They’re unwanted, unpredictable and growing at an unmanageable rate. Ladies, we’re talking about your eyebrows. They do a lot more than frame those stunning facial features of yours and it may be time to give your eyebrows the love and attention they deserve.
Scientifically, eyebrows serve the wonderful function of keeping unwanted sweat, dust and debris out of your eyes. They act as a barrier that prevents bacteria like sweat from rolling down your forehead and into your sockets. Eyebrows also play an important role in facial recognition and in communication. Furrowed, downcast brows immediately communicate an individual’s displeasure, while arched and heightened brows may convey amazement, curiosity and pleasure. You are unconsciously trained to process an individual’s facial features (including brow stance) to gauge their emotional response. An individual’s eyebrows can tell you a lot!
Bold, thick and emblazoned brows are getting a lot of hype these days and not only on the red carpet. While the skinny, over plucked brow was once the go-to look, there’s now a thicker, more au natural brow in town. If you aren’t one of those lucky ladies with full and luscious brows, fear not! There are plenty of alternatives to tidy up, thicken, reconstruct and reshape your brows. The newest trend in eyebrow maintenance is natural, relatively cost-effective and gives the wearer long-lasting semi-permanent results. This contemporary technique is called microblading, but is also known as eyebrow embroidery, cosmetic tattooing and semi-permanent makeup.
Before you scare yourself with search engines results like “tattoo” and “incision,” here are 15 things you need to know about this contemporary treatment.
15 It's a Two Part Process
It’s important to do your research before committing to any semi-permanent process, and that includes microblading. There are two procedures as part of your redefining experience, and it’s crucial that you follow through with the second step. The first step is your initial appointment with your microblading specialist, where you get to design your new eyebrows. Yes! Think of this step as the creative consultation, where you get to choose the shape, colour, curve and definition of your brows (which can take some time). After this, you undergo the initial microblading procedure. The second part of the process is a follow-up consultation, completed four to six weeks after the initial session. As your skin heals and a new layer of skin forms, the original pigmentation fades significantly. The touch-up session is used to go over the penned lines and make any alterations or colour adjustments as needed. The two -part process ensures you love your new standout brows, and that they last!
14 Touch-Ups are Key (1 Touch Up After Initial Session- Do Not Miss It)
Things generally last longer with a little maintenance and regular upkeep, and this applies to your bold new brows as well. You will notice better and longer lasting results if you adhere to your scheduled touch up appointment after the initial microblading. The second session is scheduled four to six weeks after your appointment. This gives your skin adequate time to heal following the hair refilling process. It takes a few weeks for your brows to heal and approximately one month for the semi-permanent colour to fully settle into the skin. The colour appears quite dark initially, but fades with the healing process, resulting in a softer, more desirable shade. These touch ups include refilling- if certain areas did not properly retain the pigment; colour re-shading- as individuals’ skin types absorb pigmentations differently and may require deeper shading, and brow refining and redefinition if necessary. Each individual’s unique skin will determine the longevity of their inked in brows, but generally, brows will last from one to three years, and regular maintenance will ensure you look your best.
13 It’s Not Permanent (Lasts 1-3 years)
Perhaps you’ll love your new lines so much, you’ll wish they were permanent, but unfortunately, the microblading procedure lasts from one to three years, depending on care and maintenance. The procedure is done using a tiny blade to create hair like strokes into the first layer of skin. Pigment is deposited into the epidermal skin via the blade, creating a hair like effect, similar to a tattoo, but far less painful and wonderfully evanescent. You can’t quite change your brow to suit your mood, but you’ll be pretty close! The impermanency of the process may be attractive to certain individuals who are looking for temporary eyebrow refilling and color due to illness and hair loss. Microblading allows for colouring and a hair like appearance as the eyebrow hair regrows back naturally. Research should always be done prior to such a process, but in the off chance you dislike your eyebrows, you’ll be happy to hear that with time, they will fade.
12 Aftercare Instructions Must Be Followed Exactly to Maintain Results
It is important to remember that the microblading technique opens the skin and therefore, by caring for your skin, you will avoid unwanted infection. Aftercare instructions may vary depending on your artist and the specific procedure, but generally, these tips will help your eyebrows heal to optimal peering performance. Immediately after the procedure, you must clean your brows and moisten with distilled water to wipe any built up lymphatic liquids. Healing balm is applied daily in the morning and in the evening for five to seven days. During the first two weeks of healing, avoid emerging your face and brows in water and when showering, avoid direct water contact with your eyes and eyebrows. Avoid eyebrow pencils and makeup during healing period and stay clear of swimming, tanning, pools and saunas, and facial scrubs and peels. You invested in the best brows, so make sure you care for them accordingly by following your microblading artist’s aftercare instructions carefully.
