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Permanent Makeup Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: Feb 26


Permanent Makeup Artist in Auckland
Permanent Makeup Master Artist Tiina Linna

Here you will find answers to most frequently asked questions about permanent makeup such as what is permanent makeup and how long does it last.


What is permanent makeup?

Permanent makeup, also known as micropigmentation or cosmetic tattooing, is a technique that involves depositing pigments into the dermal layer of the skin to enhance or simulate the appearance of makeup. It is typically used to create long-lasting eyebrows, eyeliner, lip color, and other facial features. The procedure aims to provide semi-permanent results, lasting several years, and offers convenience for individuals seeking to save time and maintain a desired look without daily makeup application.


Does permanent makeup fade?

Yes, permanent makeup does fade over time. While it is called "permanent" makeup, the pigments used in the procedure are designed to gradually fade over the course of several years. Factors such as the type and color of pigments used, sun exposure, skincare routine, and individual skin characteristics can affect the longevity of the results. Touch-up sessions are often recommended every few years to maintain the desired color and intensity of the permanent makeup.


Is permanent makeup safe?

When performed by a skilled and experienced professional in a sterile environment, permanent makeup is generally considered safe. However, as with any invasive procedure, there are potential risks and considerations to keep in mind:

  • Allergic reactions: Some individuals may have allergic reactions to the pigments used in permanent makeup. It is important to conduct a patch test prior to the procedure to identify any potential allergies.

  • Infection: Proper sterilization techniques and hygiene protocols must be followed during the procedure to minimize the risk of infection. Choosing a reputable and licensed technician or facility is crucial.

  • Misplacement or asymmetry: Permanent makeup is a form of tattooing, and errors in technique or judgment can result in undesired outcomes, such as uneven or misplaced pigment. Thoroughly researching and selecting a skilled and reputable professional can help minimize this risk.

  • Long-term changes: Over time, the color of the permanent makeup may change due to factors such as sun exposure, natural skin aging, or individual skin characteristics. It's important to have realistic expectations and understand that touch-up sessions may be necessary to maintain the desired appearance.

Before considering permanent makeup, it is advisable to consult with a qualified professional, discuss any concerns, review their portfolio, and ask about their training, experience, and adherence to safety protocols. Additionally, following proper aftercare instructions and maintaining good skin hygiene can contribute to a safe and successful outcome.


Does permanent makeup hurt?

The level of discomfort experienced during a permanent makeup procedure can vary depending on individual pain tolerance, the area being treated, and the technique used. Some people may experience minimal discomfort or only a slight sensation, while others may find it more uncomfortable.

A topical anesthetic is typically applied to the area to minimize any potential pain or discomfort. This helps numb the skin and reduce sensitivity during the process. Most people report feeling a slight scratching or vibrating sensation during the procedure, but it should not be overly painful.


Is permanent makeup worth it?

Whether or not permanent makeup is worth it is subjective and depends on individual preferences, needs, and circumstances. Here are a few factors to consider when determining if it is worth it for you:

  • Convenience: Permanent makeup can save time and effort in daily makeup application. If you find yourself spending a significant amount of time on your makeup routine or desire a more streamlined beauty regimen, permanent makeup can be a convenient option.

  • Desired Look: If you have sparse eyebrows, want defined eyeliner, or desire long-lasting lip color, permanent makeup can help achieve and maintain the desired look. It can enhance facial features and provide a consistent appearance.

  • Long-Term Cost: While the upfront cost of permanent makeup may be higher compared to traditional makeup products, it can be cost-effective in the long run. By avoiding the need to constantly purchase and replace makeup products, you may save money over time.

  • Commitment: Permanent makeup is semi-permanent, meaning it will fade over time and may require touch-up sessions to maintain the desired color and shape. Consider whether you are comfortable with this long-term commitment and the potential need for periodic touch-ups.

  • Personal Preference: Some individuals enjoy the creativity and flexibility of applying makeup daily and may prefer the ability to change their look regularly. Permanent makeup may not be suitable for those who prefer a more versatile or temporary makeup approach.


Can permanent makeup be removed?

Yes, permanent makeup can be removed, but the process can be more challenging than the initial application. Here are most effective methods that are commonly used for permanent makeup removal: laser tattoo removal and saline tattoo removal .


Prevention is key when considering permanent makeup. It is advisable to thoroughly research and choose a skilled technician, discuss the desired results and potential risks before the initial application. This can help minimize the need for removal in the future.


What is permanent eyeliner?

Permanent eyeliner is a cosmetic tattooing procedure that involves the application of pigment along the lash line to create the appearance of eyeliner that lasts for an extended period. The pigment is deposited into the upper or lower lash line, enhancing the eyes and creating a defined look. Permanent eyeliner can be customized to achieve different styles, such as a thin and natural line or a more dramatic and winged effect. The procedure aims to save time and eliminate the need for daily eyeliner application. Touch-up sessions may be required over time to maintain the desired intensity and shape of the eyeliner.


Who can perform permanent makeup?

