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Microblading: What you need to know

It’s the brow-enhancing treatment that has beauty insiders obsessed. But what does microblading really involve – and is it really pain-free? DANIELLE FOX has the lowdown

Beauty
FORWARD ARCH
Strong, statement brows – like those sported by model Suki Waterhouse – could be yours

From actresses Bella Thorne and Lena Dunham to beauty influencers such as Huda Kattan chronicling their eyebrow diaries on Instagram, the call for high-impact arches has been sounded loud and clear. Luckily, good genes are no longer a prerequisite: if your eyebrows are less than lustrous, microblading is the answer.

What is microblading?

Similar to tattooing but infinitely more subtle, microblading involves the drawing-on of semipermanent ‘hairs’ using a super-fine, handheld blade. “It’s meticulous and cannot be rushed,” says Suman Jalaf, the London-based brow expert and founder of Suman Brows Beauty Atelier, who is partly responsible for the treatment’s stratospheric popularity. Jalaf’s fine-arts background equips her to ink the most beautifully shaped and believable brows possible. Because of her unique skills, she is often flown around the world to cater to the brow needs of her global client list, which includes Suki Waterhouse. “I numb brows for 45 minutes, then draw on a customized shape as a guide,” says Jalaf.

What does the process involve?

It’s a fairly lengthy procedure, with the whole treatment taking around two hours from beginning to end, though some of that time is spent waiting for the anesthetic cream to render the area suitably numb. “You may feel a slight stinging, but it is relatively painless,” says Jalaf. In our experience, the sensation is enough to make your eyes water but is bearable.

Preparation and aftercare

Pre-blading prep is essential: two weeks prior to your appointment, avoid blood-thinning medicines (like aspirin) and skin-thinning products (such as retinol) to minimize bruising and bleeding. Botox is also a no-no in the fortnight before your treatment. Afterwards, keep brows dry for 48 hours to prevent the pigment from blurring, and avoid using any peels or active skincare ingredients in the surrounding area until it has healed.

“Brows will appear significantly darker at first, then soften by up to 40% over the next few days,” says Jalaf. “A touchup is needed after six weeks; then, with careful maintenance and use of an SPF to avoid discoloration, the results should last for up to 18 months.”

BROW MAINTENANCE

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