There are several different techniques for tattooing brows, and a lot of terms you will hear floating around. When I got into my fundamentals class I learned a lot that steered me to specialize in the Powder Brow technique. I chose to specialize in this technique because of the reliability of the healed results. People are able to get better longevity out of the procedure and the integrity of their skin is not compromised.
Powder Brows heal to a very soft, makeup “powder” type finish. They add fullness and depth to your brow and yet still appear very natural and feminine. There are no hair strokes being tattooed into the skin, and the color is intended to create depth where the hair is sparse or missing. This technique also sits beautifully behind what hair you have. It is carried out using a tattoo machine - which means less pressure is placed on the skin in order to get pigment into the skin. Furthermore, the configuration of the needle cartridge displaces the point of impact, making it softer and more gentle on the skin. Imagine stepping on a single nail. The damage caused from the single nail can be significant. However, people are able to walk across beds of nails all the time. There is little pain, and little damage to the foot because the pressure point is displaced. Likewise, the impact and trauma to the skin from a machine and grouping of needles (used for powder brows) is significantly less than other techniques. As far as the procedure goes, I have great topical anesthetics that will make the procedure comfortable and pain should not be a fear!
I’m sure you’ve heard of the term “microblading.” Microblading is the tattooing technique that uses a manual hand tool to carve out hair strokes on the brow area. The technique has an extremely high propensity to create scarring, and over time (with frequent touch ups) the overworked skin no longer will accept the hair strokes as crisp and precise, and the artist will have to move that client to a different style of brow (typically the powder brow). There are microblading artists that claim or boast “semi-permanent” as if it’s a perk to the procedure. This claim leads people to believe that microblading is not actually a cosmetic tattoo - which is false. Microblading is most definitely a tattoo, it’s just a different technique to deposit the color into the skin. The reason the procedure seems to be “semi permanent” is due to the fact that the manual tool cannot safely reach the depth in which pigment ideally should be implanted, thus pigment tends to fade quickly and inconsistently, requiring more frequent touch ups. Unfortunately, this adds to the problematic nature of the technique - the more touch ups, the more chances for scarring. I have personally done many corrections and cover ups over old microblading and can attest that the color does not tend to heal consistently, and the technique itself is problematic in the sense that there is a very high likelihood to develop scar tissue. Bottom line - the trend is does not typically create beautiful, or even reliable, results over time. Another reason microblading in itself can be dangerous to the consumer is due to the lack of machine being used during the procedure. Since pigment isn’t being implanted into the skin by a machine, many states do not recognize microblading as a tattoo (which it very much is). Since it is not recognized as a tattoo in many states (including Missouri) anybody can go to a one or two day training and perform the service to the public with NO fundamental knowledge of safe, ethical tattooing or wound healing.
A reliable and fantastic alternative to microblading is digital or nano hairstrokes, which is a service that I offer.