11 It Will Fade No Matter What
Sometimes good things don’t last and unfortunately, as amazing as your divinely defined brows look, over time, they too will fade. This is a natural part of the microblading process, which lasts approximately one to three years. The life line of your brows depends on many different factors including your skin type, age, the colour retention of your skin, how thoroughly you follow your aftercare instructions and your usual skincare routine. If you spend a lot of time in ultraviolet rays and tanning booth beds, your eyebrows will naturally fade much quicker than someone with zero exposure. Certain acids found in skincare products can also cause your bladed brows to fade more quickly. While fading is inevitable, remember, it’s not a permanent process. By routinely caring for your skin and adhering to intermittent touch ups, you can maintain your perfect preferred shape. Touch-ups are recommended every six to 18 months for best results.
10 It's Not a Traditional Needle Tattoo
Luckily, you won’t hear the whirring of traditional tattoo guns or have to deal with any painful ink scars. Sure, the word ‘blading’ might be a little disconcerting to you beautiful and bushy browed hopefuls, but not to fear, as the process is relatively easy and painless. The most agonizing part of the process, might very well be the time it takes to decide on the right brow shape and shading. More permanent eyebrow alternatives do exist, such as cosmetic tattooing, an older and less popular technique using micropigment implantation where colored pigment is deposited into the skin’s dermis layer. With microblading, pigment is edged into the skin’s surface with a fine blade to create a natural, yet darkened and bolder brow. The blade is tiny and angled, almost appearing like an x-acto blade. The blade is dipped in ink and scraped across the skin in short strokes. The microblading artist does this procedure by hand and works cautiously and smoothly to create strokes that mimic your brow growth. First, the desired brow shape is pencilled on and the brow region is mildly numbed. Then tiny needle strokes are made to fill in the new brow shape.
9 You Can Change Your Eyebrow Shape to Suit Trends
From movie starlet Clara Bow’s dramatic down turned, pencil thin arches to actress and fashion icon Audrey Hepburn’s infamous thick, natural brows, eyebrows definitely have a history! Popular styles for grooming eyebrows have cropped up throughout the decades, with young women looking to celebrities for the latest looks. Trends change and this applies to your brow shape as well. While barely there, over tweezed brows used to be desirable, nowadays, bigger, more natural and fuller brow shapes are making a comeback. Check out supermodel Cara Delevingne’s breathtaking brows! Whatever the season, microblading allows you the freedom to change your brow shape to suit today’s trends as they last anywhere from one to three years. If you’re unhappy with your brow shape before they fade and as the next brow wave makes its way to the big screen, you can always consult with your specialist to adapt and recreate a new look.
8 It's Not Cheap (But Worth It!)
Like the old adage goes, you get what you pay for. If you’re willing to pay hundreds of dollars for those new chic heels, you’ll likely see the cost effective nature of microblading. Depending on your brow clinic and specialist, microblading procedures generally cost $500 to $1000, though some clinics charge upwards of $1500. Yes, this might seem a costly expense at first glance, but keep in mind this includes your secondary touch up session four to six weeks after your initial treatment. Once complete, the microblading procedure gives you better defined brows for one to three years. Now that’s something to raise your brows at! Sure, your favorite eyebrow pencils, powders, pomades and gels may be significantly cheaper at your local drugstore, but what about the time consuming 15 minutes you spend every day feathering in your brows? The freedom of waking up, washing your face, applying gloss and mascara and walking out the door is bound to feel priceless!
7 It's More Hairlike Than Filling In
If you’re tired of standing in front of the mirror, engaging in another round of painstakingly meticulous eyebrow grooming, then it may be time to consider microblading. You might be surprised to hear that the process, once complete, actually appears more hairlike than filling in with pencils, powders, pomades and gels. Pencils and powders can sometimes have a matte like appearance, while microblading gives the eyebrows a more naturally full appearance. This is because the pigmentation is deposited underneath the skin. The microblading pen used to complete the procedure applies individual strokes one by one, resulting in an amazing hairlike appearance. A specialist will also help you in choosing a shade that works best with your skin colour and natural hair, so that your semi-permanent brows are as perfect as possible. The ink used in the procedure is also smudge-proof, so unlike the drawn on version, you don’t have to worry about covering your smeared brows after that unexpected, dismal downpour. Now that’s low maintenance!
