I got my conch pierced about 9 months ago and it still has not healed. This piercing is located in the center of your ear where the most cartilage is located. Healing typically lasts anywhere from three to 12 months.
I decided to get a piercing in my conch when I noticed my favorite celebrity, Justine Skye with a hoop in the center of her ear. It took me two years to build up the confidence to finally get it done. I scared myself by reading so many horror stories. I don't have a horror story of my own, but I can testify and say that this process has not been easy.
I researched everything you could think of regarding the piercing; infections, keloids, procedures, everything. I wanted to make sure I knew just as much as the piercer before I got it done.
Eventually, I decided to get my conch pierced. I had visited the shop at least twice before so I felt comfortable with the piercer I chose.
The pain of the needle puncturing through numerous layers of my cartilage was surprisingly very tolerable. I'd compare the pain to getting hit in the ear with a kickball. It hurts, but it is quick. It felt like pressure on my ear as the piercer twisted on the ball of the bar in my ear.
The first few months, I made sure I slept on the opposite ear, which was my left side. It was very difficult considering I am a wild sleeper. No part of the body goes unbothered when I am sleeping. I flip over from my stomach to my back, to my right side, and then to my left. I used a "U" shaped neck pillow to keep myself from disrupting the piercing. This helped my sleeping a little better.
Moving forward, I cleaned my piercing six times a day for three months, after that, I got a little lax. It was too much of a hassle every three hours having to go to the public restroom to clean my ear. I had a miniature makeup bag packed filled with Q-Tips and sea salt water spray.
My piercing was looking good, almost like it was completely healed, so I went to cleaning my ear only once a day before I'd go to sleep at night.
Here is where it all went downhill. Weeks later a keloid formed on both sides of my ear. I freaked out thinking it was an infection, but that couldn't be possible because I felt like I kept my ear perfectly clean and I never fiddled with it.
I dealt with this keloid for about a week until I went to my piercer and she recommended tea tree oil and going back to cleaning my ear at least four times a day. Tea Tree Oil must've been heaven sent because my keloid cleared up within three days. My ear was back to normal and I couldn't wait to change my bar to a stud.
Having not learned my lesson, four months later, another keloid type bump shows up on my piercing. I randomly decide to clean my piercing one day because I notice it's looking a little red. I begin cleaning and blood starts to run. At this point, I am ready to call it quits with this piercing.
Every time someone hugs me they are putting severe pressure on my ear and it hurts. If my hair is down and curly, its winding around the bar sticking out behind my ear, tugging at the piercing.
This process has been a repeated cycle of treating and healing, treating and healing. I am hoping this piercing will eventually heal all the way inside, so I can finally change it to a hoop.
Everyone heals differently, but I would only get this piercing if you are willing to commit at least 8 months to it. Cleaning it at least four times a day and making sure your daily habits don't interfere with the piercing.
This includes getting dressed, styling your hair, spraying perfumes, hugging people, wearing headphones, etc. You eventually don't notice what hits your ear, but at any time it could irritated by what comes in contact with it.