Everything You Should Know Before You Get You Your Eyebrows Microbladed
It doesn’t matter if you like them thin with a little arch or bold and straight across, your eyebrows are arguably your most important facial feature. They frame your eyes, brighten your face and give you a more youthful appearance. Plus, there’s something about having your brows on point that just makes you feel good.
Yet so many women struggle with brows they don’t love. Whether it was that time you over-plucked them back in high school, or after a trip to the salon when you realized your stylist waxed them unevenly, bad brows happen all the time and it can take some time for them to recover. That means spending time (and money!) on pencils, gels and the like to fill in sparse areas and temporarily repair the damage done. Who has time for all of that?
Wouldn’t it be nice to wake up in the morning with perfect brows and the confidence that comes with them? Well, you can! Enter microblading. This innovative beauty procedure is the answer to all of your brow woes. With microblading, you can transform your thin misshapen eyebrows into the full, vibrant brows you’ve been dreaming of.
What is Microblading?
Microblading is a semi-permanent makeup procedure whereby hair like incision strokes are created along the eyebrow to enhance, reshape, fill (cover gaps of lost hair), to extend the eyebrows, or to fully reconstruct brows with little to no hair. The procedure can entail the use of a nanoblade and/or a super-fine pen (technically, a bundle of 12 to 15 needles), which is dipped into a solution that is mixed using a natural selection of micropigments that has been matched to the client’s hair color and skin tone and is then glided along a sketched outline of the desired brow pattern that has been designed and scrutinized beforehand. The tip of the nanoblade and super-fine pen are so fine, that they create ‘hair strokes’ that mimic your own brow hairs. Each microblading stroke is applied individually, allowing the artist to control the shape, color, and density of the completed eyebrows. Whilst only penetrating up to 1mm into the skin, the pigment is deposited simultaneously with the creation of the hair like stroke creating a feathered outline which will be filled in further in the same manner and according to the approved brow pattern.
Also known as Embroidery, Microstroking, Feather Touch, Microfeathering and Hair Strokes, Microblading is a form of semi-permanent makeup that provides a means to partially or fully camouflage missing eyebrow hair with the appearance of simulated hair using fine deposits of cosmetic tattoo pigments.
Is Microblading right for me?
If you are guilty of over plucking, have sparse/uneven eyebrows, have lost all or a portion of your brow hair, or simply desire to change your shape or get a fuller look, we can make your dream brows come true with Microblading.
Standard microblading works best on those who have normal, dry or combination skin with small pores. The reason why is that people with oily skin have a higher risk of rejecting the pigment or experiencing pigment hydration, which is when the pigment fans out and causes the strokes to blend together. If you have very thin, sensitive skin that is easily irritated, you also may have poor retention of the microblading pigment.
If you have oily skin with larger pores, or if you’re simply looking for a more misty, powder-filled brow, the Microblading + Ombré (aka Hybrid) technique is likely your better option. It is exactly what is sounds like: a combination of microblading (hair strokes) combined with ombré powder fill which adds shading to create an incredibly natural looking brow that’s a bit more defined and filled in that standard micro bladed brows. For more on this read, The Brow Guide: What’s the Difference Between Microbladed, Ombré Powder and Hybrid Brow and Which is Best?
* Not everyone is a good candidate for microblading. Pregnant or nursing women should wait until after they’ve delivered and/or finished nursing. Diabetics, hemophiliacs or anyone taking a blood thinner should not have microblading done. Individuals with pacemakers, viral infections/diseases (HIV, Hepatitis C) and Accutane users are not recommended for microblading as well.
What should I expect from my Microblading appointment?
The first thing we’ll do is schedule a time for you to come in and meet with Fabian Lopez our Columbus OH microblading artist for a personalized consultation. Adrian will assess your skin and brows to make sure that you are a good candidate for the microblading and which method (Microblading or Microblading + Ombré Powder Brows), work with you to define the shape and density of your completed brows, help select a custom mix of micropigments to complement your hair color and skin tone, as well as answer any questions you have so that you know exactly what to expect.
After the consultation, you can schedule your microblading appointment! When you arrive, we will confirm that you’ve followed all of the pre-procedure instructions before getting started.
Adrian will start by cleaning up your brows so that they are prepped and ready to go. She will then apply a topical numbing cream to ensure that you are comfortable throughout the procedure. While the anesthetic is setting, Adrian will draw the shape for your new enhanced brows, and work with you to finalize the color and shape of your new brows, taking special care to ensure they complement your bone structure and facial features. Once you agree on the shape and color, Adrian can proceed with the microblading procedure.
