A growing number of my clients lately have been asking my advice on microblading eyebrows, a semi-permanent solution to barely-there brows that don’t have to be drawn on daily.
Now that thick brows are back in fashion, and it makes sense that many women are considering the newest cosmetic procedure made famous by social media’s love for bold brows with dramatic before and after photos of microblading eyebrows.
Yes, this is going to be a long article. It may be the most comprehensive piece on the web (that I’ve seen so far) about microblading eyebrows. For a subject this important, you don’t deserve watered-down information simplified into 10 vague bullet points — that’s not how I roll.
I hope that you’ll be well informed to make the best choice for you, so you don’t waste a bunch of money, end up with a face that looks all kinds of crazy, or have serious health repercussions, because after reading this article you’ll know what to look out for instead.
I love makeup. I cannot get through an airport in Asia without hitting the cosmetics kiosks. I spent a half-day in Paris last summer tracking down a cult eyeshadow shade. I once lured every woman in my newsroom into long-wearing testing lipsticks against caffeine, pizza and a workout in the building’s gym.Looking for eyebrow tattoo salon? Look no further,Cosmetic Tattoo by Rach got you covered.
But for all my obsession, I’ve never been interested in permanent makeup. Partly that’s because I love the process — the brushes, the textures, the ritual — as much as the results. Probably also I feared poor technique: I know how hard it is to draw a perfect cat’s-eye, but if I make a mistake, I can wipe it off and try again. And I imagined there were infection risks, though the few papers in the medical literature are focusing on mistakes and dissatisfaction more than they do on bad bugs.
It turns out that last was a reasonable fear. A new paper in Clinical Infectious Diseases describes a cluster of infections in Switzerland among women who had their eyebrows improved with tattooing: 12 developed infections with Mycobacterium haemophilum, 10 required surgery, and 9 required excisions not only of an eyebrow but also all or part of a parotid gland — the big salivary gland in front of the ear through which a major facial nerve travels.
The women came into the infectious-disease practice of the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois in Lausanne over 8 months, starting in April 2009. They all had the same symptoms: From two to seven weeks after getting their tattoos, they developed rashes and pustules at the site where they had been inked, followed by pain and swelling in the parotid nearest the infected eyebrow. (Weirdly, the paper says each woman had only one eyebrow infection, as though they were not tattooed on both sides of the face at the same time.) The glands in eight of the 12 abscessed, and 7 developed a fistula, meaning the infected gland started draining through their skin.
haemophilum is a tough bug; like its distant relative M. tuberculosis, it requires a multi-drug cocktail that can last for weeks. The women took antibiotics for two months without much success before the doctors decided surgery was necessary, and at least three months afterwards. Seven of them had to stop or switch drugs during their treatment, for side effects that ranged from white blood cell suppression to elevations in liver enzymes to rashes and nausea.
Microblading is a type of cosmetic tattoo. A technician draws eyebrow “hairs” with a special tool that has tiny needles on end. They make fine cuts and fill them with colour. The colour usually lasts about a year. All tattoos fade over time — it just happens faster with microblading. The procedure is generally considered safe, and most people don’t have problems. But there are risks. Here’s what you need to know.
Whether you want them high and arched or straight and full, eyebrow shaping has become as commonplace as getting your nails polished. For customers tired of filling in their brows with an eyebrow pencil every day, the practice of microblading can offer a more permanent solution. Still, health officials say it’s not without risk if you’re not careful about where you go.
Microblading, also known as eyebrow embroidery, micro stroking or feather touch, is when an esthetician uses a small blade to administer tiny cuts to inject ink in or around the client’s eyebrows to change their shape or give them the appearance of fullness. The semi-permanent makeup differs from tattoos because the fake hairs are drawn on individually for a more realistic look.
Because microblading involves breaking the skin, health officials in British Columbia are concerned about possible infections when untrained individuals practice the technique in unsafe conditions.See more of our eyebrow tattoo services.
Nicole Roberts, an esthetician who went to school for microblading, told CTV Vancouver on Monday that she has seen some awful infections from customers who received the procedure from poorly trained practitioners. She said the first sign of infection is puffiness in the affected area, pus, a yellow tinge or redness and itchiness.
Courtney Hesketh, the Environmental Health Operations Manager for B.C.’s Interior Health Authority, told CTV Vancouver on Monday that customers considering microblading should be cautious about where they go for the procedure.
