How to Remove a Hickey

Three Methods:Using Home RemediesSpeeding HealingCovering Up the Hickey

It’s not uncommon to get caught in the heat of the moment and end up with a hickey. A hickey is similar to a bruise, so you can remove it in the same way you would remove a bruise.[1] To remove a hickey, ice it for the first two or three days, then apply heat for several days after that. Elevating the area and applying aloe treatments may also help speed recovery. In the meantime, you can hide the hickey using clothing, accessories, and makeup.

Method 1
Using Home Remedies

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    Apply ice to the hickey. Placing an ice pack on the hickey can help to reduce swelling. This may make the mark less noticeable. Ice has the added bonus of reducing pain to the area.[2]
    • Wrap the ice pack in a clean cloth to minimize your risk of frostbite.[3] You can also place a cool spoon on the hickey, but be sure to not rub it into your skin.[4]
    • You can also use a bag of frozen vegetables, such as peas, or freeze a Styrofoam cup of water if you don’t have an ice pack.
    • Leave the ice on the hickey for up to 20 minutes at time. Make sure to wait for an hour or two after applying ice to apply it again. Apply the ice several times a day for a day or two.[5]
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    Place heat on your hickey. After icing your hickey for two to three days, you can use heat on your hickey.[6] Heat therapy helps to open up blood vessels and increases blood flow, which can promote healing.[7]
    • Use a heating pad or cloth soaked in warm water.[8]
    • Apply heat for up to 20 minutes at a time several times a day.[9] Make sure to give your skin a chance to return to its normal temperature after each heat application or you may burn your skin.
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    Apply some aloe vera to the hickey. Aloe vera is a natural moisturizer. It may help to promote the healing of a hickey. Try smoothing a thick layer of aloe vera onto your hickey. Leave it on for about 10 minutes. Then, wipe away the aloe vera with a tissue. Do this twice per day until your hickey has healed.[10]
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    Try holding a banana peel on your hickey. Holding the inside of a banana peel on your hickey can help to cool the area, which may reduce the size of a hickey. Peel a banana and place the inside part of the peel on your hickey. Hold it there for up to 30 minutes, and then wipe away any excess banana with a tissue or damp cloth.[11]
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    Raise the area above the heart. If you are able, raise the area with the hickey above your heart. This can keep blood from pooling in the tissue, making the hickey worse.[12]
    • Keep your head resting on a pillow or two if the hickey is on your neck.
    • It may be difficult to elevate areas like your stomach or thigh.

Method 2
Speeding Healing

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    Take vitamins C and K. A lack of vitamin K and C may make you more likely to bruise. Consider taking vitamin C and K supplements.[13] You can also try to eat more foods that contain vitamins C and K.
    • Examples of foods high in vitamin K are kale, spinach, broccoli, liver, and eggs.[14]
    • Good sources of vitamin C are strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, sweet potatoes, and red peppers.[15]
    • It's probably easier to up your intake of foods than switch to supplements. However, you can ask your doctor about supplements. You can also talk to your parents about taking vitamins. If you don't want to explain the reason, you can say something like, "We learned about the importance of vitamins in my health class, and I think it might be good for me to take some."
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    Stop using tobacco products. If you smoke or use other tobacco products, stop using them while you have a hickey. Smoking decreases your blood supply and may delay healing around the hickey area.[16]
    • Speak to your doctor if you want to quit smoking. There are medications and smoking cessation programs available that may make it easier for you to quit.
    • If you are underage, it's a very bad idea to smoke. Your body is still developing and smoking can interfere with this process. Talk to your parents if you've started smoking. Explain to them that you would like to take steps to be healthier, and want help quitting. While you may get in some trouble, the benefits to your health will outweigh this.
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    Stay away from massage and drainage. Although you may be tempted to massage the area around your hickey, avoid doing so.[17] This may make matters worse, as you can bruise the skin and make the appearance more apparent. You should also avoid trying to drain the blood in the hickey with a needle. This can cause more damage and can also seriously hurt you.
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    Let the area around the hickey rest. While some treatments may speed healing and reduce the appearance of your hickey, it will take some time to heal. If giving and receiving hickeys is a regular part of your make out sessions, then you may want to ask your partner to focus on another region of your body that is not visible or injured.[18]
    • A hickey—a bruise or hematoma—is an injury. You should rest the area just like you would any other type of bruise.[19]

Method 3
Covering Up the Hickey

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    Wear a turtleneck or a collared shirt. This can help conceal the hickey for a day or so. Go for turtlenecks that completely conceal your neck, and try popping the collar on a collared shirt.[20]
    • A turtleneck is probably a better option, as a collared shirt may not completely conceal the hickey.
    • Keep in mind people may get suspicious if you're wearing shirts that conceal your neck for several days in a row. Try concealing with a shirt for a day or two and then switch to another method.
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    Cover it up with accessories. This can be a cute way to conceal the hickey while adding a little flare to your outfit. A scarf, a bandana, or even clunky jewelry, like a chain necklace, can temporarily conceal a hickey.[21]
    • Much like covering your hickey with clothing, people may get suspicious if this is your go-to method for days. Try to add some variation to the accessories you use, and move on to another method after a day or two.
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    Use your hair to conceal the hickey. If you have longer hair, you may be able to cover up your neck area. This is probably not a great solution for full day coverage, but it can be used if you need to temporarily conceal the hickey. For example, you may be hiding the hickey from your parents. If they pop into your room unexpectedly, you can quickly move your hair over the hickey.[22]
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    Use a green concealer to cover the hickey. Hickeys will initially have a purple color. A green concealer will counterbalance this color, causing the hickey's appearance to fade.[23]
    • Apply your concealer to the hickey. Do not be afraid to use a lot. More is better when it comes to covering a hickey.
    • Use a concealer that matches your regular skin tone. Apply this over the green concealer with a makeup brush.
    • Gently dab the area around the concealer using a makeup sponge until it fades gradually into your natural skin. You should not be able to notice you're wearing concealer when you look in the mirror.
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    Cover up with a pink concealer if the hickey changes color. Hickeys often turn yellow or greenish when healing. When you reach this point, switch to a concealer with a pinkish undertone. This will better hide the hickey.[24] Apply the concealer same way you would apply the green concealer.


  • Using suggestions for how to get rid of bruises may also help, since both hickeys and bruises are caused by pooled blood.


  • There are many products and remedies that claim to remove hickeys or bruises, but you should be aware of using them. Remember that hickeys—and bruises—go away as your body reabsorbs the blood and this isn’t something you can speed up.[25] Taking or applying unverified supplements or trying home remedies may not get rid of your hickey quickly and have also have other medical consequences.

Things You'll Need

  • Concealer, foundation, or primer
  • Ice and heat packs

Sources and Citations

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