I think most people looking at that pic would think, "Eh...her brows are fine." But what they don't see is the insecurity I had if half of it got wiped off. Yes... if you gave me too close of a hug or threw me in a pool, them brows would go from a blended arched hockey stick to a chunky inch worm faster than you could say "Wtf happened to your brows."
In Mai fam, brow tattooing has always been a huge thing. Growing up with Mama Mai, she and every one of my Vietnamese aunts had an addiction to cosmetically tattoo anything that moved on her face. Now I spend my days arguing with each of them about why those faded teal blue eyebrows aren't as "natchu-row" (Viet version of "natural") as they think. I've just seen all permanent tattoos (including those on my own body) go through so many changes as years go on, especially on the skin of our face because it's constantly changing, shedding, and is the skin most exposed to sun. It's expected that ink color, and sometimes shape, will change from its original state on your face. Hence, I am leery of permanent tattooing on my face. However, what I'm about to share that I had done is temporary... and fades in 2 years.
It's called micro blading, and I caught wind of it while I was overseas when this whole new trend of semi permanent eyebrow tattooing made a comeback. In short, rather than shadowing "fill in" between the hairs of your brows, a certified specialist is using a small scalpel like tool to manually deposit fine "hairs" of pigment into your epidermis, making your brows appear fuller to your liking. Having not seen my real God-given brows since that fateful day in high school when I decided to "Netflix 'n Chill" with my Tweezerman, I was an eager beaver to give it a try.
My good friend *Sarah was the first to hit me up about Piret, the "Eyebrow Doctor" in New York. Of course I stalked Piret's work on Instagram (@EyebrowDoctor_) but I have this weird thing about IG. I straight up don't believe how things appear on there. Come on. Even I can make myself have a butt like Serena Williams with a lil (ok, a lot) of Facetune. So it wasn't until Sarah told me she was going to get micro bladed first that I decided to sit back and anxiously wait to hear how hers turn out. Day 1, an hour after her appointment, she was floored. Day 2, day 3, and soon one week later, her brows looked perfect. I was in.
(Let me start off by saying I felt like a kid trying to get some sleep before Christmas morning. I...couldn't...wait).
On the day of my appointment, I walked into Dr. Piret's office and was immediately put at ease by her comfortable, inviting personality. (Side bar - she's hot). We spent the next hour sketching my "perfect brow." I used her eyebrow pencil and showed her how I preferred to "thicken" my brows a bit, and how hard it was to get my "tails" just right. After a few erases, re-sketching, and reassurance I wasn't gonna come out with "sperm brows" we were ready.
I lay down on her operating table thing, and Piret proceeded to draw some crazy looking outline around my sketched in brows. I have no idea why she draws this, but I made her pinky swear this has nothing to do with how my outcome will look. Then, of course I had to take a selfie of my crazy face.
Next, she applies numbing cream. This takes a few minutes to kick in. While we waited, we talked about our obsession with pimple popping.
Then we talk hue. I know I'm keeping my hair color a nice, ashy, taupe brown for a while, so I wanted to make sure I didn't get black or blonde brows. After a few color swatches, she nailed the tone.
Piret begins the first cut. Obvi, I'm laying there so I can't see what she's doing. Good thing I brought my obsessively analytical friend to get an up close and personal video :) Ok, so real talk - the first slice stings like a mofo. But not like, "oh my God I can't make it through this" pain. More like "F*ck that's not comfortable but neither is watching my brows disappear when it rains." So I lay there like a champ. By slice 3, I felt NOTHING.
The whole procedure takes 20 min. Yes, man. When I was done, Piret had me jump up and check myself out. That...my friends...was the day I believed in love at first sight. Damn Gina, my brows looked amazing. Full, natural, and dude...perfect. I couldn't stop staring. There was one area on my left brow where I wanted her to add a mini sliver, and she did it on the spot. I super appreciated how detailed and mindful Piret was to take her time and make sure I was 1000% comfy. Necessary, man.
Here's before and afters of Mai brows, plus a video so u can see the hair vs tattoo. (PS, I went right to By Chloe for a gluten free burger after).
You're wondering how it looked the next day right? Well, see for yourself. Here is Day 1:
Day 2 I'm told they're supposed to darken a bit. They did, but not in a crazy Cruella Deville way.
Day 3 I'm speechless over the fact that my makeup takes 10 min less. Freddy realizes we'll only be 20 min late now to everything we attend.
These are my brows now. There was a little flaking and peeling, and tbh I accidentally scratched off a little "hair" on each side from my sleep. 😒 However that's allowed to happen since Im supposed to see Piret for a touch up in 4 weeks. Then, I enjoy my snazzy new face for 2 years until it fades, and I decide if I want to put in some new brows again.
Anyway, I get SUPER excited when it comes to sharing things I'm obsessed about. I didn't plan to blog this, but when I got the "hooked on phonics worked for me!" feeling, I realized I had to. There's gotta be other sistas like me who suffer from disappearing brows! Welp, not any more. Now you can swim, sweat, and sleep knowing he'll wake up recognizing who you are. Tweet / IG / FB me if you have ANY Q's! So long for brow :P
Make sure to take a look at @eyebrowdoctor_ on Instagram
*Sarah's not her real name. She doesn't even look like a "Sarah."