What Is a Forward Helix Piercing? Pain, Healing Time, Cost, Benefits, Jewelry, Aftercare

forward helix piercing

What Is a Forward Helix Piercing?

A forward helix piercing is a type of cartilage piercing that is located in the upper part of the ear, where the helix (the curved outer rim of the ear) meets the head.

It goes through the front side of the helix, as opposed to the standard helix piercing that goes through the outer edge of the helix.

forward helix piercing

Forward helix piercings can be adorned with various types of jewelry, including studs, hoops, or curved barbells, allowing for a wide range of styles and personalization.

There are several variations of the forward helix piercing. Single forward helix piercing is the most common type and involves a single piercing through the forward helix area.

Variant 1: Double Forward Helix Piercing

A double forward helix piercing involves two piercings in the forward helix area, typically done in a vertical row along the forward helix. It is a variation of the single forward helix piercing and offers a more intricate and stylish appearance.

This type of piercing allows for various jewelry options, including studs, hoops, or curved barbells, making it easy to create different looks and personalize your style.

Variant 2: Triple Forward Helix Piercing

A triple forward helix piercing involves three piercings in the forward helix area, creating a line of piercings along the front side of the helix.

Triple Forward Helix Piercing Prices

Generally, the cost of a triple forward helix piercing can range from $80 to $200 or more, excluding the cost of jewelry.

Forward Helix Piercing Pain

Does the forward helix piercing hurt? During the piercing process, you may feel a sharp pinch or pressure as the needle goes through the cartilage. The piercing process itself is relatively quick, and any pain experienced during the procedure is usually short-lived.

Many people consider the forward helix piercing to be moderately painful when compared to other ear piercings.

After the piercing, you may experience some tenderness, swelling, or throbbing for a few hours or days, but this should subside as the healing process progresses.

Forward Helix Piercing Healing Time

Similar to other cartilage piercings, the healing time for a forward helix piercing can range from 3 to 6 months or more, depending on factors such as aftercare and individual healing capabilities.

How Much Is a Forward Helix Piercing?

In general, you can expect to pay anywhere from $30 to $80 or more for a single forward helix piercing, excluding the cost of jewelry. The cost of a triple forward helix piercing can range from $80 to $200.

It is important to note that the cost can vary depending on several factors, such as the piercer’s experience, the location of the piercing studio, and the type of jewelry you choose.

Forward Helix Piercing Jewelry

There are various types of jewelry suitable for forward helix piercings, allowing for personalization and different styles. The most popular forward helix piercing jewelry options include hoops, labret studs, and barbells.

1. Forward Helix Piercing Hoop

16 gauge nose ring captive bead    Regular price $14.90

Ashley Piercing Jewelry Implant-grade titanium captive bead ring 16 gauge $14.9, SHOP NOW.

Hoops, also known as captive bead rings, are circular pieces of jewelry that can be worn in forward helix piercings. They feature a small bead or decorative piece that holds the hoop together when inserted into the piercing.

Hoops come in various diameters and thicknesses, so it’s essential to choose the right size for your piercing.

Diameter of a Forward Helix Piercing Hoop

The most common diameter sizes for forward helix piercing hoops are 6 mm (1/4 inch), and 8 mm (5/16 inch). That being said, it can vary depending on the individual’s anatomy and personal preference.

2. Labret Studs

Stud helix piercing with a dragonfly and CZ titanium 16G    Regular price $16.90

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These are among the most common jewelry options for forward helix piercings. Labret studs consist of a flat backplate with a straight post and a threaded top, featuring various designs, such as gemstones, balls, or unique shapes.

Length of the Stud

Typically, a post length of 6 mm (1/4 inch) is suitable for most forward helix piercings. But it can vary depending on the individual’s anatomy and personal preference.

3. Barbells

Barbells are another popular choice for forward helix piercings. They consist of a straight or slightly curved post with a ball or decorative end on each side. One end is usually removable for easy insertion and removal.

Gauge for Forward Helix Piercing Jewelry

The most common gauge sizes used for forward helix piercings are 18 gauge (1.0 mm) and 16 gauge (1.2 mm). But it can vary depending on the individual’s anatomy and personal preference.

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It’s essential to choose the correct gauge size for your forward helix piercing to ensure proper healing and minimize complications. Your professional piercer will help determine the most suitable gauge size for your specific anatomy and needs.

Materials for Forward Helix Piercing Jewelry

The most common materials include titanium, gold (14k or higher), surgical steel, and niobium. Avoid using jewelry made from materials like nickel, which can cause allergic reactions and prolong the healing process.

When selecting jewelry for your forward helix piercing, it’s essential to choose materials that are hypoallergenic and safe for new piercings.

