Imagine how pleased I was to see in the latest on-line edition of Skin Ink that the Ombre eyebrow technique received a lot of praise and attention. My admiration for Blended Brows™ (a version of the Ombre or combo brow) did not happen overnight. I am an entrepreneur; I create and I remain current in my profession. I too, as many have, admired the immediately after the appearance of the hairstroke, microblading, embroidery brows, or whatever marketing names were used, but I know the skin, and I know needles, and I know how pigments/inks behave in the skin over time. I, and other PMU artists, already anticipated what the hair strokes (and all associated marketing names used for lines in the brows that mimicked the appearance of eyebrow hairs) would not remain crisp, have the expected longevity, and that clients would ultimately request more brow coverage that would last longer.
Based on my client’s input, regardless of how attractive the name or the media pictures they saw of the technique, ultimately none of my clients wanted to see little strokes or lines with spaces showing skin in-between. After all, that’s not what they were accustomed to seeing when they drew on their eyebrows with a cosmetic pencil. So, what does this mean? We’ve come full circle and the Ombre/combo (Blended Brow™) is a variation of the permanent makeup traditional eyebrow technique, also referred to as a powder brow technique. I feel like we’ve come home. We (PMU artists) left home, went out to see the world, had our experiences, made some memories, and now we are happy to be back home.
Let me explain further. It is my understanding that a good percentage of clients, want their permanent cosmetics to look natural (and that word’s meaning will vary between clients). When I put the word natural to test and ask clients to show me what that means to them, they take me to an eyebrow that has a soft-fill appearance; they don’t want to see tattooed lines where they don’t have hair and they don’t want an oversaturated harsh appearance.
I do my best to gently help my clients decide what brow technique is best for them. This is their product (the procedure) and their appearance. I sincerely want them to feel an equal part of the decision making process. Some of my conversations are similar to this: “Technique will depend on your skin type, and how much or how little hair you have. If you have no or very little hair and I do a hair stroke technique or microblading you will indeed see tattooed lines, especially from an intimate or social distance. So do you want to see tattooed lines or something that might mimic more of a powdered makeup look? Why not consider a permanent makeup procedure that mimics the appearance of your cosmetic eyebrow appearance? At the end of the day, I can’t grow hair for you and the tattooed version (hairstrokes) will not remain crisp for the long-term, and as good as I am at hairstrokes, let’s face it, tattooing is tattooing and nothing looks quite the same as Mother Nature’s version.”
Today’s eyebrow techniques, Blended Brows™ by Jill Hoyer or other artists who may call a similar technique a powder brow, ombre, or a combo brow, ultimately it appears like eyebrows that have been softly applied with conventional makeup. Boom~! That’s what has become natural to a good majority of clients seeking our services. No one will second guess a light, soft, powdery eyebrow that looks like makeup. They will, however, second guess if they detect tattoo or microblading or machine hairstroke lines. Everything comes back down to the skin type and how much hair they have to begin with and how they choose to look. Personally, from my perspective, I’m very pleased that we’ve come full circle and are back to a soft-appearing eyebrow technique with more than reasonable longevity for the sake of our clients.
Permanent Makeup Artist
15 years of experience…