The regulations regarding who can perform permanent makeup vary depending on the country, state, or jurisdiction. In general, permanent makeup procedures are typically performed by trained and licensed professionals who specialize in cosmetic tattooing.


Can permanent makeup cover hyperpigmentation? Read 'Paramedical Tattooing'

Paramedical tattooing can be used to help camouflage or minimize the appearance of hyperpigmentation in certain cases. However, it's important to note that permanent makeup is not a cure for hyperpigmentation, but rather a cosmetic technique to create the illusion of more even skin tone. Can permanent eyebrows be corrected?

Yes, permanent eyebrows can be corrected or modified if you are not satisfied with the initial results or if you want to make changes to the shape, color, or intensity of the eyebrows. Here are a few methods commonly used for correcting or modifying permanent eyebrows:

  • Color Correction: If you are unhappy with the color of your permanent eyebrows, a skilled technician can adjust the pigment color to better match your desired shade. This can be done by adding a new color layer or using color correction techniques to neutralize or modify the existing color.

  • Shape and Design Adjustments: If the shape or design of your permanent eyebrows needs correction, a technician can make adjustments by adding or removing pigment to achieve the desired shape and symmetry. This may involve refining the arch, adjusting the thickness, or modifying the length of the eyebrows.

  • Tattoo Removal and Cover-Up: In some cases, if the existing permanent eyebrow tattoo needs significant changes or corrections, tattoo removal or a cover-up may be considered. Tattoo removal methods, such as laser or saline solution tattoo removal, can help lighten or remove the existing pigment, allowing for a new design to be applied. Alternatively, a cover-up technique may involve adding new pigment over the existing tattoo to create a new eyebrow shape or design.

It's important to consult with an experienced and skilled permanent makeup professional to discuss your specific concerns and desired corrections. They can assess the existing permanent eyebrows, recommend the appropriate correction method, and help you achieve the desired results. Keep in mind that the success of correction procedures may vary depending on the initial work done and individual factors, so it's essential to manage expectations and discuss realistic outcomes with your technician. A consultation is mandatory to assess if you are the right candidate for correction. Does permanent makeup cause cancer?

There is currently no scientific evidence to suggest that permanent makeup directly causes cancer. The pigments used in permanent makeup have undergone safety testing and are generally considered safe for use in cosmetic tattooing.


Can permanent makeup cover dark circles?

Permanent makeup can be used to help minimize the appearance of dark circles under the eyes, but it is not a guaranteed solution and may not be suitable for everyone. It's worth noting that dark circles under the eyes can have various causes, such as genetics, lifestyle factors, or underlying medical conditions. Therefore, it is important to address the root cause of the dark circles, if possible, in addition to considering cosmetic options. Consulting with a dermatologist or healthcare professional may be beneficial to identify and address any underlying issues contributing to the dark circles.


Can permanent makeup be done without needles?

Permanent makeup typically cannot be done without needles because the process involves depositing pigment into the skin at a precise depth to achieve long-lasting results. Needles provide a controlled and precise way to deliver the pigment into the dermal layer of the skin, which is necessary for the pigment to stay in place and create a lasting effect.


Permanent makeup and MRI?

When it comes to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, it's generally recommended to avoid having permanent makeup in areas that will be within the scan's magnetic field. This is because some pigments used in permanent makeup may contain metallic components that can interact with the strong magnetic fields generated by MRI machines.


How much is cosmetic tattooing?

The cost of permanent makeup in New Zealand can vary depending on several factors, including the location, reputation and experience of the technician, the type of permanent makeup procedure, and any additional services or touch-ups included in the package.

Generally, the cost range for common permanent makeup procedures in New Zealand is as follows:

  1. Eyebrow Microblading or Powder Brows: NZD $500 to $1,500

  2. Eyeliner: NZD $300 to $800

  3. Lip Liner: NZD $400 to $1,000

  4. Full Lip Color: NZD $700 to $1,500

It's important to note that these are approximate price ranges and the actual cost may vary. Some technicians may charge based on the complexity and time required for the procedure, while others may offer all-inclusive packages that include initial application and follow-up sessions.


Cosmetic tattooing and breastfeeding?

The recommendation to avoid permanent makeup procedures while pregnant or breastfeeding is primarily based on precautionary measures to ensure the safety and well-being of both the mother and the baby. Here are a few reasons why it is generally advised to postpone permanent makeup during these periods:

  • Sensitivity and Hormonal Changes: Pregnancy and breastfeeding can cause hormonal fluctuations and increased sensitivity in the body. This can affect how the body reacts to the procedure, potentially leading to heightened discomfort, adverse reactions, or changes in pigment retention.

  • Limited Research: There is limited research available on the safety of permanent makeup procedures during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Since the safety of the procedure and the potential impact on the developing fetus or breastfeeding baby cannot be fully determined, it is generally recommended to err on the side of caution.

  • Healing and Infection Risk: Permanent makeup involves creating micro-wounds in the skin and introducing pigments. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, the body's immune system and healing processes may be altered. Additionally, the risk of infection may be increased during these periods. It is essential to prioritize the health and well-being of both the mother and the baby, and avoiding unnecessary procedures can help mitigate potential risks.

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