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Location: through the curled outer rim of the ear from the top of the ear all the way down to the beginning of the ear lobe

Jewelry: initially, a circular ring ranging from 18 gauge (1mm) to 14 gauge (1.6mm) is usually used in diameters typically ranging from 5/16″ (8mm) to 1/2″ (12mm); jewelry types used can also include BCRs, horseshoe circular barbells, straight barbells, and labret/monroe studs with disc backs

Healing: total healing time is anywhere from 3-9 months; may be longer since the cartilage of the ear lacks adequate blood supply, making healing more difficult than areas receiving better circulation

Aftercare: wash with warm water and antibacterial soap and always make sure your hands are clean; sea salt solutions and sprays can aid with the process as well; avoid smoking, using public telephones, and sleeping directly on your new piercing; resist the urge to change jewelry prematurely – it’s worth the wait to do it right!

Since the anatomy of every individual person’s ear varies, this popular ear piercing may not be possible if your ear’s shape doesn’t display curvature pronounced enough in the helix/scapha area. This limiting factor is further increased should you choose to get double/triple/etc. helix piercings in your ear. Specific cartilage piercings in this site have different names according to their location: auricle piercings are located halfway down the ear and pinna piercings are location at the top of the ear’s curve.

Did you get your cartilage pierced at a piercing kiosk in a shopping center or a similar place? Your piercing may be pierced at a much smaller gauge than typically used in professional piercing studios. When you’re not sure about the size gauge you were pierced at, it always helps to visit a local piercer and have them tell you the proper size your piercing and/or jewelry should be.


Welcome to the Body Piercing Encyclopedia!

This post is included in the Ear Piercing category of our encyclopedia and is joined by many other blog posts about the other piercings available as options in the ear and surrounding areas.

  1. Standard Ear Lobe Piercing
  2. Upper Ear Lobe Piercing
  3. Standard Helix Cartilage Piercing
  4. Forward Helix Cartilage Piercing
  5. Rook Cartilage Piercing
  6. Conch (Inner) Cartilage Piercing
  7. Flat (Scapha/Outer Conch) Cartilage Piercing
  8. Daith Cartilage Piercing
  9. Snug (Anti-Helix) Cartilage Piercing
  10. Industrial Barbell Cartilage Piercing
  11. Tragus Cartilage Piercing
  12. Anti-Tragus Cartilage Piercing
  13. Surface Tragus Piercing

DISCLAIMER: the styles and locations displayed in the reference image to the left won’t match perfectly with your ear’s shape because each and every person has an anatomy that is uniquely individual and some of the piercings featured in our encyclopedia may not be possible for you to get. To find out what piercings are available for you and your specific anatomy, the best option is to visit your local professional piercer and ask for their expertise in determining what piercings are possible for you and your ear!

  • V

    Two months ago I got a helix piercing in a shopping store (yeah I know now). And they used a 20g earring. Could I change it to 18g and eventually to 16g? Thanks for your recommendations

    Vilmari Gonzalez on

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