Deafinite Style by Designaffairs Studio


Designaffairs Studio of Germany have designed a conceptual hearing aid that forms a flesh tunnel through the wearer's earlobe.

Called Deafinite Style, the design aims to improve the wearer's confidence by making the device look like a piece of jewellery. It could be made more powerful with the addition of a plug.

Here is some more information from Designaffairs studio:


Rising self-confidence is taking prostheses to another level. People don’t try to hide their handicap anymore.
 Show what you‘ve got, don’t make a fuss about your problem. Wear your hearing aid like a piece of jewelry, a stylish accessory. Be individual, be cool, be yourself. Hearing aid is made for customers with a medium level of hearing disability. In case of a severe hearing damage one could order the PLUG which contents a more powerful system.

At Designaffairs STUDIO we are not driven by client work, we develop visions and exciting concepts for daily life scenarios. The studio is formed by a team of professional designers who live to inspire, provoke and head to where no one has been before. We question anything conventional and challenge familiar surroundings with a smile. Our mission is to create a better place beyond expectations.

Posted on Wednesday February 10th 2010 at 1:21 pm by Chris Barnes. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Fling

    My Grandad has replaced his 20 year old hearing aid with one of these, works really well. He has also started going to Heaven nightclub till all hours and is going to get his bus pass tattooed on his ass.

  • modular

    This kind of earrings make me sick… honest. It’s a FREAKIN’ GIANT HOLE on someone’s ear!!!!!

  • fish fingers

    I find this v disturbing

  • poster

    also, you can hang your umbrella in your ear when it is not raining

    • matt

      I hang my keys from my stretched lobes when I'm bored.

  • Kong

    Great Idea, i always wondered why these pieces have to be ugly flesh color boxes.

  • Kong

    Brings a range of products to mind, i might reconsider my prince albert for playing mp 3 s.

  • andnowthenews

    Interesting and youthful approach to a product considered for the elderly.
    While this will of course not appeal to the unpierced elderly, for those who already have stretched their lobes and whose hearing will most likely fail them in later life, this creates a product that is both aesthetically appealing and dual purposed (jewelry for the earlobe as well as aiding in hearing).
    Kudos to these designers!

  • Yesbut

    hiiii disgusting

  • Gross!

  • However I do like the tattoo on the ass idea.

  • Wim

    Haha, the comments are so funny! Mental picture with the prince Albert idea. :D

    But serious, since when is mutilation hip and trendy and cool?! Making holes in your body is in my opinion plain stupidity.

    • Paul

      Mutilation? So ear piercing is mutilation then? Bugger off.

  • Luís Felipe Silva

    The concept is not bad. I didn’t like the shape, but I like when deisgners make projects trying to collaborate with some kind of deficiency. the world needs this. (sorry my bad english). :p

  • MMM


  • Bruno

    I believ that it is great that hearing aid devices are taking the next step. It might not have a wide target group, but it sure makes deaf people more open to such a life style and cool looks. Its a question of taste…
    but anyways, in term of quality.. the trimic system is very useful.
    Concepts are to explore these kind of concepts.
    In my opinion congrats to designaffairs studio!

  • BH

    I don’t mind the design of these, but it’s obviously a very specific market.
    Considering the number of people walking around with hands free sets these days, is the hearing aid market really still so far behind that it stigmatizes itself still with “flesh colored boxes” – I don’t know but I would hope not! I’d like to see an option that doesn’t require having to mutilate your ear lobes but I get the feeling that might not be radical enough?

  • MKK


    I’ve been partially deaf from birth, growing up with a hearing aid is not fun, until you have enough $ to by tiny in the ear versions. Love the idea shown here. Deaf doesn’t = old and doesn’t = boring.


  • smashed

    Whats with all the boring old man ‘ewwww! Thats gross’ responses.

    You seem to be forgetting that there are deaf young people who also require hearing aids. Obviously very few people are going to stretch out their ears just to use this, but at least someone has addressed the issue and come up with a more attractive solution than is currently available.

  • Does the ring have to be that big? I’m sure it can be made smaller.

  • Evan

    Not to stereotype, but many people who stretch their ears to a degree of permanence will probably experience partial hearing loss (body modification and loud music tend to go hand in hand in most subcultures). This is observing and responding to a unique problem set. This is good design.
    The name, however, is just plain awful.

  • Booh

    AIDs and Homosexuality are a Stereotypes too… Same with Fallout Boy and Girl Pants… Or what about Architects and their irrational fear of Engineers…

    I’m amazed at how many blatant generalizations an ear plug can generate…

    That my friends is interesting… very interesting.

  • starving

    absolutely genius. obviously no one is going to get their ears gauged specifically for a hearing aid, but for those who have gauges, this is great. i would be in support of smaller sizes as well, this one is pretty big.

  • jet

    very innovative.. thank u

  • Rag

    I’m with Booh. I find it most irritating that so many commentors are so generalist, bias and unconstructive. I don’t care if you think it’s gross, give me your constructive comments on the design or don’t bother.

    I think it creates an interesting starter for discussion on whether it’s time we relooked at a lot of potentially overlooked products. Product / human intergration is a growing area, and imagine how far it might go. Onwards…

    The body modification world is as large, dynamic and complex as the design industry is. I think an exploration into crossover products would be a fascinating project. Bravo to Designaffairs.

