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Other namesKiss mark, love bite, bug bite, love mark
Hickeys on the neck
  • Hick-ee
Duration5-12 days
Causessuction on skin

A hickey, hickie or sometimes referred to as a love bite in British English, is a bruise or bruise-like mark caused by kissing or sucking skin, usually on the neck, arm, or earlobe. While biting may be part of giving a hickey, sucking is sufficient to burst small superficial blood vessels under the skin.


The origin of the word is from its earlier meaning of "pimple, skin lesion" (c. 1915); perhaps a sense extension and spelling variation from the earlier word meaning "small gadget, device; any unspecified object" which has an unknown origin (1909).[1]


  1. ^ "hickie - Origin and meaning of hickie by Online Etymology Dictionary". www.etymonline.com.

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