Looking to get more than just a standard ear lobe piercing? Want to stay hip with the latest and most stylish body piercing trends? It sounds like you’re ready to learn about all the different types of cartilage piercings! Spencer’s is here to show you everything there is to know about this awesome body modification. We will go over cartilage piercing names, healing times, how much a cartilage piercing costs, and other important piercing information. Consider use your cartilage piercing headquarters!

Before we dive in, it’s important to know that piercing pain and healing times can vary depending on the person, as well as what type of piercing that person gets. Cartilage piercings typically take anywhere from 3 to 6 months to heal, but this isn’t a guarantee. Make sure to check out the piercing FAQs below! Once you’re comfortable with all of this body piercing information, head to our site for all your body jewelry needs. The cartilage piercing possibilities are endless!

Types of Cartilage Piercings

Anti-Tragus Piercing

Anti-Tragus Piercing Location: Located on the middle ear cartilage opposite of the tragus, which is the piece of cartilage that hangs directly over your ear canal.

Anti-Tragus Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 16 or 18 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Flat back studs, circular barbells

Conch Piercing

Conch Piercing Location: Located on the fold of the middle section of the ear cartilage, across from the ear canal. This piercing allows a ring to go around the outer edge of the ear cartilage.

Conch Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 16 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Flat back studs, captive rings

Daith Piercing

Daith Piercing Location: Located at the root of where the outer ear cartilage starts, right above the ear canal.

Daith Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 16 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 6-9 months

Recommended Jewelry: Flat back studs, captive rings, circular barbells

Forward Helix Piercing

Forward Helix Piercing Location: Located above the ear canal on the inner part of the ear cartilage. This piercing goes directly across from the helix, which is on the outside part of your ear cartilage.

Forward Helix Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a standard 16 or 18 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Captives rings, flat back studs, circular barbells

Helix Piercing

Helix Piercing Location: Located on the upper part of the outer ear cartilage. A helix earring goes directly across from the forward helix, which is on the inner part of ear cartilage.

Helix Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a standard 16 or 18 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Captives rings, flat back studs, circular barbells

Industrial Piercing

Industrial Piercing Location: This cartilage bar piercing connects two different holes on each side of the ear with a straight barbell. These types of ear piercings usually put two holes through the upper ear cartilage.

Industrial Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 14 or 16 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 2-3 months

Recommended Jewelry: Industrial Barbells

Rook Piercing

Rook Piercing Location: Located at the top part of the middle ear cartilage. This piercing goes directly above the daith.

Rook Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 14 or 16 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Captive rings, flat back studs, straight barbells

Snug Piercing

Snug Piercing Location: Located on the center part of the middle ear cartilage, right below the rook.

Snug Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 16 or 18 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 4-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Captive rings, flat back studs, straight barbells

Tragus Piercing

Tragus Piercing Location: Located on the cartilage that hangs directly over your ear canal.

Tragus Piercing Process: This piercing is typically performed with a hollow 16 gauge piercing needle.

Healing Time: 3-6 months

Recommended Jewelry: Flat back studs, circular barbells

Now that you’ve learned about the different types of cartilage piercings, here are a few helpful body jewelry FAQs:

Q: How long does a cartilage piercing take to heal?

A: Cartilage piercing healing times vary. We recommend talking to a piercing professional about the healing period, cartilage piercing bumps or swelling, and cleaning routines before getting your piercing. Keeping up with your piercing aftercare is a must!

Q: What is this bump on the back of my ear?

A: It’s normal to form a small cartilage piercing bump on the back of the ear during the first few days of the healing process. Monitor the piercing site and make sure to keep up with the aftercare. If pain or swelling worsens over time, contact your doctor to make sure you don’t have an infected cartilage piercing bump.

Q: Do cartilage piercings hurt?

A: Cartilage piercing pain depends on your pain tolerance. We recommend talking to a piercing professional about pain management before getting your cartilage pierced.

Q: How much does a cartilage piercing cost?

A: Cartilage piercing cost depends on where you live and which piercing studio you’ll choose. There are different types of cartilage piercings that have varying prices. There are also different types of cartilage jewelry, such as captives and industrial barbells, which may have a higher price than standard flat back cartilage studs. We recommend calling a professional piercer for a cartilage piercing price.

Q: Why shouldn’t I get a cartilage ear piercing?

A: If you’re questioning whether or not you should get cartilage earrings or any kind of body modification, we recommend talking to a professional and considering everything before committing. Not every piercing is for everyone, and that’s okay! Take your time deciding if you want a cartilage piercing, and speak with a professional to make sure you’re making the best decision you can for your body. If you decide that you want one, Spencer’s has tons of cute cartilage piercings to choose from.

Q: How long should I wait to change my cartilage piercing jewelry?

A: You need to wait until the body piercing is completely healed before changing cartilage jewelry. While a standard ear lobe piercing heals quickly, the cartilage piercing healing process can take up to 6 months or more. It’s important that you use the same piece of jewelry during that time and keep up with the piercing aftercare.

Q: How do you give yourself a cartilage piercing?

A: You don’t! Cartilage piercings and other body modifications need to be done professionally to prevent any possible infections or other complications during the healing process.

Q: How do I care for my cartilage piercing?

A: We recommend speaking with your piercing professional for guidelines on cartilage piercing care, but you can learn more about how to clean your piercing and jewelry, types of piercings, types of jewelry, and general piercing info on our blog.

Q: Can men wear cartilage piercings too?

A: Cartilage piercings are for men and women! Anybody can rock this awesome piece of jewelry.

Q: Can I get an allergic reaction?

A: Allergic reactions to cartilage piercing jewelry is a possibility, and could result in a rash, redness, or bumps. Contact a piercing professional and make sure that getting a cartilage ear piercing is the right move for you. Be sure to discuss jewelry material options before getting pierced. Check with a doctor beforehand to learn more about your allergies, especially if you haven’t had a pierced ear before.

Like we said, the cartilage piercing possibilities truly are endless! Want to learn more about ear piercings? Check out Ear Piercings: The Complete Guide and our other body piercing blogs for additional information!

Care & Piercing Guides