Permanent Lipstick

Permanent Lipstick: The Ultimate Guide

There are so many things a woman needs to do in only 24 hours. One of them is putting some effort into looking good. Not everyone is blessed with perfect brows, plump lips and long eyelashes. Luckily, there is makeup to cover up what we don’t like about ourselves and boost our confidence.

Permanent makeup is becoming more and more popular, especially among those who want to look good as soon as they wake up an don’t want to waste time on making their brows even or making their lips plump every morning. One of the most popular treatments is permanent lipstick or lip tattoo, and here is everything you need to know about it.

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What is Permanent Lipstick?

Permanent lipstick is a treatment which involves inserting pigments beneath the first layer of the skin of your lips. It is also known as the lip tattoo, even though tattoo ink is rarely used anymore. Pigments are used instead and the result is more natural, a powdery look of your lips.

This treatment is a perfect solution for those who like wearing lipstick but don’t want to worry about it coming off every time they eat or drink something. Also, lip tattoo gives your lips fuller, makeup look and it is great for those who want to cover up their uneven lips.

Since no tattoo ink is used anymore, permanent lipstick does not last forever and it requires a touch up after some time. The color will fade away after some time and that is why it is more correct to say that it is a semi-permanent procedure.

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

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Permanent Lipstick Before & After

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Permanent Lipstick Salons

Who is a Good Candidate for Permanent Lipstick Treatment?

Anyone who likes wearing lipstick but doesn’t like the hassle of applying it several times a day. Also, women who want to add some volume to their lips. Lip tattoo won’t do as much as lip fillers, but it will definitely make your lips look more plump.

Permanent lipstick is also great for uneven lips. It will hide the defect and make them look more symmetrical.

Who is Not a Good Candidate for a Permanent Lipstick Treatment?

You should avoid or reconsider lip tattoo if you:

  • Are pregnant or nursing
  • Have hyperpigmentation
  • Use medicines that are known to be blood thinners
  • Have diabetes
  • Have psoriasis in the treated area
  • Have an auto-immune disease
  • You have anemia (pigment may not retain properly)
  • Have a history of keloid or hypertrophic scarring
  • Are undergoing chemotherapy


What Does the Permanent Lipstick Treatment Look Like?

Permanent lipstick treatment is a process of micropigmentation, which means that a needle is used for inserting pigment into the skin of your lips. It consists of the following steps:

STEP 1: Consultations

When you come to the appointment, ask your artist everything you need to know about the procedure and the aftercare.

STEP 2: Choosing the shape and color

Then you will together choose the shape and color of your lips. The artist will use a pencil to outline your lips and once you are satisfied with the choice, the procedure can start.

STEP 3: Numbing

The artist numbs the area with the application of topical anesthetic in order to lessen the pain.

STEP 4: Pigmentation

Pigmentation means insertion of the pigment into the first layer of your skin.

STEP 5: A touch up

After your lips are healed, which usually takes 2-4 weeks, you should book a follow-up appointment. The artist will make some adjustments, add some color if it didn’t set in and round up the final look of your lips.

How Long Does Permanent Lipstick Treatment Last?

The treatment usually lasts 1-2 hours. It depends on the type of your skin. Some people are better candidates for lip tattoo, and the pigment is applied easily, while others don’t take the color so well. In that case, more pigment needs to be applied to those areas.

Is Permanent Lipstick Treatment Painful?

Lip area is very sensitive and it really sounds painful when you think about the fact that it is treated with a needle for an hour. However, a numbing cream is applied beforehand, in order to eliminate the pain. It is slightly uncomfortable.

How to Choose a Permanent Lipstick Artist?

Choosing the right permanent makeup artist might be the most important part, so take time and do your homework. Find out who the best artists in your area are. Ask your friends for recommendations and check out internet comments and ratings. Study their website and look for before/after photos.

It is important that your permanent makeup artist has a lot of experience, knows his job and is ready to answer all the questions about the treatment and the aftercare. Also, it has to be a person who works in a sterile environment and uses high-quality products. 

Most importantly, check if the artist is certified. Obtaining a certificate is a proof that the artist has completed the permanent makeup training and knows how to perform the procedure. Also, it means that the artist knows how each type of skin will react, what possible side risks might occur as well as to recommend the appropriate nourishing products.

How to Choose a Permanent Lipstick Color?

You should discuss with your artist which shade and color fit you best. You will take your skin tone and your personal preferences into consideration.

In general, it should be a neutral color, similar to the color of your favorite lipstick. You should be able to apply a lipstick later in order to enhance or change the color of your lips.  The most popular shade is soft pink.

Can I Have a Permanent Lipstick Treatment if I Have Lip Fillers?

Some artists avoid performing the treatment on people who have had lip fillers. On the other hand, there are those who are willing to do it. However, there is some required time that needs to pass between lip fillers and permanent lipstick treatment.

about permanent lipstick treatment


How to Prepare for Permanent Lipstick Treatment?

First of all, it is very important to find a reliable artist. So, do thorough research in order to find a good aesthetician who works in a sterile environment, has a lot of experience and recommendations.

