Hair stroke brows, also known as ‘microbladed brows’ are those brows that always seem to ‘WOW’ us. This technique has brows looking so natural that it just simply can’t be a tattoo, right? Hairstrokes so fine that it really has people guessing what is real hair and what is tattoo.
Now that all sounds amazing, right? Who doesn’t want the most natural looking brows?
But the question is, are they right for you?
When creating natural hairstrokes, there is never a guarantee. So, how can we explain to our clients what we can realistically achieve without them being disappointed in their healed results?
There are 3 main factors in creating perfectly healed hair strokes – Good skin, a Great Technician, and Strict Aftercare. When you have these three factors in place, you’re the ideal candidate for hair strokes.
Now some may ask, what’s good skin?
A good skin candidate is someone with dry/normal skin, with good skin texture, meaning not overly thick skin, not overly thin skin, but in-between.
How do we know who is a great technician?
Finding out who is a great technician VS who is not, truly comes down to research. When searching for a technician, read reviews, look at before and afters, look for consistency in photos, and ask about clinic sanitation standards. When it comes to any tattoo on your body, whether it’s semi-permanent or permanent, it’s still not washable, so please don’t risk your appearance and safety.
Now, even though, good skin and a great technician are very crucial in final results, the client themselves also play a huge role in the desired outcome when following their aftercare. If aftercare isn’t followed correctly it will result in substandard results. Make sure to follow your aftercare diligently, to assure your brows heal crisp and beautiful.
So, let’s say, you have good skin, a great technician, and you know you’ll always follow aftercare to a T. You still might not be a great candidate. There are other factors we must consider.
- When dealing with the skin on the face, it’s much different than the skin on the body. We have many factors to consider that can affect the outcome or long term retention of eyebrow hairstrokes, such as, UV rays, skin care products, oil, hair follicles, makeup, health problems, etc.
- When it comes to microblading, your technician will apply single strokes packed closely together to resemble ‘natural hair strokes’. Now this goes against any unwritten tattoo rule, as any tattoo anywhere on the body, if it has tiny strokes packed so tight together, it can eventually merge together. It’s just the way the body heals itself.
When it comes to traditional tattooing, they outline for a reason, that keeps the colors separate from each other, gives your tattoo a crisp, and defined look. An outline keeps the colors separate and in place, we can’t outline hair strokes, which puts them at risk of ‘merging’ together. This is why with hair strokes we want to apply them as natural as possible, but also not put strokes too close together in order to prevent migration.
That takes me to my next point, if you’re thinking microblading will prevent you from having to apply makeup anymore, this isn’t always the case.
Microblading is a very natural look. It gives the appearance of ‘natural looking hair’. Even though it will give you a darker, fuller, more defined looking shape, it will never have that ‘makeup appearance’ and if you just keep applying more and more hairstrokes, you’ll be left with a migrated mess of color in your eyebrows.
Now, what I hear on a day to day basis is, “I want the most natural look” and when a client says this, they are automatically wanting hair strokes and completely steer away from a Combo brow (microbladed hair strokes with the addition of soft shading) or an Ombre brow (shading throughout the brow going from light to dark) because they assume it’s going to be very bold, and dramatic.
The biggest thing is understanding your skin, preferences, and asking yourself, would I prefer hair strokes or do we need to implement shading as well?
Some clients come in and are completely set on hairstrokes but you know that with their oily skin, large pores, and thick skin, it’s just not going to heal the way the client wants.
This comes down to just educating your clients and if someone’s heart is set on microblading, but does not happen to be the best candidate, implementing soft shading throughout the brow will have a better result and will actually appear more natural looking then hair strokes alone.
Now, you may be a great candidate for skin and other factors, but another factor would be the actual eyebrow hair which I will show an example to explain more thoroughly.
Some eyebrow hair with microblading alone just cannot blend well enough. You might have a great shape but looking at the person you can easily differ the real hair and microbladed hair. We don’t want that, we want seamless, natural as possible looking eyebrows.
So, what do we do in that case?
In that case, the most natural looking route is a combo brow using hair strokes and soft shading. Some of you might be confused as to how that is more natural when it’s more pigment. The thing is, using soft shading will have the appearance of a soft powder makeup but will also have hair strokes for that natural touch. When implementing more color throughout it actually will blend the two different hair types (microbladed strokes, and real hair) perfectly.
Another case, would be that eyebrow hair that just doesn’t grow where we need it to grow. You know that eyebrow hair that starts out perfect but comes too far down giving the eyes that ‘droopy’ look. In that case, we want to lift the tail to open the eyes. Using just microblading technique with that style of eyebrow is very difficult because the tails will never blend properly with the rest of the eyebrow as the tail won’t have any hair. Implementing soft shading throughout will result in a seamless, natural looking brow.
We have pictures of a model we brought in to show the difference of microblading alone and a combo brow. Showing you the difference of how implementing shading in some cases not only will blend better but can actually have a more natural appearance.
Now please keep in mind, we aren’t trying to steer people away from microblading. Microblading is a beautiful, natural looking way to enhance your brows. We just want to educate people that not every person is a great candidate for it, in order for our clients to be as satisfied and happy with their new brows as possible.
We want to educate clients and those interested in the procedure on the difference between microblading, shading, and, what your best option would be. We also want to take that ‘scary’ feeling out of getting a shaded brow. Both have their place in achieving your dream brows!