woman with helix piercing

Healing of helix piercing: advice and care

Healing a helix piercing can be a delicate process, but with proper care and by following professional recommendations, you can enjoy your new piercing without complications. In this article, we provide tips and guidelines for taking care of and promoting the healing of your helix piercing.

Understanding the Healing Process

Time to Heal: The healing time for a helix piercing can vary from person to person and will largely depend on the care given. However, generally, a helix piercing is estimated to take between 3 and 6 months to fully heal. It's important to remember that each individual is unique and their healing process can be faster or slower depending on various factors such as overall health, age, and the care provided to the pierced area.

Stages of Healing: Helix piercing healing goes through several phases, including initial inflammation and scar tissue formation. These stages are:

  • Inflammatory Phase: This is the first stage of healing and occurs immediately after the piercing is done. During this phase, it is normal to experience redness, swelling, and a warm sensation in the pierced area. The body sends immune system cells to defend against possible infections and to start the repair process.

  • Proliferative Phase: This stage occurs after the initial inflammation has subsided and can last for several weeks or even months. During the proliferative phase, the body produces new tissue and blood vessels to repair the wound. You may notice a scab forming in the area of the piercing, which is a normal sign that the body is healing.

  • Maturation Phase: This is the final stage of healing and can extend for several months. During the maturation phase, the scar tissue becomes stronger and takes on a clearer and thinner appearance. It is important to continue to care for the piercing properly during this stage, as the area can still be sensitive and prone to irritations or infections.

It's worth noting that, although these stages are common in the healing process, each person is different and the duration of each stage can vary. The most important thing is to follow professional recommendations and pay attention to the signals your body is giving you throughout the healing process.

Woman with a healing helix piercing.

Basic Care for Helix Piercings


It's crucial to keep the piercing area clean to avoid infections and promote proper healing. Wash the piercing area with isotonic saline solution or a piercing-specific cleaner at least twice a day. To do so, follow these steps:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before touching the piercing area.

  • Dampen a cotton ball or gauze with the isotonic saline solution or the specific cleaner.

  • Gently apply the solution to the piercing area, making sure to clean both the front and back.

  • Do not twist or manipulate the jewelry during cleaning, as this could cause irritation or delay healing.

  • Pat the piercing area dry with a clean cloth or paper towel.

Remember, regular cleaning is crucial to prevent infections and ensure that your helix piercing heals properly. However, avoid over-cleaning as it could dry out and irritate the skin.

Avoid Touching

It's important to avoid touching the piercing, especially with dirty hands, as this could introduce bacteria into the pierced area and increase the risk of infection. Here are some recommendations to avoid unnecessary manipulation of your helix piercing:

  • Always wash your hands with soap and water before touching the piercing, even during cleaning.

  • Resist the temptation to twist, move, or manipulate the jewelry, as this could cause irritation, delay healing, or lead to keloid formation.

  • Don't allow others to touch your piercing as they may transfer bacteria from their hands to the wound.

  • Keep hair tied back or away from the piercing area to avoid it getting tangled with the jewelry and causing unintentional tugs or shifts.

  • If you feel itchiness in the piercing area, resist the urge to scratch. Instead, use a saline solution to soothe the skin and relieve itchiness.

By following these guidelines, you can reduce the risk of infection and ensure successful healing of your helix piercing.

Avoid Chemical Contact

During the helix piercing healing process, it's crucial to keep the area away from chemicals that could irritate the skin or interfere with recovery. Products to avoid include perfumes, makeup, hair products like gels or sprays, and creams or lotions not specifically designed for piercing care. Here are some recommendations to protect your piercing:

  • Apply makeup, perfumes, and hair products before cleaning the piercing area. This way, you can remove any residue that might have come into contact with the wound during application.

  • If needed, cover the piercing area with a breathable dressing when applying chemicals near the area. However, make sure not to keep it covered for too long, as the skin needs to breathe for proper healing.

  • If you need to dye your hair, inform the hairdresser about your piercing so they can take precautions when applying the dye and avoid direct contact with the pierced area.

  • Opt for hypoallergenic and fragrance-free products whenever possible, especially in areas near the piercing.

By following these tips and keeping the piercing area free from chemicals, you will be caring for the health of your skin and promoting successful healing of your helix piercing.

Care of the piercing helix

How to Prevent and Treat Complications


While it's normal to experience some degree of redness, swelling, and tenderness in the piercing area during the early stages of healing, there are signs of infection you should be aware of. If you notice any of the following symptoms, consult a healthcare professional as soon as possible:

  • Persistent redness or worsening redness over time.

  • Swelling that doesn't subside after the first few days or suddenly increases.

  • Intense pain that doesn't improve or worsens after a few days.

  • Discharge of pus, which may be yellow, green, or brown, and may have an unpleasant odor.

  • Fever, chills, or general malaise, which may be signs of a systemic infection.

If you suspect your helix piercing may be infected, do not attempt to resolve it on your own or remove the jewelry, as this could worsen the situation. Instead, consult a doctor, nurse, or piercing professional who can assess the area and provide the appropriate treatment. Early detection and treatment of infections are crucial to avoid complications and ensure a successful recovery of your piercing.


