Conch Piercings

Location:Inside the Central 'Shell' of the Ear
Jewellery:Circular or Straight Barbell, Labret, BCR
Healing:3-9 Months
You've probably seen celebrities showing off barbells on their ear cartilages. If you're thinking about getting this done too, read on to find out everything you need to know about conch piercings

Conch Piercing 101

The conch piercing has been practised by the Mangebetu Tribe in Africa and a sect of Hindu Yogis from India and is an attractive ear piercing which goes through the cartilage of the shell, or outer part, of the ear.

The conch piercing is a non-invasive piercing that looks great with barbells, labrets or rings. This stylish piercing is increasing in popularity and it's easy to see why with so many different colours and styles of jewellery available. 


A conch piercing goes through the deep bowl-shaped central shell of the ear. There are two types of conch piercing, inner and outer. The inner conch piercing is done in the centre of the cartilage whereas the outer conch piercing is done on the flat surface of the outer ear. 

The procedure is often performed with a receiving tube or with the freehand method using a sterilised needle, and sometimes forceps are used depending on the anatomy. 

Fairly large blood vessels are located in this area but this is not anything to panic about because illumination can be used to map where the blood vessels are when the piercer marks the piercing spot with a pen. 

Your piercer will help you to choose light-weight and relatively simple jewellery which they will secure for you once the piercing is done. This jewellery should be left in until the end of the healing process. 


Some people report experiencing a soreness when they get the conch piercing done. However, pain levels vary and, like all piercings, it depends on the pain threshold of each individual. 

Like all piercings, it might bleed a little bit, but this is nothing to worry about as the piercing artist will take care of it. 


It usually takes between 3 and 9 months for a conch piercing to heal, but can take a little bit longer sometimes. 

Conch piercings have a slightly higher risk of infection due to the location and infection can cause cartilage collapse if not treated properly. Hence why it is paramount that you follow the correct aftercare instructions.

It's vital not to change the jewellery until the piercing has completely healed. In order to ensure a smooth and successful recovery, it is also really important to:
  • Avoid touching the area frequently and when you do, make sure your hands are clean
  • Try not to get anything caught on it and take necessary precautions such as tying your hair up
  • Avoid sleeping on the piercing
  • Avoid swimming for at least two weeks
  • Don't dye your hair during the healing process and avoid applying any cosmetics to the area
  • If you notice any soreness, swelling or green puss, visit a doctor
Once  your piercing has completely  healed, you can begin experimenting with a range of jewellery.


The initial jewellery used for a conch piercing is generally a barbell which should be wide enough to clear without binding the edge of the ear, typically a 14 or 12 gauge barbell.

Our titanium barbells and labrets come in a range of colours and we also sell a range of add-ons to give your piercing a great new look with an eye catching design or coloured crystal.

A conch piercing requires a wider labret or barbell than other ear piercings, which is why we make our body jewellery available in a range of sizes for as many piercings as possible.

Be inspired by our range of conch piercing jewellery!

Article Disclaimer: The information contained here within is based on our experience as one of the UK’s largest piercing chains. Please note that each individual’s experiences will be subjective and therefore each person will have a different experience of pain, healing and maintenance. For more information, please view our article guides terms and conditions page.

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