For the last year I have seen a trend pop up all over social media, primarily Instagram and YouTube – eyebrow microblading. You may be asking yourself “what is microblading?” and the simple answer is it is a semi-permanent eyebrow procedure that can help to make thin or unshaped brows look fuller, more defined, arched or just polished with very fine strokes of a hand tool with a small blade. Yes you read that right, a tiny blade is used to make superficial scrapes into your skin, insert custom blended pigment into the wound and then it heals and, if done correctly, mimics the look of tiny hairs on your brows. It might sound scary to some, but if you have thin brows, over plucked or over waxed brows or just want fuller brows you’re probably at your wits end with having to “do your brows” every single day; at least I know I was!
This post is to share my entire experience with getting my eyebrows microbladed. I wanted to document the questions I had leading up to the procedure, the actual process and how it felt, how it looked the days after, my aftercare tips and my final thoughts on microblading. If you have any questions feel free to put them in the comments section below and I would be happy to answer or have my microblading artist answer them as well.
What is Microblading?
Microblading, also known as Eyebrow Embroidery is a procedure categorized under permanent makeup, but unlike traditional cosmetic tattooing, it is less invasive and is considered semi-permanent. Microblading typically lasts 1-3 years, depending on skin type and skincare routine. The procedure is done by using a hand tool with ultra fine needles and each ‘hair’ is gently etched into the skin, giving an incredibly natural and realistic look.
Why Get Microblading?
For anyone who has been born with thin brows it’s extremely frustrating that they will never grow and be full. I have never been blessed with full brows. My entire life they have been pretty thin, with no arch or shape and they always have to be filled in with either eyebrow pencil, Anastasia brow gel or powder.
When I was younger I didn’t care or even know how to “do” my eyebrows, until one day on a photo shoot the makeup artist pointed out that my brows were thin and that she would like to fill them in. I don’t think I had ever been self conscious about my brows until that point. After that it’s all I ever looked at and started to practice doing my brows, bought so many different products and was pretty good at faking the funk. After awhile though I was so tired of having to do my eyebrows everyday.
I work out a lot (as you all know) and I hated the way my brows would smear or smudge when sweating. I hated having to wake up and do my brows to look “put together” and I hated how no matter how much castor oil I tried, Latisse, Careprost, eyebrow growth serums etc. they just would never grow. I gave up and was so frustrated, until I started to hear about microblading and then said “you know what, I’m just going to do that!” So if you’re brows won’t grow, you have empty patches or perhaps no brows at all microblading might be for you too!
Do Your Research:
The first part of the process for me was to do my research. I wanted to know everything about this technique and start to Google about it. Then I went on social media to find what girls had done it and who they went to. Finally I found an artist on Instagram (http://lashandbrowbarnj.com/) and fell in love with her work. I was so impressed with how she transformed people’s eyebrows and it was so hard to tell what was microblading and what was actual eyebrow hairs. It looked flawless! After that I reached out and tried to book an appointment – and she was booked a few months in advance. I was so upset – I wanted brows like NOW! So I waited and just put it on the back burner for awhile. Then finally I saved up my money and wrote Adriana again and asked if she had any upcoming cancellations, and to my surprise she did and I was booked for that next Saturday! I was so excited and couldn’t wait to get it done.
$600 which included shaping, clean up waxing and consultation done on your first session, initial microblading session and second or enhancement session and after care products. You might be like why would you spend that much?? Well first off results can last up to 18 months if properly cared for, and to be honest I’ve spent that much on things that to me felt more frivolous. This was something I had been researching for about a year and to wake up everyday and not have to struggle with doing my brows it was worth it for me. Some people get this done who have full brows, but maybe want a different shape. Some women who have had chemotherapy or other hair loss issues do this to have beautiful brows where they just won’t grow….whatever the reason, do it if you can afford to and you’ll never regret it (at least I don’t, at all and wish I did it sooner!)
How to Prepare:
- Have your hair freshly washed, after the procedure you will need to keep your brows free of any liquid besides the healing ointment for 7 full days, so it will be easier not to worry about your hair immediately after the procedure.
- Avoid tanning; either in a bed, outdoors or self tanner. You want to show your true skin tone/color so that your pigment can match properly.
- Avoid alcohol and aspirin/ibuprofen, avoid consuming anything with caffeine (coffee, sodas, energy drinks, migraine pills) and any vitamins that may thin your blood for 24 hours prior to the procedure.
