Permanent makeup is also known as
micropigmentation. This procedure is done with tiny sterilized disposable
needles which are used to implant hundreds of microscopic mineral pigments
beneath the top layer of the skin. It is commonly used for camouflaging scars,
pigmentation changes in the skin or correcting aesthetic irregularities.
procedure is not new, as it dates back to the Egyptian days of Cleopatra (the
Queen of Egypt), thousands of years ago. Cleopatra is believed to have been
adorned with permanent makeup and Egyptian mummies have been recovered with face
and body tattoos intact. Also, the ancient Japanese art of Tebori boasts
full-body tattooing intricately done by hand.
Permanent Makeup is often referred to
There are still other names given to this
artistic procedure, but "permanent makeup" and "permanent cosmetics" are most
widely recognized by the general public
The most important factor with choosing a
cosmetic tattoo artist is that they must have an artistic flare and an eye for
detail and symmetry. The technician should have the ability to draw even
and symmetrical eyebrows, create eyeliner that is of the same thickness and
intensity on both eyelids, and to compensate for any natural irregularities in
scheduling an appointment date for a permanent
makeup procedure, you need to keep in mind the healing aspects of this
procedure. Most patients need a few days afterwards without social plans
or strenuous activities.
get cold sores or fever blisters you will need an antiviral prescription.
Physician usually instructs to begin taking it 3 days before procedure, for a
7-10 day course. Even if you cannot recall having a cold sore since you
were a child, you still need to contact your physician for a prescription of an
antiviral. The trauma that is done with the lips will activate the virus (which
is laying dormant). If you do not take any antiviral, and you do end up
with getting cold sores from this procedure, you could lose all the pigment in
the healing stages. All the pain, money and time will be for nothing, and will
have to reschedule another procedure once you have the virus under control.
prescribed drugs for cold sores/fever blishers are:
Any type of lip
surgery done within 6 months should probably wait before having permanent makeup
applied. Some of the fillers like
Collagen can sometimes cause migration of the pigment color or
poor color retention. If the patient has gotten lip implants, some
physicians feel it is best to allow the scars to mature at least 6 months before
micropigmentation, the patient should do the following:
If the patient
wears contacts, they will need to remove them for the procedure and for at
least 24 hours after.
Eyes can be
sensitive to the light after the procedure, so wearing sunglasses will help
your drive home.
Do not perm or
use dye on eyelashes for two days prior.
Do not use
eyelash curler the day of the procedure, and arrive with no makeup on the
Any surgery (such
cataract, or LASIK) done to the eyes should have a prior clearance given
from the surgeon for micropigmentation to the eyes. The approximate
time period is about two months from the actual surgery.
Permanent makeup is
in fact - the art of tattooing. The inks, pigments, or dyes that are used
regulated by the FDA or other regulation as cosmetic and color additives. The
Medical Industry refers to Permanent Cosmetics as Medical Micropigmentation,
which is a method of applying micro-insertions of natural pigments into the
dermal layer of the skin.
The permanent make-up consists of fine tiny
particles of a iron oxide base pigment compound, which are placed
into the dermis (middle skin area) to provide color. The advanced pigments
are dermatologist approved, and most of the time they are mixed to provide
customized results. Iron oxide based pigments are very safe and rarely
cause any allergic reactions.
During the healing phase or recovery phase, a
patient can lose up to 30 - 50 percent of the pigment color, as the skin exfoliates
itself. The area goes through this exfoliation phase, however; it is
important to know not to help the process along with peeling the tissue back as
this can cause the patient to lose some of the pigment.
This a typically a two step process with the
sessions - anywhere from one or more weeks apart. The technician who
performed the micropigmentation treatment will go over any areas that didn't
take with the first round. The implantation process takes time and several steps
to achieve the final results. The pigments are mixed custom each time to
closely match the skin tone or hair color of the patient.
It is important that
you go to someone who is not only accredited to do this procedure, but has
refined their techniques so you can get the most natural result possible.
Attempting to create a natural hair pattern with the eyebrows requires the
expertise of an experienced pigment specialist.
