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Permanent Tattoo Makeup

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Permanent makeup is a form of cosmetic tattooing that is also referred to as micropigmentation, micropigment implantation, and dermagraphics. The technique involves depositing tiny implants of pigment into the dermal layer of the skin. Various machines and methods are used, including the traditional tattoo pen.

Permanent makeup can benefit those with hair loss from alopecia or chemotherapy, or for those who desire feature definition (permanent eyeliner, permanent lipstick or lip liner, lash or eyebrow enhancement), scar camouflage, and skin repigmentation. While the process is considered permanent because the color is implanted into the skin, fading often occurs as it can with any tattoo, so periodic maintenance may be necessary. The initial procedure generally takes between 1 and 2 hours; follow-ups are shorter.

Is Permanent Makeup Application Painful?

Since this is an invasive procedure, some discomfort is to be expected and will vary according to the patients pain threshold and the skill of the technician. Pain management options include topical anesthetic ointments and anesthetic blocks (injections administered by a doctor, dentist or nurse). This is an issue that should be discussed with the technician during a consultation.

Permanent Makeup Technician Requirements

Another topic that should be brought up early on is the technicians experience with applying permanent makeup: how long has he or she been doing it, how many procedures has he or she completed, etc. Ask to see his or her tattoo license (if one is required by the state in which he or she practices) and certificates of training. Ask to see the technicians portfolio, or photos of work theyve done, and ask if you can talk to any past customers. Find out what guidelines he or she suggests prior to a procedure. Generally, you will be told to avoid alcohol, aspirin, and vitamin E for at least a week before because these substances can cause bleeding and affect the final outcome. There are no uniform standards for the industry, so you really must have a good feeling for the person to whom you are entrusting your appearance. If something about the technician doesnt feel right, move on to another.

Sanitation is very important during a micropigmentation procedure, so check to make sure that certain standards are observed during the procedure. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these include: needles that are new and sterile, new gloves and sheets for each client that are changed during the procedure as needed, a technician who is clean and knowledgeable of sanitary practices, and a procedure room that is clean and enclosed. Allergic reactions to micropigmentation are very rare, but a skin test should be done before proceeding.

As the procedure begins, the technician will put on latex or vinyl gloves and inspect your skin to make sure there are no rashes or broken skin. The area to be treated is then swabbed down with alcohol or sprayed with an antiseptic solution and shaved if needed with a disposable razor.

Pigmentation is applied with a traditional tattoo gun or pen. These electric devices are equipped with up to 14 needles arranged along a bar. The business end of the needle is dipped into a small amount of ink. The needle bar moves up and down very quickly, driving the needles into the superficial and middle layers of the skin to implant the pigment. The technician controls the speed and power with a foot switch. A single needle is used to make fine lines, and a row of needles are used for shading and areas of dense color. Excess pigment and some blood may ooze out from the puncture wounds, which the technician wipes away with a disposable towel. How much discomfort you will feel varies greatly and depends on your pain threshold and what part of the face or body is being tattooed, As the session comes to an end, the technician applies a layer of antibiotic cream over the treated area.

Recovery Time After Makeup Tattoo Application

Expect to feel at least a little sore afterward. The healing process takes approximately a week. During that time, you should wash the area with mild soap no more than twice a day and then apply antibiotic cream as needed. The area should be exposed to the air to encourage healing and kept moist until healing is complete. Treat it like the scar that it is: do not apply cosmetics or peroxide, do not pick at any scabs or flakes, do not go swimming or hot tubbing, and keep it out of direct sunlight. If you are prone to keloids or hypertrophic scarring, you may develop scar tissue at the treatment site.

As with any cosmetic procedure, the training and skill of the technician - not cost - should be the primary concern.

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