Safe Standards & Dirrrty Bugs

We are a world obsessed with clean. Is that because we “like it dirty”? (are there any old schoolers out there that think of Xxxtina Aguilera at this reference? AM-I-RIGHT?!)

From our addiction to hand sanitizers (which is said to be worth over $2 billion dollars globally in a few years) to cleaning our houses with disinfectants that could kill an army. No, I’m not knocking it, although I do tend to err on the side of a more natural cleaning product at home.

When it comes to my microblading studio however, I am far more OCD, and for good reason! Us m’bladers and permanent makeup artists are literally breaking the skin with our tools, in order to push lovely pigment into the skin which in turn creates those gorgeous, fluffy brows we all love and definitely most of us do not have naturally. Why oh why was I not gifted with supermodel-esque, thick, juicy eyebrows?! Well at least there’s a fix for that (and my severely over-plucked 90’s brows), finally. WHEW.

Back to bugs…

We are obsessed because every day there seems to be a new “super bug” or debilitating disease and we DEF don’t wanna be on the losing end of that battle. As a mindful, health conscious human on this planet we need to do our part in the prevention and spread of nasty little bugs we can’t usually see. It’s up to you to constantly keep your eyes open when you choose to get a procedure where there can be risks to your health. Here’s a few important things to be on the lookout for when selecting an artist (or even to keep in mind when visiting a medical professional who will be slicing, dicing, or splicing any part of you!):

  • Have they been registered with the local agencies that oversee body art/tattooing?
    When microblading, you’ll want to be sure your artist has annual Bloodborne Pathogen training. This ensures they know how to combat the spread of, you guessed it, bloodborne ickies. Most counties will want to verify this training has been completed and will also require the practitioner to register with the agency before approval. The facility they work in will also need to be inspected on an annual basis to make sure safe standards are being met.
  • Have they been properly trained in the service being performed and what credentials do they have?
    It’s tough to say it, but this industry is not heavily regulated. The local health department doesn’t really care about your artist’s training (or even if you’ve had any). They just want to make sure you’re  not spreading disease. Helpful hints: Ask what company they have been certified with, how long the training was, and if they have had any advanced training. Everyone starts somewhere, and some will be a-ok with having a newbie work on them, but if you’re not, you cannot be mad about a potential negative outcome if you don’t ask the proper questions.
  • Do you like their work?
    Check their portfolio of work online. Be sure to watch for before/afters and healed results after retouching sessions. Some photos will look great immediately right after the procedure, but not healed. You’ll want to see they have good pigment retention, color selection, stroke patterns, and be sure to check reviews. No one is perfect, but see how they deal with issues that may come up. Are they willing to go the extra mile or will they leave you high and dry once they have done the work? Do any of the clients have before brows that are shaped like yours? This is a good indication of what you can expect and is so important. Although microblading is semi-permanent, no one wants to go through 1-2 years of #badbrowphotos.
  • What are their working conditions like?
    I can tell you this is the hardest thing to discern before booking an appointment, but one of the most important to keep in mind! Can you see photos online of their space? Can you schedule a consultation prior to your appointment? Maybe drop in to take a peek? Think hospital clean. Think STERILE. Think free of dirt or clutter. Think to yourself, “Self, this place has been straight up hosed down to the max with proper disinfectants between clients. You good. You real good.” I can tell you one thing, if you walk into your appointment and don’t feel the warm fuzzies (either because you aren’t vibing with your artist or because of the studio) DON’T DO THE PROCEDURE. Ask questions if you have them. Get comfortable being assertive. I’d rather someone ask questions than for them to be terrified of me or next few hours. I’ll never get mad at a thorough question and answer session prior to the service. If your artist isn’t willing to answer or doesn’t understand (“wtf…why the third degree?!”) then they may not be the one for you. Their space should be immaculate and well constructed for the level of precision they need to microblade. Keep in mind your skin will be opened and you have to choose someone who will keep you safe before, during, and advise you of proper aftercare during healing.
  • What kind of tools do they use?
    Their tools (blades, blade handles, razors) should either be 100% disposable, single-use, and sterile or they should be sterilizing tools properly between clients. Blades and razors are never reused and should always be opened up in front of you to show they are brand spankin’ new for you, and tossed into a special container (called a sharps container) after your session.

I hope this helps you with what kinds of questions to ask your artist when considering microblading or permanent makeup. As long as proper safe standards and procedures are taking place and you do some due diligence, we can keep our health in tact and also have some #bossassbrows at the same time!

BEAUTY = HEALTH (not BEAUTY > HEALTH) —> Keep it clean sistah!

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—HEATHER KELLE

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