Micro Stroking FAQ
What is microstroking?
Microstroking, also referred to as semi-permanent makeup, cosmetic tattooing, microblading and eyebrow embroidery is the process of implanting colour pigment beneath the surface of the skin by means of tiny, sterile, disposable needles to produce the appearance of hair strokes, makeup, or to enhance the natural features of the face.
What is the difference between microstroking and standard body tattooing?
The purpose of microstroking is to enhance your natural features. Microstroking is softer and more subtle – it is meant to be a natural-looking enhancement. Body tattoos use ink while cosmetic tattoo procedures involve pigments. These pigments are designed to gently fade over time. Fading is desired as it allows the artist to make changes to colour and shape as your natural colouration and facial changes occur.
Does microstroking hurt?
A highly-effective, topical anesthetic cream and gel are used for numbing before and during your procedure. Pain threshold levels vary from person to person and every effort is made to ensure you remain comfortable for the entirety of the procedure. Having this service performed during your menstrual cycle may increase discomfort during your procedure. If you are a frequent smoker, the topical anesthetics used during the treatment will not last as long. If you have been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, be aware that this may affect your tolerance to the procedure.
How old do I have to be to get microstroking?
You must be 18 years or older to receive this service.
Can I get microstroking if I am pregnant or nursing?
As a precaution, we do not perform microstroking on pregnant or nursing women.
How long does microstroking last?
Microstroking treatments are considered semi-permanent and will not wash off, however, they will fade over time and may need to be refreshed every 1-2 years.
We will re-evaluate how your skin has retained the pigment at your second session and make any changes necessary. Multiple sessions are normal for microstroking procedures with each new procedure requiring a minimum of 2 visits. Your second session can be booked no sooner than 2 months after the initial appointment. After your first 2 appointments, additional sessions will be charged according to our current pricing.
How many treatments are needed?
For most clients, a minimum of two treatments are usually needed. With most procedures, the colour looks dramatically lighter after the first week. Some clients prefer this, while others opt for a bolder look. At the second session, we will assess the colour retention and make adjustments as necessary. We can always go darker and add more density at your next appointment.
What factors will affect my microstroking?
Sun exposure: The sun will extremely soften the look of your tattoo, so sunblock should be used (once healed) to prolong your enhancement.
The regeneration of skin cells: The longer the regeneration takes, the longer the pigment holds.
The speed at which the skin absorbs the pigment: The slower the absorption, the longer the pigment will hold.
The choice of colour: Some colours fade quicker than others, e.g. a blonde colour will fade quicker than a dark brown colour.
Bleeding during the procedure: Any bleeding during the tattooing procedure will reduce the amount of pigment absorption.
What should I do before my eyebrow procedure?
If you have an ideal shape and colour in mind, bring a few reference photos with you to your appointment. You may fill in your eyebrows as you normally would so we can take into consideration the shape you desire. If you regularly get your eyebrows waxed, threaded or tinted, please do so at least 3 days before your appointment. If there are any stray hairs that fall outside of our final shape, we can remove them. If you plan to go on a vacation, it is recommended to plan your trip a minimum of 14 days after the procedure. We require our clients to avoid any blood thinning medication for a minimum of 72 hours prior to their appointment. This includes Vitamin E, Aspirin, Niacin, fish oil supplements, and Ibuprofen. Do not drink any alcohol the night before and day of your appointment and limit the amount of caffeine you consume. If you have been on prescription Accutane in the past, you MUST wait at least one year before considering this procedure, if you use any type of retin A or hyaluronic acid please stop using it around the brow area before/after the procedure.
It is highly recommended that you avoid SUN and TANNING BED exposure for 30 days BEFORE and AFTER your procedure. If you use botox or any injectables please wait 4-8 weeks before having your procedure done. If you show up for your appointment with a new tan or a sunburn, you will need to reschedule and will forfeit your deposit.
How will I look immediately after? What is the healing process?
Your semi-permanent makeup will appear darker and more intense than expected for the first few days. This will gradually lighten during the healing process. Redness and swelling should be minimal. Please view our detailed aftercare instructions.
How will my cosmetic tattoo look in the future?
During your appointment, we will analyze your skin's undertone to anticipate how the pigment colours will fade in the future. We will also mix pigments to ensure the colour blends well with your existing eyebrow and hair colour. The majority of our clients' cosmetic tattoos stay true to colour and lighten naturally over time. There are some cases, however, where colours may fade to different tones according to the individual’s response to the pigments (like personal lifestyle or iron deficiencies). Many factors affect these changes. At your follow-up appointment, we will re-analyze how your body has responded to the initial colour. Special formula alteration to correct the colour and to prevent further colour change is made at this time. Your eyebrow tattoo will eventually look softer and have more of a "powdered" look. This happens with all clients as the skin ages. To keep your hair strokes looking good, a refresher appointment is suggested every 1 to 2 years. Results vary with each client.
What should I know about long term care?
A good sunscreen should be applied daily AFTER healing and is required to help keep colour true. As with any tattoo, sun exposure will make the colour soften faster.
Fading speed depends on your skin type, lifestyle, sun exposure, pigment colour used, capillary condition, and if any chemical peels were done after your procedure.
If you are planning a chemical peel, laser treatment or other medical procedure, please inform the technician that you have had a cosmetic tattoo. Careful application must be taken to avoid affecting the tattooed area.
Will cosmetic tattooing work well for me?
If you have extremely oily skin, the hairstroke eyebrow technique will NOT work well for you. The constant production of oil will cause the hairstrokes to heal with a diffused, softer look. Your end result will look more powdered than you would expect.
If you have little to no existing hair, your tattoo will appear more 2-dimensional than those clients who have more hair naturally.
If you are a frequent smoker, your pigment may fade more quickly.
If you are iron deficient or Anemic, your pigment may fade more quickly and bleeding/bruising may occur during and after the procedure.