How to get rid of a hickey

If going in to work with a hickey on your neck isn't your ideal way of starting off the week, here are a few ways to help get rid of them.

A hickey is a bruise or broken capillaries that occur from sucking on the skin too hard. Hickeys usually aren’t painful, but they can be embarrassing if visible. Few people want to show off a hickey in the real world. Like any bruise, if left to heal on its own, it can take days or even weeks. But there are a few measures you can take in order to get rid of a hickey quickly.

Cover it up with makeup

To disguise a hickey with makeup, you may need a few colours of concealer to hide the varying colours of the bruise and blend with your skin. A green colour corrector can hide the dark purple tones. Next, pat on a concealer that’s one shade lighter than your skin tone. Blend lightly with your finger or a makeup brush. Add a light dusting of face powder to set the colour.

As the hickey heals it will change colour. If it turns green or yellow, opt for a concealer that contains more pinkish hues.

Wear loose clothing

If you got a hickey during the cooler months of the year, you can easily hide it under clothing. Turtleneck shirts or sweaters and scarves can go a long way to hiding the evidence.

If disguising it isn’t an option, there are a few methods that can work to get rid of a hickey.

Apply a cold compress

Ice will constrict broken capillaries and stem the bleeding. This works best if you’re able to attend to a hickey right away. Try a bag of frozen vegetables or ice in a re-sealable plastic bag. Create a buffer by wrapping an ice pack in a dry cloth. Avoid any direct contact between ice and skin as it can cause skin damage. A frozen spoon is another option. Let the spoon sit in the freezer for 10 minutes, then wrap with a napkin. Apply compress for 10 minute intervals to reduce swelling.

Massage the area

If you’ve woken up the morning after to discover a love bite, try massaging the area with something smaller than your fingers. This could be a lipstick container, marker top or pencil eraser. You want to press firmly and steadily, twisting the skin over the mark. (This should feel slightly painful.) You want to encourage the blood deeper under the skin where it won’t be visible.

Apply topical treatments

There are topical options to soothe the skin including aloe vera gel, peppermint oil or vitamin K creams. If you don’t have peppermint oil, peppermint toothpaste can work. Apply regularly throughout the day to help reduce swelling.

If you are unable to get rid of the hickey through compress or massage, you may have to live with it – under a turtleneck of course.

How to get rid of a hickey
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