Frequently Asked Questions
Why do tattoos on the body last but permanent makeup has to be touched up?
We hear this question a lot and the truth is that there are certain areas on the body that don’t hold the pigment as well as other areas. Especially if it is an area that exfoliates more rapidly like the face. It is also true for tattoos applied to the hands and feet and most tattoo artists don’t like to tattoo those areas because of the fact that it fades so much. Having said that, it is also important to note that certain colors last longer than others. For example an eyeliner tattooed in black pigment is going to last longer than medium blonde brows that are applied with soft earth tones because the body absorbs lighter colors faster. We tell our clients that it is better to have soft natural results that need to be touched up every 2-3 years than harsh unnatural looking results that last forever.
Does it hurt?
Everybody has a different pain tolerance but having permanent cosmetics applied should NOT be likened to torture. The area to be tattooed is prepped in advance with a topical numbing cream to alleviate discomfort. The lips, being more sensitive due to the nerves surrounding the mouth, can be totally numbed with an injection of lidocaine by a medical professional. However, most of our clients are fine with just the numbing cream. Most permanent makeup procedures should take around an hour. If it’s taking much longer than that then it’s not being applied efficiently and the skin runs the risk of being overworked. Overworking the skin can be painful as well as cause unnecessary trauma to the treated area, resulting in poor results and sometimes scar tissue.
Does it bleed?
Properly applied permanent makeup does not need to be inserted into the skin more than the width of a dime. In general tattoos applied using too much pressure causes scarring which gives the tattoo a raised waxy look. When permanent makeup tattooing is done correctly, it rarely causes bleeding and the area should only slightly swell with a mild redness around the treated area that usually only lasts for a few hours.
Is there any down time?
If the permanent cosmetics have been applied with the technique that causes the least amount of trauma necessary to achieve desired results, then you should expect to be completely healed in less than a week. You do not have to discontinue any of your normal activities just as long as they don’t include swimming. The only area that may look a little swollen is the lips so we typically tell people not to make social plans the day of their procedure if they are having their lips done.
What is the aftercare?
Your skin has just been punctured hundreds of times by tiny needles so you want to make sure the area stays clean and protected for at least 5 days after the procedure. We recommend washing the area with a mild soap the day after the procedure and we give our clients an after care ointment to use to keep the area protected and speed up the healing process. It is important to avoid swimming in pools, lakes or oceans for bacteria reasons and also because salt and chlorine may pull out the color which may affect your results. You're also going to want to avoid using any skin lightening or exfoliating skin care products such as Retin A and Glycolic acids. Avoid prolonged sun exposure as this can also cause premature fading of the pigment.
How soon will I need a touch up?
We typically do our procedures in 2 sessions, the reason for this is because no two skin types are the same and individual results may vary. While one person only fades 1 shade lighter after healing another person may lose up to 50% of their color in the healing process. It is for this reason that we prefer to start out conservatively for the first application of permanent makeup. It is easier to add a little more color at the 3 week touch up than to have to lighten up color. This also gives us a chance to check in with our clients and make sure they are happy with their results. Once a client has had both the initial and follow up procedures their permanent makeup should last anywhere from 2 to 3 years depending on the depth of color and the clients individual skin type.
If you have any additional questions please feel free to email us through the contact page.