Microblading is a cosmetic tattoo which is implanted in the upper layers of the skin meaning the results will fade over time and the hair strokes will need to be maintained with touchups. But what does that really mean? Let's break it all down...
Over time the strokes will soften in color and appear less crispy on everyone. The pigment doesn't completely disappear but is much lighter and smaller even after just a year. How often you will need touchups depends largely on your skin type and lifestyle.
On normal to dry skin the technique normally requires a color booster session every 10 - 18 months.
For bald brows, more oily skin, large pores and/or thicker skin some artists recommend touchups every 6 months but this can lead to scarring and is not recommended. In my experience it is a better long-term solution to add a soft shading to lengthen the life of the tattoo, create the most natural result and avoid overworking the skin.
Please remember everyone responds differently due to a variety of factors and microblading cannot always completely replace makeup. It can simplify and shorten the brow shaping process but for a more dramatic look with a fully beat face a small amount of brow cosmetics may still be desired.
So what does microblading normally look like after a year?
The strokes will soften and shrink but the brows are still obviously fuller than before the original procedure. Most tattoos remain true to color. In some instances, pigments may fade to different tones based on the individual's reaction to the color. At your color booster session we re-analyze how you have responded to the initial color formulation and make any necessary formula alterations to prevent future color changes.
Certain hormone changes, laser treatments, chemical peels, skincare products, mineral deficiencies, regular exercise/sweating or sun exposure will cause the tattoo to fade faster and/or change color so be sure to closely follow all long-term aftercare instructions for best results.
This collage shows the typical process of microblading from before the procedure to fully healed after one year.
If you chose not to touch them up they will continue to lighten and fade over time but the pigment may never completely disappear.
So what if you have had microblading and it doesn't look the way you want it to or you want to change the shape of your brows that have previously been bladed?
The best option is to wait until the brows are light enough to go back in and correct the shape or color. While this is not what most people want to hear it is the healthiest option for your skin and leads to the best results in the long run.
To ensure the best for your facial beauty please be conservative with the artist you choose and how often you get your face tattooed. There are plenty of microblading technicians who will work on clients with brows that are simply too overworked and/or saturated to accept more pigment just to make money so it is important to avoid a technician that agrees to work over super-dark brows.
I understand it can be annoying waiting for the pigment to fade but without time to metabolize the pigment your skin will become damaged and the brows will forever look harsh and obviously tattooed. So it is better to spend a year or two letting them fade and using cosmetics as needed before attempting correction.
So how do you know if/when you should get microbladed again?
You may be a candidate for microblading correction:
If the color has soften significantly (at least 50%) and the shape has shrunk
Strokes are far enough apart to still be visible (not muddy puddle brows)
There is not scar tissue on the brow area from previous work
It has been at least 12 weeks from your last brow procedure (often more time is needed to fade the brows--this is just the minimum recommended wait time)
When coverup with microblading is NOT recommended:
If you are unable to properly follow the aftercare instructions (usually caused by exercising/sweating before the brows are fully healed or failure to properly clean the brow area while healing)
If your brows are muddy (strokes fuzzy but still dark), blue or too dark
If your brows have visible dents or lines in the skin this is scar tissue--please avoid tattooing and look into micro needling therapy to help regenerate collagen in the skin
Muddy, discolored and/or dark brows can sometimes be candidates for ombre brows where the technique is powdery and much more gentle on the skin.
If you are considering correction please contact us prior to booking for a virtual consultation by emailing clear, well lit photos of your brows without makeup to firstname.lastname@example.org