To some, hickeys are a purple badge of honor, a love bite, or a trophy. To others, they kind of literally suck. You don’t exactly want your parents to see your bruise and you clearly don’t want to wear a turtleneck in the summer months because, lol, not obvious at all.

WTF is this thing? 

When it comes to hickeys, there’s generally nothing to be worried about. Hickeys aren’t tattoos, nor are they marks that will last for weeks on end. Simply put, a hickey is a bruise. (Still, if you’re bruising easily or are concerned about how long the bruise is lasting, check with your doc). Bruising happens when small blood vessels burst under the skin. The yellowish, purple and green color comes from the body readjusting to the blood that’s been lost. It’s only one way the body breaks down something called hemoglobin, a red protein that transports oxygen in the blood.

SEE ALSO: You’re parting your hair all wrong

Photo: Carolyne Testone/Very Good Light
Photo: Carolyne Testone/Very Good Light

It sounds more complicated than it is to get rid of. Yes, erasing the purple mark is fairly easy to do. That being said, Time.? Is.? Running.? Out.? To get rid of said bite, action needs to be taken like, yesterday. So if you’re reading this because you need immediate assistance, stop what you’re doing, quit Snapchatting this awkward moment, drop your phone and walk run to your nearest kitchen.

What you’ll need:

  • Cold spoon (if one is refrigerated, cool, if not, run it under cold water or dunk it in some ice)
  • Mirror
  • Arnica gel
  • Heavy concealer (one that matches your skin tone)
Up and down and all around.
Up and down and all around.
  1. First things first: Breathe in, breathe out. The calmer you are, the better.
  2. Take your cold spoon and place the bottom of the spoon over the shady hickey in question. Continue to gently – and slowly – rub it onto your neck in a circular motion for 45 seconds. (Seriously, be gentle because you don’t want the hickey to get red and bigger).
  3. Continue this every three hours throughout the day and it will instantly help the swelling go down. Trust us, we’re experts ;). It works because the cold helps stop any more blood from seeping out of the veins.
  4. If you have arnica gel on hand, rub it into your hickey. This natural homeopathic gel reduces pain, swelling and discoloration from bruises. Here’s one from Amazon. Wait until it dries before the next step.
    A closer view.
    A closer view.
  5.  Find a good concealer to get the proper coverage. If you’re close by an Ulta or Sephora, we’d recommend going in and finding your shade. The following are three clutch brands we recommend:  Kat Von D, Dermablend, or Amazing Cosmetics. While they’re super heavy and thick, they will get the job done. Dab on, smooth over the spot and you’re done.
  6. Live your life. Remember that things like this happen all the time. Ride the wave. Enjoy the moment and let it (and by it, we mean your blood) soak in … until next time, mother sucker.
Contemplating life after hickey's gone like.
Contemplating life after your hickey’s gone like.

Hair by Joseph Carrillo; Makeup by Brittan White; Styling by David Yi; Photos by Carolyne Teston; Produced by Elizabeth Denton; Special thanks to Donna Kang and Team Timo Weiland