Conch piercing guide

In Piercing by Roxanne Adams

If you already have your earlobes pierced and you’re thinking about getting an edgy new piercing, you may want to consider getting a conch piercing. This is a piercing done in the cartilage of the middle portion of the ear.  It’s so named because this part of the ear looks somewhat like a conch shell. You can get an inner or outer conch piercing. Inner refers to the lower part of the ear and outer refers to the upper section.


What you should expect

You may be a little nervous about getting this piercing but once you choose a reputable piercer there is no need to fear. The individual will clean your ear then mark the area which you both agree will be pierced. He or she will then insert the piercing needle. Once it goes through the cartilage, the piercer will then insert the jewelry. Your ear will be disinfected and you will be provided with aftercare instructions to keep infections at bay.

If you’re getting the standard sized piercing, the pain will not be much worse that than caused by a lobe piercing. If you want a bigger hole for jewelry with a larger gauge, your piercer may use a dermal punch instead of a regular needle. Since more cartilage is being removed, the pain is likely to increase.

Cost of conch piercings

The cost of a conch piercing can vary depending on your location and how experienced your piercer is. However, needle piercings generally range between $45 and $80. Dermal punches can cost a little more. While you don’t want to spend more than you need to, it may be worth it to pay a little extra for an experienced professional. They would be more qualified to both perform the piercing and advise you on how to care for it. They may also go the extra mile in ensuring that proper hygiene is maintained. The last thing you want is a cheap piercing that leads to infection.


How to care for a conch piercing

Your piercer should give you all the information you need about aftercare but you may want to prepare beforehand. All you should really need are sea salt and cotton balls or Q-tips. Gauze may also come in handy in case you bleed a lot. Salt water is the best healing aid for piercings. Mix the salt in hot water and let it cool to a comfortable temperature. Use your cotton ball to soak up some of the water and hold it to your ear. You should treat your piercing in this way for about five minutes twice a day. You can also buy a prepared aftercare spray if you don’t want to mix your own salt water.


The healing process

Because the piercing goes through cartilage and not just skin, it generally takes a long time to heal. Expect the process to take from six months to a full year. If you contract an infection it would be even longer, so you want to ensure the area stays clean. Pay special attention to excessive pain and any redness, discharge or fever associated with the conch piercing site since this probably means you have an infection. Generally maintaining good health can make the recovery smoother. Eat well and get your rest so your immune system to can do its work.

Jewelry options

You will need to keep the original conch piercing in for about two months or longer. When it’s time to change it, you can choose from a range of options including hoops, barbells and studs. Make sure your new earring is not too heavy as this could prevent the piercing from healing properly. Follow the advice of your piercer on this. You can opt for nickel-free earrings and other metals which don’t usually cause allergic reactions. Don’t use cheap jewelry which will tarnish.

Conch piercings can really add some extra edge to your look so if you want one, go for it! Just remember to choose your piercer carefully and to follow their instructions closely.