The Entire Microblading Healing Process Day by Day
One thing that freaks out my clients is the fact that some scabbing and "flaking" of the pigment is actually quite normal.
Unfortunately it may look like your brows are coming completely off, but don't let it freak you out because some of it is normal.
Because of this confusing process I've created an outline to help you understand what is normal and what isn't (including daily pictures of the process):
Day 1: I LOVE MY NEWS BROWS! Your brows are fresh, perfect and brand new. What's not to love?
(You can see how the brows become "patchy" as some scabbing occurs and scabs flake off. During this period it is CRITICAL that you do NOT pick off the scabs because you run the risk of pulling the pigment out.)
Day 2-4: "These are way too dark and thick." Your brows will actually get darker over this period of time, but don't freak out! They will lighten again.
Day 5-8: During these days your brows may be flaking and scabbing off. Make sure to NOT pick or remove the scabs or you may inadvertently remove some of your pigment!
Day 9-10: "My brows have completely fallen off!!" Your brows will appear like they are completely gone during this time, but don't worry - they will still be there! And this is also why it's important to have your touch up.
Days 11-28: "My brows are coming back but they are patchy!" Your brows will appear to be patch and incomplete during this part of the healing process. Most of these patches will fill in over time but if for some reason some area doesn't take the touch up will help fill the gap so to speak.
Day 42 (after touch up): "These are better than I could have ever imagined!!!" And now you are back to the way you felt after the first day Trust me when I say that this is a real cycle.
That is basically the process in a nut shell!
As you can see there are definitely lots of up's and down's that occur, and if you aren't ready for them they can definitely cause some stress.
But don't worry, as long as you listen to the aftercare instructions and follow them to a "T" you won't have any long term issues.
I will go over my recommendations to get amazing brows below but I want to show you another picture that can further outline what the finished product will look like.
This picture outlines the difference between the initial visit (healed after 7 weeks) and the final product (after the touchup).
One of the benefits of the touch up is to fill in any gaps that may get pulled out as a result of scabbing.
The most important thing you can do is set your expectations up early and TRUST your artist!
It is absolutely critical that you follow your aftercare instructions and trust in your artist to get the best possible result.
Is Scabbing normal after the first visit?
Scabbing is definitely a normal part of the healing process.
I'm a big fan of dry healing (I think it's better than ointment healing and you can read about why here).
Ointment healing results in a more crisp and defined brow when everything is said and done, but there is the issue of scabbing.
When using the ointment healing process some of the scabs are "covered" and are less likely to be "picked" off of your face.
The dry healing results in more scabbing (which is ok), but can be more tempting for people that have a tendency to "pick" them off.
Scabbing usually starts around day 5 (after your initial visit) and persists through day 10.
As the scabs naturally fall off it may look like your brow becomes "patchy".
This is OKAY. Don't let it freak you out.
Don't worry if it looks patchy, it will only be temporary.
As long as you don't pick the scabs off any pigment that is loosened in this process can be reapplied during the touch up.
Why you shouldn't "pick" your microblading scabs:
The microblading pigment is placed in a shallow well in your brows.
The scabbing and healing process can adhere to the pigment and if you pick it off you are literally pulling the pigment off of your face in the process.
This can basically undo all of the initial work and may result in a longer visit.
If you let the skin heal naturally it will "let go" of the pigment through the process.
It is normal that about 10-15% of the pigment will fall out or fade during the initial healing process, but can be re-applied during the touch up.
(Video of the microblading healing process and what brows look like after 85%+ retention by following all of the after care instructions.)
Microbladed Brows 6 Months Later
I know what your next question will be:
Do the brows actually stay on long term?
The answer is yes, they do!
As long as you follow the aftercare instructions you will get your reward:
Long last perfect brows! (example below)
This picture shows you the difference between fresh microbladed brows and what brows look like 6 months later.
The average length that brows last ranges from 9 to 15 months.
The two biggest factors for brow longevity include:
Ability to adhere to the microclading aftercare instructions
Getting in for your touch up within 6 weeks after your initial visit
As long as you do these two things you will ensure that your brows will last.
Some other factors that are out of your control may limit the longevity of your brows, but these aren't under your control.
Things like: how much oil your skin produces, your hormones and your genetics.
Because you can't change these factors it's important to focus on what you CAN change.
Emotional hoops you might go through during the healing process
The physical part of healing is only part of the journey.
Because your brows are such a huge part of your self confidence (in some women) there is also an emotional component that many women go through as they heal.
This is also normal, and I've attempted to go over this in detail below:
Your brows will get much darker and thicker from the time you leave until around day 5.
Be prepared for your brows to look harsh and possibly unnatural during this time period.
If you have a spouse or significant other tell them before hand to keep comments to themselves because even though you’ll know they will heal better it can still be hard since the brows are on YOUR face.
You’ve seen my healed pictures so be patient and know they will look perfect with time!
After the darkness wears off you’ll start scabbing and flaking, and underneath your skin it’s going to look like there is no pigment left.
Don’t worry: it’s still there and it comes back in with time.
Your skin’s healing process is just that… a process.
You did not go through that entire process for it to all be gone at day 7.
As long as you are following aftercare instructions to the T you have nothing to worry about.
Around week 3 and 4 when your skin is closer to being complete healed you will notice there are some patches and strokes that didn’t retain as they should have.
Just realize that it’s impossible to get your brows perfect on the first visit.
Which is why everyone needs to have their touch up:
Any missing pieces or strokes we want to fill in will be done at the touch up so please make sure you make this appointment a priority as well.
Without it your brows won’t ever be completely “done".
At this point (even around week 2 when you are completely scab free) you can put eyebrow makeup on to help even out any missing strokes.
Microblading Do's and Don'ts
Do only use a baby wipe to touch them
Do avoid brow area while you wash your face
Do sleep on your back if possible
Do put small bandaids on the ends if you are a side sleeper
Do keep them as BONE DRY as possible
Do NOT get them wet
Do NOT touch them for 24 hours
Do NOT sweat or workout
Do NOT put ointment, lotions or makeup on them
Do NOT stay in direct sunlight or go to a tanning bed
Do NOT pick, itch or rub your brows
Do NOT have hair touching your brows (bangs)
Do NOT use benzoyl peroxide, salicyclic acid, or retinoids
Do NOT use a sauna
Following these basic Do's and Dont's will help you achieve the best results possible.
Remember that during this healing process your worst enemy is anything that can get into your brows and up root the pigment.
That means things like sweat, lotions, creams, etc.
Stay away from these as your brows heal.
Another important factor, which is somewhat out of your control, is infection.
Infection can cause issues with pigment retention but shouldn't be a big problem if you follow the aftercare instructions.
Hi! I'm Kat and I write these posts. I'm obsessed with eyebrows, hair and anything related to fitness. Right now I do microblading, 3d brows and semi permanent eyebrows in Mesa, Arizona. Have questions? Leave them below!