I Got My Eyebrows Microbladed — & This Is What You Need To Know

Would it be strange to say my favourite tattoo is on my eyebrows? Not for me, no. In fact, I'd venture to say that getting my eyebrows microbladed (aka semi-permanently tattooed) is among the top three best decisions I've ever made in the name of beauty — right up there with retinol and daily SPF.
You see, I've had thin, barely-there eyebrows all my life and while I wouldn't say I'm ashamed of them, I've spent a good chunk of my mornings filling them in — in part because I think that fuller arches give my face more definition, but also because I want bold brows to go with my wilder eye and lip looks. I've even tried eyebrow tints, and while they're good, it doesn't quite help with my shape.
When my good friend got her brows semi-permanently tatted, I started dreaming about what life would be like if I didn't have to pick up another brow pencil again. Two years later, I finally plucked up the courage to go under the blade — the microblade, that is.

What Is Eyebrow Microblading?

Eyebrow microblading is the process of using a small tool with tiny needles to draw hair strokes on your eyebrow (not a tattoo machine). The result is a realistic-looking brow that doesn't wash off. The procedure can take up to 40 minutes depending on what look you're after. Eyebrow microblading will usually last anywhere between one to three years, although you may need touch-ups occasionally. It's a must for us low-maintenance girlies who want to look put together without battling an eyebrow pencil every morning.

But Wait, What's Eyebrow Tattooing Then?

Good question. While eyebrow microblading and tattooing are pretty similar, there's a key difference. Tattoos last forever, microblading doesn't. The hairline strokes aren't put as deep into the skin as what a tattoo gun would make, meaning your body can actually metabolise the ink from microblading. This eventually makes it fade away. Eyebrow tattoos also have ink that's far more concentrated, giving you a bolder look. Microblading on the other hand, results in a softer, more realistic look.

IRL Procedure — What Should I Expect?

The entire procedure took about an hour and was pretty painless (save for some mild discomfort at the onset). First Berry numbed my eyebrows for about thirty minutes before tracing over them with a pencil to get my desired shape. Once we had my ideal shape, Berry began matching her inks to my hairs. Then it was time to whip out the microblading tool – a metal, scalpel-like mechanism used to deposit ink into the skin. The actual scraping and prodding of my brows was underwhelming — I had built up the experience so much in my mind that I expected a lot more pain, but since Berry numbed my brows multiple times throughout the process I barely felt anything at all.
After-care was where things got tricky, Berry instructed Alyssa and I not to get our brows wet for five full days so that the ink could set — as you can imagine, this made everything from shampooing to washing our faces difficult. For two weeks after, we weren't able to profusely sweat due to exercise (didn't complain about that one) or touch our eyebrows. We also had to apply a thin layer of ointment over our brows after the first five days.

How Much Does Eyebrow Microblading Cost?

Eyebrow microblading isn't cheap. In Australia, you can expect to pay anywhere between $500 and $2,000 for the procedure, not factoring in touch-ups. But for some people, this cost is absolutely worth it.

The Verdict — Is Microblading Worth It?

Two months after the procedure, I was in love with my new brows. The best part was that no one could tell that I'd had anything done to them. Oh, and it cut my morning routine in half so I could hit snooze a couple more times.
Two years after microblading my brows, I found myself reaching for gels and pencils to fill them in once again. My permanent makeup artist Emilia Berry mentioned that the ink would start to fade within one to two years and like clockwork, it did. This isn't necessarily a bad thing though — I'd prefer having the choice to get them done every few years rather than having a permanent tattoo that I could potentially regret.
If you are thinking of going under the knife, make sure you've done your research. "Find out how long the artist has been microblading for, look at before-and-after photos and make sure it is their work," she says. "The most important thing you should do is to make sure that they have a permit from the health department. It should be exposed on the wall." If you can, be sure to do a consultation and confirm that your artist is using new needles.

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