I finally got my helix piercing!
Whenever people talks about helix piercing, all sort of gory images on the net come into my mind. I wonder how bad would it hurt. The thing about helix piercing is, there’s really only one correct way to do it, with a body piercing needle. If you do it with a piercing gun. May the force be with you. Piercing guns are meant for lobes piercing only. If you want to pierce any other part of your body, including helix, tragus, forward helix bla bla bla.. Needle piercing should be your only choice. Unlike needle, earring we use with piercing gun is too blunt to pierce through our ear cartilage. Instead of pierce right through, it shatters the cartilage, lead to repeat episode of inflammation, pain and all that disgusting pus.
I listed down a few things that I think you should know before getting a piercing.
1) Which side do you sleep on. Getting a piercing on the ear you sleep on is extremely extremely annoying. I got mine on the ear I sleep on. I have to change my sleeping position to prevent irritation to the wound. Extremely annoying.
2) Pick a good piercer to do it. Most of the tattoo parlour does body piercing. By good I mean, make sure they sterilise their instrument with autoclave. Make sure they wear a glove when they touch your ear.
3) For earring, I strongly recommend using surgical steel earrings (barbell). Surgical steel is the least reactive material. Titanium is good as well. Give your piercing 2-3 weeks to heal before you change the earring. Also be sure to use a longer barbell to allow some space for swelling.
4) Expect redness, swelling, itchiness and pain after piercing. If this is your first time doing it, bring a friend along to drive you back. You can never be too careful. It is common to feel dizzy and a bit run down after you pierce your ear.
5) I got my piercing done for 100MYR. That’s equivalent to 30USD. Do not choose your piercer based on price. I did some research before getting mine. An average of 30USD is common. Make sure they are quoting the price using a needle, not a piercing gun.
6) For after care, I clean the area with saline solution with cotton swap twice a day. Cleaning more than 2 times can irritate your wound. The idea of mixing salt with water is ARGH. I know. Instead of mixing my own saline, I use contact lens solution. Contact lenses solution are basically normal saline. And on top of that, they are sterile. My piercing heal perfectly. I wash my hair as usual with extra care to not irritate the piercing. make sure you clean the wound after shower to prevent chemical residue build up. I believe that with good care, piercing can heal without any episode.
However, the only real advice is, forget the gun, go with the needle.