Microblading Numbing Cream – Detailed Guide
Learn all about microblading numbing cream, what ingredients it can contain, how to use it for best results, plus our top product picks to try out!
DISCLAIMER: Check local rules and regulations regarding topical anesthetics before you use any numbing product on any client.
As a microblading artist, you should always strive to provide your clients with the most comfortable experience possible.
In order to do this, the use of numbing creams before and during the procedure is highly recommended.
Microblading numbing cream is not only an ideal solution for dealing with that scratchy feeling of microblading needles, but it can also reduce bleeding from tattooing and make it easier for artists to see where they are applying the pigment.
Read this guide to learn more about numbing cream types and best practices for microblading procedures.
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Why You Should Always Use Microblading Numbing Cream
Tattooing of the skin implies injecting pigments into the dermis layer with thin needles. Microblading is similar in the sense that it’s a process that also implies breaking open the skin by creating hair-like scratches with a thin blade.
This method can be uncomfortable and even painful for most clients since the sharp tool used during the procedure reaches nerve endings located in the dermis layer of the skin.
By applying a numbing cream for microblading on top of your clients’ eyebrows they are less likely to feel any discomfort during the procedure and have side effects like redness, bruising, or inflammation.
This is because the numbing agent found in the cream will prevent the body from sending any inflammatory signals that may cause the sensation.
After the procedure, your clients may experience slight irritation but it should fade away once the skin has healed.
Keep in mind that the numbing effect is only temporary and wears off depending on the formulation, but in general, it should last anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours.
This is why investing in a secondary numbing cream for microblading may be beneficial to prolonging the feeling of comfort.
Image source: Instagram @zensaskin
Which Types of Numbing Cream Exist?
There are two different types of numbing creams that can be used for microblading:
Pre-Numbing Cream for Microblading
A topical anesthetic cream is used before the microblading procedure and applied on unbroken skin to prep it.
You can apply it to the brows before you even start pre-drawing and measuring, or after you’re done mapping in which case it will last you a little bit longer.
The main ingredients in topical anesthetics are lidocaine, tetracaine, and benzocaine which can be found in a mixed numbing cream formula or separately.
Out of these 3, lidocaine is by far the most common ingredient found in numbing creams since it’s been proven to provide the most intense numbing sensation and doesn’t affect pigment implementation during the procedure.
Secondary Numbing Cream for Microblading
The effects of pre-numbing creams aren’t as long-lasting as you may think and they can wear off before the procedure is done. That’s where a secondary numbing cream for microblading comes into play.
Secondary numbing creams are actually not creams, but liquids or gels that can be used on broken skin to prolong the numbing sensation until the end of the microblading treatment.
Before applying numbing cream, remember to do a patch test on every client to reduce the possibility of an allergic reaction.
Keep in mind that epinephrine-based numbing agents aren’t recommended for use on clients with high blood pressure or similar conditions.
Epinephrine can increase the heart rate and force of contraction, thus increasing the output of blood and raising blood pressure so opt for a lidocaine, tetracaine, and benzocaine mix formula (or BLT) instead.
Secondary numbing can also be used as the only numbing solution once you’ve done the first pass and the skin has been broken, depending on your client’s pain threshold.
Image source: Instagram @zensaskin
How to Properly Use Numbing Cream for Microblading
Before using any numbing solution on your clients, instruct them not to drink any alcohol 24 hours before their treatment, or the numbing solutions won’t be as effective.
After you’ve done a patch test, proceed with applying a primary numbing cream by following these steps:
- Clean and exfoliate the eyebrow area thoroughly with soap, water, and exfoliator to remove dirt, sebum, and makeup residue, then dry the area completely before applying numbing cream.
- Apply a thick coat of numbing cream (2 mm thick) to the area.
- Cover the eyebrow area with plastic wrap. The heat under the cling film will help activate the cream and keep it from drying out.
- Leave the numbing cream and wrap in place for 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the strength of the numbing agent.
- After 25-30 minutes, remove the cling film, wipe the cream away with a paper towel and your client is ready for a pain-free microblading session.
Later on, if you want to use a secondary numbing solution, apply it in a thin layer with a clean q-tip on the treated area. Leave it on for about 30 seconds and wipe it clean.
Your client may experience a slight stinging sensation for the first few seconds, but it will begin to subside as the numbing takes effect.
How to Properly Remove Numbing Cream Before the Procedure
Learning how to properly remove numbing cream from your clients’ eyebrows is as important as following the right steps when applying it.
The best thing to do when removing primary numbing cream is to use the side of a q-tip stick, for example, stretch the skin at the tail of the eyebrow and gently wipe away the cream starting from the head of the brow.
Next, take a cotton pad and gently pat down the treated area to remove any excess. Use a spoolie to comb through the client’s eyebrows to see their natural growth pattern and pick up on any residue.
Remove secondary numbing gel by wiping it off with a cotton pad or q-tips when necessary, since its texture and consistency is much thinner and easier to remove.
Does Microblading Hurt Without Numbing Cream?
Microblading can be quite uncomfortable and painful if no numbing cream is used during the procedure.
Depending on the client’s pain threshold, you should apply a 5% strength lidocaine cream before the treatment, which is the maximum concentration of lidocaine that you can use on your clients.*
This formulation should be strong enough to work on most people.
However, if your client still feels significant discomfort, you can apply a topical anesthetic with multiple numbing ingredients, like the previously mentioned BLT cream (benzocaine, lidocaine, and tetracaine).
*This may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Check with your local authority.
Can Numbing Cream Affect Microblading Results?
Numbing creams do not affect the outcome of the microblading procedure.
They can, however, reduce bleeding if they contain vasoconstrictors and make it easier for the artist to see where they are applying the pigment. Numbing creams can also be beneficial to faster healing.
Image source: Instagram @sublimebeautydistrict
What’s the Best Numbing Cream For Microblading?
The staple between microblading artists and within the microblading community is a lidocaine-based cream formula since lidocaine is an agent that causes allergic reactions the least often.
You should also have a BLT (benzocaine, lidocaine, tetracaine) pre-numbing cream at hand if the lidocaine cream isn’t strong enough for your client.
To help you along with your choice, here’s a look at our top product picks when purchasing a lidocaine-based numbing cream and a BLT numbing cream for microblading:
What to Avoid When Purchasing Numbing Cream
When purchasing microblading numbing cream, you should avoid making the following mistakes:
Refrigerating Your Numbing Cream
Never store your numbing cream or secondary numbing gel in extreme temperatures like cold or heat. They are meant to be stored in a cool, dry place, and do not require refrigeration.
Not Cleaning Your Client’s Skin Before Application
Numbing cream works best when applied on thoroughly cleaned, prepped skin.
Keeping Your Numbing Cream Open
Remember to close your numbing cream and gel tightly immediately after use, to prevent oxidation.
Never use microblading numbing cream or gel on clients who are pregnant or nursing. There is not enough research to show that numbing creams or gels are safe for the fetus.
Microblading Numbing Cream – Main Takeaways
Microblading numbing cream is an essential part of every microblading procedure because it takes away from the discomfort experienced by the client. It also supports quicker healing and easier pigment application.
Lidocaine-based creams and secondary numbing gels are indispensable tools to have in your microblading arsenal for giving your clients a smooth and pain-free microblading experience.
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