Back in the day, eyebrow tattooing was the way to
fill in sparse, thin, uneven eyebrows and create a fuller brow line. But there
are downsides, including ink that is too dark and unnatural looking results. Enter microblading, which today is the first
choice for people looking for refined results and full, luxurious brows that
are a hot trend
Microblading: What’s In a Name
Personally, we think microblading is misnamed. The term blade conjures up visions of
little knives cutting our skin, while in reality, a microblade is a hand-held
device made up of teeny, tiny needles carrying a pigment. (We thought you’d like the idea of needles better.)
A vegetable-based dye is then applied with hair-like strokes to mimic the hairs
that grow naturally in your brow line. The idea is to give your brows a full,
Some salons and spas also do ombre brows, filling in the brow to give it a makeup look. And In microshading, a combination of
microblading and ombre, the beauty technician does hair like strokes at the
head of the eyebrow and shades in the rest of the brow.
Microblading Versus Tattooing
Microblading is a semi-permanent brow makeup that is
similar to eyebrow tattooing but different in significant ways.
• First, because the technician is working with
extremely small needles, she can achieve more refined, natural looking results.
• In addition, the pigment (ink) is subtle and
gradually fades to a more natural looking shade.
• Tattoos are designed to be permanent and they are
harder to remove if you don’t like the shape of your brows or change your mind.
• A tattoo is applied with a vibrating needle, while
microblades don’t vibrate. This usually results in more accurate, detailed
• Microblading results typically last up to 18
months but the pigment can take up to three years (or longer) to fully fade.
How Microblading Works
Depending on the technician, microblading takes one
to two hours. Here is the process:
• Your beauty specialist will rub a topical
numbing cream on your brows and leaves it on for 20–40 minutes to work. (She
removes it after the area is numb.)
• Next, she measures your face and brows and
sketches on the shape that looks best for you.
• Then, she “draws” your brow’s new shape,
using those tiny needles to scratch your skin’s surface and fills them in with
light, hair-like strokes. (Think kitten whiskers.)
• After you are both happy with the design,
your brow expert applies medical-grade ink (pigment) to your eyebrows and waits
five minutes (or so) before removing it. She may apply the pigment twice before
• You will return for a touch-up in about four
to six weeks. At that time, your technician will fill in any gaps, and
fine-tune the shape. Many people then have touch-ups about every 18 months.
What to Expect
Depending on where you live–and the technician’s
skill and experience– microblading costs anywhere from $150 up to $700 or more.
There will be some
scabbing and flaking as your brows heal and you may want to stay home for a few
days. Experts also recommend keeping your brows dry and avoiding exercise that
makes you sweat.
Plus, it’s important to be patient–and not panic.
Your brow color will become lighter during the first two weeks, and you can
expect to wait four to six weeks for the final result. Then it’s time to have
your touch-up session.
Good to Know
Be sure your brow expert draws the shape of your brows before she begins. No freehand microblading allowed! And be sure to do your research before booking an appointment. It’s worth paying a bit more to get the results you want.
Find salons that specialize in microblading.
Give her the gift of beauty with a Spafinder gift card.
 Mirror, “Microblading: Everything you need to know before you have the treatment,”Rosie Hopegood, May 2019
 RealSelf, “ Everything You Need to Know About Microblading, “ Mari Malcolm, November 2018