The PMU industry has exploded so much over the past few years that it’s now a really competitive branch and every new artist is trying to find their place under the brow sun. With the competition so strong, an artist who wants to make a name for themselves has to perfect their skill, but also to come up with ways to attract clients.
With the popularity of the initial microblading technique so huge, everyone is trying to come up with a spin-off that will make their work stand out. We are now witnessing the number of permanent makeup treatments doubling in comparison to what was available 5 years ago, with many new trends and brow tattoo styles emerging.
One of those that pops up every now and then is 6D microblading, or 6D eyebrow embroidery. It sounds cool at first but then you start to wonder – what exactly does the 6D stand for? How is it different from basic 3D microblading?
PMUHub explores this elusive phenomenon.
What Is 6D Microblading?
With so much vagueness around this treatment that’s made its way onto some artists’ service menus, one thing is clear enough – it’s a form of advanced brow tattooing that gives clients fuller arches that look like natural volume by drawing on extra hair strokes with a manual blade.
But everything else about it seems to be abstract.
Is it the same thing as microblading? Is it more advanced? How is it done?
This industry is still very new. The PMU terminology is a work in progress and different artists and academies call one and the same thing different names. The term 6D microblading seems to have emerged among South African PMU artists, but has made its way around the globe.
We bring you a run-down of different claims about this treatment and try to determine whether it’s a different technique, or just a way of branding microblading done by certain artists as something fresh and unique.
Image source: Instagram @makeupzonebyserpildurmu
Explanation #1 – 6D Microblading Is More Complex and Advanced
Some artists offering the treatment claim that it’s a more complex version of microblading. It features more hair strokes drawn closer together. Apart from the basic, long strokes, it features more short strokes that accompany the long ones. That way, an illusion of extra volume is created, but it also makes the arches look more natural, as natural arches contain baby hairs, too.
Explanation #2 – 6D Microblading Uses Thinner Blades
Others claim that 6D microblading is done with thinner needles than basic microblading. While most artists do microblading with .25 blades, there are artists who prefer to use .18 blades which are thinner and thus create more delicate, crisp strokes. So some call microblading done with thinner blades 6D microblading, while others call it nanoblading, although nano brows are usually done with a machine.
This explanation is closely connected with the 1st one. Thinner blades allow for more hair strokes to be fit into the arch, and thus more complexity.
Image source: Instagram @jacke.rizo
Explanation #3 – 6D Microblading Doubles the Volume of 3D Microblading
Calling this rich pattern of hair strokes 6D microblading might be a cute way to suggest that it doubles the volume provided with regular, or 3D microblading. This might be the most valid theory – artists found a creative way to describe both the similarities and the differences in the name of the treatment itself.
It’s a way to present the treatment as a spin-off on microblading designed for clients who want maximum volume, but with hair strokes alone, without shading.
Explanation #4 – 6D Stands for 6 Directions of Hair Growth
The perpetual enigma – what does the D in 6D eyebrow stand for?
With 3D microblading, the analogy is clear. The look of hair strokes is so natural that they look like actual hairs that protrude from the skin until you get close enough to realize it’s actually an illusion. The hairs look like they are actual, three-dimensional hairs. But if we follow that logic, what are the 6 dimensions in 6D microblading?
An alternative that makes more sense and that some artists claim is the solution to the 6D microblading enigma is that it actually stands for 6 directions in which the hair strokes are drawn. In order to make the brows look as natural as possible, the artist will mix 6 different types of strokes into the arch.
They are of different lengths, go in different directions, have different curves, and form different angles with the natural hairs.
Explanation #5 – 6D Microblading Includes Shading
Some artists dub the combination of hair strokes with shading 6D eyebrow microblading. A manual tool or a machine is used to shade the areas between the strokes, thus adding more depth and dimension to the brow.
Image source: Instagram @artistasdebelleza
Explanation #6 – It’s Just a Marketing Gimmick
The final and most likely explanation – there is nothing special about 6D microblading and it’s exactly the same thing as the original treatment.
With the industry being so competitive at the moment, some artists decide to deviate from the established nomenclature and give their treatments branded names. They try to give their services names different from what they’re normally called.
This is fine – they have the right to make their services stand out, especially if they develop a unique stroke pattern or modify the technique in some way.
The problem is that clients get confused easily, and while they probably know a bit about treatment such as microblading or powder brows, they may not know what to expect when they come across a treatment with an elaborate name, and might even give up and go elsewhere, not having the energy to research the treatments.
So, What Should I Make of 6D Microblading?
If you’re researching brow PMU techniques and come across 6D microblading, or if you’re looking for a course and find one that claims to teach this technique, contacting the artist/trainer is the safest way to clarify what exactly it is. You might get several explanations from different technicians.
To find out more about microblading, check out our Ultimate Microblading Guide.
Cover image source: Pexels