The treated area should be kept clean but not
scrubbed. Excess pigment on the skin surface will shed without disturbing
the implanted pigment.
There will be swelling and possible bruising from permanent makeup application. Ice packs after the procedure can help some, but mainly used as a comfort
measure for the patient. Some patients do need to be careful how long they leave
the ice packs on, as applying the cold compresses/ice packs too long could
possibly create frost damage on the skin. Using refrigerator temperature cold
packs can be safer than ice packs.
Cold Packs or Ice Packs are contraindicated in
poor blood circulation
other skin/vascular/blood disorders that
react to cold temperatures
Permanent makeup procedures are compared to skin deep wound. All
procedures will go through a period of oozing, bleeding, crusting over and then
The area should be kept moist with
ointment at all times during recovery.
For at least two days after the procedure, all strenuous activity should be
avoided. Increased blood pressure dilates the blood vessels which
contribute to swelling and oozing.
Keep the area clean. Keep
antibacterial ointment on the area with keeping it moist. Scabs that dry
out end up taking longer to heal than the areas that are kept moist.
Absolutely no peeling or picking at the crust that forms over the area.
This has the potential of causing pigment loss, scarring and delayed healing.
No swimming for at least two weeks in a chlorinated pool, fresh or salt water.
Do not expose the area to a tanning bed, as the UV lighting can cause the
pigment to fade.
Avoid having any contact with the area with anti-aging products, as they contain
acids, lighteners and tend to increase exfoliation - causing the pigment to fade
Make sure you tell your physician or medical technician if you have permanent
makeup, as any treatment with non-invasive laser treatment can also fade and
remove permanent makeup.
Permanent makeup always appears much darker and more severe immediately after
the procedure. The color will not look right until you are completely
healed. All patients can end up losing 30 - 50 percent of the pigment color, so
the technician always has to go darker than the color you choose.
Excess pigment will shed off as the skin exfoliates. Once that process is done,
new skin starts healing over the area on top of the pigment, and tones down the
color noticeably. As swelling goes down, the lines (eyeliner, lip liner, and the
ending part of the brow) will be much thinner. The color will continue to soften
as the healing process progresses.
The healing process and the results looking natural occur within two to three
Lips seem to take the longest to heal out of all the different procedures.
They tend to ooze and have more swelling. The area tends to crust over
from you sleeping at night. Rinsing the area with water and applying more
antibacterial ointment will help loosen the crust. Once that is done, dry
the area and then reapply the ointment.
Try not to pucker or over stretch your lips during the recovery period, as doing
this can open up some of the crusted healed over areas and start the oozing
cycle once again. The area between the vermilion border of the lips (where
the lip liner would be applied) and the skin surrounding the mouth has a lot of
tension when healing from this procedure. The less animated you are with
your mouth expressions, the faster the healing process will happen.
The lips start to peel around day three and will continue for at least a week.
It is best to try and refrain from peeling or picking the exfoliated
skin before it is ready, as you can lose some of the pigment from the procedure. Allowing the skin to fall off on its own is best.
It is normal to feel some discomfort with micropigmentation of the lips.
The following day, the discomfort will ease, and normally by day three or four,
the patient is "pain free". If you are experiencing a great deal of pain
during this time, it could mean that either you have an infection, cold sore, or
possibly a reaction from the antibiotic ointment. If this pain doesn't go
away after switching antibacterial ointments, you should see your physician to
see if this is a bacterial or a yeast infection. If it is an infection,
the open areas will be discolored or yellow thick discharge.
Candida lip infections are different, in as much as a lot has to do with the
severity or strain of the infection. Symptoms include, cracking and
bleeding near the corners of the mouth. Itching and burning can also occur
small granulomas or nodules, blisters along the vermilion border of
The benefits of
micro-pigmentation can present itself in many ways:
hair is a sign of aging and can give the illusion of the face dropping.
Micro-pigmentation can make the brows appear thicker with filling in this
area with hair like strokes. This will frame the face and showing a much
more vibrant appearance.
