Lip Blush Healing Process - Day by Day
Read our guide through the lip blush healing process to learn what to expect day by day, and protect your lips from infection and patchy healing.
Last updated August, 2023.
Lip PMU application implies breaking the surface of the skin, so it entails a short lip blush healing process, although there’s no downtime per se, and it won’t disrupt your everyday routine.
After the treatment, you will experience some short-term side effects like swelling and tenderness, and your lips will start a peeling cycle that will last about 10 days. The lip healing process is relatively short, but be prepared for some discomfort.
Here’s a detailed overview of what to expect during the lip blush healing process day by day.
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How Long Does the Lip Blush Healing Process Last?
The superficial lip blush healing process lasts about 7-10 days for most people. That’s how long it takes for the surface of the skin to heal – but it takes about a month for the tissue underneath to heal completely and for the pigments to settle.
Once the peeling ends, you can consider your lip tattoo healed, but if you want to get a touch up, you need to wait about 6 weeks, because further trauma to tissue that hasn’t healed 100% can cause permanent scarring.
Lip tattoos are done with an electric PMU device. The artist pierces the skin in countless tiny dots and builds up the color opacity as soft or as saturated as you want. So, the skin is broken and it has to go through the recovery process.
With different shading patterns, various styles of the lip tattoo are achieved, but the lip blush healing process is more or less the same for all of them.
Image source: Instagram @jasminediebelius_pmu
Stages of the Lip Blush Healing Process Day by Day
After your session, the skin of your lips will go through several stages of the permanent lip color healing process. It needs to recover from the trauma and close up the micro-wounds.
If you notice any unusual symptoms or extreme irritation throughout your lip blushing healing process, contact your artist. You may be having an allergic reaction, or an infection.
Here is a general timeline for lip blush healing.
DAY 1: Swelling, tenderness, intense color
Let’s explain what you can expect on day 1.
The lip tattoo healing process starts halfway through the procedure. Your lips will probably start swelling towards the end of the tattooing session. This is a natural reaction to the trauma.
Everyone experiences a different degree of swelling, so be prepared for anything from minor swelling, to your lips doubling in size.
Don’t panic – this is normal and it will subside.
They’ll also keep oozing lymph in the first few hours – icky, but normal. Blot it off as instructed.
The swelling can cause your lips to look asymmetric – this too will subside. The same goes for minor bruising some clients experience.
Apply an ice pack to minimize the swelling. Make sure the surface that comes in contact with the treated area is clean.
After the numbing used during the procedure stops working, you will probably feel some tenderness, or even mild pain. Check with your artist if it’s okay to take a painkiller.
Follow the cleaning routine prescribed by your artist.
The color of your lips is very intense. You may love it, or you may feel like it’s too much – either way, that’s not the true shade the pigments will have.
The color will fade significantly over the next few days, and your lip tattoo will look 40-50% lighter once the 6 weeks have passed. You can book a touch up when the lip blush healing process ends and go darker.
For most clients, the pigment shade looks its darkest in the first 48 hours or so. After that, it starts fading.
DAY 2: Less swelling, more tenderness, and a lot of dryness
On day 2, some symptoms have subsided, but new ones emerge.
Your lips should be closer to their normal size, but still a bit swollen. If they don’t go back to their original shape within a few more days, contact your artist. You may be experiencing an allergic reaction.
Your lips still feel tender to the touch. You may experience a slight burning sensation similar to a sunburn.
Dryness kicks in. Your lips will feel tight and they may start chapping. The scab film is forming.
Apply the prescribed moisturizing ointment frequently to minimize the discomfort and prevent heavy scabbing.
Keeping your lips moisturized forms a film-thin layer of scab that will peel evenly, instead of thick, patchy scabs that will pull out too much of the pigments.
Don’t touch your lips! If you pick at the scabs, your lips will heals patchy.
Moving your lips may feel uncomfortable. Try to control your motions, eat in tiny bites and drink through a straw to prevent the scab from cracking until it’s formed.
They don’t look too attractive at this point, but muscle through it. It will be worth it!
Here’s a couple of specialized moisturizers safe to use during the lip tattoo healing process:
DAYS 3 AND 4: Heavy peeling and dryness
You’re entering what will probably be the least attractive phase of your lip blush healing process.
The first round of peeling starts. The scabby film will start falling off in patches and strips from the center of the lips outwards – the outline will be the last to peel.