  • Irina D>

    Why do i as a human have to use MY body,to mutilate it in order to make place for a gadget????????Are designers so much in lack of proper useful ideas????(P.S.the ear issue was a teribilistic invention of the ones who wanted to do things out of normal and common… simply don`t invent such a thing and present it as a positive issue…..:-S

  • PAD_Z

    Wow its amazing how some people in the design community completely miss the point of designs such as these…

    its a well produced, carefully structured idea that is obviously not marketable, but why should it be?

    kudos to Designaffairs

  • amsam

    great project to generate such hilarious comments. PAD-Z has it right.

  • Pedro

    It’s for sure interesting to see the discussion that the project created. In my point of view I believe that the world design is missing such forthcoming designs, as it challenges any perception! this analysis can only be confirmed by the extremly distinct opinions that people have of this product! Its all about the approach …
    and for those who say that they don´t want to pierce their bodies to have an hearaid device … please you don´t have too .. but if you want to look cool and do have an pierce u can!!!!
    open ur minds ;)

  • Wolfgang

    what is next?? a microfon that looks like a mursi lip-plate

  • Jen

    andnowthenews Says:
    February 10th, 2010 at 6:50 pm
    Interesting and youthful approach to a product considered for the elderly.
    While this will of course not appeal to the unpierced elderly, for those who already have stretched their lobes and whose hearing will most likely fail them in later life, this creates a product that is both aesthetically appealing and dual purposed (jewelry for the earlobe as well as aiding in hearing).
    Kudos to these designers!

    I’d just like to point out that not all Deaf people are old!

  • z4rd0z

    By the time that people with gauged ear piercings are looking into hearing aids they will be smaller, more effective, and less obtrusive. Or even directly implanted into a tooth or jawbone. There will be no need to trade out your favorite plugs for this clunky piece of 20th century sized tech. This is an idea straight out of an early 90s cyberpunk novel.

  • twosons

    i love this idea, i cant stand wearing a normal over the ear hearing aid it makes you feel like you an old man and im only 20 , i dont mind that i need a hearing aid and love the idea that it doesnt have to be hidden

  • caco

    why so big ?, my uncle has an implant for hearing and you cant bearly see it, it looks like a small metal plug behind the ear.

    why do expansions on your ear, i dont think many elderly would go for the FINNISH METAL FAN look.

  • Emmanuel

    Man was I wrong thinking people interested in design and architecture would be more openminded… Get out of your studio-apartments above your mother’s garage and see the world. This is how (young/hip/fashionforward) people look these days! And if you know that hearing damage is very much an actual topic with young people, because of loud music, beats being pumped into their/our ears by those ‘oh-so-beautifully-desgined’ mp3 players. And who-ever it was who posted the question: ‘since when did it become hip to pierce and mutulate our bodies’ Open your historu books and look to the Maya’s, the Egyptians, the Indians and native african tribes. Really stupid remark. There are different cultures than your own, wich are probably more beautiful.

  • Susi

    emmanuel, you seem to be so right, unfortunately. i hope someday, people will stop judging at first sight. but i think i am not the first with this wish…

  • squeed

    i think its great.. more of this please

  • Filip

    You know it’s not just the older generation that require hearing aids. This might not be for everyone but I find this type of piercing quite intriguing, but then they look great on younger people, not sure about having one when you’re much older (same with tattoos)

    At least it’s making body modification more functional rather than an aesthetic choice.

  • Some Dude

    Amplification with attitude.
    You’ve made a lot of people happy, finally something you can wear that looks good -Brilliant! . AD

  • Good idea for anyone already with holes in their ears. If my hearing was bad I really don’t think I’ll be punching holes in my ears just to look cool.

  • augustus

    lol counting on the future masses of stretched eared hipsters getting old. I love it.

  • zak


  • Blake K

    If the idea does not apply to you, why do you feel the need to bash on it?
    Im sure Designaffairs could have put the device in any sized object that fit in your ear just like anyone else does. The fact of the matter here is they decided to try something different to appeal to a common market that may not be like the one you are used to. Body modification is a big thing and is growing rapidly and moving throughout cliques of all society. Body mods are not just for fans of alternative music, more and more people are getting modified and body modification traces back very far into history. For those of you who think this is disgusting what about tattoos? that is a body modification or lets hit on a much more dangerous body modification that most people overlook and that a lot of people do. TANNING. Tanning is indeed a body modification in its simplest form. Stretching out your earlobes is less dangerous than setting yourself up for sun poisoning, or frying your skin laying in a tanning bed. The bottom line is here is that Designaffairs took a chance to make something different. They released a product that would be beneficial to help someone/anyone. They are not asking you to stretch your ears and I am not sure if they make smaller gauge plugs for this product or not, but what they are doing is offering a product. You don’t have to like every product out there. If you are an adult male you wouldn’t buy a g-string that meant for a teenage female would you? If a products use does not apply to you, should you really care? I urge everyone who thinks this product is disgusting and stupid and people who think nobody will use this to simply go outside, go to your local mall, or any place that younger generations gather and take a look at the people you see around you. Look at the future of our culture and yes I agree that is a scary thought. But notice the trends and realize just because they are not right for you, does not mean they are wrong.

    We are simply human beings trying to make life work for other humans beings, why try to complicate that? Let us help each other out.

  • andnowthenews

    My apologies for inherently attributing deafness to oldness, I did not think about what deafness actually is and it shows in my simplistic and stereotypical response.

  • Matt

    Thank you for designing with my future in mind. If this goes into production, I will definitely bet getting them, if not, I'll have to make them myself.


  • satomi ok

    I want it. But I don’t have big earlobes…

  • Justin Ireland

    I think this is awesome! I love how it doubles as a gauged ear ring. And also it would help me from sweating on my hearing aids. That frequently causes problems for me when out.