Lip Liner or Full
Lip Color can actually make small shrinking lips appear fuller and detract
from the fine lines that form around the lip area with age. This gives a
much smoother edge to the lips.
As women age,
sometimes eyesight diminishes. This can have a direct reflection on how
their eye makeup is applied. Permanent eyeliner and brows can restore
confidence in older women.
conditions, medications, or aging can diminish eyelash growth. Permanent
makeup can help restore some of the eyelash loss with tiny hair like
Many women loose
their brows and eyelashes from chemotherapy treatments - permanent makeup
helps tremendously with the physiological and emotional benefit for women.
thins with age, and permanent eyeliner can give the illusion of thicker
Self-esteem and confidence is renewed with the youthful appearance of having
proper eyebrow shape, lip shape and lash enhancement.
Brows that have
been shaped, colored and arched can take years off an aging face.
Brow arches open up the eye area and make a face appear more youthful.
Being able to
free up your time in front of the mirror with waking up with your "face on".
Women who are active in sports and other activities can participate with
more confidence knowing their makeup will not sweat off.
Women who are
older might lose some of their mobility in their hands to apply makeup
evenly. Permanent makeup can give these women freedom from the problematic
day to day makeup applications.
allows for women to look fresh and ready to go right out of the shower or
Women who have
undergone breast reconstruction due to an accident or breast cancer can have
their newly formed breasts appear normal with the areola/nipple complex
tattooing. This gives the women the confidence and self esteem back that
they might have lost with losing a breast.
People who have a noticeable scar can have micro-pigmentation done to even
out the color variances and skin pigmentation changes.
Allergic reactions to
the pigment is a rare situation and can be hard to remove. Anytime you
implant anything that is foreign into the skin, there is the potential for a
reaction to occur, and sometimes can manifest themselves years later with a rash
or an immune system allergic reaction.
The top two adverse
reactions are either a granuloma (masses that form inside tissue around a
foreign substance) and
keloid or hypertrophic scarring
(overgrowths of scar tissue or a raised scar)
Keloid scars can
appear with the removal of permanent makeup more commonly than with its actual
It is so
important that you go to a clean place to have micro-pigmentation done, as it is
possible to get either Hepatitis C or another blood born disease from the use of
unclean needles. Unsterile
tattooing equipment and needles can transmit infectious diseases such as
Another concern is
regarding MRI's and having permanent makeup applied. There can be some swelling
or burning in the pigmented area due to interactions between the magnetic field
and the pigment - which can interfere with the quality of the MRI image. Before you go in and have a MRI done, on the information sheet you fill out,
they will ask you specifically if you have any tattoos or micro-pigmentation. The magnetic reaction happens with the iron oxide in the pigment. It tends
to vibrate and can cause a mild inflammatory reaction. If this should
happen, topical steroid cream or Benadryl helps the response.
Make sure you
disclose to the radiologist if you do have permanent makeup so that they can
know about this ahead of time and make adjustments for the quality of the MRI
image. The reaction from the permanent make up will not compromise the quality
of the imaging as long as the radiologist is aware of the permanent makeup.
Patients just need to tell the radiologist that they have this, so they will not
misread the test report.
Each procedure can
take one to two hours to perform.
An ointment such
as A & D ointment, antibacterial ointment or Vaseline must be kept on the area.
Keeping the area "moist" will allow for a faster healing period.
Days four through
- will see a light crust that will form over the area that was treated. This eventually
will fall off.
It is important
not to pick, rub or peel the skin where the pigment has been applied.
The healed color
will be lighter and softer than what was originally done.
A follow up visit
will be required anywhere from four to six weeks. If needed a light
layer of color is applied to any area that might have some irregularities
from healing. Adjustments to the shape or color tone is also done at
ups might be needed anywhere from one to five years.
Because of where the pigment color is implanted to (the
reticular part of the dermal layer of the skin), and it
cannot be washed off....it is considered by all counts
actually permanent. Fading can and does happen often
with any tattoo. Periodic maintenance with color
re-enhancement or color refreshing will help maintain the
longevity of the tattoo.
Micropigmentation has been
referred to as permanent makeup, however the following can
fade the procedure out: