Three Quick Ways to Shorten a Necklace

Three Quick Ways to Shorten a Necklace

The other day, I spotted a woman wearing the most beautiful Kendra Scott necklace. It sat right in the hollow under her neck—not quite a choker, but not exactly dangly either. I ordered one later that night, but when the necklace arrived, it didn’t fit me the way it had fit her, even when I put the clasp on the smallest setting. It was slightly too long, and infuriatingly sat just below the hollow of my neck. I subsequently spent a few days searching for ways to shorten a necklace, and found three methods that will work in most cases. Please, allow my misfortune to be your benefit.

Use an earring

First, I sought counsel on TikTok, where I saw a hack that seemed too good to be true: You shorten a necklace by folding the chain in the back, then jamming the post of a small stud earring through the fold, thereby shortening the chain. Alternately, you can shove the earring through both sides of the chain without folding it, skipping the clasp mechanism altogether, like this.

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I tried this and it worked, but I’m hesitant to use it while out in public, as I’d be left hanging if the little rubber band broke. I also found my hair kept getting tangled in it, creating a mini disaster at the nape of my neck. (If your hair ever gets tangled in your jewelry, by the way, try using Nair to remove it.)

I also don’t love using something so unreliable to twist up a chain. I work hard to keep my jewelry organized, tangle-free, and well maintained, so the idea of jumbling it up with elastic isn’t really enticing. Still, if you have a cheap necklace or aren’t offended by a low-rent solution, this one can work in a pinch.

Just buy a necklace shortener

Sometimes, a clever hack can take care of one of the little problems I encounter throughout the day. Other times, I just need to buy a specialty product to fix it. After striking out twice with the DIY methods—both of which worked, but not exactly how I wanted them to—I gave it and shopped for a necklace shortener.

I found one that is actually really pretty and effective, and looks good from the front and the back:

Effectively, a necklace shortener does the same thing as the earring and the rubber band, but in a prettier way. You run both sides of the back of the chain through the holes and clasp the necklace as usual. The shortener sits between the clasp and your neck, reducing the length of chain that actually wraps around. This particular shortener came in a set of two, so you can use them to layer a couple of chains, and comes in gold, silver, and rose gold, so you can choose the least obtrusive color.

If your chain’s gauge is big enough to support the earring solution or you don’t mind keeping a bunched-up rubber band behind your head, the inexpensive hacks work well, but if you want something effective for all sizes of chains and that looks a bit more elegant, a necklace shortener is the way to go.

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