I’m no stranger to eyebrow tattoos. Back in 2011, before terms like “microblading” or “ombre brows” were commonplace, I had my eyebrows tattooed in a back alley beauty shop in New York City’s Chinatown. I think back on the experience and shudder. An exacto knife was used to etch in hairlines in what can only be described as a “spa” the size of a broom closet. While the results were on the thin side, my brows did look nice and gave me three good years until ultimately fading. (Sun exposure, skincare ingredients such as Vitamin C and retinol, and how dry or oily the skin is can affect the duration of brow tattoos.)
Thankfully since then, the technology of semi-permeant makeup has come a long way here in the states. And one such leading brow tattoo expert, Leann La, founder of Fuzion Artistry in Orange County, CA, is leading the way.
The family operation (Leann runs the salon and next-door spa with her sisters), features a subtle technique called “ombre powder brows” that involves light etching and shading with a tattoo needle. A base layer of color is applied at the first session and a touch-up four weeks later, post peeling, is applied to create depth, shading and add color variants. If you check out the salon’s instagram page @fuzionartisty, you will see what I’m talking about.
The ease of walking out of the shower, waking up in the morning or going swimming and having perfect brows called to me. Missing my tattooed brows, I reached out to Fusion Artistry to book an appointment to have mine redone. Though, my jaw went slack when I was informed their earliest appoint was in six months. What the…
Luckily for those traveling to the area specifically for this treatment or severely impatient (such as myself), an expedited appointment can be made for an additional $100 fee in addition to the painful eyebrow tattoo cost of $600 for the actual procedure.
Here’s how it all went down…
Step 1: Shaping – Leann asked what style I preferred and I told her “natural, leaning towards boy brows.” She took this into account in addition to my bone structure and face shape when shaping. Shaping took the longest amount of time, maybe 20 minutes or so. Every so often Leann would ask me to look in the mirror and I could say “thicker” or “less arch/more arch” based on my preferences.
Step 2: Color Mixing – Leann adjusted the ink by mixing together the appropriate colors.
Step 3: Tattoo – There was no numbing cream needed and it wasn’t painful at all. It felt like someone was scratching my skin. The tattoo process took around 15-20 minutes. Right after my eyebrows were a little red, but nothing that noticeable.
*I was advised to avoid getting them wet for one week, avoid direct sunlight, and not touch my brows while they heal. At the 7-10 day point the brows will peel to reveal a lighter color before the touch-up is required.
Step 4: Touch-up – I returned back to the salon for a color touch-up, which took around 20-30 minutes.
Middle photo: This is what my brows looked like right after getting them tattooed. The color is darker, as it will fade once it peels. (I was doing a face mask)
Bottom photo: This photo is of my brows two weeks post tattooing. You can see that they’re much lighter once they peeled.
Overall, I love my brows. Right after they peeled I mentioned to people that I had them tattooed and everyone was like, “You did?! It looks so natural!”
-by Amy Chang
Image source: @FuzionArtisty, author
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