When Beyoncé first sang the line, "I woke up like this," she probably wasn't referencing the beauty world's recent obsession with permanent makeup. But if she had been, she would probably be nodding to the seamless work of cosmetic artist Dominique Bossavy. With celebrities like Jenna Dewan, Lena Dunham, Michelle Williams, and Megan Fox on her roster, she's become the go-to face tattoo artist for the celerity set. Yes, we said face tattoo artist— now let us explain.
In the age of eyebrow embroidery, tattooed lips, and eyelash extensions, permanent makeup is the next best thing to a full makeup routine. For our latest episode of Marco Beauty, above, we explored the topic with Famous In Love actress Claudia Lee as our proxy — and the results speak for themselves. We still had some questions, so we tapped Bossavy to lay it out for us, below. Press play to watch the whole thing go down, then scroll down for all the details.
What is permanent eyeliner?
"You can call it whatever you want," Bossavy tells Refinery29, "It is still a form of tattooing." But unlike a microblading treatment, permanent eyeliner will not scab and doesn't cut into the skin with a blade. If you visit Bossavy, you'll get a gentle, non-invasive procedure that uses mineral-based pigment, a low frequency tiny needle, a unique injection technique (what Bossavy coined "NanoColor Infusion")... plus some numbing cream for a comfortable experience.
Does it hurt?
Although it's not as invasive as using a blade, she still implants colour into the dermis for a permanent colour effect. She assures potential clients that the sensation isn't alarming, but feels like a vibration against your lashes — at the most, like someone is lightly scratching your skin.
What's the procedure like?
Bossavy first starts by cleaning the eye with a cotton round and some makeup-removing solution. Then, she uses a cotton swab to smooth on numbing cream to your lash line. To make sure she gets a precise line as close to the lashes as possible, Bossavy uses magnifying glasses (and gloves!) to add the pigment to the skin. You'll hear a slight buzzing (like any tattooing needle) as Bossavy begins to go back and forth over small sections of the lash line, which she says she normally goes over two to three times.
How long does it take?
Up to an hour, depending on the person, since each procedure is bespoke!
What results can I expect?
The illusion of thicker eyelashes, like your eyes are really popping in the same way a tight-lined lash might appear. Bossavy creates the most flattering look for each individual based on their eye shape, eye colour, and everyday makeup routine.
Should I expect downtime?
Not really. Celebrities are free to attend a red carpet immediately after.
Are touch-ups necessary?
Like any tattoo, the permanent eyeliner is expected to slightly fade. Bossavy offers free, first-time touch-ups — which she recommends — four to 12 weeks after the first treatment. The follow-up treatment could last up to an hour. Why? As skin heals, it could resist absorbing more pigment, so it might take some added time to get the finished look just right.
Is Bossavy's procedure the same as everyone else's?
Not exactly. This technique in particular is specific to Bossavy and her three clinics in L.A., New York, and Paris. She confirms that every cosmetic artist will have a different technique and tools. Just do your research before you book your appointment to make sure who you visit will give you safe results you love.