Ok i realize that 99.9% of you are probably going to scoff at what i'm about to ask, but i'm gonna ask it anyway... Ive had my ears gauged at size 2's for like 5 years with double flare stainless eyelets... i decided a few days ago to bump them up to 0's so i bought some size 0 double flare solid acrylic eyelets and some size 0 acrylic tapers. The tapers went in super easy with minimal swelling... i had them in for a couple days and got impatient so tonight i took out the tapers, cleaned my ears with antibacterial soap, grabbed some K-Y, and went about attempting to put the plugs in. The left one was a little tough but it popped in and has barely swelled at all and doesnt hurt whatsoever. The right lobe was really tough... it was pissing me off so i kept pushing and right when i was about to just give up and put the taper back in it slid in most of the way but started bleeding... i was rinsing off the blood and being the genius that i am - decided to keep trying a little more since it was largely through the hole. Well... i thought it was in but then i flipped my ear over and looked at the back side and discovered there was a super thin flap of skin covering a little bit of the plug end, and i tried to nudge it a bit more but the skin just wouldnt cooperate so i removed the plug, cleaned up the blood, and put the taper back in with the o-rings loose not knowing what else to do. So all of that said... i'm sure i'm gonna get flamed hard on this board but i'm hoping SOMEONE has experience with this and can give me sincere advice. because of that flap of skin i saw i am worried i have a blowout. Well, actually im pretty sure it happened... ugh. It's swollen but it doesnt hurt or anything. Looking at my lobes i dont actually have a split along the hole, it just seems like i shredded the inside of the holes a bit. Ive asked a couple other people that have experience with this and they both said to leave the taper in since it was comfortable before i attempted the flare insertion... just to wash them and let them heal awhile before attempting to stretch again. Looking back i SHOULD have just put size 0 single flare plugs in with o-rings until they were fully ready to stretch for the double flares. I got impatient and didn't think first. Ugh. So should i leave the taper in and clean it till its ready and go with a single flare for a long time to be safe, or should i put the smaller size 2 plugs back in and wait for them to heal and reattempt. I'm already anticipating all of the "just take them out, they are ugly/stupid/etc" replies i'm gonna get. I'm hoping someone can tell me something different though.