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Permanent makeup (micropigmentation)

Permanent makeup is a godsend for women tired of painstakingly reapplying eyeliner every morning.

Before You Go

Consider taking a Tylenol before the application. Aspirin and aspirin-based products like ibuprofen may increase bleeding during the procedure. Clean the face of all traces of makeup.

After care for permanent makeup (micropigmentation): After permanent makeup is applied, the tattooed skin will usually scab. Do not pick at or otherwise disrupt the scabs, as this can cause scarring or the lifting of pigment.

Keep in mind that the initial appearance of the permanent makeup will be darker than expected at first. Color will flake off and fade during the weeks after application.

It is not uncommon to do touchups after the first application of makeup has healed if, for example, the permanent eyeliner is insufficiently dark or thick.

What To Expect

A permanent makeup session is much like any tattoo application. After a consultation with the tattoo artist, who typically works in a salon, the artist will apply the ink with a needle. The procedure usually takes one to two hours.

Getting tattooed is not a comfortable experience, though anesthetics like lidocaine are commonly incorporated into tattoo ink applications. Permanent makeup application to the lips, which are full of nerve endings, is particularly painful. The needles used to apply permanent makeup, however, are typically very fine, which helps reduce discomfort somewhat.

The color will appear to be about 25 percent darker than intended when first applied. Over the next few weeks, as the top layer of color flakes off and skin heals, the final results will be seen.

Permanent makeup will fade over time, so expect to have a touchup after two to five years. (Permanent makeup exposed to the sun will fade faster.)