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!
Wow, your brows look amazing!! So natural and gorgeous
I actually enjoy doing my brows, but totally understand people who dont. I love your transformation, it look really great.
I've been hearing so much about microblading, but really had no idea what went into the process and how much it costs. It was so useful hearing about your experience and seeing the results. Thanks for sharing!
Sweet Helen Grace
I had no idea about the process. I'm glad, you are happy with the results.
Nina's Style Blog
Oh wow! I didn't even know this procedure existed. I love how natural it looks.
They look so good! Ah I have the same struggles with asian brows.
The result is simply amazing! I love how your brows look stylish but still natural.
Love your thorough review! Thanks for sharing, it's something I definitely want to look into doing.
Awesome article. I have been thinking about eyebrows microbladed so this post was very helpful. Your brows look amazing btw. 🙂
Wow, this is amazing,I should definitely try that !
Been so curious about the microblading process, thank you for this post!
North + South + Navy
Omg they look sooo natural and amazing on you! My mom had this done and they look so good! It's something I would consider if I didn't have such thick eyebrows.
xo | Cindy Elena
The 2nd and 4th session look somehow similar but the shading and shape look fitting to your face shape which is a good choice. Love to see the faded results of the eyebrows showing the natural colors. Microblading brows sure are quite the treat to a woman/ man’s eyebrows.
Amazing eyebrows! Thank you so much for sharing your experience of eyebrow microblading and powder fill – this will be really helpful for us girls who are hesitating about having microblading for one reason or another. Please keep sharing posts 😊
This article is as fab as your eyebrows! I’m having my brows done this coming week and was on the fence about powder vs. blade. I originally asked the artist for microblading, but she texted me and suggested that powder might be a better option for me. Your post has given me the confidence to just try the powder and then follow with blade if I so desire. Thanks so much!
I agree in part with a lot of this topic. Thank you for sharing this informational material.
Thanks for the tips! They look fabulous! Side note: I love your lip stick color. Do you mind sharing what color and brand you are wearing?
It’s “Bawse” liquid lipstick by Smashbox!
What a great article. Your eyebrows look amazing. I like that you talk about powder eyebrows as well as microblading, nice to know their is other options out there. Thank you.
This article is full of great and useful information. Thank you for posting. Keep up the good work.
Just wondering how long the powder filled portion of your brows lasted before they started fading? Or have you been touching them up regularly? Having some remorse about the shape I chose for my powder brows and wondering what the fading timeline looks like since it seems you did this 2 years ago 🙂
I get them touched up every year or so! They start fading around 8 months, but that’s because I have combo skin and use exfoliating facial products. If you want to speed up the fading process, maybe use more exfoliants? I’d say the general shape stays for about a year. Hope that helps!
Thanks so much for your reply! Would you say the dye may fade completely over time or would there always be some remnants left behind? Maybe hard for you to answer as you touch them up so consistently!
It’s supposed to fade completely over time, but I do think that takes closer to 2 years. As I touch up 1-1.5 years, it’s mostly faded by still not totally.
Much thanks to you for sharing an instructive blog. I have never known about Microblading and my grandma used to have a tattoo in her eyebrows. Pitiful to state, that tattoo consistently goes down and goes to be shading green. I will advise her about this Microblading and she should seriously mull over this one. I imagined that castor oils would assist her with causing her hair to develop and make it think, however, I surmise, it is impossible since she truly is mature enough for that. http://reapinpin.com/service/semi-permanent-makeup/
hi thank you for sharing.
I love the before after powder brows pictures
really good work
keep an browing
wow thats so talented.
I love that powder brows.
Thank you for sharing this detailed blog with us! I didn’t fully understand the process until now.
Appreciate the time and effort you put into creating this. Thanks!!
University Place Gym
I really love how natural your eyebrows look! Whoever did them did a great job Carolyn!