If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ll have heard of microblading – aka the secret to getting Insta-worthy brows. But microblading can move on over, because there’s a new eyebrow treatment on the scene and it promises even more natural looking face-framers.
Naturally we had to test it out, and I kindly volunteered as tribute (jk i’ve been wanting to do this like, forever). I contacted LVC, experts in the treatment, and spoke to one of the directors Kim Hunjan who gave me the lowdown.
Why nanoblading over microblading?
Now I’m a pretty low maintenance gal, so the idea of being able to forgo eyebrow makeup everyday was very appealing indeed. Kim explained “Korean Nanoblading is a newer form of microblading using really fine needles to mimic crisp fine hair strokes. It is the perfect fix for uneven, sparse or fine eyebrows.”
Pigment is dispensed into the skin from the tip of the needle, et voila, perfect brows. At LVC, EMBO (sourced from Germany) is the pigment of choice; it’s plant based and contains no nasties. Um, where do we sign?
What exactly is the nanoblading process?
Your technician will use a conventional needle device – which is the size of a hair strand and very flexible – to create the hair strokes. They will do this freehand; no machine is used like in tattooing. As the needle sits approximately 0.75 mm outside the cartridge it is easier to apply the exact pressure needed to create the super fine and precise hair strokes that give the look of a perfect, yet natural, defined brow. The very tip of the needle is dipped into the pigment and the vibration pulls the pigment down into the cartridge. It is then dispensed from the needle into the skin. It’s said that it’s easier to get a good result from Nanoblading as there is less trauma to the skin and it’s almost impossible to implant the pigment too deep, which is where many technicians (who aren’t highly skilled) can go wrong with microblading.
How long does it take?
From the time of my initial consultation to leaving with my new BFF’s (aka brows) it was around an hour and a half. First off I met Kim, who introduced me to nanoblading technician, Meg, who would be doing my brows. She was super lovely and chatty, immediately putting me at ease; she applied numbing cream and explained that in 15 minutes the area would be numb enough that I wouldn’t feel any real pain. We then discussed my brows, the exact shape and style I wanted and I showed her some pictures of my ideal result. This led us on to our fave bloggers and their brows but I digress. This all took 40 minutes which seems like a lot of time spent discussing eyebrows, but when someone is shortly going to be near your face, with a needle, making semi-permanent changes, you’re kinda glad to be discussing in depth… Once we had drawn on the shape of my eyebrows-to-be and I was sure I was happy, it was go time.
The actual nanoblading process took around 35 minutes, but Meg is known for being super quick and skilled; the process can take anywhere between 30 minutes and 2 hours.
Does it hurt?
Not really. It’s more of a slight discomfort, and the numbing cream really did help a lot. It felt like a light scratch, but like anything else, you soon get used to it. Some people compare it to the feeling of getting your eyebrows threaded, but I actually thought it was less painful.
What’s the recovery like?
When Meg handed me the mirror, I braced myself to see a bloody, red, swollen mess, but was pleasantly surprised to find that my brows looked completely normal and the shape was to die for – if I do say so myself. I was given a cream that I had to apply daily, and was under strict instructions not to get my brows wet for 2 weeks (this included sweating which meant the gym was out *sob*). I was also told not to scratch or apply any make-up/creams to my brows other than what I had been given. I was also told to avoid direct sun exposure (no danger of that in England amirite) and tanning beds or fake tan.
I’m almost at the end of my two week main recovery period now, and the only real issue I had was trying to avoid getting my brows wet whilst washing my hair in the shower – it’s no fun and i’ll admit one or two (or three) drops of water made their way onto the brows (sorry Meg). One trick I learnt towards the end was to literally wrap cling film around forehead, which wasn’t my best look, but seemed to work pretty well.
Cleansing my face was fine as I simply used a muslin cloth to cleanse around the area.
How long will it last?
Kim advises the treatment will last up to 2 years, depending on your skin type (oily skin tends to lose pigment faster) and how well you look after your brows. Keeping them as dry as possible for the first two weeks, not picking at scabs and avoiding sun exposure are some of the ways you can get keep them in tip top condition for as long as possible.
I am so darn happy with my brows – my face looks so much more defined when Im wearing no make-up, and not having to pencil in brows has made my morning routine a whole lot shorter. All hail LVC and the nano-brow!