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Everyone loves some A+ brow game, but not everyone is wild about the time, effort, and product required. Enter: Microblading. Microblading is a type of semi-permanent makeup that is designed to fill in and enhance your brows, which means way less work for you. To learn more about microblading, because it is pretty new, I hit up Sheena Nolan, a Certified Microblading Artist and owner of Arched Brow Boutique in Atlanta, Georgia to learn more.
What is Microblading?
Microblading is a semi-permanent cosmetic technique and gives you a very natural hair like effect. In fact, the final result is sometimes a shock at first to someone who normally fills their brows in with a pencil.
Microblading is a 2-step process. The initial procedure and then the touch-up session six to eight weeks later for perfecting your brows. Both must be done for a complete result.
Is microblading like a tattoo?
Yes, but there is no tattoo gun involved. The artist uses a small blade to make realistic hair-like strokes in the eyebrow area, while filling with pigment. The tattoo is not as deep as the traditional style, which is why it is considered “semi” permanent.
Who is Microblading for?
Microblading is for people who want the freedom to wake up, wash your face, apply some light makeup, and go. You do not to worry about sweating your eyebrows off in the summer, nor washing them away in the pool.
Thin, sparse, overly tweezed eyebrows are the most common reasons that clients turn to microblading. But, as artists we get to also work with some amazing women that have hair loss due to illness, and help them feel beautiful and regain confidence.
Not everyone is a candidate for microblading. You should be totally honest and open with your artist so they can help decide if microblading is for you. Some red flags would be: if you use blood thinners or other specific medications, are under dermatologist care (especially if you’re using Retin-A), or tend to scar or keloid.
How do I pick an artist?
First things first, research! Make sure they are licensed and insured, as the industry is not heavily regulated in some areas. Then, look at their work. Often you’ll see images that are before and immediately after the procedure. That doesn’t give you a good idea of the final result, so before you make your decision, reach out and ask for healed images.
Microblading is not cheap. And the cheapest deal is definitely not the best deal. If a price is lower than the local standard, the artist is usually either starting out or not confident in their work. Stay away from the Groupon special. Groupon is not the place to go when someone is going to stick needles in your face.
What should I do before I go?
Most procedures last about 2 hours. The majority of this time you will be either be numbing or sitting in an eyebrow “mask” (where pigment is placed on the micro-bladed area in order to absorb and fill the newly created hair strokes).
There is some minor discomfort to the procedure. Some artists use a pre-numbing cream, others do not numb until the skin is broken. Either way, it is best plan for some discomfort, but know that I have never had a client say it was unbearable.
What about on the day of my appointment?
You should make sure you let your artist know all medications you are taking. And I do mean, “all.” You don’t know what medications may cause issues, but your licensed artist will.
Also – your artist should include you in the color choice, as well as get your approval for the eyebrow shape before starting. If they do not, RUN!
What is the healing process like?
Your total healing time after microblading is 10 days. Proper aftercare is necessary for optimal results and it is very important to follow the directions completely. You will not want to submerge your face in any water (that includes the shower), get in hot tub/sauna, be in the sun, go to the gym, or sweat heavily during this time. There is no “down time”, but you will want to limit activities that could interfere with healing.
Five to seven days after microblading, your eyebrows will start to flake and peel. They might itch a little (or alot). It might feel/look scary to you, but it’s normal. You will want to let the skin exfoliate naturally, as picking/peeling can compromise the pigment.
In the time between the first session and the touch-up, your eyebrows will go through several phases. There will be times they look dark, then they may appear light, at some point the lines will appear to have faded completely in some areas, and then about 4 weeks in they will reappear. All of this is normal.
What about after I have microblading?
Immediately after the procedure, your eyebrows will appear darker and larger. The day after, you will look in the mirror and say “HELLO BROWS!”. So you know, this does calm down after a few days.
Results are not permanent. On average results last 18 months, How long your results last depends on your skin type, sun exposure, and other factors, but on average, results last about 18 months.
Finally, all skin heals differently. Skin is a living organ, and no two healed results will be the same.