Q and A on Permanent Eyebrows


Permanent Eyebrows - Microblading Eyebrows - Tattoo Eyebrows.

Q. What does it cost?

A. Permanent makeup is not inexpensive, but it can be priceless.  It has been estimated that the savings in daily makeup is about $400 per year, and in time that you may save 380 hours per year. Most people don't get permanent makeup to save money, they do it for convenience and to know that they always look their best. If you compare other non-surgical procedures such as Botox or wrinkle filler it gives you a good idea of the value of permanent makeup. For about the same cost as some Botox or filler, which may last only 3-4 months, you will get permanent makeup that lasts for years and saves you time every day. 

Q. How long does a procedure take?

A. Usually, each procedure appointment is 2-3 hours.  The majority of the time is spent in adequately consulting and selecting the appropriate color for your skin; in measuring and artistically drawing on the planned procedure prior to actually implanting the color; and allowing for the application of topical anesthetics.  Complete after-care instructions will be reviewed verbally and then sent home in written copy form. 

Q. Is it the same as a tattoo?

A. It is a form of tattoo, although different techniques and pigments are used. Anytime color is implanted into the dermis of the skin, it is technically a tattoo, regardless of the manner in which it is performed. 

Q. What is micropigmentation?

A. This is the name of the process used to implant color in permanent makeup. Many people refer to permanent makeup by fancy names such as micropigmentaton, dermal pigmentation etc. It is all correct, however, it truly is a tattoo process. 

Q. Is the procedure safe?

A. Unlike many technicians that re-use or sterilize via an autoclave the various components of their equipment, we use all pre-packaged, sterile and disposable needles and needle casings. This ensures that you will receive the safest, most sterile form of cosmetic tattooing available. In addition, all of your procedures are done under Federal OSHA standards that regulate the sterile, safe and healthy practices for prevention of cross-contamination from person to person. 

Q.  Does it hurt?

A.  A topical anesthesia is used as needed to help numb the areas to be treated.  This helps to alleviate any minor discomfort you may experience during the procedure. Everyone has their own unique level of pain tolerance. Some people feel that certain areas of the face are more sensitive than others, so special emphasis is put on making the client as comfortable as possible. A variety of topical anesthetics are on hand to ensure that your procedure is as pain-free as possible.

Q.  I have no eyebrow hair at all. Will the result look natural or artificial and “painted on”?

A.  A highly specialized technique called eyebrow hair simulation is used to create unbelievably realistic eyebrows.  Personal preference will dictate how “natural” or “dramatic” you want the healed result to be. Fewer hair strokes implanted in the skin looks more natural , and often 2-3 colors and 2 different needle sizes will be used to create a more multi-dimensional appearance. 

Q.  Do you have to shave off my own eyebrows?

A.  NO!  Every attempt is made to retain all natural hair and integrate it into the design of the permanent eyebrows.  In some cases where shaping of the natural brow is required, a few hairs here and there may need to be removed to create a clean, symmetrical and esthetically pleasing result.  The more brow hair you have the more natural the result will be.

Q.  I have pretty good natural brows, but they aren’t perfectly even and I have a few sparse areas. Do I need permanent eyebrow color?

A.  Some people really only require eyebrow enhancement.  This means that select areas are augmented with hair strokes to fill in any “gaps” and create symmetry and balance so both brows match well.  This eliminates the need for daily penciling or filling in of these areas. 

Q.  How will I look immediately after the procedure? 

A.  You may experience minor redness on procedure day. The eyebrow area has very little soft tissue content so swelling is usually not a concern. You may resume normal activities immediately except that you will be advised to wear no makeup directly on the treated area for about one week. There is some minor redness, healing and peeling during the first week. Most clients resume their regular schedule, such as returning to work, the very next day.  It is advised that for very special occasions or anytime you want to look your super-best that you allow one week of healing time. 

Q. When will I see the final result?

A. At first the pigment will appear too dark. There is an exfoliative process during the healing that allows for the surface layer of color to “peel” after 4-7 days. Once completely healed, you are actually viewing the color through the skin, not on the surface as with traditional cosmetics. You can expect that it will “heal, peel and fade” after about one week. The color is usually about 30-40% lighter when healed than it appears the day of the procedure.  If the color looks perfect immediately after the procedure, it would be much too light when healed.

