When I was young I had a friend whose mom had hairless, thin, blueish grey eyebrows. I would always look at them and wonder why they looked like that. Did she just not have eyebrows and have to draw them on with poorly matched eyebrow pencil? I would try not to stare but I made sure to get a close glance every time I saw her- she had no hairs and the thin lines above her eyes always seemed to be exactly the same.
Later in life I learned that my friend's mom actually had eyebrows- eyebrows she chose to shave off. And the thin blueish gray lines were faded permanent tattoos! A reality my little kid brain couldn’t have ever dreamed of! This is a reality that I also found out wasn’t that uncommon.
Semi-Permament Eyebrow Tattoos
I thought of my friend's mom's eyebrows recently when I was scrolling through my Instagram search feed. I spotted what looked a woman with two sets of eyebrows, one on top of the other. I tapped the video and found another and another of what I would later learn was Microblading, the latest trend in eyebrow beauty.
Like the thin blueish grey brows that I once tried to understand, microbladed brows are tattoos- well, semi permanent tattoos. An eyebrow artist draws thin lines with a tiny blade made up of several little needles that only penetrate the top layers of the skin. Then a layer of pigment designed to match the color of your eyebrow hairs is placed over the lines for a few minutes to let it set in. The goal is to create fuller, better shaped brows by effectively adding trompe-l'œil hairs between and around your actual hairs.
The process, which usually consists of two sessions, can cost anywhere between $700-$1500 and lasts up to a year. Micoblading also has some stylistic variations- microshading and microfeathering. The former results in a gradated block shaped brow similar to the look of filling in your brows with an eyebrow pencil. We'll get into microfeathering in more detail below.
Microfeathering- a Microblading Concept
Microfeathering is the brain child of eyebrow master Kristie Streicher, founder of Beverly Hills’ Striiike. She’s credited with making natural, full brows not only chic but the standard. Mircofeathering is Streicher’s trademarked “microblading concept” that consists of suble natural feather strokes that fill in bare or missing spots to give your brow a fuller look.
What I learned after what ended up being several hours of youtube video viewing and Instagram stalking is that microblading is also one of those trends that have reached the DIY beauty crowd. Yes, people have started doing their own microblading at home- which has results ranging from “OMG” to “I can’t believe she just did that!”
My conclusion- microblading is one of those trends that can really improve the look and shape of your natural brows and can even help people dealing with alopecia and other hair conditions. It’s a far cry from the blueish gray tattooed eyebrows of my friend's mom- it can actually look extremely natural if done right, which seems to be the biggest caveat. If you’re going to slice up your face and put ink in your wounds, have a professional do it. If your don’t believe me just google it.