The Low-Down on Microblading

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Image: Vogue.com

If you’re sick of penciling in your brows day in and day out, you’ve likely considered microblading- but it can be intimating (is it a tattoo!?), which is why you’ve probably wonder what exactly it entails. We turned to board certified dermatologist and founder of DermWarehouse, Dr. Alan J. Parks, to find out everything you need to know if you’re considering getting this brow treatment.

What is microblading?

“Microblading is a form of semi-permanent makeup for the eyebrows. The purpose of microblading is to fill in your brows in the most natural-looking way possible. Basically, pigment will be implanted into your skin in order to create fuller-looking brows in whatever shape your heart desires.”

So, it’s a tattoo?

No. According to dermatologist Dr. Alan Parks of DermWarehouse, “Microblading is a form of tattooing, however, it’s not the same as getting a tattoo. This makeup is semi-permanent, so it won’t last forever, but it will last for about one to three years, depending on the person. It doesn’t go as deep as a regular tattoo, which is why it doesn’t last forever, however, the pigment is still being implanted underneath the skin.”

How does it work?

“A trained technician will use a handheld tool that’s made up of microneedles to implant pigment into your skin. The microblading tool (the pen) will be used to draw hair-like stokes into the brow to look just like your natural hair. Before the actual microblading begins, the technician will draw the brow shape onto your face to make sure you’re happy with it and she will mix the perfect color to match your natural brow color. The procedure takes around two hours from start to finish.”

What does it feel like?

“Your skin is essentially being scratched by a needle, so it won’t feel good, but it’s not terrible. Everyone’s pain threshold is a little bit different. It certainly won’t be the worst pain you’ve ever experienced, but you won’t be itching to come back for more. You can use a pain numbing cream on the area to help with discomfort, however, some technicians recommend against it.”

What is the recovery time like?

“Taking care of your brows once the procedure is over is very important. You need to follow specific instructions (such as not getting your brows wet for 5-7 days – this includes with sweat), but typically, though the area will be a little bit red, you can walk right out of the office and back to work – and you’ll look great! The color of your brows will look very dark as soon as the procedure is finished, however, it will lighten significantly after a couple weeks.”

In the days following the procedure, there will be some scabbing. Dr. Parks adds that “you should avoid picking the scabs at all cost. Not only will this damage your skin, it will also damage the newly microbladed area. You’ll be all healed within 1-2 weeks and after about a month, your color will be fully set in. You will also be able to get a touch up 4-6 weeks after your initial appointment. It’s not always essential, however, it does ensure the color is locked in and everything is going ok.”

How often do I need to have the procedure done?

As  mentioned earlier, the color on your brows will typically last between one to three years, and you can get touchups in between. You can have the procedure re-done or touched up once you start to notice fading.

Is microblading for everyone?

“Mostly everyone is a candidate, however, you should not get the procedure done if you’re pregnant or nursing. If you have cancer, hemophilia, or hepatitis, you will need a letter from your doctor, however, it’s probably not for you either.”

How much does it cost?

“Depending on where you get the procedure done, it will typically cost between $500 to $1,000, sometimes more. There are some cheaper options out there, but when it comes to such a prominent spot on your face, it’s probably not worth taking any chances. The price will include the touch up four to six weeks after your visit.”

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