After your brows are finished, she will apply a healing ointment to soothe your skin and protect your new brows. You’ll be given specific microblading aftercare instructions and that’s it! You’re ready for your first brow selfie!
How long does the procedure take?
The entire Microblading process takes approximately 2.5 to 3 hours from consultation, to finished brows. Most of this time is spent on consulting and paperwork, measuring for symmetry and shape (an intensive and incredibly detailed process that insures brow perfection), before selecting and/or mixing the perfect color shade(s). The Microblading treatment itself only takes about an hour varying based on how sparse the brows are and the coverage area.
Does Microblading hurt?
If a tattoo-like process sounds rather unpleasant, rest assured we do everything possible to maximize comfort and make your service as pain-free as possible. A topical lidocaine cream is applied to numb the skin at the start of the process, and at multiple times during the service. Most clients rate the pain a 3 in a scale of 1-10, and compare it to having your brows threaded. Some sensitivity comes immediately after the topical anesthetic wears off and after that, there is minimal tenderness and swelling. Having this service performed during your menstrual cycle may increase discomfort during your procedure.
Will my Microbladed Brows look fake?
No. The microblading technique creates soft, natural-looking brows. When we implant the semi-permanent pigment under the skin with a cosmetic tattoo process, it looks more realistic than traditionally applied makeup.
How is brow shape and color decided?
During your consultation, your technician will analyze your skin type and undertones, brow color, natural growth patterns, facial shape, bone structure while also taking into consideration how you normally shape/fill in your brows. With their professional opinion and your preferential input, they will design and shape a custom brow that is natural and flattering for you. You will give them your feedback and tweaks will be made until we get the shape where you are happy. We will match the color to your natural brow hair, and (only) hair that sits outside the newly created frame will be removed.
What colors are available?
A wide range of colors are available to complement your skin tone and hair color. Your microblading artist have trained with the best to become cosmetic color theorist and will work with you to select the perfect pigments to craft your perfect brows.
Is there any downtime?
There is minimal swelling and redness, but you will go through a 4 week healing process before your Microblading Perfection Session – this is a touch up session 4-6 weeks after your original procedure. It’s necessary and included with the cost of your procedure, because we know that everyone heals differently and the outcomes of this treatment vary. During this session, we refine your brows to ensure they look perfect and retain their color!
What is the healing process like?
Immediately after the service your brows will appear crisp and dark, do not be alarmed, it takes time for the pigment to settle into the skin and your new brows will fade significantly over a two-week period creating a very natural look.
5-7 days after your procedure, the brows will start to scab and fall off. Although you will experience itching, it is best not to pick at the scabbing and allow this process happen naturally. You can apply ointment as needed to the area to help lessen any associated discomfort.
When your scabbing has subsided, the pigment will have faded around the 8-10 day mark and your brows will be looking much less dramatic. They might even be a bit too light for your taste now, but don’t worry! Around 14-28 days after your procedure, the pigment “reappears” and your new microbladed brows will be healing nicely and looking great.
During your initial procedure, certain areas may not pick up pigment and need to be refilled. This along with any other potential concerns will be addressed during your Touch-Up Perfecting Session! Your pigment color may need to be adjusted, and brow thickness or more strokes can be added. We will perfect your brows during this session and ensure love them!
How many treatments are needed and will I need a touch-up?
Microblading is a two-step process: an initial consultation and service to establish shape and color, and a perfecting session 6-8 weeks later, during which we will assess your pigment retention and make adjustments. Depending on factors such as lifestyle, sun exposure, brow color, etc. you will then require future touch-ups every 1-2 years. We will schedule your initial Microblading Touch-Up / Perfecting Session (included in your Microblading service cost) visit 6-8 weeks after the initial procedure, to give the skin the proper time it needs to fully heal. It’s also an important time for you to get use to your “new brows” and determine if you wish to make any adjustments to the density or general shape of your brows during your perfecting session. But the touch-up helps “solidify” your results and helps them last longer.
Depending on your skin type, or if you have very little brow hair (including alopecia), additional Touch-Ups / Color Boosts maybe required and will be charged according to the current price list. But with one service (and a Touch-Up between), you’ll get 1-2 years of fabulous brows from this relatively small beauty investment.
Compared to other techniques, “microblading gives a very natural look and better simulates hair, says Fabian Lopez, Columbus OH microblading and brow expert here at PLEIJ Salon + Spa in Columbus, Ohio.
