An introduction to microblading
The American actress Saoirse Ronan once said that “if you don’t have eyebrows, you don’t have a face”, this quote couldn’t ring truer in today’s visual society led by popular beauty trends, one of the most recent of which is microblading...
If you are reading this and haven’t the slightest clue as to what microblading is, the technique basically allows for you to have semi-permanent eyebrows through the use of a handheld tattoo device that creates the illusion of fine hair strokes.
Eyebrows are an ever-changing trend, in the late 90’s and the early 2000’s, eyebrow styles that were all the rage were tweezed to within an inch of their existence, some of which had an arch so defined they looked like arrows sitting on faces. Then along came threading, this technique which uses a cotton thread to rid your eyebrows of unwanted hair overtook the popularity of tweezing in western cultures.
As with most trends, eyebrow shapes and appearances have come full circle and have, once again started becoming a little ‘bigger’, ‘bushier’, more pronounced and even darker, moving away from the thin and not-so-bushy triangles that we all cringe at when looking at old photos of ourselves.
In staying with the latest trends, many women (and some men) are looking to return to more natural, beautifully shaped, well-defined, fluffy and feathery brows. Unfortunately, not all of us our well-endowed, or shall we say, ‘well-enbrowed’ in the brow department and only have a few strands holding on for dear life, as a result of years of over-tweezing or more rarely, due to health conditions such as alopecia. And so, in this day and age where nothing is impossible when it come to getting what we want aesthetically, microblading is the latest 'go to' for wow brows.
Interestingly enough microblading originated in Asia more than 25 years ago and goes by a number of different names such as eyebrow embroidery, eyebrow feathering, micro-stoking, even brow-micropigmentation and 3D brows1. In 2015 microblading became increasingly popular in western society, truly coming into its own in 2017.
With this trend taking the beauty world by storm, it’s time to put down that eyebrow pencil, step away from the tweezers and dye and step into the world of semi-permanent brows, sculpted, shaped, arched and darkened to your personal preference.
What is microblading?
Microblading is a semi-permanent and manual form of a cosmetic tattooing, however, unlike traditional tattooing which uses an electronic machine, microblading makes use of a handheld microblade (which resembles a pen) to apply each hair stroke. The blade of the instrument, or microblade, consists of a row of fine needles which are dipped into ink (colour pigment). Once dipped, the blade will be pushed into the skin, cutting in a slicing motion, drawing on each hair stroke to create the allusion of more natural and fuller eyebrows1. Hundreds of hair strokes will be created to build a more textured look, resembling your own eyebrow hair.
Microblading will be performed by a trained technician, however, the technique is not regulated or monitored, and the technician performing the procedure does not necessarily need to have a specialised license to do so.
The biggest part of the appeal of microblading is that it lasts for roughly 12 to 18 months, fading gradually over time, making it a more permanent option than eyebrow pencils and powders and creating a more natural look as opposed to the more solid appearance of classic eyebrow tattoos. Another great aspect of the procedure is that regardless of whether you have bushy brows and want them tamed and shaped, or have nearly-invisible blonde brows, or hardly any hair at all, you can get microblading done, with just a few considerations.
1. BC Ministry of Health. 2017. Microblading services. Available: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/health/keeping-bc-healthy-safe/pses/microblading_factsheet_public_june13_2017.pdf [Accessed 30.11.2017]