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Microblading 101: Tips + What to Expect
My Honest Review of Microblading
Microblading. Micro-shading. Micro… ? Who knows what’s next. What I do know is this department has taken off! I was one of the first of the masses, (at least in Minnesota) to give this microblading thing a shot over a year ago and I’m here to tell all!
I’ve always hated my eyebrows, I wasn’t a victim of over plucking too much but I am a victim of fine blond hair! I always needed reinforcement with a pencil, the problem is I was never able to nail down a symmetrical shape. I’m also fairly active and prefer to go out with a fresh face and always felt like my eyebrows were the one thing that made me self-conscious to do that.
I will never forget the time I was playing in a high school playoff basketball game and the opponents from the other team’s student section were bantering me, asking if I “forgot my eyebrows at the tanning salon”. I laughed it off because they totally had a point. I was missing my brows and I totally over-tanned!
Fast-Forward almost 8 years now and finally, a REAL solution to my problem.
When I first booked my appointment with Jonelle (owner of The Archery) I had no idea what to expect. In fact, I didn’t do much of any research. I seriously didn’t even have the slightest idea of how microblading worked. Looking back that was pretty naive, but I got lucky because I ended up being in great hands. I am sharing my experience with The Archery, in hopes that you all can enjoy them too. This is a 100% genuine (non-paid) “endorsement” because I truly believe in her work & her team!
After my experience, I posted a quick pic stating I got my brows back! And since then, I have had tons of questions about my experience, and level of satisfaction. So, I thought I’d create a quick list of what you should know before you decide to get your brows micro-bladed.
What is the micro-blading process?
Microblading is the skill of semi-permanent tattooing in which artists use a handheld tool to create realistic, hair like strokes to enhance your natural brows. The small blade, created by tiny micro needles, inserts pigment into the skin. Pigments are placed in the upper dermal layer of the skin, more superficial than a normal tattoo which in turn fades over time. (https://www.thearcherymn.com)
In my words: The artist makes small slits/cuts (that resemble hairs) into your skin, they then rub pigment into the open cuts and let it soak in. Then, it is wiped away. The process is repeated until the artist feels the job is done!
- Do Your Research for an Artist: microblading is 100% an art! Make sure the artist you are considering has posted a ton of photos of their work, including before and after’s. If you like what they are doing and they have enough experience + happy customers you should be good.
- Make sure your potential artist is Phibrow certified. Phibrows is the most prestigious microblading certification in the world and is known all around the globe as the best, most natural looking microblading technique. Phibrows artists must go through rigorous training on technique, color theory, skin types and more. Unlike other trainings, Phibrows artists must pass 11 levels of progress in order to be certified.
- You Pay For What You Get: If it’s WAY cheaper than others, be wary! There is a difference here in offering ‘entry pricing’ because they know they are just starting, verses being less expensive because someone isn’t qualified/certified. Jonelle charges more now than when I originally went to her because, well, she’s mastered her skill and deserves the going market pricing. But, she has apprenticed artists and they sometimes charge a little less. It does not mean they are any less qualified, rather have less experience under their belt.
- Trust Your Artist: Once you’ve done your research for an artist and decided on one, trust their technique and opinion. Your facial structure defines how your brows should look, meaning length + arch. Of course, you can have that tailored to your preference, but a good artist will know what will look best on your face. Like I said above, I literally did no research I just knew I wanted a fluffier, symmetrical brow. My artist did exactly that without any photos!
- Your Artist will Color Match Your Brow: Upon completion and the days following your brows will be much darker than they ultimately will be, it is just a part of the healing process. But it is not extreme at all, don’t worry about not being able to go out. I was just fine the next day and no one commented on them being dark or looking weird.
- Expect a Pain Similar or Less Than a Real Tattoo: The pain is totally minimal. First round, I was not numb and it is fairly uncomfortable though still tolerable. Beauty is Pain, right? After that, your artist will use a numbing cream and you will feel pressure with every stroke but no pain. I would describe this as a unique feeling- probably like nothing you have ever felt before but it does not hurt too bad.
- Take After-Care Seriously: Your artist will likely explain to you that your brows may form scabs. Do not pick! If you keep your brows moisturized enough, you may get lucky and not scab at all. That was the case with me, but I also have very oily skin so that may have aided that, and I wore saran wrap over them at night longer than suggested (Greg loved that haha). Check out the Archery’s aftercare page here if you want more details on what to expect and avoid the days following.
- Do You Tip Your Artist?: I personally think this is necessary, even though it is likely not expected. Your artist is providing you with a service, and they deserve to be awarded for their gorgeous work (only if you are satisfied of course). Plus, you are putting your face in their hands! I tipped my artist 20%.
- Consider Booking a 6-8 week Touch Up Immediately: When I had my brows done, a 6-week touch up was included with the purchase of the service. Now, it is paid for and scheduled seperately. I actually think this makes sense, why pay for a 6-week if you might not need it? I would ask your artist if they think you will want one, based on your color and skin type they should be able to make a suggestion for you. At least get it on the calendar. I would suggest doing a touch up to make sure the initial strokes healed right, and can be darkened if needed. It is hard to know how you will heal.
- Plan Your Touch-ups Months in Advance: It sounds crazy to think about booking your 8-12 month touch up immediately after your initial service, but it might not be a bad idea. When booking my 8-12 month follow up, my artist was booked out 7 months online! Luckily, I knew she reserved spots for previous clients and was able to get in much sooner.
- But Wait! You Might Not Need a Touch Up that Soon… Even though I just suggested to book your appointments ahead of time, based on your skin type- you might be able to go much longer without getting them touched up again. It has been exactly a year since my first session, and I am NOT in need of a touch up at all. I just want to go back and get certain parts more defined.
- You May Still Have to Fill in Your Brows: While microblading will change your makeup routine, and give you a perfect shape, there is a chance that based on your preferences you may still want to fill in certain areas of your brows. I didn’t for the first 3 months, but after that, I wanted to have the inside of the brow more defined and would lightly fill them in.
- I have tried many eyebrow pencils and found that a lot of blonde colors pull red and they did not work for my ashy blonde color. I am in love the NYX Micro Brow Pencil or the NYX Precision Brow Pencil. I use the color Taupe and I totally swear by it!
Did I miss anything? Drop me a note!
If you decide to invest in beautiful brows: Good luck- you will not be disappointed.
Check out The Archery’s Photo Gallery to see some of their work, also can we talk about their cute studio below!? If you have any other questions about the process that I cannot answer, or are interested in booking at The Archery you can contact them here.
This Post Has 3 Comments
I have been so nervous to get my brows microbladed, but this post honestly makes it seem so worth it and do-able! Plus, I feel the same as you, I never walk out of the house without my brows filled so I think this may be the answer!
Thank you! Very helpful!!!!!
Absolutely!! Glad I could provide some insight 😋
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