There are several methods of applying permanent makeup for eyebrows. It can be done manually, with a range of blades and shading needles, or, it can be done with an electric device similar to a tattoo machine.
The most popular brow PMU procedure – microblading – is traditionally done with a hand-held tool with a blade that’s made up of several thin needles. However, the look of hairstrokes can also be created with a machine, and the look is called nano brows, or nanoblading. Microblading with machine is becoming more and more popular.
Let’s see why.
Image source: Instagram @esteticabrunacosta
Why Do Some Artists Do Microblading with Machine?
More and more artists have started recognizing the benefits of doing digital hair strokes, and they’re getting certified for both methods, here is why:
It’s Said to Be Gentler on the Skin
Manual microblading opens up the skin with a blade that’s dragged through its surface, and the incision is somewhat thicker than a brow hair. If a machine is used, the skin is broken with a vibrating needle that pierces the skin over and over again in tiny dots that add up to a hair stroke. The needle is as thin as a strand of brow hair, and it’s flexible.
The flexibility and the ability to set needle length lowers the chance of inserting pigments too deep.
The Healing Symptoms Are Less Intense
Both methods make micro-wounds on the skin, but the digital method of pigment implementation opens up the skin less, so the wounds close up faster. Therefore, the scabs that form are thinner, but the skin goes through all the healing stages nevertheless.
It’s More Suitable for Mature Skin
The flexible needle is safer for mature skin, which is normally thinner and more sensitive, and therefore more prone to damage with a manual blade.
It’s Suitable for All Skin Types
The manual method of microblading doesn’t combine well with oily skin. Clients with oily skin often notice their hair strokes blurring together after a while, plus they fade quicker and entail more frequent touch ups.
The nature of digital application of hair strokes makes them more resilient to sebum overproduction, so digital microblading works for all skin types, even skin with larger pores. They will still probably fade a bit quicker from oily skin, but not as quickly as manual hair strokes.
It Lasts Longer
Again, digital hair strokes are more resilient. Microblading with machine lasts around 2 years on average, while strokes drawn manually fade within 18 months for more clients. Of course, these are only tendencies, not rules.
Apart from skin type, the pace of pigment fading depends on body chemistry and lifestyle, but generally, digital strokes last a few months longer than manual ones.
What Does Microblading with Machine Look Like?
Both versions give similar results – brows filled in with extra hair strokes that look like natural hairs.
The difference in the look of manual vs digital hairstrokes is minimal, but it does exist. Digital hair strokes are thinner, since they’re done with a needle thinner than a blade. This allows them to be drawn closer together, so more strokes can be added into the brows. The strokes are crisper and more defined, and they look extremely realistic.
The strokes of manual microblading also look very realistic, but a bit thicker than digital ones. So clients who already have relatively full brows often go for manual strokes, while clients who have sparse brows or no brows at all might want to opt for microblading with machine.
Is the Price the Same for Manual and Microblading with Machine?
The prices are very similar. The price of traditional, manual microblading is around $600, while microblading with machine, or nano brows, is priced at an average $660. Of course, the prices for both treatments range from much lower to much higher than that. It all depends on your location and the artist’s experience.
So, Which Option Should I Go For?
Since the difference in the final results is minimal, you should primarily base your decision on the properties of your skin. If your skin is more mature, or if it’s oily and has larger pores, you should opt for microblading with machine. If it’s dry to normal, you can go for either one. That said, not many artists do digital hair strokes, as it requires special certification, so if you live in an area where PMU is not that much in demand, it might be a challenge finding an artist.
Cover image source: Unsplash