOS Stars Ear Cuff, $18
7. ASOS Snake Ear Cuff, $14
8. ASOS Statement Draping Chains Ear Cuffs, $12



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