Ever since I heard about eyebrow microblading half a year ago, I started researching brow artists in the Seattle area who offered this service. I looked for months, but when I found Lindsey McAndrews on Instagram, I hit her up right away! Btw, this post is not sponsored and I paid for everything myself. I have been offered free microblading by others before, but I declined those because I loved Lindsey’s work and trusted her with my brows.
Lindsey first powder-filled my brows and then microbladed them. I’m not a brow artist, but from my research, here’s what I learned about the differences:
Powder-Fill vs. Microblading
The powder-fill method is done with small dots of pigment, which creates a soft, ombre brow, so the front of the eyebrow is lighter and the tail is darker. I had parts of my eyebrows powder-filled first to lay down a base, and then microbladed on top of that.
Microblading vs. Tattooing
Microblading is semipermanent and done with plant-based pigments. The artist manually draws in each hair stroke so the results look more natural. The needle is three times smaller than a tattoo needle, so the lines can be really fine. Because these pigments are plant-based and semipermanent, the colors will fade in 6-24 months without having time to oxidize. Oxidizing occurs with tattooing because it’s permanent, so blacks/browns may discolor to green/blue or orange/red.
I have brow hairs, but I wanted my brows to appear darker and the shape to be more defined. I also didn’t want to spend a lot of time doing my brows anymore (I used to use Glossier Boy Brow Tint to darken and ABH DipBrow Pomade to shape).
2. 1st Session
I first had a powder-fill so that created a shape for my brows. It’s a soft look if that’s what you prefer, but I wanted more definition.
3. 2nd Session
After a month, I went back for my touch-up session where I was microbladed on top of the powder-fill. You can see the hair strokes are much more defined. This photo was taken the day I had it done, so you can see some redness still.
This photo was taken about 10 days after my 2nd session. I don’t have any product in my brows! It’s still a little dark and will fade to a more natural look in another week or so.
Does microblading hurt?
Yes, but it’s bearable. They should apply numbing cream on the brows beforehand, and add numbing ointment throughout the process. Powder-fill feels like getting poked, and microblading feels like being scraped.
How long do the microblading results last?
They say anywhere from 6-24 months. I would think that this wide range is due to your skincare routine, like if you use retinol or exfoliate a lot, that could cause quicker fading.
What is included in the microblading session?
This probably varies, but where I went, the consultation, 1st, and 2nd sessions were included in the original price.
What is a reasonable price?
I can only speak for the Seattle area, but I think $400-550 is reasonable for the main session (listed above), and $150-250 for a touch up session about 1-2 years down the line.
How did you choose your brow artist?
I mentioned that I found Lindsey McAndrews on Instagram and I knew she was “the one.” When I met her, that was only further confirmed! She’s been doing and designing brows for over a decade. I appreciated how meticulous and picky she was. She would notice a small detail and fix it without me having to prompt it. She is also so personable and sweet. I recommend finding someone who is honest, experienced, and detail-oriented, so you can really trust her to draw something semipermanent on your face!
How long does the process take?
The first appointment takes about 1.5-2 hours. A good portion of that time will be spent discussing the shape you want, and the artist measuring and drawing out your ideal brow. The 2nd session takes a little under an hour.
What’s the healing process like?
On the 1st day, my skin felt sensitive and looked red. Brace yourself for the 2nd day though! The brows looked reeeally dark and strong, but don’t be scared as the color will definitely fade. I wore a hat on the 2nd day haha. On the 3rd and 4th day, my brows felt a little itchy — but avoid scratching. The color was still dark then. Now this may get a little gross… but on the 5th day, you may start noticing some dead skin cells on your brows but resist touching them or scraping them off. From day 6 onward, you’ll start to be in the clear! Don’t get nervous if you see some initial patchiness, and just be patient for your brows to fully heal and for the color to settle. Within the month, if you still have patchiness, your brow artist can fix that during the touch-up session.
What is the aftercare?
Your brow artist may suggest something more tailored for you. This is the aftercare that worked for me. I put witch hazel on a facial pad and lightly tapped it on my brows a couple times a day for 10 days. Following that, I put Aquaphor on a q-tip and lightly tapped that onto my brows. Aside from those steps, I didn’t touch my brows for 10 days. I washed around them and didn’t wear any brow makeup.
Would you get your eyebrows microbladed/powder-filled again?
YES. It’s definitely worth the investment for me. I love not having to do my brows! I also like that it’s semipermanent so if I want to change my brow shape, I can in a year or so. That being said, my last thought would be to manage your expectations. As with anything, there is no such thing as perfection. Sometimes, your skin just may not heal as well or retain color as long. You may need a little touch here or there (I still own the ABH Brow Wiz just in case). But if you’re on the fence, and you can find a brow artist you love and trust + you’re able to invest, go for it!
Let me know if you have any more questions in the comments, and I’ll respond there!