So you have an appointment for Permanent Cosmetics coming up, but you have several questions you need answered. Every experienced Permanent Cosmetics Artist is used to answering a multitude of questions of varying similarities from client to client on a daily basis. It’s part of the job, and in order for us to perform Permanent Cosmetics procedures, we must ensure that our clients are completely informed of the procedure process, risks associated with the procedure, as well as aftercare information for the healing process and overtime. In order to prepare you for your Permanent Cosmetics appointment, we have outlined a list of frequently asked questions to address any issues you may have. Some answers may vary from artist to artist and answers may be based upon artist opinion, so always make sure that your artist explains everything to you in a way that you understand. If you have additional questions for your artist, ask them! Do not feel like you are not allowed to ask questions or have input on your procedure. As previously stated, it is the Permanent Cosmetics Artist’s job to ensure you are completely informed and happy with the procedure.
1. What is Permanent Makeup?
Permanent Makeup are techniques where pigment is implanted into the dermis layer of the skin using a permanent cosmetics tattoo machine or manual tool for the purpose of cosmetic enhancement. In other words, we use a tattoo machine, or microblading tool in order to place pigment into the skin in a desired design, in many cases being hairstrokes, or shading in the desired area. Basic Permanent Makeup procedures include shaded brow procedures, eyeliner, and lips, but many artists provide more advanced procedures like microblading as well. Permanent Makeup Artists can also provide paramedical procedures as well, including, Areola Reconstruction, Scar Tissue Camouflage, Cleft Lip Camouflage, and Hairline Restoration.
2. Will The Procedure Hurt?
Clients often have two main concerns for their upcoming procedure; first being will it hurt, and second, what will the final outcome look like. The concerns of a Permanent Makeup Artist when performing a procedure are quite similar. Artists want to ensure that the client is comfortable throughout the procedure and that the client is happy with the design. When performing procedures, it is our job as artists to ensure you are comfortable, and we do this through the use of topical anesthetics often containing lidocaine, tetracaine, and benzocaine. Many Permanent Makeup Artists use a pre-numbing and a continual numbing product as well to ensure the client is comfortable throughout the procedure. The pre-numbing product is applied before the artist has broken skin to ensure you are comfortable during the beginning stages of your procedure, and once the skin is broken, the artist will use the continual numbing product to ensure you stay numb throughout the procedure. These products, used together, can ensure your comfort while the procedure is taking place, but once the procedure ends your numbing will start to wear off. Once your numbing has lost effect, you will feel sore and tender, a similar feeling to a sunburn, or if you have ever received a traditional tattoo before the sensation is like your healing tattoo. This can be alleviated using a cold pack, which some artists will provide. If you are allergic to any numbing agents, be sure to inform your artist. Oftentimes the artist can use a different numbing agent with a different active ingredient for your procedure in order to avoid any reactions.
3. Is it really permanent?
When a needle breaks the skin with the intention of implanting pigment into the dermis layer of the skin it is considered to be permanent. Much like traditional tattooing, Permanent Makeup procedures are always subject to a fading and exfoliating process, which begins immediately after the initial appointment and is continual. It is widely accepted in the Permanent Makeup community that there are several factors that can influence the longevity of your procedure. This includes things like skin condition and properties, how you take care of your procedure during the healing stages and over time, exposure to the sun, the use of skin care products, and exfoliation performed on the area. In most states, artists are required to provide the client with a detailed aftercare sheet which includes all of the information a client should know about their healing process and proper care for their procedure over time. It is important that you follow your aftercare sheet exactly, taking all of the proper precautions to ensure that your procedure does not begin to fade prematurely. As long as you take care of your procedure properly, your procedure can last for years, some clients’ procedures lasting up to 5 years without needing a touch-up. But, most clients will need a touch-up 6-8 weeks after their initial procedure to repair any gaps that have formed during your initial healing process, and a yearly touch-up to ensure that your procedure stays looking fresh. Ultimately, it is up to you as the client to decide when you need and want your touch-up procedures.
4. Is the procedure safe?
As Permanent Cosmetics Artists, it is our number one concern to ensure that our procedures are safe for our clients, future clients, and ourselves. We do this through the use of client registration forms filled out by our clients that detail any information that we may need to know that could constitute the client not being able to receive a service for one reason or another. When filled out correctly and honestly, client registration forms ensure that procedures are safe for our clients. Ensure that you answer all of your artist’s questions honestly regarding any of your medications, medical conditions, skin conditions, and allergies in order to ensure that your procedure is safe. Artists will also use a sterile environment with single-use items to ensure that there is no cross-contamination from a previous procedure to your procedure or from your procedure to another. This ensures that our procedures are completely safe for everyone involved.
5. How long does the procedure take?
The length of your procedure can vary according to the type of procedure being performed, the technique used by the artist, the client’s skin condition, and the experience of the artist. New Permanent Makeup Artists may take longer to complete a procedure than an experienced artist. Average procedure times can vary anywhere from 2 to 4 hours. This time includes consultation, client registration, numbing, pre-drawing the template, the procedure itself, fine-tuning, and explaining of aftercare. It is recommended that you schedule your procedure on a day you have very little else to accomplish to give the artist ample time to complete your procedure. If you do have other plans on the day of your appointment, be sure to let your artist know, so that they can be considerate of your time and aim to finish the procedure with extra time for you to get to your next appointment on time.
6. How much does Permanent Makeup Cost?
The average cost of Permanent Makeup procedures varies depending on the area of the salon or clinic, and the qualifications of the technician, but the price usually averages from $300-$600 per procedure. Prices are different from artist to artist some artists charging a deposit as well. Be sure to consult with your artist before your procedure to agree on the pricing of your procedure.
7. Is Permanent Makeup like tattooing?
In many states, Permanent Makeup is considered to be a branch off of traditional tattooing. We provide the same type of service, in that we use a tattoo machine and tattoo needle to implant pigment into the dermis layer of the skin, but there are some differences between the two trades. Permanent Makeup is different from traditional tattooing because of the products that we use and the way our procedures are performed. The pigment that we use when performing Permanent Makeup procedures is safe for use on the face and is designed to fade much more than a traditional tattoo pigment would. This is to ensure that our procedures maintain a natural appearance, and do not end up looking completely tattooed or filled in. Most Permanent Makeup Artists also use topical anesthetic agents that numb the skin in order to keep our clients comfortable. In traditional tattooing, this is a practice not used very often, if ever. Our procedures are also done with different techniques than those that are used in traditional tattooing. We use different techniques because we are aiming, always, for a natural healed result.
8. What conditions might exclude me from receiving a Permanent Makeup procedure?
When filling out client registration you will be asked a multitude of questions regarding any of the medications you currently take, any current medical conditions as well as any allergies you have. As previously stated, always fill out your client registration honestly or your procedure could be unsafe for you during or after the procedure is completed. Many times if you are taking any medication or have any medical conditions the artist is unsure of, they will ask you to receive permission from your physician before proceeding with the procedure. In the case of allergies, those with allergies to pigment or anesthetic might be told they are unable to receive a procedure, but many artists will look around to find a brand of pigment or anesthetic that does not contain the allergen in order to allow you to receive your procedure. If you have any medical conditions, take any medication, or have any allergies that concern you as to whether you can receive your procedure, call your artist beforehand and ask if you need permission from your physician to proceed with the procedure. Calling beforehand can ensure that you hold your appointment time and do not come to your appointment only to have to reschedule because you need permission from your doctor.