Permanent Makeup FAQ's
WHAT IS COSMETIC TATTOOING (AKA PERMANENT MAKEUP)?
Cosmetic tattooing (also referred to as permanent makeup or PMU) is the process of implanting pigment beneath the surface of the skin with disposable needles to produce the appearance of hair strokes, makeup, or to enhance the face's natural features.
Techniques include microblading, nano brows, powder brows, combination brows, lip blushing, eyeliner or lash line enhancements, freckle enhancements or beauty marks.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN MICROBLADING, COMBINATION BROWS, POWDER BROWS AND NANO BROWS?
Microblading is a manual tattooing technique that uses a hand tool with a very tiny blade attached at the end of it. The blade is used to implant realistic hairlike strokes of pigment into the skin. This is best for clients with normal to dry, healthy skin.
Nano Brows are another version of hair stroke tattooing using a permanent makeup machine and a single needle cartridge to create the illusion of natural hair. This method can work with all skin types, but keep in mind that more oil production means faster fading.
Combination brows combine microblading or nano hair strokes with machine shading. This is a completely customizable option
and can be as airy and natural or crisp and defined as needed - a great option for clients who have areas of the brow that are very sparse or no longer grow hair, or for clients who desire a look somewhere between natural and defined.
Powder brows resemble a powder makeup fill. This is a great option for all clients, but sometimes the only option for clients with mature/thinning skin, oily skin, or tough/porous skin in the forehead area. This can also be a wonderful option for clients who have had previous cosmetic brow tattoo that did not heal or age ideally (keep in mind any previously tattooed brows will need to be assessed and approved by your artist PRIOR to booking an appointment).
WHAT IF I'M NOT SURE WHICH TYPE OF BROW IS BEST FOR ME?
Don't worry! Each of our experienced brow artists' brow booking option is listed as a "Custom Brow Tattoo". Your appointment will include a full consultation within it where we discuss your goals and concerns, and we'll make a decision together on what will be best for you! Each different brow procedure takes relatively the same amount of time to complete, so it's something that can be decided in the moment.
AM I A CANDIDATE?
Cosmetic tattooing or permanent makeup is NOT recommended for those who:
have a Viral/Infectious Diseases
are Currently Receiving Chemotherapy (Consult doctor first)
have a Pacemaker or Major Heart Issues
have Received an Organ Transplant
are Sick (Cold/Flu)
If you are taking blood thinners, or have active eczema or psoriasis wounds in the brow area, cosmetic tattooing is not an option for you.
You cannot get permanent brow work done if you have had botox or dysport in the forehead area within 1 week before your service. Please schedule these appointments accordingly.
Absolutely no lasers, peels or other intense exfoliating skin treatments within the month before your PMU service.
If you are anemic or a smoker, your pigment will likely fade faster than average.
IMPORTANT: If you have had any previous microblading or brow tattooing done in the past, you MUST email clear photos of your brows and receive approval BEFORE you book an appointment or you risk forfeiting your deposit. We take this very seriously. The same rule applies to any previously tattooed lips or eyeliner. All previously tattooed areas that are approved by your artist for re-work will be considered a correction/coverup and your appointment needs to be booked as such!
HOW LONG DOES IT LAST?
Everyone's skin is different and some people retain pigment better than others. Most clients find themselves wanting a brow "refresher" appointment anywhere from 10-18 months, but you would likely see remnants of pigment for 2-3 years if you were to leave them alone after your first session, depending on a number of different factors. Sun exposure, the rate of skin cell regeneration, pigment absorption rate, skin type, and color choice all have an affect on how long they will last. Generally, lighter colors will need refreshers sooner than darker colors.
DOES IT HURT?
Everyone has different levels of sensitivity and pain tolerance. A highly effective topical anesthetic is applied before and during the procedure to ensure that you remain as comfortable as possible for the duration of the appointment. Many of our clients fall asleep mid-procedure!
HOW LONG IS THE PROCEDURE?
The majority of your tattoo appointment is dedicated to numbing and discussing a shape and color. We map everything out so that there are no bad surprises in the end. Your initial appointment can take 2-3 hours from the time you walk in the door to the time you leave, but the actual tattooing process takes around 60 minutes for most procedures. Touchup appointments typically take about an hour and a half.
HOW DO I PREPARE FOR MY PERMANENT MAKEUP APPOINTMENT?
