Permanent Eyeliner

Permanent Eyeliner: The Ultimate Guide

If you are a make-up lover, then eyeliner might be one of your best friends. It’s hard to imagine any make-up look without drawing those wings on, but in true honesty, this can be quite a daunting task, especially if you’re putting on your eyeliner every single day. This is why many women opt for having their eyeliner permanently tattooed on their face, just to make sure that they will have their discreet eyeliner on, perfect, at all times.

Numbers represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given time worldwide. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. A score of 0 means there was not enough data for this term.

Permanent make-up is a trend that’s really catching on, and apart from being able to opt for microbladed eyebrows or scalp micropigmentation, the industry has something new in store for us – the permanent eyeliner. However, since this is a procedure that’s still gaining a lot of popularity, you might not know everything that you have to about the process.

If you want to fully understand the art of getting your permanent eyeliner on, take a look at the following guide.

Click on the link to go directly to a specific step:


What is Permanent Eyeliner?

Even though it’s not actually like getting a regular tattoo (more on that below), permanent eyeliner is definitely a form of tattooing. Using state-of-the-art machines that consist of a low frequency needle, the artist will insert a certain pigment into the skin of your eyelids, thus ‘permanently’ drawing your eyeliner in the exact shape that you want.

The permanent makeup eyeliner technique does not scab and doesn’t cut into the skin with a blade. This is what makes the whole procedure completely non-invasive, and the fact that it also uses mineral-based pigments is also a plus. Another thing that you might expect will feature this procedure is a numbing cream for a comfortable experience.

Want to find out more about permanent eyeliner? Follow the links:

Permanent Eyeliner Cost

Permanent Eyeliner Before & After

Permanent Eyeliner Reviews

Permanent Eyeliner Videos

Permanent Eyeliner Salons

Who is the Right Candidate for Permanent Eyeliner Procedure?

Just like it’s the case with any example of permanent makeup, most people qualify as good candidates for the procedure of getting a semi-permanent eyeliner. However, there are certain things that the patients need to bear in mind before opting for this procedure.

Even though the client will have all of their questions answered on the first consultation with the artist, there are certain pre-existing conditions that can affect the final outlook:

  • People with diabetes
  • People with serious diseases such as cancer, epilepsy or autoimmune disorders
  • People with any bleeding disorders
  • People who take blood thinning medications
  • People who’ve recently had Botox injections or fillers


Is Permanent Eyeliner Just Like Getting a Traditional Tattoo?

As already mentioned, getting permanent eyeliner is a form of tattooing, but it’s nothing similar to getting a regular tattoo.

First of all, it’s not actually permanent (which you can read a bit below) – it’s just a term that the industry likes to use. It is considered such only because the pigment will remain in the skin forever, but the longevity of the color and the visibility will eventually fade to a certain extent. This is why this is also known as semi-permanent eyeliner, as a more modern technique, pigment technology and more advanced tools are used nowadays. 

The process is similar to getting a regular body tattoo, though – the needle is used in order to deposit pigment into your skin. However, the process differs in the way that the pigment is deposited only in the first layers of the skin, not that deep as in regular tattoos.


What is the Permanent Eyeliner Procedure Like? (step by step)


The procedure starts by getting the eye cleaned with a cotton round and a make-up removal product.


A cotton swab is used for the numbing cream that will make the whole procedure much more comfortable.


The artist will use magnifying glasses and gloves in order to add the pigment into the skin of your eyelid.


You will hear a slight buzzing sound (which is very similar to the one of the tattooing needle) and the artist will slowly begin to inject the pigment into your skin.


The artist will go back and forth over small sections of the lash line, most often two or three times, in order to make sure that the pigment will stay there.

Does Getting Eyeliner Tattoo Hurt?

The procedure of getting tattoo eyeliner is a non-invasive one, but the patient needs to know that it’s still a form of tattooing. It’s not that invasive as using a blade, but the patient will most likely feel a certain sensation. This sensation, however, is not painful, as the artist will use a numbing ointment or a cream. The final feeling might be just like a light scratching on the skin.

How Long Does the Procedure Last?

The whole procedure lasts approximately an hour, even though it could be different for various patients. However, if the patients want a style that’s a bit more complicated (more on that later), the procedure could last up to two hours, approximately.

How to Choose the Best Artist?