How long will my Microbladed Brows (cosmetic tattoo) last?
The pigments will not wash away like your topical makeup, rather they are “semi-permanent” and can last between 1-2 years but will begin to fade over time. Different factors including: skin type, sun exposure, pigment color (lighter colors fade faster), chemical peels coming into contact with the area, iron deficiency, salt water exposure and smoking will affect how fast the pigment breaks down.
In addition the skill or your microblading artist also plays a role. If your artist doesn’t go “deep” enough into the skin with their incisions, your brows will naturally fade faster as the body pushes the pigment out of the skin. If the pigment is placed in the epidermal area (which is not very deep) then your body will probably kick out all of the pigment over the course of 60 days or so which is the natural life cycle of your skin!
If you want your results to last as long as possible then we encourage you to follow the after-care instructions from your artist as closely as possible!
For best results, it is important that you follow the aftercare instructions and touch-up your brows every 1-2 years or as needed to keep them looking distinct and defined. A few ways to extend the interval between touch-ups / color boosts: Stay out of the sun, since it can fade the pigment, and avoid putting exfoliants (like retinol and glycolic acid) near your brows, because with continued use they’ll lift the top layers of your skin—and the color with it.
Most clients come for a color boost after 1 year.
*Please note that final results CANNOT be guaranteed, as each unique skin type has different retention and breaks the pigment down at diverse rates. We will re-evaluate how your skin has received the pigment during your 6-8 week touch-up (included in the initial procedure price) and make any adjustments necessary. Some people may require additional sessions if they have previous tattoos, light hair, very sparse brows or oily skin.
What factors will affect my cosmetic tattoo?
Oily skin: it can cause the pigments to blur and heal more “powdery” and lighter.
Smoking: smokers may notice their tattoo will fade faster.
Sun Exposure: Increased sun exposure will result in premature fading. Avoid sun while healing and once healed, put sunblock on your brows.
Color of pigment: lighter colors will fade faster.
Bleeding during the procedure: any bleeding will reduce pigment absorption. Avoid blood thinners prior to and following your appointment, including certain medications (blood thinners, ibuprophen, tylenol, etc.), turmeric and fish oil, alcohol and coffee.
Does Microblading damage your natural eyebrows?
When performed properly, microblading should cost minimal damage to your natural eyebrows,” explains Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. However, it is important to visit a reputable salon. In the event that the technician deposits the pigment too deep in the skin or if you develop an infection, there may be permanent damage to the hair follicles. It is possible that the blade cuts some of your natural hair is in the process of depositing the pigment into the skin, however, these hairs should grow back in relatively short time but the loss will be camouflaged by your new microbladed hairstrokes.
What can I expect immediately after my Microblading procedure?
Your brows will appear darker and more intense than your desired look for the first 10 days after your procedure. They may continue to darken as scabs form, though this isn’t an accurate indication of your final results and they will gradually soften as the skin heals. You may have some redness and swelling, but it will be minimal and should subside after a couple hours. Slight tenderness may occur for a few days. It is recommended that you follow the aftercare diligently. Many clients that do not have sensitive skin are not even red around the brows when they leave. Many clients return to work directly after their procedure. You do not need to “hide” after this procedure, however, you do need to follow the aftercare instructions.
What is the difference between an Eyebrow Tattoo and Microblading?
An eyebrow tattoo is a more permanent procedure, which uses a machine to deposit standard tattoo ink deep into the skin. Microblading involves using a hand tool with tiny needles to create shallower, individual stokes on the skin, and then allows pigment to seep in. The pigment blends in with your natural eyebrows to create realistic brows that fit the proportions of your face and highlight your unique features. Microblading lasts only 1-2 years depending on your skin’s pigment retention — and for someone who’s a bit squeamish about making a permanent change or wants the freedom to be able to change their look every few years, that just may be the ideal amount of commitment! Furthermore, eyebrow tattooing is very painful by comparison, and typically quite a bit more expensive. Permanent eyebrow tattoo also tends to produce a thick, unnatural solid line, whereas Microblading allows for much more control resulting in more precise, crisp, hairlike strokes.
What else should I know?
Prices vary based on location and artist expertise, but expect a quality job to cost somewhere between $500 to $1,000. In the first few days, you might want to plan around your brows. On the first day after microblading, clean your eyebrows with distilled water on cotton pad gently and apply aftercare cream every four hours. On the second day, repeat that three times. For the next five days, do this morning and night. Your brow area might be red and scabby, so try not to schedule big things (e.g., a huge job interview or engagement photos) for the first week or two. Also, avoid going to the gym, any excess sweating around eyebrows will prevent pigment retention and could cause infection.