- I took arnica leading up to my appointment which is a natural, homeopathic that helps to prevent swelling and bruising. I take this anytime I get dental work done or if I hurt myself by bumping into something
- Make sure you don’t have any pressing events the day of or after, though you can go out in public just fine
- Don’t do microblading the week you plan to go on a tropical vacation and lay out in the sun, you have to be out of the sun or you risk ruining the color of the pigment
I had my eyebrows done on a Saturday afternoon. I figure this will give you a sense of the after care each day as I mention the day below. I arrived at 3 and we chatted for about 20 minutes. Adriana put numbing cream on my brows and covered them with a tape or clear plastic to let it set in. After that we went over my desired results and how we will shape my brows. She went over all of her training and schooling and we had a great talk while we waited for my brows to get nice and numb to begin. She drew the brows, paying attention to shape and symmetry (my eyebrows have never had natural shape so this was exciting!). My biggest issue with my brows was that they did not come very far in around the center, that was wear I had to use brow gel and powder the most. She was able to shape them to come in a lot more and look natural.
How it Will Feel During:
The numbing cream certainly helps, but the first pass of the blade is going to be uncomfortable. You will hear the cracking sound as your brow is being bladed and it took about 85 strokes for each brow. After the first pass more numbing cream is applied right into the fresh cuts which burns a bit. Then the numbing cream sets in and you won’t feel much after that. So the first pass and the numbing cream in the freshly cut skin hurts the most. The sound is more annoying than anything because you can hear it over and over again, but it wasn’t something I couldn’t tolerate. You have to know you WILL feel the cuts at least in the beginning, even with numbing cream. If you are squeamish about any pain you need to realize it will hurt a bit.
How it Will Feel After:
Immediately after my eyes felt sunburned. I had some redness all around my brows, and they felt tight, especially when moving my brows when making expressions but it did not feel that awful. The first night you will wash them with perfume free soap like Dove beauty bar and then pat them dry. You will then apply the brow ointment all over to cover and protect the open cuts (this will be given to you). This keeps bacteria and water out of the brows and keeps them clean. After that you cannot get your brows wet at all for a week. This is challenging when working out or showering but it isn’t impossible. When I would wash my hair I would do it while taking a bath and just leaning my head back.
Around day 3-5 is when the itching sets in. At first I was like “what is everyone talking about with the itching, this feels fine” and then around day 3 it all started. That was the most annoying part because it feels like a mosquito bite that you know you can’t scratch but want to so bad. I think I did good with avoiding to touch the brows but I did pat them a few times with a flat palm because it was so annoying. They will start to dry, crack and flake. You should not pull the pieces off, but let them fall off on their own. If you pull off the flakes early you can pull off the pigment too. The flaking is part of the process so don’t be nervous as that happens. After about a week they will have finished shedding.
Touch up/follow up appointment:
Due to the calendar and amount of appointments that my microblading artist had I had to wait almost 8 weeks to get my touch up/fill in. Normally you can wait 6-8 weeks but by week 6 I saw most of my strokes had faded to a lighter color. It wasn’t terrible, but I did have to revert back to using brow products to fill them in until we did the touch up. At my touch up appointment we skipped the numbing cream to start, to get things going faster and that was a little more uncomfortable than the first appointment but I got through it. After the first pass she applied the numbing cream to get into the cuts and that helped and felt nothing after that. We also opted for a slightly darker pigment to make the color last longer and I am really glad we did that. It took a lot less time for the fill in since the shape was already there and we had the opportunity to add a few more strokes as well.
After Care for Touch Up:
The after care the second time around is a breeze compared to the first session. After your touch up you will be encouraged to wash your brows a few times before bed and apply the post tattoo style ointment you are given. That helps to seal the brows and keep them moisturized and clean. After that you can get your brows wet each day, unlike the first time around where you can’t get them wet for an entire week. I could work out, shower, wash my hair without any concerns.
110% I would do microblading over again and again. I can’t tell you the difference it has made in my overall appearance and time it saves me every single day from having to draw on brows and then also having to worry about them smearing or smudging during the day. No matter how many products said they were waterproof or sweat proof I still had issues and concerns around always drawing brows on. I was tired of having to pack products on vacation, or better yet, forget to pack them and wonder what I was going to do. Having fuller brows, with a shape and darker color is the best investment I have made in a long time. I absolutely love my brows!!!
If you have thin brows, tired of drawing or filling them in, or want more of a defined shape then find a great microblading artist and do it. I would do your homework, check reviews and take your time to find someone who is fantastic because it’s truly an art. If you go online and do searching you may hear some people say they don’t like how light the pigment got, or that it looks ashy, etc. Pigment def changes over time and it also depends on your skin, skin tone, the products you use and being careful about sun exposure. I put an SPF moisturizer on daily and also put it on my brows to protect them. Also, make sure you get good aftercare instructions. Adriana was amazing throughout the entire process and I highly recommend her. She went over all the care instructions with me and even sent them in a text to follow after I left.
Here is the link to her website to learn more or book your appointment or to just see other photos and learn more about the entire process. Best of luck and let me know if you decide to get it done as well or have any question 🙂 http://lashandbrowbarnj.com/
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