Aftercare following a microblading or any other permanent makeup or paramedical tattooing procedure is crucial to the safe healing of your skin, but also to the retention of the pigments.
One of the instructions your artist will give you is to avoid exercise after microblading for a certain time. You may be surprised by this – what correlation could there possibly be between your brows and your workout?
Well, there are definitely restrictions on when can I exercise after microblading. Allow us to elaborate.
How Long Should I Avoid Exercise After Microblading?
Avoid exercise after microblading for 2 weeks. This is how long the incisions need to close up.
You may come across conflicting information. Some artists advise 7 days, some will even say you can do light exercise the very next day. This is risky. You might get away with this and your PMU may go undamaged, but since you just paid a not insignificant sum for the treatment, you don’t want it to be money down the drain.
Exercising earlier than the 2-week mark could affect the quality and longevity of your permanent makeup results.
It would be useful to refrain from outdoor workouts for a couple of additional weeks – you don’t want to expose your brows to sunlight too soon. Or, find a sweat-proof sunscreen which will actually stay on your brows even if you’re sweating.
Learn more about other aspects of microblading aftercare in this guide.
Why Is Exercise After Microblading Forbidden?
Exercise after microblading and other PMU before the 14 days elapse can increase the chance of infection or irritation, may slow down the healing process, and could affect the quality of the healed results. Let’s explain each risk.
High Chance of Infection
If sweat gets into the incisions of microblading or the punctures of machine micropigmentation, it creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Moisture combined with heat (exercising raises your body temperature) means perfect conditions for bacteria to reproduce and cause an infection.
It Makes Irritation Worse
Your skin is already irritated from the procedure. Exposing it to sweat will just make it worse. You’ll feel more uncomfortable and it’ll be harder to refrain from touching the area, which is a huge aftercare no-no.
Slowing Down the Healing Process
The micro-wounds need to be kept dry at all times. The only scenario when they can get wet is the regular cleaning, and even then you only need a damp cotton pad, and to dry the area immediately afterward.
Getting the freshly implemented pigment moist outside of the necessary cleaning affects its settling process. As a result, the longevity of the brows can be shortened. Pigment settling is a delicate process and you don’t want to do anything that can affect the retention.
The Chemical Composition of Sweat Affects the Pigments
Sweat contains salt, and salt affects the pigments. In the first 2 weeks after a treatment, the pigments are still settling into the skin, so they’re very susceptible to chemical reactions, be it exposure from the outside or from within.
Sweat comes into contact with the pigment from both directions.
As you perspire, sweat inevitably seeps downwards, and large amounts of it can travel down your forehead and into the treated area. Since sweat is extracted through pores, it comes into contact with the pigment from the inside. It can literally push it out of the skin.
The biggest problem is the relatively high content of salt in sweat. Salt is a notorious pigment-killer. In fact, the most popular removal method is centered around the fact that salt extracts pigment from the skin.
Saline removal opens up the skin and injects a saline solution into the spots where unwanted pigments are placed. The salt dries up the pigment and it gets taken away with lymph, blood, and the scab that forms on the surface.
So you definitely don’t want to introduce a component used to remove unwanted pigments into your freshly done and very much wanted microblading.
Learn more about saline permanent makeup removal here.
When Can I Exercise After Microblading Touch Ups?
Again, only after the 2-week mark.
A microblading touch up may do less work than the original session, but all the same rules of aftercare apply. Your skin will be broken once again and more pigments will be implemented. The recovery process may not be as intense as the first time around, but the skin still needs to go through all the stages and the additional pigment needs to settle in.
So, skip your workout.
Here’s some more info on brow healing after the touch up.
What If It’s a Really Light Workout?
Skip it. There isn’t really a formula that can determine how much you’ll be sweating during a particular gym session – many factors determine this and you simply can’t guarantee you’ll finish your workout 100% sweat-free.
The exception may be, like, really light in-door yoga. Anything more intense than that is not worth the risk.
Exercise after microblading is really only acceptable if you’re a professional athlete who absolutely can’t go 2 weeks without working out. If that’s the case, always wear a sweatband above your brows and clean them as soon as possible. Be prepared for the possibility of your healed results not turning out perfect and having to get more frequent touch ups.
What About Exercise After Permanent Eyeliner?
Wait 2 weeks! All the same rules apply.
And Exercise After Permanent Lip Blush?
Again, wait 2 weeks. Lip blush is the permanent makeup procedure where the most pigment is extracted during the healing process anyway, so you don’t want to cause additional pigment loss. Avoid sweating as much as you can, drink through a straw, and refrain from kissing!
The problem with exercise after microblading or other PMU procedures isn’t in the workout itself, but rather in the perspiration it produces. So, that principle translates to all activities – if it makes you sweat, try to avoid it in the 2 weeks after your procedure.
We know some things are out of your control and you can’t really pause your life just because you got your brows done, but it’s all about calculating the risks and determining your priorities.
Cover image source: Freepik