This is the most annoying and unattractive phase of the lip tattoo healing process, but be patient and control yourself – don’t pick at the scabs.
Your lips will still feel very dry and tight – apply the prescribed moisturizer to relieve it.
As with any wound, as it heals, it’ll start itching. Don’t rub or scratch your lips – you’ll rip off the scabs and cause patchy color healing.
DAYS 5-10: More minor peeling and color ghosting
The worst is behind you. Be patient just a bit longer.
The first round of peeling ends, but there may be some additional light peeling. Wait it out and don’t pick at the chapped skin.
Once peeling ends completely, you can consider your lip tattoo healing process finished. For most people, it stops around day 10. Once it stops, you can start wearing makeup and abandon the aftercare routine.
If your lips are still peeling at that point, be patient and follow the aftercare routine for a few more days.
The color has faded significantly – so significantly, in fact, you may think the treatment didn’t work.
Don’t start panic-texting your artist asking for a color boost – this is a normal part of the lip color healing process.
The color will re-emerge and take its final shade within 6 weeks. That’s the process of pigment settling and you can’t speed it up.
Image source: Instagram @prettyfaceink.adl
If you’ve ever had cold sores, or herpes, you’ll need to take an antiviral medication before and after the treatment. The tattooing can cause a cold sore flare up, which can disrupt the lip tattoo healing process.
Consult your GP.
What to Avoid During the Lip Blush Healing Process
- Don’t get your lips soaking wet. Clean them by blotting them with a damp cotton pad. Drink through a straw. If they do get wet, dry them by patting ASAP.
- Don’t touch, rub, or pick at your lips. Let them peel at their own pace. If you rip off the chapped skin, you can pull out the pigments and your lips will heal patchy.
- Avoid contact with any surface that’s not clean, including your fingers. You risk contaminating the sensitive area with bacteria and developing an infection.
- Don’t expose your lips to sunlight. It accelerates pigment fading and can cause the color to change.
- Don’t go swimming. Don’t take long, hot showers, and don’t go to saunas or steam baths. Try to keep your lips dry (apart from the prescribed moisturizer). Otherwise, you risk developing an infection.
- Don’t get toothpaste on your lips. Here’s how your should brush your teeth during healing.
- Don’t put any products apart from the prescribed moisturizer on your lips. No makeup for at least 10 days.
- Don’t sleep on your face.
- Don’t eat spicy or salty foods. They’ll sting. Cut any food into small pieces to prevent the scab from cracking.
- Don’t drink alcohol. It’ll sting and dry out your lips further.
- Don’t drink or eat anything too hot – it will make the swelling worse.
- Don’t smoke.
- Don’t get any beauty treatments. If harsh ingredients get onto the area they’ll irritate the skin, and can disrupt the pigments from settling properly.
- Don’t get teeth whitening.
- Refrain from kissing. You risk developing an infection, and you’ll rip off the chapped skin.
Is the Permanent Lip Color Healing Process the Same for All Styles?
How much your lip will peel depends on how much work was done. The stages of lip tattoo healing process are universal, but everyone experiences a different degree of the symptom severity.
This may depend on the style of lip tattoo you got.
The lip blush healing process is more severe if you got a more saturated look or full lip color. It’s done by tattooing the whole surface of the lips, including the outline, so the entire area will peel.
The aquarelle lips healing process will probably entail a bit less flaking, as this style doesn’t imply such a dramatic outline and the outer edge is not treated as much as with other patterns that involve PMU lip liner. So the center of the lips will peel more than the outer parts.
Ombre lip blush healing does the opposite, since the pigment saturation is highest towards the edges, and decreases towards the center. So the scabbing will be heaviest around the lip outline.
Permanent lip liner only treats the edges of the lips, so that’s where the scab forms.
Depending on pigment saturation, your lip tattoo healing may take less than 10 days.
Image source: Instagram @madebymchl
Lip Blush Healing Process – Main Takeaways
In the first 10 days after your appointment, your lips will go through several stages of the lip blush healing process. You can expect some swelling, followed by peeling.
Be prepared for some discomfort like tenderness, dryness, and itching, but it’ll end quickly.
Follow the prescribed aftercare routine to make sure your permanent lip color healing process goes smoothly and your results turn out great. This implies regular cleaning and moisturization, avoiding certain activities, and protecting your lips from contamination.
Lip tattoo healing stages are the same for all styles, but lip liner or aquarelle lips healing may be less severe.
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