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  1. Titanium: This material is lightweight, strong, and hypoallergenic, making it a popular choice for those with sensitive skin or nickel allergies.
  2. Gold (14k or higher): Gold is a classic and luxurious choice for jewelry. Make sure to choose a high-quality, pure gold alloy to avoid any potential allergic reactions.
  3. Surgical steel: This is the most commonly used material for piercing jewelry. It’s durable, hypoallergenic, and affordable, making it an excellent choice for many individuals.
  4. Niobium: This is another hypoallergenic material that’s lightweight and corrosion-resistant. It’s an excellent option for individuals with metal allergies.
  5. Biocompatible plastics: Some piercing studios offer biocompatible plastics for those who are allergic to metal or have sensitive skin. These plastics are safe, comfortable, and can be sterilized.

Forward Helix Piercing Benefits

Forward helix piercings offer various benefits, mainly related to personal style and self-expression. Some of the key benefits include:

  1. Aesthetic appeal: Forward helix piercings can be a stylish and unique addition to your overall look. They can enhance your ear’s appearance and allow you to showcase your personal style. With numerous jewelry options available, you can easily switch up your look and keep it fresh.
  2. Versatility: The forward helix piercing is versatile, allowing for single, double, or triple piercings. This variety enables you to choose a design that best suits your preferences and desired level of complexity.
  3. Self-expression: Like other body piercings, the forward helix piercing can be a form of self-expression. It can represent your personality, interests, or simply be a creative way to adorn your body.
  4. Wide range of jewelry options: There are many jewelry options available for forward helix piercings, including labret studs, barbells, hoops, and clicker rings. This variety allows you to personalize your piercing and experiment with different styles and designs.
  5. Compatibility with other ear piercings: Forward helix piercings can be combined with other ear piercings to create a unique and cohesive look. For example, you can pair your forward helix piercing with a lobe, tragus, or conch piercing to create an interesting arrangement of piercings.


As with any body piercing, there are potential risks associated with this piercing. Some of these risks include:

  1. Infected forward helix piercing: One of the most common risks with any piercing is the possibility of infection. Maintaining proper hygiene and following aftercare instructions are essential to minimize this risk.
  2. Bump on forward helix piercing: Sometimes, small bumps can form around the piercing site. These bumps can be caused by irritation, improper jewelry, or other factors. They often resolve with proper care, but it’s essential to consult with your piercer if you notice any issues.
  3. Allergic reactions: Some people may have allergic reactions to specific jewelry materials, such as nickel. Opt for hypoallergenic materials like surgical steel, titanium, niobium, or gold (14k or higher) to minimize the risk of an allergic reaction.
  4. Migration and rejection: Piercings can sometimes migrate (change position) or be rejected (pushed out) by the body. Choosing the correct jewelry material and size, as well as following aftercare instructions, can help minimize this risk.

How to Remove a Forward Helix Piercing?

If you decide to remove your forward helix piercing, it’s essential to do so safely to minimize any discomfort or complications.

It’s worth noting that cartilage piercings like the forward helix can close up quickly, sometimes in a matter of hours, so it’s best to keep the piercing in place if you plan on reinserting the jewelry.

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water to prevent infection.
  2. Soak a clean cotton ball or gauze in saline solution or warm water to soften any crusted material around the piercing.
  3. Gently twist the jewelry back and forth while pulling it away from your ear. Avoid pulling the jewelry out forcefully, as this can damage your ear or cause bleeding.
  4. If you encounter resistance, stop and visit your professional piercer, who can remove the jewelry safely and without causing any harm.
  5. Once the jewelry is removed, clean the piercing site thoroughly with saline solution or warm water and mild soap. Be gentle when cleaning to avoid irritating the area.
  6. Continue to clean the area regularly until it has fully healed.

After removing your piercing, it’s normal for some discomfort and redness to occur. However, if you experience excessive pain, bleeding, or signs of infection, such as pus or a foul odor, seek medical attention immediately.

Forward Helix Piercing Aftercare

Proper aftercare is essential to promote healing and prevent complications with your piercing. Here are some guidelines to follow:

  1. Wash your hands before touching the piercing to avoid introducing bacteria into the area.
  2. Clean the piercing site twice a day with a piercing aftercare spray or a homemade saline solution or mild soap and warm water. Gently clean the area with a cotton ball or swab, taking care not to rotate or move the jewelry excessively.
  3. Avoid touching or twisting the jewelry unnecessarily.
  4. Avoid swimming or submerging the piercing in water, including hot tubs or pools, for at least six weeks.
  5. Avoid sleeping on the side with the piercing to prevent irritation and pressure on the area.
  6. Avoid wearing tight-fitting clothing or hats that can rub against the piercing site.
  7. Avoid using hair products or makeup on or near the piercing area.
  8. Be cautious when brushing your hair or putting on clothes, as these actions can snag the jewelry and cause discomfort or even damage.
  9. Take care not to bump or hit the piercing accidentally.
  10. Avoid drinking alcohol or smoking, as these can slow down the healing process and increase the risk of infection.

If you experience any symptoms of infection, such as redness, swelling, warmth, discharge, or pain, contact your professional piercer or a healthcare professional for advice.

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