6 The Process Takes About 2-3 Hour
Two to three hours is a long time to be under the gun, but luckily, microblading doesn’t entail traditional needle tattoo guns and the majority of the lengthy session is actually spent on you choosing your perfectly perched points. During your first appointment, you work with the specialist to choose the best brow for your new you (this includes discussion regarding colour and shape). The microblading specialist uses key measurements to find your best eyebrow shape, determined by your facial shape and structure. They use a pencil to shape, fill and style your brows to your preference. The microblading procedure is timely and meticulous in order to choose the best customized shape for you. That’s right, it’s a customized process! Microblading artists pay incredible attention to detail as these results will show on your face for (potentially) years to come! The actual blading process of penning in the pigment takes about 30 minutes to one hour to complete, depending on your sensitivity. Compared to the countless hours of filling in and tweezing your brows, that’s nothing to gripe at!
5 Easy Maintenance
The hands-down, best part about your shapely new eyebrows is they are low-key and easy maintenance. If you’re a woman who loves minimal makeup, lusciously full brows and more free time to pursue your passions (channel Lorde and Lily Collins), then you are sure to be a microblading believer. After the procedure is complete and your brows are completely healed, you can treat your microbladed eyebrows like the real deal- -wash, sweat, swim, rub and wake up with them! The secondary follow-up session to touch-up your eyebrows, gives you the opportunity to make any necessary changes you want to your fill, color and shape. As your brow color fades over time, you may seek further touch up consultations with your eyebrow specialist (generally after six months) but until then, you are free to live your life pencil and powder free if that’s the way you want to live it.
4 Choosing Brow Shape - Where to Look
There is no shortage of eyebrow inspiration when it comes to choosing your best brow shape. Type ‘best eyebrows’ into your search engine and you’ll find yourself scrolling celebrities sporting sublime brows for days on end. If you have anxieties or queries about what the blading procedure looks like, check out YouTube for thousands of videos, which explain the procedure in full and give you an insider’s glimpse of the process. If you’re looking to Instagram for a best brow consultation, be sure to follow cosmetic tattoo artists and brow wizards Shaughnessy Keely and Nadia, whose pages provides a flurry of fully feathered, expertly groomed brows. These brow specialists’ Facebook and Instagram pages provide sneak peeks of the microblading process, before and after photographs, and enough images to fill you with a serious case of brow envy. But jealousy be gone, as this is an option that is wonderfully available to you too! As it is a rapidly growing trend, there are sure to be skilled specialists in your area.
3 You'll Want to Do It Again
Once you’ve bitten the bullet and undergone your first microblading session, you’re bound to want to do it all over again, despite the price tag attached to the procedure. If you usually leave your house feeling insecure about your over-tweezed and over-plucked arches, you can now walk out that door with your face framed by your perfectly embroidered brows. When it’s done right, your eyebrows will appear full and shapely in a natural-looking way. The microblading procedure is a bit of a commitment with the two-step, multiple hour procedure, but in comparison to the daily chore of pencilling in your eyebrows, it is an engagement worth investing in, with significantly less maintenance than that of pencil or powder. Most microblading web reviews rave about the miraculous nature of this increasingly popular trend, and paired with a reputable and skilled microblading technician, many clients exuberantly exclaim they will repeat the procedure once their pigmentation has faded.
2 Daily Maintenance After Procedure
Wake up and get out of bed! The benefit of this procedure is the always ready and au natural appearance of your eyebrows. Many women claim to not touch their brows at all in the months following the microblading, while some women still tweeze, pluck and fill their brows in after the procedure. Others may choose to routinely visit their technician to touch up their brows every six months for peak performance. Ultimately, maintenance depends on your preference and style, not to mention the state of your bank account. While touch up appointments cost less than the initial procedure, it is still a substantial monetary investment. By doing your research and finding a top notch technician, you can also avoid patchy brow syndrome and lessen the frequency of your microblading visits.
1 Length of Time It Takes to Choose Proper Shape
You might be surprised to find out that choosing the color and shape of your brow can be a lengthy part of your first microblading session. The process can be time consuming because it is important to map out and pencil in your eyebrows (yes, there are calculations involved!) with your technician prior to penning in your semi-permanent eyebrows. Be patient and take as much time as you need for this part of the treatment. You will be the one sporting these eyebrows, so you want to ensure you absolutely love the look of them. The aim of the procedure is to beautifully compliment your facial expressions, and highlight your structure and features. Before beginning the blading process, examine your face in the mirror from multiple angles. Have your technician take a photo of you from head-on and from the side so you can fully see what your eyebrows will look like.