“Our biggest concern is that there is a risk of blood-borne infection. Such things like Hepatitis and HIV,” Hesketh said. She also said that common skin infections could become serious if they spread because eyebrows are located so close to the eyes and brain.
Unregulated businesses have been popping up on websites, such as Facebook, Kijiji and Craigslist, offering the service from home. Unlike commercial tattoo and body piercing shops, these home-based salons don’t have to undergo proper health and safety inspections.
The provincial Interior Health Authority advised prospective customers to research different businesses to ensure they visit one that is licensed and undergoes regular inspections. They also recommend that clients make sure their practitioner is only using a single-use microblading pen. Hesketh said it’s a good idea for recipients to pay close attention to the esthetician setting up for the procedure.
“Watch them open packages, that’s the most important thing,” she said. “You want to make sure that they haven’t used that scalpel or needle on somebody else.”
Anyone looking to receive microblading can view inspection reports for licensed businesses in B.C.’s southern interior by visiting the Interior Health Authority’s website.
What Is an Eyebrow Tattoo?
An eyebrow tattoo is a form of semi-permanent makeup that has helped thousands maintain well-manicured and trimmed eyebrows for a long time. Like standard tattoos, it involves using tattoo ink to fill in your eyebrow, creating a fuller and neater look.
Most people are nervous about getting their eyebrows tattooed on because of the word’ tattoo.’ But there are a lot of differences between signing up for semi-permanent makeup and going for a permanent body tattoo.
An eyebrow tattoo is a beauty treatment that has helped thousands to bear well-manicured and trimmed eyebrows of their choice for a long period of time. Of course, as nothing is permanent in nature, the effect of this treatment as well lasts for a couple of years only. Eyebrow tattoo treatment was making a buzz among celebrities for quite some time but has been caught in the limelight recently only. An eyebrow tattoo is a form of a semi-permanent solution that offers you relief from unwanted visits and exhaustion of thousands of money into the maintenance of your eyebrows.
In the method, a specialist, most commonly an experienced tattoo artist applies a semi-permanent colour over the topmost layer of the skin. The procedure is done with the help of a sterilized vibrating needle which slips in and out of the skin to cause the pigmentation or colour effect. Eyebrow tattooing procedure may be carried on with the help of three varied methods, and the clients are asked to pick just one of them. The first and most popular one is the simple hair stroke procedure wherein tattoos of hair strands are added over the area for a more natural effect. The second method as per the specialists is the solid method and is generally adopted by those looking for a more dramatic effect. The last eyebrow tattooing method is that of shading, which is employed to render a denser and fuller effect.
How Is Safe Permanent Makeup?
Lovely red lips, perfectly shaped eyebrows, and flattering eyeliner. Permanent makeup holds the promise you’ll work all day, go to the gym, dance all night, and wake up in the morning with makeup in place. Nothing, it seems, will phase these cosmetic tattoos.
In the hands of a skilled person, the procedures are generally safe. But state regulatory agencies haven’t kept pace with the growth of the permanent makeup industry, and there are lots of unqualified people wielding needles.
Permanent makeup is considered micropigmentation, similar to tattoos. It involves using a needle to place pigmented granules beneath the upper layers of the skin. Tattooing and medical restoration, which corrects imperfections from scars and vitiligo (lack of natural pigmentation in the skin), are similar procedures. “They’re the same procedures but used for different purposes,” says ophthalmologist Charles S. Zwerling, MD, who coined the term micropigmentation.
Permanent makeup for eyeliner is the most popular cosmetic enhancement, followed by eyebrows and lip colour. Some practitioners offer blush and eyeshadow, but Zwerling, chairman of the American Academy of Micropigmentation (AAM) in Goldsboro, N.C., says he’s totally opposed. “What I’ve seen has been very poorly done. You can’t be sure what the colour is going to do, and if you get an allergic reaction, you’re dealing with a large surface area. You’re talking about major reconstructive face surgery.”
Most procedures are done after applying an anesthetic to the skin. Zwerling says after the initial procedure, touch-up might be required but no sooner than one month and as much as three months later. Practitioners include dermatologists, cosmetologists, aestheticians, nurses, and tattooists. Before you rush to the Yellow Pages to find a practitioner, experts advise doing your homework.
