A hickey, also known as a kiss mark or love bite, is actually a kind of bruise. Hickies result from kissing or sucking the skin too hard, causing broken capillaries and pooling blood that turns the skin red or purple.
A hickey can last more than a week, but will heal with time. Once healed, there is rarely any kind of scar or mark left behind.
However, having a hickey where other people can see it is quite embarrassing. You can hide hickies with clothing or makeup. You also may want to try the help of a number of easy-to-follow home remedies.
1. Cold Compress
To heal a hickey, the blood clots need to be broken apart so the blood spreads out. This can be aided by applying a cold compress on the affected skin. Any kind of cold compress will constrict ruptured capillaries and reduce bleeding.
- Put some ice cubes in a paper towel and lightly press it against your skin for about 15 minutes, several times a day. An icepack will help prevent swelling around the hickey and reduce pain. Do not apply ice directly on the skin because it can cause an ice burn.
- Put a spoon in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes. Then, wrap the spoon in a cloth and lightly rub it over the affected skin area until the spoon is no longer cold. Do this several times a day until the hickey is gone.
The stimulant effect of peppermint can help improve blood circulation, and hence it is very useful in treating hickies. It can also heal the capillary vessels.
- Apply peppermint oil gently on the affected skin area. Initially there will be a tingling sensation, but it will quickly go away. Do not use this remedy more than twice a day as it can irritate the skin.
- Apply some peppermint-based toothpaste on the affected area for a few minutes. Once the tingling has stopped, wipe it off with a warm washcloth. Do not use this remedy more than once a day. It works best when done as soon as possible after getting a hickey.
3. Rubbing Alcohol
If only a few hours have passed since you got the hickey, rubbing alcohol is just the right ingredient for you. Rubbing alcohol has disinfectant, soothing and cooling properties that can help get rid of a hickey fast.
- Apply some rubbing alcohol to the affected area using a cotton ball.
- Rub the area gently for several minutes. This will help minimize any discomfort.
- Rubbing alcohol can dry your skin, so apply some moisturizing lotion on the area after you are done.
- Do this several times a day for one or two days.
4. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is a natural moisturizer that will help reduce the sensitivity of the affected skin area. Also, its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties will help the burst capillaries under your skin heal faster.
- Extract fresh aloe vera gel and massage the gel into the bruise. Do this two or three times a day.
- If you do not have an aloe vera plant at home, you can use an aloe vera-based cream or lotion and apply it on the affected skin two or three times a day for two to three days.
5. Banana Peel
Banana peels have soothing as well as cooling properties that can help minimize your hickey fast.
- Cut the peel of a ripe banana to the size of your hickey.
- Place the inside of the peel on the bruise for 10 to 30 minutes.
- Do this two or three times a day to reduce the appearance of the bruise.
6. Vitamin K
Vitamin K prevents coagulation (blood clots) and hence can be used to treat bruises. This vitamin helps your body reabsorb pooled blood and speed up the healing process.
- Apply a lotion or cream rich in vitamin K to the hickey two or three times a day until the bruise has vanished.
- Eat more vitamin K-rich foods like brown rice, spinach, broccoli, soybean oil, and fish oil for a couple of days.
- You can also take vitamin K supplements to facilitate the healing process.