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By Laurrel Allison 04/08/2018

Cartilage piercings come in many different shapes and sizes. In the 2000s, it was all about the piercings on the upper outer edge of your ear. What’s trending now is slightly different and far more awesome, if I do say so myself. Forward helix and triple forward helix are cartilage piercings with personality. You can even add a constellation of helix piercings if that’s your cup of tea. 


Cartilage piercings are different than piercing your earlobes or your navel. Cartilage piercings do require more healing time and you need to be gentle with them during this process. The proper aftercare is important for this to go well. While it used to be a style dominated and preferred by women, it’s now becoming far more common to see men rocking helix piercings as well, which is quite awesome!


A regular helix piercing is the piercing found at the upper outer edge of your ear. Directly opposite to this common piercing is the less-common (but oh-so-fabulous) forward helix piercing. It’s a popular trend to tack two more forward helix piercings on when you get one, so you end up with three. The client or piercer could end up deciding to only do one forward helix and the rest later. Or, if the client is a fast healer and has a high pain threshold, the piercer could do all three in one go. 


While it’s not very common, it is possible for forward helix piercings to reject. Normally, this only happens due to how the piercing was done. For example, if it’s too close to the edge of the ear. If you can feel your piercing rejecting, take the piercing out immediately to prevent potential scarring. Wait for it to heal before going back to try to redo the piercing in a different location. You may also want to go to a different, more experienced piercer than before.


Before you head off to the piercer’s, be sure you want this kind of commitment. Cartilage piercings can get irritated easily and even get infected during the healing process. You might shift in your sleep and end up with an earful of pain the next morning. Once healed, it’ll probably feel fine 99% of the time. But there’s always the random days when your piercing hurts for no reason at all (or none that you can think of) and that’s normal. If you’re down for the time it’ll take babying, protecting, and cleaning your helix piercing, knock ’em dead! I’d recommend these awesome piercings to anyone in a heartbeat, even though I’m no professional piercer and they know your anatomy best.


While the forward and triple forward helix piercings are in a very specific area of the cartilage, plenty of piercers like to get a little creative. They might link a helix to a daith or line up a triple forward helix so that it’s in line with a tragus. If you give your piercer the creative freedom they love, you could end up walking out of their studio with a crispy new look unlike anyone else’s. 

If you decide to give yourself a bit of a piercing makeover, be sure to do your research! Talk to your pierced friends and colleagues to find out where they went to get their body mods done. Google piercing artists in your area and read the reviews from their clients. Or go to a nearby city to find a reputable shop. Have fun but be safe in the process!

Featured image by tallbitchkata at JüL Head Piercing 

Laurrel Allison

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