Beards are the biggest trend in male beauty of the decade! Not only does a full beard look great on any guy, it’s also a huge relief to not have to shave every single day. It can bring out your natural handsomeness, and draw attention away from any insecurities you might have.
However, not everyone is blessed with a thick, masculine beard that grows evenly in all spots. In fact, most men have patches where their facial hair is thinner than they want it to be, or even patches where it doesn’t grow at all, due to various reasons.
The solution to all your facial hair insecurities comes in the form of beard micropigmentation! Let’s see what it’s all about.
What Is Beard Micropigmentation?
Beard micropigmentation is a form of cosmetic tattooing for facial hair.
We know what you’re thinking – tattooing your face might not be your cup of tea. However, we should make one thing clear right from the start. Beard micropigmentation is not a traditional tattoo you probably have in mind.
So what is it? Well, beard micropigmentation is a treatment intended to imitate the look of a natural stubble, it’s supposed to mimic the look of facial hair follicles emerging from the skin. It’s not done in the same way as body art tattooing, and its results are not permanent.
What you get is the look of a full, even beard. It works for people who already have some facial hair but want to even it out, or for people whose facial hair doesn’t grow at all and need a full reconstruction.
Image source: Instagram @alphascalptx
What Issues Can It Fix?
Beard micropigmentation is a very versatile technique. Here’s what it can do:
- Give density to existing facial hair which needs extra volume all over.
- Camouflage spots where facial hair is thinner or bald spots.
- Camouflage scars.
- Modify the shape of facial hair.
- Recreate the stubble (or 5 o’clock shadow) look on the entire jawline.
Does It Work on a Longer Beard, or Just a Stubble?
Beard micropigmentation can add volume to any beard, regardless of length. It won’t give you actual hair strands, but can create the illusion of density.
Image source: Instagram @bollywoodscalp
How Is It Done?
Beard micropigmentation uses the same technique as scalp micropigmentation, or SMP.
An electrical needle device similar to a tattoo machine (but not the same) is used to make tiny punctures on the surface of the skin and inject pigments into them. Once healed, these little dot-like incisions look like hair follicles that are just emerging from the skin.
The dots are dispersed over the area which needs densifying. If there are actual hairs in the area, the dots are “drawn” between them.
The pigments are injected relatively shallow into the skin, which is what differentiates this treatment from traditional tattooing. Another difference is the fact that beard micropigmentation uses a pigment formula, not a tattoo ink, designed specifically to imitate the look of natural hair follicles.
These two factors combined ensure that the results look hyper realistic for a few years, gradually losing color intensity and fading away unless you refresh them.
Image source: Instagram @studiolepoteoui
What’s the Treatment Like?
Beard micropigmentation is done over a series of several micropigmentation sessions. There’s a healing process after each session, after which the color loses some of its initial intensity, so it’s built-up gradually for a realistic result.
Before the series of treatments starts, you do thorough consults with the technician, so you get a totally customized look best suited to the needs of your facial hair.
Each session goes something like this:
The area that will be treated is cleaned of all the built-up dirt, dust and sebum to prevent infection during the procedure.
If you’re getting more work than just a spot cover-up, the tech will draw an outline that will become the shape of your beard once filled in with pigment dots.
A topical anesthetic in the form of cream or gel is applied onto the area and left on for 15-20 minutes. This eliminates the pain, but you might feel some discomfort.
The tech uses an electric needle device to implement the pigment dots. This can take from a few minutes to an hour, depending on the amount of work that needs to be done.
Finally, your face is cleaned to remove residual pigment.
After the treatment, your face will be reddish and tender for a few days, and you might notice thin scabs forming over the results. All this is normal and will pass, but you need to be careful not to get the area contaminated and follow the aftercare routine your tech prescribes.
After about 6 weeks, you can go back for another session.
Image source: Instagram @scalplosangeles
How Long do the Results of Beard Micropigmentation Last?
Most clients can go 3-5 years without needing to refresh their beard micropigmentation.
It’s all very individual though, and it depends on your skin type, skincare, body chemistry, and lifestyle. Pigments fade somewhat faster from oily skin, and frequent sunlight exposure can also accelerate fading.
How Much Does Beard Micropigmentation Cost?
This depends on how much work you need done.
Total beard reconstruction is the most expensive, and it can cost as much as $2000. But most clients get minor corrections and those are usually several hundreds of dollars.
Beard micropigmentation is the safest and most natural-looking way to enhance your facial hair, and its results look great for a long time. However, beard microblading, a similar technique which can recreate the look of hair strands rather than emerging follicles, is also gaining in popularity. Read all about it in this guide.
Cover image source: Freepik