Yes, it’s the new trend that has women everywhere tattooing their faces: Microblading!
After filling her brows with pencil and shadow for years, Kendra was intrigued when she heard about “permanent makeup.” A procedure that promised she wouldn’t have to fill in her eyebrows ever again was damn appealing.
The procedure itself, however, sounded a little scary: Microblading.
What are “brow tattoos?” Also known as eyebrow embroidery, feathering or etching, microblading is just one of the permanent makeup procedures gaining popularity in recent years. Microblading is especially appealing lately, given the beauty trend for thick brows that can earn a “brows on fleek” Instagram hashtag.
But getting brows on fleek doesn’t come easy. As the name suggests, microblading uses a very small blade made up of fine needles to deposit pigment under the skin, giving the appearance of hair. It can be used by those who want to toss their eyebrow pencil, or it can be used in more extreme cases, such as for patients with hair loss. The procedure can cost anywhere from $500 to $1,200 and takes about an hour and a half to two hours, including numbing time.
Microblading isn’t visually permanent, although the particles of pigment remain; it lasts about a year. But that might be just the right amount of time, considering many women are getting it for aesthetic rather than health-related reasons.
As a licensed permanent cosmetic technician, I see everyone from those with serious illness, such as cancer and alopecia, to the domestic goddess. While the procedure can be used for more than just those trying to keep their brow-game on point, many of my clients are using it for just that.
But beware, folks. There are murky regulation waters: Doing that legwork is key, considering the procedure isn’t exactly regulated everywhere. In some states, there isn’t one single certification needed to practice microblading. As such, it’s up to the customer to do her research. When the procedure is implemented incorrectly by someone inexperienced, injury can occur and serious damage of disfiguring someone’s face can also happen. Too, if the murky waters bring you someone unqualified, he or she likely will not understand the color theory of healed pigment in skin. What can happen then? The results can be blue, green or orange brows. Yikes.
The procedure, like other forms of tattooing, is not formally regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (the federal agency merely “monitors problems” with the tattooing industry). Tattooing is handled state by state, some of which have specific training requirements for permanent cosmetics. The Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals issues certifications generally, and aesthetic nurse specialists who do it are board-certified.
The main lesson to achieve beautiful brows ‘on fleek?’ If you choose to tattoo your face, please do your homework and find a licensed, knowledgeable and experienced technician! Then enjoy your added beauty all day, every day.