Bear in mind that, just like any other permanent makeup procedure, the right artist can either make or break your final look. Some artists have higher prices, but you need to know that higher prices are very often justified. You are not supposed to save money on procedures like these.

What you should also do is do a bit of a research on a certain artist – try to find as much photos of his or her work as possible and decide accordingly. Make sure that they use high-quality products and pigments as well.

permanent eyeliner treatment


How to Prepare for the Permanent Eyeliner Treatment?

There are a few things you should consider in order to prepare for the treatment properly:

  • Do not dye or perm your eyelashes for 2 days prior to your procedure
  • Inform your cosmetic tattoo professional about any eye surgery (cataracts, lasik) that you may have had
  • Avoid taking fish oil few days prior as it thins your blood which can tend to push out the pigment
  • Do not drink the night before the treatment, your pain threshold will be lower
  • Do not wear contact lenses during the procedure and for the next 24 hours
  • Wash your hair that morning – because you can’t get your healing tattoo wet
  • Don’t wear makeup to your appointment, as it will be removed at the site of the treatment
  • Take a panadol prior to coming if you are concerned about pain
  • Bring sunglasses to wear home as your eyes may be sensitive to light after the treatment
  • Relax! It’s not actually as scary as you might think.


What Can You Expect After the Procedure?

Upon finishing the procedure, you will be asked to clean the tattoo area every half an hour for the first day, in order to remove any lymph drainage. On the contrary, the lymph will turn to scabs, which is exactly how the color is lost. Bear in mind that lymph drainage is one of the most common unexpected skin reactions after getting any form of tattoo.

Things you should avoid in the aftercare period are:

  • You are not supposed to get the new tattoo wet for the next seven days. You will have to pay special attention to how you shower, wash your hair and face.
  • There is no down time, as you can continue with your activities in exactly the same way.
  • Most importantly, do not use make-up on or near the area for seven days, until your skin is completely healed.
  • Do not touch, rub or pick any of the scabs or dry skin that you might see on your face. However, everyone’s skin is completely different, so you may have or may not have scabbing.
  • Do not sleep on your face.

For a comprehensive day by day overview + extra tips for all skin types head out to Permanent eyeliner aftercare guide.

What if I Have Eyelash Extensions or Wear Contact Lenses?

If you have eyelash extensions, you should remove them at least a couple of days (or even a week if you want to be extra safe) before the actual procedure. If you remove the extensions very close to the appointment, there may be glue left behind on the lash line, which could interfere with the procedure and the final outcome of the permanent makeup eyeliner. Once the eyeliner heals, you might add the lash extensions once again.

If you wear contact lenses, you should take them out before the procedure. Be prepared not to wear them for few days after the procedure as well. Your eyes might be a bit swollen after the treatment, or even tender, so it’s better to opt for glasses for the time being.


Are Touch-Ups Necessary?

As far as the touch-ups are concerned, it’s quite normal that the permanent eyeliner will fade over time, just like it’s the case with all other examples of semi-permanent makeup.

The first touch-up might be expected after 4-12 weeks. This appointment will also last an hour or so and it is done after the skin heals, so it will make it possible to absorb more pigment.


How Long Does the Eyeliner Last and Can it Ever Fully Disappear?

One of the reasons why tattooed eyeliners are also known as semi-permanent eyeliners is because they typically last somewhere between a year and three, depending on the artist and the quality of the ink.

Even though the ink will be permanently injected into the skin, the color will eventually fade. This means that the chances of the color fully disappearing are quite high. However, since everyone’s skin is different and holds the pigment differently, it’s difficult to say precisely how long it will take for the color to fade (even though it is expected to completely fade after three years, if not sooner).

Will I Lose Some Color During the First Week?

Just like it’s the case with most of the permanent cosmetic procedures, you might expect that some of the color will fade in the first thirty days.

You might think that the permanent make up eyeliner is very strong once the procedure is done, but note down that some of the ink will fade in the first month. Do not panic. This is only because the color always appears darker first, and slowly lightens in the first seven days. As a result, you will get an eyeliner that looks completely natural.

Browse our Permanent eyeliner before and after gallery for more results.

permanent eyeliner styles and colors


What are the Risks and Side Effects of Permanent Eyeliner Treatment?