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING CAREFULLY (This pertains to ALL cosmetic tattoo procedures):
No working out or any activity that will cause excessive sweating the day of your procedure. This includes before your appointment as well!
Absolutely no alcohol or caffeine within 24 hours of the procedure.
Avoid blood thinning medications for 48-72 hours prior to procedure. This includes Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Niacin, Vitamin E, and Fish Oil supplements (Tylenol is OK).
No waxing or tweezing the area 3 days before your appointment.
No botox within 1 week prior to your brow appointment.
No fillers 2 weeks before or after your lip blush appointment. Or before or after your eyeliner appointment.
No tanning or excessive sun 30 days prior or after procedure. If you come to your appointment with a fresh tan or sunburn we will not be able to perform the procedure. You will forfeit your appointment and will be charged 50% of the service cost.
No facials, chemical peels, lasers or microdermabrasion treatments near the treated area for 4 weeks before or after your procedure.
No Retin A or retinols for 7 days prior. And no Accutane for 1 year prior to procedure. No exceptions!
The procedure will not be performed if you have any lesions, irritations, or pimples inside the area that is getting tattooed. If any moles are removed from area prior to procedure, they need to heal 1 month before microblading.
There is no guarantee how your skin will heal and take to the pigments. Every client has unique skin and some may take to the pigment better than others.
LIP BLUSH CLIENTS ONLY:
Make sure you are regularly hydrating your lips and drinking a lot of water on the days leading up to your appointment. If your lips are chapped or cracked we will not be able to perform the procedure and you will forfeit your deposit.
If you have ever had or are prone to cold sores, it is recommended that you get a prescription from your physician for 5 day's worth of cold sore suppression medication before getting this procedure.
If you have dark brown shades or very melanated lips that you are hoping to neutralize with lip blushing, you must email your artist for pre-approval before you book.
EYELINER or LASH ENHANCEMENT TATTOO CLIENTS ONLY:
Please make sure you remove all eye makeup before arriving at your appointment.
Do not wear contact lenses to your appointment. If you normally wear them, please be sure to wear your glasses to your appointment instead as you will not be able to wear your contacts for the first week after your procedure.
No Latisse or lash serums for two weeks prior to or after your eyeliner or lash enhancement appointment.
HOW LONG IS THE HEALING PROCESS?
Most initial healing phases are over after about a week to 10 days after the procedure is performed, however, it takes approximately 4-8 weeks to fully heal from any cosmetic tattooing procedure. Immediately after the appointment the pigment will appear darker and warmer in color than how it will once it is fully healed. After the procedure it is normal to experience some tenderness and swelling for the next 24-48 hours. After the first week, the surface color will naturally exfoliate and leave a softer color. Between weeks 4-8 is when the skin completes its healing and the pigment will darken a bit.
CAN I WEAR MAKEUP AFTER?
Yes, but no makeup can be touching the treated area until it is healed. Please avoid any makeup touching the newly tattooed area for AT LEAST a week after the procedure, preferably two weeks. This is crucial for avoiding infection and for getting the best healed results possible.
CAN I WORK OUT AFTER?
Nope, sorry! You must refrain from any activity that causes any facial sweating for the first week after your procedure. This means definitely no cardio workouts, hot yoga or HIIT classes. If you are going stir crazy you may go on walks (while wearing a hat for sun protection), do regular yoga or lift light weights. This also means no saunas, hot tubs or steam rooms. Once again, this is important if you want the best possible outcome for your permanent makeup. You want to protect your investment and your artist's work, so plan accordingly!
DO I NEED TO COME TO MY TOUCHUP APPOINTMENT?
It is highly recommended and will solidify anything that might have faded after the first treatment. Most permanent cosmetics (especially brows) require a minimum of 2 sessions to solidify the pigment. Everyone heals differently, so if you do not heal perfectly the first time, don't worry!
WHAT SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT LONG TERM CARE?
After your cosmetic tattoo has healed, a good sunscreen should be applied to the area daily (no sooner than 10 days). Sun exposure will cause color to fade faster. The pigments used are organic so the color will naturally fade over time. The fading speed depends on a number of different factors including skin type, sun exposure, pigment color used, and iron deficiency.
If you are planning a chemical peel, microdermabrasion, or laser treatment on your face, please inform your technician! Careful application must be taken to avoid affecting the tattooed area.