Microblading is a tattoo. Pigment is deposited into the dermis (not into the epidermis as so many techs are claiming) so as to make the pigment last. Were it placed in the epidermis it would slough off within 30-90 days, depending on age (as the epidermis continuously renews itself). The tattoo, as is the case with all other tattoos, can and will fade depending on multiple factors (brow color – darker colors last longer and require less maintenance while lighter colors require more frequent touch-ups, quality of pigment/ink used, UV exposure, use of acids in skincare products, medications) but without intervention will never disappear completely. Tattooing is permanent, whether it is on the body or face. It is crucial to do your research on the experience and education level of the artist before having any work done.
Immediately post treatment, eyebrows will appear darker than expected, but will fade during the healing process over the following 4 weeks. The treatment is typically a 2 step application process:
- The initial appointment includes consultation and initial application.
- The second appointment a minimum of 4 weeks later is to refine the strokes and fine-tune color. The 2nd application ensures that the micro-pigments are healing properly and responding well.
While defined as semi-permanent due to the periodic Color Boosts / Touch-Ups to keep the color fresh, Microblading is in fact permanent just like any other tattoo on your body.
Are there any safety precautions I should take?
Safety precautions for Microblading are similar to those for any other tattooing technique. The most common complications and reports of client dissatisfaction from microblading relate to misapplication of the pigment (poorly trained and/or inexperienced artists), pigment migration, and color change (low quality pigments). Serious complications are uncommon though it is important to stress that like all forms of tattooing risks associated with Microblading include the transmission of blood-borne pathogenic organisms (e.g. HIV, Hepatitis C Virus) as well as short term or long terms reactions to pigment ingredients. Therefore, it is essential to check that the technician holds appropriate licenses and registrations for the provision of Microblading services as well as inquiring about the standard of training that has been attained by the technician.
There is not yet a standard for independent testing of microblading professionals. However, the Board of Microblading is being formed complete with examination and requirements of training, a knowledge of the basics of sanitation, Bloodborne Pathogen Certificate, Color Theory, Techniques, Safe needles (such as the hygienic cartridge microblading needle with retractable “no stick” design”), and healed photographs of work completed.
Procedures performed by technicians who have completed a comprehensive course of instruction can minimize the risk of unwanted outcomes and client dissatisfaction.
Microblading is perfect if you have sparse areas or overly plucked eyebrows that you want to appear fuller, and the result is a semi-permanent solution to ‘I woke up like this’ brows. With one service (and a Touch-Up between), you’ll get 1-2 years of fabulous brows from this relatively small beauty investment.
If you’re tired of filling in your brows every day, but you want the freedom to be able to change your look every few years, this procedure might be the perfect investment. And there’s an added bonus: After getting your eyebrows Microbladed, you may find yourself putting your makeup brushes down. Clients with fierce Microbladed eyebrows often don’t feel the need to wear much additional makeup. When your brows are groomed and perfected, you just have a more awake, polished look!
Time savings, less money spent on makeup, and perfect brows? Seems too good to be true. Well unfortunately, not everyone is a good candidate for microblading. Pregnant or nursing women should wait until after they’ve delivered and/or finished nursing. Diabetics, hemophiliacs or anyone taking a blood thinner should not have microblading done. Individuals with pacemakers, viral infections/diseases (HIV, Hepatitis C) and Accutane users are not recommended for microblading as well.
You Are Not A Candidate For Microblading If You…
• are pregnant or nursing
• are undergoing chemotherapy
• have a viral infection or disease
• have epilepsy
• have heart problems
• have skin irritations or psoriasis of the eyebrows
• are currently sick
• have had Botox in the last 2 months
• are currently using Accutane
• are diabetic
PLEASE NOTE: Microblading results in a very natural and fuller-looking brow. While your brows will initially appear darker, they will fade significantly over a two-week period. It is absolutely crucial to have a touch-up procedure completed. It is also difficult to predict how well your skin will retain the pigment. Due to this and other varying factors, we cannot guarantee your microblading results. Microblading has become a very popular, in-demand service, as a result many less than experienced individuals have begun offering this service and promoting themselves as microblading specialist. This is a semi-permanent procedure and as such we STRONGLY encourage you to do your due diligence before selecting a professional to perform your microblading service.