In order to prepare for the treatment, avoid taking the following medicines, substances and vitamins since they cause your blood to thin:

  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Caffeine (coffee and tea)
  • Fish oil
  • Niacin
  • Vitamin E
  • Retinol-based products

It is also vital to take anti-viral medication before your procedure if you’re prone to cold sores. They can appear due to the needles treatment and negatively affect the healing process.

PMUHub tip: If you have any conditions or disease, check if you are a candidate for the treatment. Do not have botox or fillers at least a week before the treatment.


What Does Permanent Lip Makeup Aftercare Entail?

Your lips will be swollen and dark after the procedure. The aftercare period lasts 5-7 days, during which you should do the following things:

  • Use Vaseline, balm or coconut oil to nourish your lips.
  • Clean them with a cotton pad and a little bit of water after every meal.
  • Don’t wear any  makeup for a week.
  • Avoid spicy food. It is also recommended to take beverages on a straw and avoid food for two days.
  • Do not rub, scratch and peel the area.
  • Don’t expose your lips to the sun, hot tubs, tanning beds, saunas, swimming pools.

Can I Wear Makeup After the Permanent Lipstick Treatment?

Under no circumstances should you wear lipstick immediately after the treatment. You must wait until the healing period is over. Once your lips are not swollen anymore and all the scabs have fallen off, you can wear lipstick. Also, it is desirable not to wear any makeup in order to avoid it reaching the treated area and infecting it.

Be patient for at least a week and after that, you are free to apply makeup.


How Long Does the Healing Period Last?

The healing period lasts around one week. Your lips will be swollen at first and some scabbing will be involved. Also, the color will look too intense, but 50% of it will fade during the first week. It takes a little bit longer for the color to settle. During this period, you should religiously follow the tips your artist gave you, in order to avoid any discomfort during healing.


Should I Have a Permanent Lipstick Touch-Up?

Permanent lipstick is a procedure that requires touch-ups in order to last longer. However, they are not mandatory. The first one should be done 4-8 weeks after the initial treatment. After the color has settled, there might be some spots that need filling and imperfections to be corrected.

The frequency of touch ups depends on your skin type and your lifestyle. Annual touch-ups are recommended if you want to maintain the color as long as possible. Also, you can change the shade of your permanent lipstick at the touch-up appointment.

People with oily skin should have a touch up every six months. Also, people whose skin is very often exposed to the sun and water might need to retouch their lip tattoo more often. The color on these types of skin is prone to faster fading.


How Long Does Permanent Lipstick Last?

Even though it is called permanent lipstick, it lasts for 3 to 5 years, after which the color will fade. This is because pigment, not tattoo ink, is used. Also, lips are a very exposed area, which affects fading. However, if you have regular touch-ups you can prolong your permanent lipstick. It can last up to 10 years.

What Affects the Durability of Permanent Lipstick?

  • One of the factors that affect the durability of permanent lipstick is your skin type. People with oily skin will need frequent touch-ups in order to maintain the color.
  • Your lifestyle plays an important part, too. If you do a sport where you sweat or swim a lot, it is more likely that your tattooed lips will start losing its color faster.
  • The way you treat your permanent lipstick will also affect its longevity. If you have frequent touch-ups, it will naturally last longer.


Is Permanent Lipstick Safe?

Permanent lipstick is a safe procedure, if you choose a good artist and a good salon. A professional artist must use sterile equipment, disposable needles, and know their job. The artist must be aware of any skin conditions you might suffer from and warn you about side effects.

If you don’t break the aftercare rules and if you look after your lip tattoo carefully after the treatment, there is no need to worry.

Can You Be Allergic to Permanent Lipstick?

Some people are allergic to tattoo ink, but permanent lipstick treatment uses natural pigments which don’t cause allergic reactions.

If you are still afraid of having an allergic reaction, you can always do the patch test, which will show whether you will have an allergic reaction to a certain pigment or not.

Are There Any Side Effects of Permanent Lipstick Treatment?

Luckily, side effects are only short-termed and they usually involve:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Peeling and scabs
  • Scaring (not very common)

This should all disappear within a week.


Can Permanent Lipstick Be Removed?

In case you are not satisfied with your lip tattoo, it is possible to remove it. Like any other tattoo, it is done with a laser. However, it means more pain and spending more money.

So, before you decide you want to get rid of it, see how it can be fixed. If you don’t like the color, it can be changed at your next touch up appointment. If the situation is not hopeless, maybe you can just wait until the color fades and use products that speed up fading (retinol, vitamin C, or hydroquinone).

If your lip tattoo is really botched and you dread it, then opt for the laser treatment.


How Much Does Permanent Lipstick Cost?

The average price of permanent lipstick is $800.

The price depends on the location, the popularity of a salon, the expertise of the artist and the material used. If you want to make sure the job will be perfectly one by a professional, be ready to pay more than $1000.

Bear in mind that touch-ups are required if you want your lip tattoo to last longer. Your skin type and lifestyle will dictate the frequency of touch-ups. Most salons charge around $200 for every additional appointment.


Permanent lipstick or a lip tattoo is an ‘old but gold’ permanent makeup treatment, nowadays updated with the improved technique and pigments. It is quite convenient, effective, and a lot of women love it.

So, if you want amazing, colored lips every day, go for it. Also, don’t let the price be an important factor when you choose an aesthetician. Focus on the skillfulness and experience of the artist and the other factors mentioned above.

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