I am lazy, I like to make my life easier whenever I can: looking out for short cuts worth taking and procedures worth doing, and today I was exploring the world of semi-permanent make-up.
I have thought about getting my eyebrows done before, something to help fill in the bald patches and round out the ends. Although at the same time, I didn’t think I actually needed the service, given that my eyebrows were already pretty thick and I am confident enough to go out everyday without doing anything to them. However an opportunity arose and I figured why not give it a try, to at least see if I liked it, if not to simply have the experience of getting a face tattoo.
I decided to go in to my session blind. No research, no reviews; heck, I didn’t even know what treatment I was getting exactly. All to be able to offer up this informative blog review of the new powdered ombré eyebrow treatment. For the raw and real recap, visit my YouTube channel: MaggiMei; where I filmed the whole process step by step. Or keep reading for the detailed description.
The salon I was getting it done at is located on Kingsway, my session was with specifically one of the technicians that work there: @browsbywinnie. She is trained in eyelash extensions and now powdered brows. Questions, I would later ask and she would later answer, as we undergone my treatment. She was certified in this technique last August and since then has completed the process over 50 times. Given her aesthetic and her own brows; done with the similar technique, I felt more confident in the process by just looking at her.
But before I could lay on her table I had to fill out a multi-page form that had me signing away liability and disclosing medical information I didn’t know, on illness I didn’t have. It was thorough. A check-list of sorts that Winnie would later go through with me, allowing me to ask all the questions as I needed, in order to feel safe with what I was about to get done.
Powder ombré eyebrows are the latest trend in eyebrow enhancement. Ideal, to those who don’t have much hair or brows that are too thin, and like the “make up look”, but might not want to go though having to do it themselves everyday. The other, and similar option is microblading, which has the technician drawing individual hairs for a more natural look. What I was going to get done would require shading and a more intense outline.
My concerns were not the pain, but more the commitment of having these brows for 2 years, or for however long, before they fade. A shape and a colour I would customize and choose, outside of what I was naturally born with.
The process begins with measurements. Dyed string and plastic rulers taped to my forehead helped create a guide. Where my brows would start and stop, as per my specifications. I had asked Winnie to simply follow my natural eyebrow. The first take had her doing just that, with me adding on adjustments, after the fact. After looking at it all coloured in and bold I decided I wanted a bit more definition in my arch. A look she was able to help me achieve with a little shaving using a razor blade and a q-tip dipped in alcohol to clean up any excess. She had me look in the mirror and approve the final drawing before we would move on.
Next it was picking the colour I wanted for my brows. You do this like how you would order off a menu, a menu of black to brown swatches. I followed the hue of my dyed hair, and choose a warmer light brown shade. This this would also help with the more subtle end result I was looking for.
When ready I was told to lie down on a Saran wrapped dentist-like chair, and to make myself comfortable. I relaxed as she prepped all the ink and tools needed, because once again, she was giving me a face tattoo. She began by drawing an outline of the brow, I felt the straight lines being drawn on my forehead. I didn’t find this part painful, but did learn that I have the unconscious habit of raising my right brow and keeping it arched, that most clients find their right eyebrow more sensitive that their left; and that the closer to the centre of your face she goes the more tender you feel, and. Luckily the next part she numbs your face for.
An ointment is applied directly to your mouth eyebrow. Saran Wrap keeps it covered. The result, pain free shading to follow. You are able to get a re-up on the ointment as many times and as often as you want. Winnie is patience and concern over your comfort. She told me a few people have screamed, none have cried, and that I was the first one to giggle. She commented on my high pain tolerance in disbelief, I never felt prouder. She compared the experience of the process and the healing to getting a tattoo done. The buzzing of the cordless tool, the scanning and itching that will follow in the days to come, and my inability to peel or scratch. The outcome today isn’t what is intended and won’t be what I get a week from now. The dye will appear darker to begin with, and like other tattoos it will fade. But where as regular tattoos go deeper into your skin to dye it, her’s are more surface level and therefore will fade over time. The longevity of the procedure depends on the person and how they heal. Here, no immediate touch up is required like you do with micro blading, just a follow up whenever you feel your new brows need a pick me up.
Right brow after left brow the process was quicker than expected. Not the 3.5 hours that you plan for, and that the appointment lists. The extra time is just an insurance, the actual shading took under an hour. I was there for only 2. And the only discomfort is her having to lay her hand on your face like a table, to shade. You get the occasional knuckle in the closed eye socket, but nothing you can’t handle.
When completed, she wipes your face down with a baby wipe to remove all excess ink splatter and dark spots. My first blush impression was positive, a new look that still resembles me. But all subsequent looks in the mirror had me not recognizing the person before me. This definitely took some getting use to. Also, for a week I had to apply eye makeup on thick, so that my bold eyebrows matched the rest of my face. But fast forward two weeks, I love the way they look and I love the way I look with them. Along with my eye lash extensions, I now have no fuss and no muss beauty 24/7.
As for the treatment itself, Winnie was a delight. She was patient with all my question, gentle in all her actions, and warming in her approach. I wasn’t scared because she was so calm and could speak to her own powder ombré experience. We ended up chatting as she completed my procedure. And much like a doctor talks to distract you from the pain of a needle, she had me recommending my favourite restaurants, and forgetting that I was changing my face by having a needle drag across it repeatedly. The session went smooth and I was sent away with a little draw string baggy that included her business card if I needed any help, after care tips and an ointment to dab and not rub in to my new brows, to help in the healing process.
In conclusion, if you are thinking about getting this procedure done and are either weary of the consequences or can’t find the right person to go to, I highly recommend @browsbywinnie. An modestly priced service that gives you back time in your day to day routine, is money well spent. Check out the link below for the salon and how to book with her.
JT Beauty Parlour
1726 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC V5N 2S3