Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2020, and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Although microblading and similar permanent makeup treatments are generally safe and non-invasive, with minimal chances of serious side effects, in certain cases they’re not a good idea.
Among those are pregnancy and breastfeeding. So, take a look at possible repercussions that may occur when opting for a microblading treatment while pregnant.
Microblading is a semi-permanent makeup treatment. It is similar to traditional tattooing, although it is not permanent. It is done in the dermis layer of the skin with a small blade that makes scratches. The pigment is inserted into the hair stroke alike scratches, making them look like hairs.
The result is natural-looking eyebrows that usually last 2-3 years. Some touch ups might be required as well, in order to keep the results of the treatment as fresh as possible.
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Pregnancy can have a whole range of effect on the body. Many women notice their hair, including eyebrows, gets thinner or starts falling out, so a frequent question for PMU artists is Can you get microblading while pregnant?, or Can you get ombre brows while pregnant?
Although trauma to the skin is minimal with permanent makeup for the eyebrows, the risk of infection is always present. This applies to less serious skin infections, and more serious blood infections like HIV or Hepatitis B, which can be very dangerous for the fetus.
Antibiotics that are used in treating severe infections are another thing best avoided while expecting.
Additionally, PMU artists report that the hormonal changes that happen during pregnancy often have a strange effect of the pigments injected during PMU. Most notably, they can affect the color, which can turn once the hormones are back to normal.
The situation is similar when it comes to shape. During pregnancy, most women experience swelling and a bit of a weight gain in different parts of their body, including the face, so the shape of the brows microbladed during pregnancy could end up looking totally wrong once everything goes back to normal.
The numbing cream used during PMU procedures contains a chemical called epinephrine. This ingredient is not to be used on pregnant women as it can affect the heart. In rare cases, it causes increased heartbeat, cardiac anomalies, and even fetal tachycardia.
The changes in hormone levels in pregnant women affect the circulation of blood, so extensive bleeding is possible during the procedure. This can lead to uneven settling of the pigments and patchy, unattractive results.
Hormone levels also slow down the healing of the skin, which means you are at risk of infection for a while after the procedure until the skin closes up completely.
Although any PMU professional knows the importance of quality pigments, no one can guarantee that the formula is 100% safe for the vulnerable fetus. PMU is a relatively new procedure and there have been enough studies into the safety of the procedure during pregnancy and possible effects on the baby.
Getting microblading isn’t a good idea until you’ve stopped breastfeeding. Infections and possibly unsafe substances from the pigments are passed onto the baby through breastfeeding, so it’s better to wait, even if you’re dealing with post-partum hair loss.
Getting a microblading touch up during pregnancy is no safer than getting the initial treatment, as it entails the same risks. So in case your brows have begun to fade, or you found out you were pregnant before you got the chance to do the mandatory 6-8 week touch up, it’s better to skip it.
Use topical makeup until you’ve had the baby and stopped breastfeeding. It may be inconvenient, but the health and safety of your baby are top priority.
If you’re activelly trying to concieve, it’s best to postpone your microblading appointment, as you may end up getting pregnant in the 6-8 weeks after the initial appointment and have to skip the touch up.
If you’re in any stage of the IVF (in vitro fertilisation), it’s best to postpone your microblading appointment. There is virtually no information on how the hormones injected as part of preparation for IVF may affect the PMU pigments and their retention.
Additionally, if you end up getting pregnant in the 6-8 weeks after the initial procedure, you may have to skip the touch up.
Once you’ve had your touch up appointment and your skin has healed from that completely, there’s no risk of infection, so it’s safe for you to start trying to get pregnant.
In order to be completely safe, general advice is to get your brows microbladed (or treated with any other semi-permanent makeup technique) once the pregnancy and brestfeeding period is over.
Most PMU salons and artists have a business policy where they don’t accept pregnant clientele. So, in case you came across some artists that do, please read the potential risks and repercussions listed above and then decide if it’s all worth it.