Sunday, August 17, 2014

My Eyebrow Tattoo Experience

Why hello there :)

Since I had some free time today I figured i'd talk about my newest obsession- my tattooed eyebrows! Now now... I know what you're thinking. You're thinking I probably look like I have some of these:

But tattooed eyebrows have come so far since the days of our parent's tragic, blue/grey/green tattoos. I first became interested in tattooed eyebrows because (like most Asians) my brows are naturally sparse, and a bit uneven. Nothing I couldn't live with but I just wanted them to be more shapely, and with minimal effort because I am LAZY.

After some Yelp sleuthing I decided on CC Permanent Makeup, in Los Angeles, CA near Koreatown. I was torn between her and Sherri, since together they sort of have a monopoly on the whole business in LA.  They both share a similar aesthetic and technique, but CC had overall better reviews so I went with her instead. Here are some basics:

Cost: $300 (not including tip, includes free touchup)
How long does it last: 2-3 years, depending on care and sun exposure (wear sunscreen!)
How long did it take: Altogether including the tattoo and consultation 75 minutes
The actual tattoo part: Maybe 5-10 minutes
Healing time: 5-7 days
Pain level: low

The Experience 

When you first come in they'll numb you up with a topical numbing cream. Then you'll die of boredom for the next 30 minutes while the numbing cream does it's magic. Bring a magazine or a fully charged cellphone because you'll be antsy with nothing to do.

After it's had some time to sink in they'll remove the numbing cream. This is the part where you'll go back and forth with CC, deciding on the best shape and thickness of the tattoo. This is when I knew I had picked the right person- she's incredibly knowledgable but you can tell she wants you to be happy with the final result. She initially drew on eyebrows that were super arched- I loved them, but it was a bit too much of a different look for me to be comfortable with. A lot of people say to trust them, and I agree the eyebrows looked fantastic but it was just too much of a dramatic change to commit to on the spot. We settled somewhere in-between and her assistant came back in to "poke" the numbing cream deeper in to the skin. Admittedly this is the most uncomfortable part- but it's uncomfortable more than painful.

CC then quickly filled in my brows, while making fun of a particularly large pimple that was erupting out of my face. After a few minutes, we were totally done! I paid, was given aftercare instructions and went home.

You can see the  individual "hair strokes" in this photo.

Healing Process

This is easily the hardest part. Healing eyebrows are ITCHY. And you can't get them wet. I purchased large, wound care bandages and cut them in half for my daily showers. In retrospect I really should have just toughed it out and washed my face with some face wipes. If the tattoo becomes too itchy, put a small amount of ointment on a clean q-tip and apply it along the length of your brows. This usually relieved the itchiness for me.

First day after- soooo dark.
Also beware, these are incredibly dark when you first get them. Unless you like a stronger brow, you'll feel pretty uncomfortable about it the first few days. They get even darker on day 2, but will fade back to an acceptable color at around day 4-5 after the scabs begin to peel.

6 days after- not filled in!

 Enjoy your new brows!

I still fill mine in from time to time, but I like how they look without brow powder as well. I really recommend this to everyone- especially because many girls I know feel uncomfortable without filling in their brows daily. This is such a beautiful alternative- that you can't rub off on hot, sweaty days :) Let me know if you have any questions. And I'd be happy to answer them below!

PS. Sorry for the crappy photos. I promise I took some amazing ones on my DSLR- which I accidentally deleted like a idiot while filming the video you can watch below. Tragic, I know. Someone give me a Darwin award right now, please.