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Demystifying the durability of Microblading

Hello, beautiful people!!


My clients and students question me all the time about the durability of the pigment used in microblading.

For those who don't know, microblading is also a type of dermopigmentation.


In a nutshell, specifically in the case of microblading, we implant ink/pigment in the skin through a manual inductor (a type of pen, also commonly called tebori) to which we attach a "micro blade," hence the name Microblading.


The well-known microblading procedure is the one done on eyebrows. But we also have microblading for lips, eyeliner, scalp, and all other types of permanent and semi-permanent makeup known on the market.

In this post, we will address, in particular, MICROBLADING in EYEBROWS.

The more natural-looking microblading lasts from 06 to 18 months.

On the other hand, microblading intending a darker effect can take up to 24 months to fade to the point where the pigment is no longer perceived on the skin. I will explain here the reasons for these variations and also the pros and cons in both cases.


The durability of Microblading (and basically all other types of dermopigmentation) is directly related to 5 main factors:


Age

Younger people tend to have a faster metabolism than older people, which translates to, cell renewal happening more quickly in young people. Consequently, the skin that had been pigmented gradually loses its layers, day by day, at a much faster rate than middle-aged people (36 - 59 years) and the elderly (+ 60 years).


Lifestyle

Women and men who perform facial peels, lasers, or any type of rejuvenation treatments, also have their cell renewal process accelerated. Such procedures cause the microblading pigment to fade, even if the eyebrows are protected throughout the treatment.

Depending on the type of procedure performed, the skin on the entire face will be stimulated, and the eyebrows will certainly fade.


Another point is sun exposure, given that the sun is undoubtedly one of the biggest villains when it comes to microblading durability. Ultraviolet rays can change the pigment molecules. That is why people who expose themselves to the sun and also to tanning beds have a very reduced durability when compared to people who avoid these types of exposures.

A good alternative is the use of sunscreens all over the face (including the eyebrows!). And for the most careful, the SPF + Hat combo is the best option.


Metabolism

Individuals that have an accelerated metabolism and uncontrolled hyperthyroidism, as well as those who take anabolic steroids or weight loss drugs, will also notice their dermopigmentation degrade/fade faster.

This is because the entire tissue system may have part of its functions unregulated, such as accelerating skin turnover (cell renewal), tissue fiber stiffening, increased vascularity, oiliness, and high sweating, among other changes that also lead to early degradation of the pigment implanted in the skin.


Skin Type

Oily skins, although generally thicker, tend to be more vascularized and are more prone to bleeding at the time of the procedure. And every time there's bleeding, there's a more significant "mobilization" between the defense cells in the dermopigmented area, which leads to a more substantial loss of the ink deposited.


Depth worked by the professional

More aggressive microblading techniques done reaching deeper skin layers tend to last longer. However, they tend to be more heavy-duty, and the chance of color change over the years is much higher. The color of the pigment tends to reveal cooler tones when deposited too deep.

Microblading procedures aiming for a subtle effect, reach more superficial layers of the skin, tending to last less. However, the chance of color change is smaller, and the pigment degradation happens in a more balanced way.


The main difference between the two types of procedures mentioned above is that, when depositing the pigment more deeply (reticular dermis, also called the deep dermis), ink particles are suspended in the dermal gelatinous matrix. In contrast, others are swallowed by dermal cells called fibroblasts. Since these pigment particles cannot be metabolized by the organism, they remain in the same place. The cell that contained the pigment particle dies and is again swallowed by another cell, which remains in the same place, continuing this continual cycle of cellular activity.


The more delicate procedures, on the other hand, seeking to deposit smaller amounts of ink in the papillary dermis (first layer of the dermis), do not cause as much damage and degrade more easily, with virtually no color changes.


Other questions I frequently get on the subject are: