Many Middle-Eastern women have at least one female family member with eyebrow tattoos. If they’re from an older generation, their brows may seem a little more stern and, uh, solid. By that, I mean their eyebrows have been filled in with a solid line, opposed to the more trendy feathering techniques being practiced now.
Alas, this Latin-American, Asian and Middle-Eastern beauty secret has finally emerged in America and is flying under the radar as “Eyebrow Embroidery” and “Mircoblading.”
This summer in Lebanon, I decided to throw away my eyebrow pencil and turn to this more permanent solution to solve for my bare, light brows.
Who’s a candidate?
Anyone can get eyebrow tattoos — but I think it works best for those who have hair but lack shape or density. If you do not have too much eyebrow hair to begin with, the tattoo artist may recommend a full brow instead of feathering because each drawn hair will be more visible to others. This is why working with a makeup tattoo artist that you trust and consulting with them is important.
What is the process like?
The first part of the process is the consultation. Together, you and the artist decide on the color of the ink, as well as shape. It is recommended to choose a color that is a few shades darker than your hair because once the tattoo heals, the color fades slightly. Depending on how your skin reacts to the ink and the type of ink being used, the tattoo will also fade more over time.
To decide on shape, the artist will fill in your eyebrows with the ink you have decided on. This step was especially difficult for me because I had no shape to begin with. It’s good to have a third opinion in this step because this is a semi-permanent procedure and “eyebrows on fleek” is the goal. Once you decide on a shape, the artist will wipe off the ink she drew and begin tattooing.
Some artists will use numbing cream, which I definitely recommend for the light hearted. The needle that was being used was the size of a precision point pen, which I could feel as the artist drew in my eyebrows, hair by hair. After a few strokes and unbearable pain, my artist would rub my eyebrows with ice to sooth my skin.
After an hour to two hours of a needle etching through your skin, your eyebrows have transformed! The artist will want to see you once your tattoos have peeled, which is part of the healing process, to make sure everything is even and to your liking. They will also recommend a “retouch” session to go over any missing spots and to assure longevity of color.
While they are healing, one should put antibiotic cream on their eyebrows two or three times a day for the first three days. After that, apply Vaseline to seal out liquid and dirt while keeping your healing skin hydrated for a week. After the second session, you will repeat the same process.
After three months, I have no regrets about getting my eyebrows done — except that I wish I had gotten them done sooner! I am much more confident with my naked face now that I have stronger eyebrows framing my features. So far, I have not experienced much fading even with the light color of my tattoo. My only concern is getting them touched up every one or two years because of the pain I experienced. Moving forward, I may get a prescription numbing cream instead of the over-the-counter one my artist used.
Either way — goal accomplished.
Image provided by the author.