Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading Compared – Which is Better?

Permanent make up on eyebrows

Table of Contents

Eyebrows help to shape your facial appearance by complementing your other facial features. However, some people have thick, full brows, while others have a few hairs. Those with sparse eyebrows look for ways to enhance them cosmetically through procedures like eyebrow tattoo vs microblading. 

Eyebrows raised

When considering these procedures, you might want to evaluate them to know which one suits you best. Like all the other cosmetic procedures, eyebrow tattooing and microblading are two different processes with one goal – to enhance your eyebrows. 

Keep reading for an in-depth review of the two, including how they work, benefits and drawbacks, etc.

Let’s find out more.

What is an Eyebrow Tattoo?

An eyebrow tattoo is a brow enhancement procedure performed by injecting ink deep into your skin to form a thick line. By tattooing your brows, you create a thickness and fullness in line with your brow. The outcome is often permanent, allowing the tattooed area to stay intact for the rest of your life.

Woman's Face with Colorful Makeup

In tattooing, the needle penetrates your skin repeatedly in a tapping motion to insert ink into deep layers of your skin. This procedure is permanent, but colors may fade due to oxidation with the blood. Once your eyebrow is tattooed, it’s quite difficult to remove.

The eyebrow tattoo is ideal for those who want to add some volume to the middle part of their eyebrows. There are various types of eyebrow tattooing. They include pen or rotary machine cosmetic tattoos, full created hair stroke eyebrow tattoos, soft shading technique eyebrow tattoos, and feather-like eyebrow tattoos. 

In all these tattooing options, the tattoo procedure is the same. Only the end result is slightly different.

What is Microblading?

Person With Blue Eyes

Microblading is another cosmetic procedure for eyebrow enhancement. It involves creating lines along the brow to mimic the natural hair of your eyebrows. It’s a two-step procedure involving microblading and touch-up.

Microblading is a painless procedure because the cuts made by the microblades are shallow. You may experience very little to no bleeding. Only a minimal amount is used here, allowing color to remain in the incisions and not bleed outward.

This eyebrow enhancement process is semi-permanent. After a year or two, you’ll have to undergo the procedure again. The microblading process is non-invasive and leaves shallow marks on your skin. The good thing is that it gives an illusion of thick, full eyebrows that appear more defined. 

Since the ink fades over time, you can decide to undergo periodic touch-ups to maintain better results.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – Tools Used in the Cosmetic Procedure

Eyebrow Tattoo

Eyebrow tattoo is a deep skin invasive procedure. It uses a machine tool with a tiny needle that penetrates the skin to put ink underneath it and create a stroke that mimics real hair. The ink will change color based on your skin type.

Microblading

Microblading uses blades, needles, and pigment to place a semi-permanent pigment on the brow. The pigment color lasts only for about two years before it fades.

Besides these tools, there are other accessories like numbing cream, drawing pencils, a measuring ruler, face masks, care cream, and barrier film oil.

Verdict

Both procedures use the appropriate tools to ensure successful eyebrow enhancement.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – How it Works

Eyebrow Tattoo

In the eyebrow tattoo method, the esthetician (tattoo artist) will first draw different shapes on your eyebrows using a tattoo eyebrow pencil. They’ll then apply the numbing cream to minimize the pain. 

Using the tattoo machine, they’ll draw hair-like strokes on your brows. The needles will create tapping motions as they sink into your skin to let the ink penetrate. You get to choose the ink shade and texture you prefer. 

Woman's Brown Eye

Eyebrow tattoos are permanent and will create the thickness and fullness you want in the middle of your brow. However, this procedure is not recommended for brow definition.

After the tattooing procedure, you’ll feel some pain, swelling, and redness. The esthetician will give you a healing cream, which you’ll apply two or three times a day until there’s no more pain and swelling. 