Microblading could cause:
Infection. If your technician uses dirty water or equipment, they can spread bacteria like staphylococcus (staph). They could also spread viruses like HIV, hepatitis, or herpes. Sometimes the ink is contaminated with bacteria or mould. There’s no guarantee it’s safe, even if the package is sealed. Your doctor might give you antibiotics, antivirals, or antifungals if you get an infection.Our exclusive range of eyebrow tattoo services will help you in eyebrow microblading, feathering or hair stroke eyebrow tattooing procedures.
You might get an itchy rash from the ink. That could be a sign of an allergic reaction. It’s rare, but it happens most often with the colour red. Red is sometimes mixed with black dye to make a shade that matches your natural brows. You may need steroid shots or antihistamines.
Microblading injects a foreign substance into your skin. Your body may try to protect you by making inflammatory knots around the area. It may not happen right away. Granulomas sometimes happen months or years after the procedure. You’ll need to take steroids or antibiotics to get better.
This is when you get more than one granuloma. They may grow on your organs. In one study, they showed up 15 years after a patient got a traditional eyebrow tattoo. The treatment is the same.
These are scars that grow bigger than normal. They don’t usually happen on your face. But if you’ve had keloids before, you may get them from microblading.
It’s not common, but tattooed skin can swell or burn if you get an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Your skin will go back to normal after the procedure. If you need one, be sure to tell your doctor or radiologist about the microblading.
Eyebrow tattoo – Things to keep in mind
- After learning the benefits as mentioned earlier of permanent eyebrow tattoo, you decide on availing the treatment, make a list of all the salons nearby that offer the specialized services on the same. Then, refine your list further with the names of only licensed and registered salons that are offering the services of a permanent tattoo.
- Fix up an appointment or consultation with the eyebrow tattoo specialist. Expect questions on your medical history, especially prior cases on skin damages and progressing disorders in your body in this meeting. The specialist may especially look for signs of piercing, if any, on the brows, marks of pigmentation and scars as well.
- It is ideal to ask for qualifications as well as the portfolio of as many as three eyebrow tattoo specialists to select the best from them.
- Hours before the time of the procedure, wash the area carefully to remove traces of dirt, bacteria or oil around the room.
- Once the eyebrow tattooing procedure is over, slight tenderness, irritation, and mild swelling would be the common side effects to expect. To avoid incurring further harmful side effects, follow the specialist’s advice and avoid direct contact with the sun.
Side effects of eyebrow tattoo
As with most of the tattoo procedures, an eyebrow tattoo is also likely to cause skin problems, especially inflammation, scratches, the appearance of red coloured bumps and sometimes trigger allergic reactions in the form of unusual itching. If sterilized tools are not used, eyebrow tattooing may put you in the danger of incurring dangerous diseases like Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B and tetanus. Further, direct contact with the sun may further put the treated skin under the danger of inflammation. This can, however, be prevented by wearing sun shades or wearing sunscreen lotion before setting out on Sun.
How Worried Should You Be?
These stories of infection are frightening. But are they the norm or the exception?
The Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals says permanent makeup, such as microblading, is safe as long as “sterilization and disinfection guidelines are met.”
However, microblading does pierce the skin, which increases the risk of infection. And since it’s performed close to the eyes, the infection can come with serious complications. Dr. Anthony Rossi, a cosmetic dermatologic surgeon at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, told BuzzFeed that microblading might be risky because the industry is not regulated.
“We’re trying to put advocacy out there to say a lot of these procedures being offered in nail salons or spas involve traumatizing the skin, which can lead to serious complications,” he said. “They’re not regulated, and that’s a serious issue because they’re not held to the same health standard.”Check out eyebrow tattoo page which has everything you might need near you.
Reducing Your Risk
If you are considering having your brows microbladed, taking steps to avoid a bad experience can help you have a positive outcome.
Before you even schedule an appointment, do your research. Check with your health department to see what regulations are in place in your state. You can also check with the Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals, which can refer you to a technician.
Seek an artist trained by a reputable institution. He or she should offer an initial consultation, during which you can ask questions and assess the cleanliness of the salon. A good technician will ask you for some general health questions and discuss the type of brows you want.
The FDA doesn’t regulate tattoo shops or cosmetic salons. But they do watch out for problems. You have to report them. If you have a bad reaction, let the FDA know.
Don’t worry if your eyebrows get a little dark and flaky. That’s a normal part of the healing process.