Keloids are abnormal growths of scar tissue that can appear around a piercing. If you notice a raised and firm bump in the area of the helix piercing, you may be developing a keloid. Here are some recommendations to address this situation:

  • Do not attempt to treat the keloid on your own, as you could worsen the situation or cause an infection.

  • Consult a dermatologist or a skin care healthcare professional to assess the bump and recommend appropriate treatment.

  • Treatments for keloids can include corticosteroid creams or gels, corticosteroid injections, laser therapy, cryotherapy, or even surgery in more severe cases.

  • Keep in mind that although keloids are not harmful to health, they can cause aesthetic discomfort or even pain if they grow too large.

Remember that prevention is the best strategy to avoid the formation of keloids. Maintain proper hygiene and follow the care guidelines for your helix piercing to minimize the risk of developing this complication. If you have a history of keloid formation, discuss it with the piercing professional before undergoing the procedure.

Rejection or Migration

In some cases, the body may reject a piercing or experience migration, which means the jewelry appears to move or come out of the skin. While this is more common in certain types of piercings, like surface piercings, it can also occur with a helix piercing. If you notice that your piercing seems to be changing position or that the skin is thinning around the jewelry, it's important to follow these steps:

  • Consult a piercing professional as soon as possible to assess the situation and provide guidance on how to proceed.

  • Do not attempt to resolve the problem on your own, as you could worsen the situation or cause additional skin damage.

  • If the piercing professional determines that rejection or migration is occurring, they may recommend removing the jewelry to avoid further complications, such as scarring.

  • Once the skin has fully healed, you may consider the possibility of re-piercing the area, if you wish. However, it's crucial to talk to a piercing professional to discuss the risks and ensure that proper precautions are taken.

By following these recommendations and acting quickly at the signs of rejection or migration, you can minimize risks and ensure the health of your skin and your helix piercing.

woman with rejection or migration

Tips for Successful Healing

Maintain Good Hygiene

One of the keys to ensuring successful healing of a helix piercing and preventing complications is to maintain proper hygiene in the piercing area. Here are some tips to ensure the area remains clean and free of dirt:

  • Wash the piercing area at least twice a day with isotonic saline solution or a piercing-specific cleanser, following the instructions provided by your piercing professional.

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before touching the piercing area or performing any cleaning activities.

  • Avoid sleeping on the side of the piercing during the initial weeks to prevent additional pressure and dirt accumulation.

  • Frequently change your pillowcases to ensure a clean, bacteria-free environment.

  • Keep your hair clean, tied back, or away from the piercing area to prevent it from getting tangled in the jewelry or transferring dirt and bacteria.

By maintaining good hygiene in the piercing area, you're promoting proper healing and reducing the risk of infections and other complications.

Avoid Sleeping on the Piercing

During the healing process, it's important to try to sleep on the opposite side of the helix piercing to avoid pressing or irritating the area. Constant pressure on the piercing can delay healing, increase the risk of infection, or cause the jewelry to become embedded in the skin. Here are some tips to protect your piercing while sleeping:

  • Use a horseshoe-shaped travel pillow or a specialized piercing pillow that has an opening to keep the piercing area pressure-free.

  • If you don't have access to a specialized pillow, try placing a rolled-up towel around the piercing area to keep it elevated and pressure-free.

  • If you sleep on your side, try placing an additional pillow between your shoulders and head to prevent accidentally rolling onto the piercing.

  • If you're prone to moving a lot during sleep, consider using a soft bandage or piercing protector to help keep the jewelry in place and reduce irritation risk.

By taking these precautions and avoiding sleeping on the helix piercing, you can protect the area and promote complication-free healing.

Don't Change the Jewelry Prematurely

It's crucial to wait until the helix piercing is fully healed before changing the jewelry. Changing the jewelry too soon can cause damage, delay healing, and even increase the risk of infection. Here are some tips to ensure you are ready to change the jewelry:


  • Complete healing of a helix piercing generally takes between 3 to 6 months, but this time may vary depending on individual care habits. Listen to your body and observe how the piercing area looks and feels.

  • Consult a piercing professional if you have doubts about whether your piercing is fully healed. They can assess the area and determine if it's safe to change the jewelry.

  • Do not attempt to change the jewelry if you still experience pain, swelling, redness, or discharge around the pierced area. These are signs that healing is not yet complete.

  • When you are ready to change the jewelry, make sure your hands are clean and use a new, high-quality piece of jewelry, preferably made of hypoallergenic materials like titanium, surgical steel, or 14-karat gold or higher.

By following these tips and waiting for the appropriate time to change the jewelry, you can enjoy your helix piercing without complications while maintaining the health and integrity of the pierced skin.

Helix Piercing for Women


Healing a helix piercing can take time and require specific care; however, by following these tips and recommendations, you can enjoy your piercing without complications. Make sure to follow professional guidelines and be alert to any signs of complications to ensure a successful and healthy recovery. Do not hesitate to consult a specialist if you have any questions or symptoms out of the ordinary. With patience and dedication, you'll soon be able to proudly show off your new helix piercing with confidence.

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