Recently I had my eyebrow’s microbladed by Brow & Arrow’s founder and principal tattooist Connie Philios (click here for my results posted on her Instagram). Now those who have seen me without make-up on Instagram will probably be surprised by this. Heck, I’d be surprised too! I’m definitely not your typical microblading client. But before you raise your eyebrows any further, I will fully explain.
When you think of this cosmetic procedure you probably have the impression that it’s catered towards those with thin, light or damaged brows. For me, I fit under none of those categories. My brows have always been quite dark and defined. However, I’ve had other brow problems instead i.e. lack of symmetry and extension at the tails. My right brow for instance has always had a nice arch to it, whereas the left has always been broader and thicker in width. As Connie of Brow & Arrow wisely said during the session “our brows aren’t twins, they’re more like sisters”. In her line of work she sees a lot of women who have eyebrows that aren’t perfectly symmetrical. The good news is that this can be improved with microblading.
I firstly will acknowledge that this is all pretty minor. Armed with a good brow liner, I can generally draw away my problems away in the raising of an eyebrow. For many other women, I understand it isn’t as simple. However, I was presented with an opportunity to give this procedure a try and I thought it would make for an interesting review. After going through with this would I pay for it in the future? The answer is a yes, yes and yes! I love that I no longer need brow make-up when I'm rocking a minimal make-up look. Another totally unexpected plus is that complete strangers come up to me and compliment me on my brows! I love the end result. Thank-you Connie.
When it comes to semi-permanent cosmetic procedures performed on your face, it is important to research well. Some artists use different techniques so I can’t stress enough how important it is to do your homework! This is where I’ll share a major tip. Before deciding on where to get microbladed, it's important to view the salon’s previous work (e.g on their Instagram page). Look for clear before/after shots taken under the same lighting conditions and at the same angle. It’s a bonus if they tag their clients too. I think this greatly adds their reputability as it shows that clients are happy enough to have their face presented on Instagram. In addition I recommend going beyond the salon’s posts. Stalk the “photos of them” and see who has tagged or hashtagged them. Assess whether PAYING clients are happy (not just influencers like me). This will give you a clearer indication.
I personally decided to collaborate with Brow & Arrow because Connie is a true perfectionist and someone I trusted immensely to achieve the result I wanted. For example, without me even mentioning my concerns, she commented on my unsymmetrical eyebrows the instant I walked into the salon. That’s the extent of her attention to detail. When a professional is able to pick up on flaws like this, from a mere glance at your face you know you are in good hands. If you are interested in seeing more of her work, you can view Connie’s amazing transformations by viewing her Instagram page here.
Now that I’ve spoken about my desired outcome and my selection process, I would like to go over the appointment. Once booked in, I was sent a text with all the necessary information I needed to know. It had useful tips on what to expect and how to best prepare. If you are planning to have your eyebrows microbladed it is important to follow these instructions to the letter so that you achieve the best possible results.
To minimize pain during the procedure I was instructed to buy a 5% emla cream from my local pharmacy and apply it to my brows for a minimum of an hour prior to the session. This is a topical local anesthetic available over the counter. Me being so busy though, I actually forgot to buy the cream! Not to fear, Connie did apply a local anesthetic to the brows whilst she explained the procedure and aftercare and went through the paperwork. This took half an hour in itself so it was plenty of time for the cream to sit there and numb the area.
After all the formalities the anesthetic cream was removed and Connie used a clear adhesive ruler on my forehead to accurately design and measure my new brows. She plucked the extra hairs away and shaded the design in pencil to ensure I was happy before going ahead with the microblading. When I looked at the proposed design in the mirror I could hardly recognize myself! Staring back at me was a face with two perfectly symmetrical brows with the nicest arches! It’s amazing how much of a difference a new shape can make to your entire face.
Connie from Brow & Arrow was very conservative with my transformation, taking on the less is more approach. As I use my face so much with what I do, she said it would be better to under-do my brows and touch them up over a few sessions rather than to go overboard. When microblading, it is much easier to add to the effect than it is to fade it away. She also never uses harsh inks like pure black. It creates a completely unnatural effect – similar to penciling in your brows with a sharpie! Instead she chooses from a wide variety of ink shades to suit the colour of her client’s hair and complexion perfectly. For me, after being sampled with a few different shades, a warm toned brown was selected. Then with the brow shape and ink colour decided upon, I was ready to be microbladed!
During this process, Connie etched fine little hair like lines into my skin by hand. These etches were performed between my existing hairs, making the end result look super natural. All in all, I think this took around 30 mins. The process of microblading is quite manageable and not anymore painful than a particularly bad waxing session. I found it similar to getting my brows threaded when it’s that time of month. The pain might make you curl up your toes inside your shoes but it’s nothing you can’t handle. As a woman you come to learn that most beauty procedures require a little pain. I see the payoff is worth it in the end, especially when I get to enjoy the benefits of having ready to go perfect brows.
The aftercare has been super easy, even if it is a little annoying. Rule one is to apply the aftercare cream as much as you can! It’s water repellent and helps the area to stay clean whilst it heals. I was home a lot during the healing period so I would just apply a thick amount and let it sit there for most of the day. When the cream thinned out I would simply reapply.
The second rule is to avoid getting your eyebrows wet all costs! That includes sweating too so no exercise for a week! What a great excuse for skipping gym haha. Of course this makes shower time quite problematic, so Connie recommended that I apply a thick glob of the cream to my brows to help repel water droplets. To be safe I also avoided getting my entire head wet and the only time I washed my hair was at the hairdressers. It isn’t worth the risk as wetting the brows can potentially remove pigment, taking months off the procedure’s longevity. For the same reasons, I was also extremely careful to avoid the area when I cleansed my face or applied make-up. You’re investing pain, money and time into this procedure it’s important to follow that instructions exactly so that the result lasts as long as possible.
Oh, I should also mention that if you don’t apply enough cream, your brows will itch like crazy. Luckily I only experienced minor itching and scabbing because I was very good with adhering to the aftercare.
Now that my brows are fully healed I am delighted with the results! I'm super excited for the perfecting session in a months time to fill in the areas that require a little extra attention. I think the new shape looks great, the effect is so natural and I can now rock that minimal make-up look perfectly! Thanks Connie from Brow & Arrow for doing such a wonderful job.
Update: Perfection Session at Brow & Arrow
Since writing this I have gone in for my perfecting session at Brow & Arrow. After the first healing process was over I noticed that my brows were a still a little lighter than what I'd hoped for. This is a common experience and Connie my tattoo artist was able to achieve the exact look I wanted in the follow up session. I'm so happy with my twin brows and the time I save not needing to do eyebrow make-up anymore! The second session also hurt less and healed much faster.