DIY inner conch
Let me just start off by saying that you should not pierce yourself if you don't have to. A lot can go wrong and professionals really know what they're doing. That being said, do not go out and get pierced anywhere that uses guns. I have been horrified to see my friends with new piercings, only to find out that they got it done with a gun. Not just lobes, either. I'm talking tragus piercings and helix piercings. Don't do it! Guns are bad.
Anyway, back to my conch. I've always wanted a big ring around my ear, so one day I decided to just do it. I have done all of my piercings myself, including ear cartilage, so I wasn't worried. I sterilized a regular sewing needle that looked to be around 16g (by boiling for 30 minutes), and marked my ear. The barbell I was using was pre sterilized, so I didn't worry about that. Then, I just went for it. I did have to bend my ear forward, to make sure I would get the piercing straight, but everything went fine. There was a crackling noise while piercing, but nothing too scary. I've never experienced that "popping" sound when I pierce myself, it's always more like a series of fast little crackles. I left the needle in for a minute, then went to put the jewelry in. The piercing was too small for the barbell, but with a little force I felt it pop through the back of my ear. When I looked in the mirror, I was in love. It looked so good next to my tragus, like it was meant to be there all along.
I think I should probably tell you how I figured out the right placement, too. I had a spare 16g circular barbell (horseshoe) lying around, so I took the balls off it and put it around my ear where I wanted my inner conch to reach. Then I took it off and marked where I thought it was, and tried the ring on again to check my mark. It is always good to get an idea of how something will look on you before you go sticking needles through your body. Believe me, if I didn't like how it looked, I wouldn't have pierced it. Also, I know I said I've always wanted a ring, but I know that healing with a barbell is less complicated and wouldn't put as much stress on the piercing, so I'll just change it to a ring once it's healed.
There was absolutely NO pain when I pierced my conch. Of course, when I was putting the barbell in it hurt slightly, but I expected that because I was basically stretching the hole. It was more like soreness than pain, though. Right now it is still very sore, but it's doing well. I keep touching it even though I know I shouldn't, but I can't help it. Every time I get a new piercing I'm always touching it. It is a really bad habit, but nothing terrible has happened so far to any of my piercings. I can't sleep on that side so much, because it is so sore, so I kind of have to angle my head weirdly to sleep. And I can't sleep on my other side because I still have a healing snug piercing there. It sucks, but not enough for me to want to take everything out. I love my piercings way too much.
Overall my piercing experience was non-traumatizing and successful. Do not be afraid to push hard if you choose to pierce yourself. If you resign yourself to doing a piercing, just do it. Do not wimp out right in the middle, and do not go slow. Make it as quick as possible, trust me when I say it is WAY more painful if you go slow. Also, see if you can get real piercing needles and look up the best ways to sterilize them. You can find piercing needles anywhere online, for reasonable prices, and I know the BME store sells them. I just used a sewing needle because I wanted a new piercing right then and had no money to spend on piercing needles. Obviously a piercing needle is the best thing to use in this case, so be safer than I was if you plan to do this.
As for healing, it is doing very well. Sore, like I said before, but that should be expected. I think healing time is 4 to 6 months, so hopefully all goes well. So far I've just been cleaning it with hot water, and there's no swelling, but I need to go out and buy some non-iodized sea salt for warm sea salt soaks (or better yet, pick up some H2Ocean like I have been meaning to for a long time), and if there is any swelling (like my snug STILL swelling after 2-3 months) I will do chamomile tea soaks, because those really seem to help me. I did a chamomile soak on my tragus when it was healing, to get rid of a piercing bump, and it cleared up in two days and it was fully healed by the third day. So stock up on some 100% chamomile tea, guys (you need to make sure nothing else is added and that you're not allergic to ragweed). Always go to a professional, but if you have a high pain tolerance and confidence, piercing yourself is an alternative. Not a totally safe one, but definitely doable. So go for it!
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 27 Jan. 2011
in Misc. Ear Cartilage Piercing