Microblading is changing people’s lives - creating convenience, building confidence, and letting people sleep in longer in the morning - seriously. Having the opportunity to have a microblading procedure took 20 minutes off of my makeup routine every morning.
But with social media showcasing people’s airbrushed lives, artists and clients tend to showcase perfect, immediately after work, often leaving out the raw experience and the ups and downs that go along with the healing of permanent makeup.
Showing the results just immediately after a procedure is not the same as showing the entire process, and can leave client’s who get the procedure with A TON of questions about their healing process. The procedure itself is only about 10% of the true microblading experience, and the next 30-60 days after are the real deal.
So for anyone considering a procedure, and for artists who want to show their clients what they can expect during healing, below is the real experience of the healing process for the first month - the good, the bad, and the scabbing.
For a detailed look at my pre and post aftercare instructions as per Tina’s recommendation see our blog post on Prep & Aftercare and PMU Aftercare 101.
Here are my natural eyebrows - pre-microblading:
Day 1, you're excited! You get to go into your artist’s studio with patchy uneven brows, or no brows at all and voila, you come out with legitimate hair strokes that you want to show off to the world, literal #browgoals.
Before and Immediately After
They look textured, dense albeit a little bit red, but it’s a world of a difference, you feel like a changed person. Your brows are bold in color. If you aren’t used to filling them in a lot, they will look slightly more dramatic in appearance than normal, tender, slightly swollen, and you may even experience some slight bleeding. The day you get them done you may be in awe of your fresh set of brows.
If you’re used to filling them in and are used to bolder brows, you may be in love. If not, don’t panic. The permanent makeup has been applied to compensate for fading of 20-40%, so if they look darker than you normally wear your brows, stay calm, the color will fade over the next week.
You will try really hard not to sneeze, because of the multiple tiny paper cut-like wounds on your face, but I had mine done during allergy season, and there’s no avoiding it. Your brows will be reddish, still quite tender, and maybe even a little bit thicker in texture than the day before. You may really notice the difference in your brows and feel like people are looking at them, but chances are you’re more self-conscious about it rather than people noticing them being darker than normal.
At this point, I really loved the way that they looked and was super happy with them. I could still see every hair stroke that was made and the redness for me had subsided a lot. They had not started to form hard thick scabs yet. Day 2 was pretty easy.
By Day 3, you shouldn’t notice a huge difference from the previous two days, if anything, the pain and tenderness will start to subside, and the brows will get slightly dark or thicker, but nothing major. At this point, you’ll probably be loving the convenience of getting up and having instant brows without the hassle of having to create them yourself. You’ll likely find yourself daydreaming about beach days with completely waterproof brows, but don’t act on this at LEAST until day 10!
Day 5 is when things start to change. This can be the turning point in the healing process, where your brows are getting itchy and it is advised to NOT scratch them, as the wound may still be open. A thick layer of scabbing may form, and the fine hair-strokes that were created may be hidden. You may feel like you want to start panicking. RESIST the urge to blow up your artist’s phone firing off questions and accusations alike. You have a wound on your face, therefore your body is trying to repair itself, hence the scabbing. It’s all a part of the healing process, and if you’ve had any other kind of tattoos in the past, it heals very similarly.
Just know that this is totally normal and even if it doesn’t look pretty, you shouldn’t worry, they’re going to be #browgoals again in no time.
This is the scary time period when the serious scabbing will start, and begin to peel away from the skin. If you’re anything like me - you will be extremely tempted to pick or peel the scabs. Don’t give in to this temptation, it could affect your healing very negatively. If you pick it, you could lose pigment that was deposited into the skin and could end up with a holey, patchy eyebrow. By gently rinsing the area regularly the scabs will slowly start to fall off - when they’re ready. This phase is definitely the hardest of the process. As a client looking on social media, I haven’t seen anyone talk about or show this side of the microblading healing process. All we see is perfectly fresh strokes, but scabbing? Who knew your entire eyebrow would shed and go through this transformation? It’s so important for clients to know and truly understand the whole process, and really be assured by their artist that what they experience is perfectly normal, and necessary for their eyebrows to heal properly.
At the end, they will have the brows they always wanted.
Your scabs will probably be all flaked off or flaking off on their own by this point and you’ll start to see the light at the end of the healing tunnel. But because the skin has not completely mended itself back together, there may still be some cause for concern. The color during these days may seem way too light or even grey and missing in spots. You might feel like your skin didn’t take the pigment, but that’s not the case. They’ll almost look like you’ve filled them in with a powder, so again just remain as calm as possible and begin to start enjoying the fact that your eyebrows are done for you every morning. It’s important to note that at this stage, the wounds should be closed so if you’re feeling self-conscious about the light look of them, you are able to apply some makeup to fill in for the time being.
Healing is almost complete! YAY! You’re almost there.
The color and definition of the hair-strokes will return at this point. The color is beginning to even out and look more natural and brow-like. People you tell about the procedure won’t even believe that it’s a tattoo. It’s truly amazing. You’ll be settling into your new shortened makeup routine - oh and those waterproof brow beach days? AMAZING!
Guess what? Your healing process is complete! Your skin is completely healed and color is looking great. They should look soft and natural. This is the point where you’ll be able to tell if there is anything you want to add or change, there could be a couple spots from loss of pigment, which is all dependent on how well your skin took the pigment, but this is OKAY because your follow-up appointment should be just around the corner!
All in all my experience with microblading was amazing! Through the ups and downs of the healing process, I was always assured that everything happening was normal, and was guided on how to take proper care to ensure the best results!