The tattoo ink will be oxidized during the first three days, leaving a darker shade on your eyebrows. The tattoo color will also fade off after ten days, making your eyebrows feel natural. The scab will flake off in a week as the skin starts healing.

You’ll need a touch-up appointment after healing. Your esthetician will examine the tattooed area for gaps and fill them up. This is optional.

Microblading

Person's Eye With Black Mascara

During the microblading procedure, the artist will use a tattooing machine with multiple tiny needles and microblades. The pigment will be placed into your skin as the machine goes over your eyebrows, making feather-like strokes to form lines that look exactly like the hairs on your eyebrows.

The marks will be shallow and non-invasive. A day after the procedure, you’re required to clean your brows using distilled water. Then use a cotton pad to gently apply the aftercare cream every four hours. Do this three times on the second day, then two times in the next five days. 

Microblading is for those looking for newly shaped brows, definition, and thickness. It simulates the hair so well that it looks natural. This procedure will give an illusion of thick, full eyebrows, and no one will know that you have very sparse brows. If your brows are thick, they’ll appear more defined.

The only slight limitation with Microblading is that it’s a semi-permanent procedure that doesn’t last for a lifetime, like the eyebrow tattoo. After about one to two years, you’ll have to redo the process again. 

Verdict

Both eyebrow tattoo and microblading procedures use similar methods of operation, except that the microblading process is faster, precise, and less painful.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – The Healing Process 

Eyebrow Tattoo

After tattooing, the skin will feel swollen and red for about three to four days. The scabs will flake off after a week, allowing the baby skin to appear. At first, the pigment color will darken but start fading after four weeks. Tattooed strokes remain permanent after healing.

Microblading

The healing process for microblading is almost similar to that of eyebrow tattoo. The only difference is that a microbladed area will heal much faster. 

When the microbladed brows are healed, you’ll need a touch-up to ward off the extra undesired strokes. Your microblading specialist can enhance the appropriate strokes with strato-cell, a skin barrier that helps to heal while keeping the pigment shade intact.

Verdict

Microblading heals faster than eyebrow tattoo.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – The pain

Eyebrow Tattoo

Tattooing is performed using a machine that penetrates deeper into your skin. This can be painful since the depth of the needle puncture needs to use more ink, causing the color to bleed into the nearby area. Recovery may take a bit longer as the skin needs to heal from deep inside to the surface.

Microblading

Microblading is done using a hand tool that cuts through the uppermost skin layer. The procedure is less painful and doesn’t damage the skin much. The recovery is quicker because not much pigment is used, which means color doesn’t bleed into surrounding skin cells. The technique also has minimal discomfort because of the numbing of the area around the brows.

Verdict

Microblading is a much lesser painful procedure of the two. 

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – Natural Looking Eyebrows

Eyebrow Tattoo

A needle is used in eyebrow tattoos to deliver ink to the inner layer of the skin. When it comes to achieving fine lines, the needle is incapable of delivering precision. The tattooed brows will have a solid look that makes them look like brow fillers.

Microblading

Shallow Focus Photography of Human Eyes

The microblading estheticians often hand-draw fine lines that mimic natural eyebrow hair before applying the color pigment. The lines blend naturally with the eyebrows, and you can’t distinguish them from the real hair.

Microblading creates hair-like strokes like hair growth patterns to make them blend in with the eyebrows. You’d think the microbladed area is a dense version of the eyebrow hair.

Verdict

Microblading delivers natural hair-like strokes that blend well with the eyebrows compared to eyebrow tattoo, which creates a solid look.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – Permanence

Eyebrow Tattoo

Monochrome Photo of a Woman Closing Her Eyes

Eyebrow tattooing is permanent. When the ink penetrates the skin, it remains there for the rest of your life unless you decide to remove it using tattoo removal treatments. At times the ink may lose its hue. Tattoo ink is different from the specialized pigment ink used in microblading. 