Permanent eyeliner is a serious cosmetic procedure and therefore must be performed by a licensed, well trained professional. Some of the risks or potential complications that should be considered before the actual treatment, are:

  • Infection. Unsterile equipment and needles can easily pass along infections such as hepatitis and staph bacteria.
  • Allergic reaction. Even though rare, allergic reactions to the ink used in permanent makeup can be very serious, as it’s difficult to fully remove all of the pigment.
  • Granulomas. These are nodules that may form around material that the body perceives as foreign, including particles of tattoo pigment.
  • Scarring. If you are prone to developing scars, you may be at risk of keloid formation (these are scars that form beyond normal boundaries).
  • Removal problems. Removing permanent makeup, or any kind of tattoo, is a painful, slow process. It can take several visits to a doctor to permanently remove the ink, and it’s often an expensive, painful procedure.
  • Changing trends. Although it may seem tempting to always have your face looking fresh and ready to go, consider that today’s looks might seem dated in a few years.


How Bold Should My Eyeliner Be?

Different women prefer different styles, as everything depends on their liking, their hair color, eye color or even skin tone. The most important thing, however, is to determine how bold you want your eyeliner tattoo to be. You should definitely take your current eyeliner into consideration – how thick do you wear it now?

There are 4 different styles that you can opt for:

Eyelash enhancement

This is an extremely subtle application of the tattoo and one of the hottest nowadays. It can be done in two different ways, as either a thin line that does not leave the lash area, or as a dot next to each eyelash. This style does not give the look of an eyeliner tattoo, though, but rather makes your eyelashes fuller and thicker.

This is a great option for all the women who want their eyelashes to appear thicker, but it’s also a procedure that many guys opt for.

Thin eyeliner

Even a thin line can make your eyes pop, and this is the best alternative for all the women who do not like to wear thick eyeliners. This is a good option for many, because it allows building up the eyeliner and making it thicker with the help of make-up, while still having that thin eyeliner line in the morning when they wake up.

Medium-width eyeliner

This option is the best for women who wear make-up every day and want a look that’s somewhere between natural and bold.

Thick eyeliner

This should not be selected by every woman, but rather by those who wear a significant amount of make-up on a daily basis. If you want to opt for a thick tattoo eyeliner, you need to be ready to commit to a permanently bold makeup look.

PMUHub tip: Remember, you can always add to the eyeliner, but you can never take anything away. So bear in mind that you really need to be sure about the thickness that you want before opting for the actual procedure.

Can I Choose the Color and Style?

Next up, you will have the option of choosing the color of your tattoo eyeliner. The two most popular colors are brown and black, and it would be best to stick with these two. Many facilities offer more diverse colors such as green, blue and violet, but you need to pay attention that you will have to stick to the color that you choose for a couple of years. Are you sure that you want to have colorful eyeliner every day for the next two years?

These are things that definitely need to be thought about, so make sure not to reach a decision you might regret later on. If you’re pale or blonde, then you might choose the brown eyeliner as it looks more natural.

Moreover, you can choose the style – do you want a fad, a regular lash line or a winged eyeliner?

Think about the trends and if you want to have them tattooed on your eyelids. Also, bear in mind that the wings can lose their shape due to the fact that skin sags over time, so the safest option is to have a lash line. This is the reason why many trendy styles are never recommended for the procedure – they can be added to the regular eyeliner tattoo.


Can Permanent Eyeliner Be Removed?

It is possibly to remove a permanent eyeliner completely. Luckily, it takes permanent eyeliner pigment usually less time to fade, compared to a tattoo pigment on other areas of the body. On average about 3-5 laser treatments are required to remove the pigment entirely. Most patients can see changes after the first treatment.

The procedure itself is simple: after applying numbing eye drops into patient’s eyes, the aluminium eye shields are placed in the eye sockets in order to fully protect the eyes from the laser. The whole process usually takes anywhere from 10-15 minutes, and the numbing drops stop working approximately after an hour.


How Much Does it Cost?

The prices of getting a permanent makeup eyeliner can vary a lot, but the approximate price of the initial application is anywhere from $500 to over $1000, depending on the style, color and thickness of the eyeliner. The touch-ups can cost around $200 – $700.

Visit Permanent eyeliner cost page for fuller understanding of treatment’s price and factors that affect it.


Permanent eyeliner is definitely a time-saving decision and it can indeed be great, but you need to carefully decide what’s good for you – the artist, the style and the color.

Take time to consider all your options and decide on what’s suits best to your needs.

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