It's long been the curse of many a rugby player (and an easy way to spot one on a night out), but a Northern Ireland woman may have created a way to prevent the dreaded cauliflower ear.
Brenda Phillips, a dental technician from Lisburn in Co Down, has invented a silicon ear guard to prevent injury and protect cartilage, after her son has been playing sport for all his life.
Her invention, Caulear Protection, is already used by rugby players, judo professionals and wrestlers and it patent pending.
Ms Phillips told Belfast Live that: "Cauliflower ears aren't that nice to look at it. But it isn't just about aesthetics, they can be very painful and can also cause ear damage.
"People who play contact sports like rugby and wrestling protect their teeth, so why not protect their ears?"
She first came up with the idea four years ago when she was watching a rugby match on the TV, and saw that an Ulster player had a piece of cotton wool protecting his ears which split open every time he was tackled.
Great news for young rugby players - no more unsightly ears, see?