Brow love: Getting microblading for the first time

I’ve always had really full brows.

i have a few friends who lack in the brow department, but lucky for me, I can say that my whole life I’ve been blessed with enviable full brows. Like they are so full that I pretty much had a unibrow when I was a kid.

Anyways, since I’ve been so lucky in the brow department, usually when it comes to makeup, I would just fill in the tops and the tails and that’s pretty much it.  I actually only recently started to focus on my brows as the first few years of blogging I actually never really touched them (I cringe looking back at old photos now). Basically what I’m getting at here is that I didn’t really go above and beyond for my eyebrows since I didn’t think I really needed it.

Until recently.

Wink Studio in Winnipeg, MB

I started to notice lately that my brows were two different shapes. It wasn’t the most noticeable, but I noticed it and it started to bug me. My one brow had that tadpole shape (rounded head with a tail), whereas the other one was more fluid. Around this time a local studio, Wink Studio, reached out to me to do a collaboration and since they specialize in brows and microblading I figured I would give it a shot (they also do lash extensions, which I had gone to them for years ago and they do a great job!).

In case you aren’t familiar with microblading, it’s done with a small tool that is made of several tiny needles that creates small cuts to the top layer of the skin. The aesthetician then goes over with a semi-permanent pigment, which settles into the cuts creating a more enhanced brow. Microblading is different from eyebrow tattooing since the tool creates a hair stroke which blends in with the existing eyebrow hair. Tattoos are often done with a machine and needle, often producing a less natural line.  Microblading also fades over time, whereas a tattoo would be permanent. When you leave the salon with amazing-looking brows don’t expect them to actually look like that. Over the next few weeks they will fade a bit and you will be required to go in for a touch up.

Microblading before and after

As you can see in my before shot above, my left brow was considerably different than the right. The left one is much thinner on the top, is shorter near my nose, and has that tadpole effect to it. I wanted more even brows, which was what I ended up getting (and loving!).

Wink Studio’s owner Varbie ended up doing my microblading. I knew her from way back in the day when she did my lash extensions and was a one-woman studio out of a small room on Stafford and Grovesnor here in Winnipeg.  Wink Studio currently has two locations in Winnipeg (109-25 Amy Street in the Exchange District and 517 Campbell Street in River Heights). I went to their Amy Street location to get the microblading done initially and then the Campbell location for my touch up.

The process starts by first combing out my brows and then she measures them so they are symmetrical and fit my face nicely. She then takes the pigment (in a shade which best matches my brows) and then paints on the strokes so I could see how my brows will look and see if I want any adjustments prior to her going in with the blade. This was probably the longest part since we worked together to get a shape that I really loved.  Varbie added more “hair” to the start of my brows so they aligned with my face better, extended the tails a bit, added hair underneath my left brow to create a more seamless shape, and filled in the tops. When she handed me the mirror to look at them I was so impressed with how they looked.

Microblading process at Wink Studio in Winnipeg

Once we both liked how they looked (honestly, there was so much math and measuring involved in this, I was quite impressed), she grabbed the blade and started to create the strokes.  Now, this part is slightly painful, however, you can ask to get numbing cream put on prior so the pain isn’t that bad. I skipped it since I have a pretty high pain tolerance, but depending on where she was doing the strokes, some areas hurt more than others.  You also hear the blade cutting into your skin, it’s like a scratching noise. Again, this didn’t bother me but I have read that it bothers others. Once she’s done with the blade, she grabs the pigment and paints it on. This is usually the part you would see on Instagram, the look of those too-thick brows.  She left the pigment on for a few minutes and then wiped it off. The pigment settles into the cuts creating those stroke-like effects.

After a few back and forth and adjusting, I left with amazing brows, which Varbie told me not to fall too much in love with since they would fade over the next four weeks.  She also gave me some healing cream to put on my brows three times a day to help with the cuts over the next 10 days. After the procedure she also recommends not to get them wet or sweat for the next 24 hours.

Over the next few days my brows went through the cycle she mentioned. Although they didn’t get itchy (she said that was common), they did flake off a little and scab, but again, that was totally to be expected. I also found they got a bit darker but then lightened up and faded, and then a few weeks later the pigment came back. The human body works in weird ways people.

Anyways, as recommended I went for a touch up around four weeks later where she filled in the parts that faded (for the most part I left my brows the way they were, however, I did fill them in a tiny bit if I was going out somewhere special). This time I opted for the numbing cream (which takes around 10 minutes for it to kick in), however, I did still experience some pain in some areas.  Varbie mentioned that the touch ups usually make the pigment last longer since your skin is then used to it and familiar with it.  So far, after two-and-a-half weeks, the pigment is still looking great (with some very light, minor fading).

After your first touch up, they recommend to visit every 12 to 18 months.  Microblading typically lasts anywhere from one to three years depending on your skin type and age. Your skincare routine will also affect how long the pigment lasts on the skin. For example, if you tan or use products with AHA or Glycolic Acid will make the pigment fade faster.

So would I recommend microblading? I have to tell you, I love going to sleep and waking up with perfect brows. It’s awesome that I can wear no makeup and my brows still look amazing. It also cuts down time considerably when I do my makeup (even on those days where I just throw on CC cream and mascara). The service is expensive (at Wink Studio the prices start at $350 and go up depending on who you see), and then the touchups also cost a lot of money as well (start at $75).  You have to remember that although you may leave the studio with perfect brows, they will fade, so the touchup is necessary.

Microblading after photo
Microblading after four week touchup

Although I had full brows to begin with and may not have needed it as much as others (I would imagine those who have sparse or no brows at all would be much more inclined to get this done), if you have the money for it and want it, then definitely do it. Not only has it made my life easier, but it makes me happier to have nice brows, and I mean, they do say, “eyebrows speak louder than words” (at least I saw that once on a cute print haha).

Have you had microblading done? What were your thoughts?

Please note, I was provided this service gratis. All opinions are my own.

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