The Science Behind Hickies
A hickey, also known as a love bite or a kiss mark, is essentially a small bruise caused by the suction of the skin, usually on the neck or other sensitive areas. When you suck on the skin, the blood vessels beneath the surface break, and the blood pools, resulting in a reddish or purple mark. Although they are painless for the most part, they can be quite noticeable and last for several days or even weeks.
Why People Give and Receive Hickies
Hickies are often seen as a romantic or passionate gesture between lovers. They can be an intimate way to express affection and desire or even a playful way to mark one’s “territory.” Some individuals find the sensation of receiving a hickey pleasurable, while others simply enjoy the visual reminder of a passionate moment.
How to Give Yourself a Hickey
Choose the Right Spot
First, select the area where you’d like to have the hickey. The neck is the most common location, but you can also choose the inner arm, shoulder, or any other area with soft skin and easily accessible blood vessels. Keep in mind that the more visible the location, the more likely others will notice your hickey.
Prepare the Skin
Before you begin, make sure your skin is clean and dry. This will help prevent any irritation or infection. You might also want to gently warm the area with a warm towel or by rubbing it to increase blood flow and make the hickey more pronounced.
Once the area is prepared, pucker your lips and press them against the chosen spot. Start sucking gently, gradually increasing the suction force. Be cautious not to suck too hard, as this can cause pain or more severe bruising.
Maintain and Release
Hold the suction for about 20-30 seconds, then release. You should see a reddish mark on your skin, which will darken as the blood pools. If the hickey is not as prominent as you’d like, repeat the process, but avoid doing it too many times to prevent excessive bruising.
Aftercare for Your Hickey
After giving yourself a hickey, you may want to apply a cold compress to help reduce swelling and minimize its appearance. Over the next few days, you can also use warm compresses to promote blood flow and speed up the healing process. Avoid scratching or rubbing the area, as this can cause further irritation and prolong the healing time.
Alternative Methods to Create a Hickey
Using a Vacuum Cleaner
If you’re having trouble giving yourself a hickey using your mouth, you can try using a small vacuum cleaner attachment. Place the attachment against the desired area and turn on the vacuum for a few seconds. Be cautious not to leave it on for too long to prevent excessive bruising.
Using a Bottle
Another alternative method involves using a small bottle with a narrow opening, such as a soda bottle or a small jar. Press the opening of the bottle against your skin and gently squeeze the sides, creating suction. Hold for about 20-30 seconds before releasing.
Employing Makeup Techniques
If you don’t want to actually create a hickey but simply want the appearance of one, you can use makeup to achieve a similar effect. Start by applying a red or purple eyeshadow or lipstick to the desired area, blending it outwards. Add a touch of yellow or green to mimic the natural progression of a bruise, and finish by setting it with translucent powder.
The Risks and Precautions of Self-Administered Hickies
While giving yourself a hickey is generally harmless, there are a few potential risks to be aware of. Excessive suction can lead to severe bruising, which may take longer to heal. In rare cases, it’s possible to cause an infection if the skin is broken during the process. If you have any concerns about your hickey, consult a medical professional.
Before giving yourself a hickey, consider the social consequences. Some people may view hickeys as unprofessional or inappropriate, and you may face judgment or disapproval from others. If you’re concerned about how others will perceive your hickey, choose a less visible location or opt for a temporary makeup alternative.
Giving yourself a hickey can be a fun and harmless way to express your passion or experiment with sensations. However, it’s essential to understand the risks involved and take necessary precautions to protect your health and image. If you follow the steps outlined above and proceed with caution, you can safely give yourself a hickey and enjoy its unique, temporary mark of affection.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How long does a hickey last?
A hickey typically lasts anywhere from a few days to two weeks, depending on the severity of the bruise and your body’s healing process.
- Can I get rid of a hickey faster?
While there’s no guaranteed way to eliminate a hickey immediately, using cold compresses, warm compresses, and avoiding further irritation can help speed up the healing process.
- Is it dangerous to give myself a hickey?
Giving yourself a hickey is generally safe, but there are some risks, such as excessive bruising or infection. Always use caution and follow proper techniques to minimize these risks.
- Can hickeys cause permanent damage?
In most cases, hickeys do not cause permanent damage, as they are simply bruises that heal over time. However, excessive suction or repeated hickeys in the same area can lead to more severe or lasting marks.
- What should I do if my hickey becomes painful or infected?
If you experience pain, swelling, or signs of infection around your hickey, consult a medical professional for advice and treatment.