Microblading

Microblading lasts for one to two years before you go for a retouch treatment session. The pigment is designed to fade and turn into a light version of the original color so you can keep the natural appearance. The pigment does not sink deeper into your skin, and that’s probably why it fades when your skin cells turn over. 

To maintain your enhanced eyebrows, you’ll need to get annual touch-up treatments. The good thing is that you can change your brows’ appearance during your next touch-up session to fit the changes in styles and trends.

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Verdict

Eyebrow tattoo is permanent and cannot be removed, but microblading lasts for one to two years. You have to retouch the procedure if you want to maintain your look.

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – Pros & Cons

Eyebrow Tattoo Pros

  • Eyebrow tattoos last for a lifetime, with no need for touch-up treatments all the time.
  • It is recommended for people who’ve suffered from alopecia
  • No more worrying about smudging or breaking your makeup when showering or swimming
  • It helps boost your confidence, especially if you had over-plucked eyebrows before 
  • It’s cheaper

Cons

  • Getting tattooed on the eyebrows is a bit painful and takes slightly longer to heal
  • You can’t change your brow style anytime you want to
  • There’s a risk of getting an infection or allergy

Microblading pros

  • It’s a quick, simple, and less painful eyebrow enhancement procedure
  • No makeup smudges
  • Impressive, natural-looking results that even fade naturally without altering your appearance
  • An excellent option for filling your sparse eyebrows

Cons

  • It is much more expensive than the eyebrow tattoo
  • You can also get an allergy or infection

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – FAQs

Is Eyebrow Tattooing Safe?

During the procedure, iron oxide is used as a pigment. This element is safe and can be absorbed by the body easily. Food-grade pigments can cause allergies to your skin. To be safe, make sure you take a patch test on your earlobe (behind) to determine if tattooing is the best option for you.

What Should I Consider Before Undergoing a Microblading Procedure?

Always consider your skin type before you decide to go with microblading. If your skin is the dry type, you’ll have crisp strokes, and for oily skin, you’ll likely get scattered strokes. Before the procedure, avoid caffeine, alcohol, and blood-thinning medications. Also, don’t go for microblading if you’re pregnant.

What is More Painful, Eyebrow Tattoo, or Microblading?

Eye tattooing is more painful than microblading. The depth of skin invasion is much deeper in eye tattooing as the ink needs to penetrate through to the last layer of the skin.

Do Microbladed Eyebrows Fade the Same Way as Tattooed Eyebrows?

Not at all. Microblading uses a pigment that naturally fades with time, but its shades don’t change. The tattoo ink is often oxidized with blood, which changes the eyebrow color into a green or blue tone as it fades. However, microbladed eyebrows tend to fade a lot faster than tattooed eyebrows. 

Which Procedure Last Longer, Eyebrow Tattoo or Microblading?

Eyebrow tattoos last longer because they’re permanent. Once you’re tattooed, it will remain intact for a long time. To remove it, you have to undergo another procedure using tattoo removal treatments. Microblading, on the other hand, fades over time.

Do I need to Moisturize My Eyebrows for Microblading Aftercare?

No. You should not moisturize your brows at all. Dry healing is the best way for microblading aftercare. Applying an antibacterial cream or any moisturizer on your skin after microblading will instantly fade the pigment. It’s only the oily skin that will need special care. For best results, apply the aftercare ointment that the aesthetician recommended. 

Eyebrow Tattoo vs Microblading – Which is Better?

Our evaluation shows that microblading is a much better option than eyebrow tattoo. First, the process is non-invasive, less painful, and fast-healing. While it fades faster than the eyebrow tattoo, you can use it to keep up with the ever-evolving eyebrow styles and trends. 

What’s more, microblading produces more natural results that blend well with one’s eyebrow hair. It is hard to notice when one has microbladed eyebrows, but you’ll quickly notice the difference with tattooed options.

Shmulik Dorinbaum

Shmulik Dorinbaum

A musician, a father, a former cancer person, not a tattoo artist, but a tattooed person indeed.