Help! I Have A Hickey! What Is A Love Bite And How Do I Get Rid Of It?

Plus, how to hide it if you do happen to get one!

Life’s tough enough (especially when you’re a teen) without certain sticky situations cropping up when you least expect or want them. Here’s how to keep your cool, and your dignity.

Help! I’m in hickey hell

You’ve been going out with your boyfriend or girlfriend for a while and have been taking everything slowly. However, last night’s snogging session got a teeny bit out of control and you’re now the proud owner of a lovebird the size of Laois on your neck. Now isn’t that great!

What actually is a hickey?

Also known as hickeys (or ecchymosis if you’re a doctor…) these reddish-purple bruises form when a person sucks and lightly bites on an area on another person’s body causing the blood vessels under the skin to break. They vary in size and colour depending on the length of time and how strongly the skin is sucked. They’re also very easily recognisable and a dead giveaway to what you’ve been up to. And let’s face it, they ain’t very pretty either. However, the worst thing about them is the trouble that follows if they’re spotted by a teacher, a nosy sibling, or horror of horror, your parents!

If it’s in winter, you’ll always get away with a big scarf!

How to deal:

Hate to break it to you but there’s no quick or magical way to get rid of a hickey. Lashing on a load of concealer or foundation will only make it stand out, so don’t overdo it with makeup. And despite what you may have heard, toothpaste really doesn’t make a difference at all. Sozz! Like any other bruises on your body, it will, of course, go away in time. However, there are a few ways to cover up the hickey if you don’t want anyone else to see it. The easiest and most foolproof way is, of course, to wear a high-necked top. However, if it’s 100 degrees outside (yes we live in Ireland but stranger things have happened!) you’re going to look a little mad so we recommend adding a little ooh-la-la to your outfit by tying a pretty floral or polka dot scarf casually around your neck. If you get any strange looks, explain in an indignant and condescending manner that “everyone knows this season is all about Audrey Hepburn,” or your favourite French blogger! Mutter something in French and stalk off in a huff. This kind of behaviour should borrow you a little time. Collared shirts are also an option, add a flannel shirt over your white tee and call it fashion, the collar will perfectly cover your neck nuisance. Your second option is to get your mitts on a green colour corrector which you can buy from most cosmetic counters. The green colour counteracts redness and if you dab the tiniest amount onto the area and then cover with concealer a shade lighter than your skin tone, you should be covered… literally! Brush on some powder and remember to keep your hands off it if you want to keep up the guise! Alternatively, you could always feign neck pain and try to get your doctor to give you a neck brace (we’re joking!).

If someone does spot it, as hard as it is not to feel a little embarrassed, just accept that these things happen and that we’re all human after all.