You may have noticed it on your favorite Instagram influencer or on a beauty ad at your local drugstore – perfectly shaped, full eyebrows that were created using something called microblading.
So what exactly is this procedure, and what do we need to know about it? In this article, we’ll dive into this cosmetic trend and tell you all you need to know to decide if it’s right for you.
What is microblading?
Microblading is a procedure – performed by a trained specialist – that helps create the look of thicker, fuller eyebrows.
To achieve this look, the microblading specialist uses a handheld tool to create tiny cuts on the skin that apply pigment that mimics the look of eyebrow hairs. Since microblading is semi-permanent, it’s considered a type of tattooing, although the results don’t last as long as a regular tattoo. This is because the pigment is applied to the surface layer of the skin only and not deeper as with a typical tattoo. Even though it’s semi-permanent, the look achieved from microblading can last one to three years.
Before starting the microblading procedure, the technician will determine your natural eyebrow color and outline the shape of your brows along with your natural hair growth pattern. Next, they’ll apply a topical numbing cream to the area. Though microblading isn’t very painful, it’s similar to plucking your eyebrows or the pain felt when scratched.
Why try microblading?
Many people who try microblading do so to improve the appearance of their eyebrows. They may have thin, uneven brows and desire a fuller, thicker look. Often, those who undergo a microblading procedure do so to avoid the daily maintenance of using eyebrow pencils, fillers, and other tools to achieve this desired appearance.
If you already have thick, full eyebrows, microblading is likely unnecessary, as it only makes your brows appear fuller. If your goal is to tame and shape your eyebrows, gels and waxes may be the better option.
How much does microblading cost?
Just like other cosmetic procedures, the cost of a microblading procedure varies based on your area’s cost of living and the experience level of the practitioner. However, you should generally expect to pay between $500-$2,000 for a session.
What credentials do microblading technicians need to have?
Technicians who practice microblading need to become certified in the process, but the exact training and licensing requirements vary by state.
Safety concerns, aftercare, and long-term effects of microblading
If you have sensitive skin, skin allergies, or skin prone to acne and breakouts, you may want to avoid microblading – the procedure may cause skin inflammation or irritation for those with these conditions. In addition, microblading is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding due to the risk of infection. Consult with your healthcare provider to determine if you have any healthcare conditions that may prevent you from undergoing a microblading procedure.
Even if you don’t have one of the aforementioned skin conditions, you may want to avoid using certain products before the procedure that can aggravate the skin. This includes retinols, exfoliants, and peels.
Aftercare and follow-up
After your microblading procedure, the color of the pigment will likely appear a bit darker and fade over time, similar to hair dye. So it’s important to consider this when working with your technician in selecting the best color for you. It will also take a week or so for your skin to heal after the procedure.
To ensure proper healing, here are some additional steps to take up to one week post-procedure:
- Avoid getting the area wet. Take care when washing your face to bypass this area.
- Avoid wearing makeup.
- Don’t go swimming or sit in a sauna or hot tub, and try not to sweat too much until the skin has healed.
Finally, remember that the look achieved from microblading can last a year or more. If this seems too permanent – or if you’re someone who likes changing their looks to keep up with trends – microblading may not be the best option for you.
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