Q. Is it really permanent? How long does it last?

A. Some people may need the color darkened within one to five years after the procedure.  This is typically only about $100, since it is merely a re-coloring of any areas which may have lost color intensity.  A light blonde eyebrow tone will not last as long as a dark brown color due to the physical properties of the color pigments. 

Q. What factors affect how long the color lasts?

A. The skill of the technician, the quality of the pigments used, the individual's skin type, how dark the original color is, sun exposure, and use of exfoliating skin-care products. First the color must be put into the dermis layer of the skin, If not, it will come off as soon as the epidermis goes through a normal shedding cycle.  The sun, exfoliating products such as Retin-A, and regular swimming contribute to premature fading. Regular use of sunscreen will help prevent premature fading.  

Q. I am nervous about the fact that it is permanent. How can I know what to expect before I have it done?

A. We use makeup pencils to draw it on in advance for your approval. Guidelines such as facial shapes, bone structure and artistic design techniques are implemented to create your unique brow shape that perfectly suits you.    I am always cautious to keep on the side of light and natural, for we can always add more color later during your follow-up visit.

Q.  How do I know what color will look best on me?

A.  You may give input into the selection of the color.  Some people like to bring their everyday brow makeup to the procedure appointment for color comparison. However, there are many considerations to choosing a color for permanent makeup, and especially so in the eyebrows.  This is where a highly trained and experienced permanent makeup practitioner guides you in the selection process. Everyone has their own unique skin qualities, including color tone and sensitivity. Using these guidelines helps in the decision making process.  Underlying skin tone will influence the healed color result and the long-term color qualities. It is IMPERATIVE that the technician has a good grasp of color theory, extensive knowledge of the skin physiology and investigates the ethnic influences on skin tone values. In addition, having lots of experience working on many different skin types with the particular brand of color pigments is important. 

The final factor is to remember that being conservative is key. It is easy to darken or add more color later, but not easy to remove or recolor if the result is too dark or unnatural. 

Q. Can permanent makeup be removed?

A. Yes. A laser can remove it, however this is rarely done due to the risk of scarring and the colors used in permanent makeup.  If you wish to change color, re-coloring is possible and requires a skilled technician. For severe cases a properly trained technician can use a salt-based product for pigment removal. This process is extremely advanced and requires special training and the technician should be a seasoned practitioner.

Q. I am planning a cosmetic facial procedure. Should I wait until after that for my permanent makeup?

A. It is often advised that you have your permanent makeup first. You will have great guidelines to ensure symmetry and placement when adjusting facial structure as is done in a face or brow-lift.  The other bonus is that you look better when you are healing from surgery while you are not allowed to wear traditional makeup. 

If you have surgery first, you need to wait until your doctor clears you to have any procedures done, usually 6-12 weeks. 

Q. I am planning on some laser facial rejuvenation treatments. Can I do this after having permanent makeup?

A.  You may have laser treatments such as IPL for photodamage, fraxel-type lasers for skin tightening and skin restoration but you need to inform the medical professional that you have permanent makeup. Certain colors can turn to an undesirable shade or get lightened or removed. It is simply avoiding direct contact between the laser and the permanent makeup areas. 

Q.  I heard that you can’t have an MRI if you have permanent makeup. Is this true? 

A.  No.  You can safely have an MRI even if you have permanent makeup. In rare, isolated cases of facial/head MRI scans, a warm sensation can manifest in the makeup areas.  Statistical data indicates this is rare and usually related to heavy dark eyeliner. Simply tell the MRI technician that you have had permanent makeup (or any form of tattooing) so they know to watch for any unusual reactions. 

Q.  I am about to undergo chemotherapy for a diagnosis of cancer.  I am told my eyebrows and eyelashes will probably fall out.  Can I have permanent makeup and should I do it now or after the treatments?

A.  It is preferred that if given medical clearance by your doctor and you are within the proper time frame of your treatment schedule, that you do the permanent makeup first.  This helps in color selection and placement in your natural eyebrow position. When the hair does fall out, you will have eyebrows already done, and are able to avoid going without any eyebrows for a time.

If you miss the time window allowable by your doctor’s treatment plan, you may come after the fact when you receive a medical release for any invasive procedure.