Hopefully, this guide to a typical healing experience is helpful to artists looking to give client's an in-depth look at what they can expect!
You can watch my full experience below:
Touch Up: Tina recommends that a client does not come back for a follow-up microblading procedure until the skin is fully healed, and suggests 3 months after their initial procedure as the optimal time to come back for their follow-up!
Are you waiting for your touch-up appointment and need something to give you a bit more definition until then? Check out how you can use the Pro-Pencil or Skinny Pencil to touch up your brows in the meantime, here.
Fast forward 2 years and here are my results. Flawless!
Loved what you read and want to see more Healing Day by Day experiences?
Check out our other blog posts below:
Day number 7 seeing bare spots hope it will change
I am so glad I found this article! I am on day 5 and scabs are coming off and it looks like there might be no pigment underneath!! I will wait patiently (I hope)
So glad I came across this artical. Was ready for a meltdown and your artical put me at ease.
Thanks. I’m probably the only dumb person on here that had a re-do at 10 days. I am now 8 days post and scabbing and flaking off with a huge chunk missing
Next touch up in 3 weeks. My anxiety has gone through the roof.
Thank you yes I panic on day 5 itching real bad an flaking all the way off I am black women. I have nothing left right now . But my artist she really good . She told me not to worry but yet you do. It looks like nothing going to come back I just have to trust her .
Thank you sooo so much for this article! And the picture storyline to go along with it!! I’ve been on the fence about getting my eyebrows done mainly because I didn’t know the details of the healing process (nor what it would look like). I can confidently book an appointment now thanks to you sharing your experience. Cheers!
Thank you for a detailed summary. I must admit I am on day 6 and not happy with the symmetry at this stage… Keeping my finger crossed. I also understand the follow-up session is there to round everything off for a great finish.
PS: your eyebrows look beautiful
Thank you! I’ve been freaking out since I had mine done four days ago! My artist warned me of the process as she prepped m brows, but I went from almost no brows to a pair of severe, dark, thin lines across my forehead. I told her I preferred conservative, subtle. She promised they would lighten by about 40% when healed. Hoping I can last that long. I refuse to leave home without glasses or shades and/or baseball cap. Only thing saving me right now is working from home thanks to COVID-19. Praying results will pay off. 🙏🏾
It is really great and nice article. I read this and it is very helpful.
I poured water on my entire face on day 11. Day and night! It was itchy and it appeared milkfish gray. Maybe because of the healing cream I’d been applying, not sure.
I’m still scared, and I sincerely hope I retained a better part of the pigment…
Thanks for this post. This explains my experience. I haven’t seen any detailed experience like this, online..
On day 14 after the big change over. I do have grey hair on my left eyebrow. My right one don’t show gray. Like most of the people here i was somewhat disappointed the first few days. But thanks to your explanation I wait patiently to get a retouch if needed. My tech. is out of country right now but will be back in 10 days. The best explanation I seen online. Thank you!
Hello, I got my eyebrows done 6 days ago. A little patch came off. Yes I was nervous. Now seeing and reading this blog, I’m going to trust my artist. I didnt want to blow up her phone. Lol.
Let me say thank you for posting the pics with each stage. Very great details everyone should see. Thank you very much.
I’m excited to after my touch up, I’ll be able to have a summer with eyebrows. 😊
I really love the article and your working. you are such a pro.
Im just using tina davies pigments. those are the best on the market
thank you so much love this!!!!
Thank you thank you thank you!!! I am on day 5 and my eyebrows are scabbing and flaking off and it looks like there is no color left underneath, reading this gave me some faith that the color will be back. Appreciate it so much!
If you haven’t scanned then the artists was good! I’ve done mine twice, initial then retouch and i did not scab at all so I retained almost all pigment. On retouch I opted for a darker shade just because I wanted more dramatic and I changed the shape a little. Anyway, day 7 on retouch and they look like day 1.
Extremely self-conscious about leaving the house. On day 2 and my brows look extremely harsh for my face, like drawn on. I know it’s part of the process but still, feeling like i wanna go back to my old brows.. still I have to wait. Thank you for these. Your brows look amazing
Wow I’m going into Day 9 and my brows still look fantastic. Not as dark as the 1st and 2nd day but still cute. I must be a unicorn. lol
I’m a Microblade Technician and it is important to understand that your Touchup is your most important appointment. I had a girl who freaked out and couldn’t make it to the Touchup because she only had 30% of ink retention the first time around with barely any hair on her brows. Unfortunately, the girl left a bad review in my business because of her healing process and that will probably hurt me in the long run. Please! What your going through is common the first time around. I can’t stress that.
Today is my2 day my browns are reddish. My artist told me to wipe them every half hour with a wash cloth and add to the browns A &D ointment.
Thank you for taking the time to give us this incredibly detailed experience! I’m day five and just starting to scab. Had I not done my research before getting this procedure done I’d be freaking out right about now!
God bless Google…I’m on day 5 and was panicking BIG TIME! The girl that did my brows didn’t inform me of all the steps… Glad to hear I’m not alone and it SHOULD get better!
Just had my treatment 3 days ago. No pain after the first evening. They still seem dark, but I it takes time. My stylist said Only coconut oil for the first week.
Did anyone see hair loss. I have notice that about 10 hair that have come out.
I’m glad I came across this. My eyebrows are 9 days old and to me it looks like my old eyebrows and that I had nothing done. I know sometimes it doesn’t take but I couldn’t believe it wouldn’t take to any part of my brow. I’m patiently waiting now :)