If you are considering permanent makeup but are nervous that it will hurt, just know that most of us have been in your shoes wondering the same thing! I bet you anything that 99.% of people who consider getting permanent makeup are nervous that the procedure will hurt. The simple answer is this: If you go to an experienced and caring permanent makeup artist, they should apply enough numbing cream so that you are comfortable during your procedure. Of course, there are always other factors.


Let us start with the obvious. If you go to a permanent makeup artist that was giving out a killer deal, they will probably try to cut costs in other ways to offset the big promotion! “Where in the world would they cut costs?” you might ask. Well, a fair amount of numbing cream would be the place to save! That stuff is not cheap! Some permanent makeup artists don’t care if their clients are numb and happy. They just try to work quickly to get them in and out of the pain. I have heard of other permanent makeup artists trying to cut costs and save money so they don’t apply a lot of numbing cream on their clients. That just sounds terrible! My motto is “A numb patient is a happy patient!”. I spare no expense when it comes to the comfort of my clients. You want to come in and get pampered, not come in and get battered and bruised!


If you have certain medical conditions, permanent makeup may not be right for you.

As I stated earlier, each permanent makeup procedure carries its own unique set of potential risks and individuals with certain medical conditions are at greater risk for unpleasant side effects! If you have any of the following medical conditions, please get checked out by your physician, for medical clearance, prior to scheduling an appointment for your  cosmetic tattoo.

  • Diabetes
  • Glaucoma
  • Pregnancy/Breastfeeding
  • Bleeding disorders such as hemophilia, platelet disorders or sickle-cell anemia
  • Heart conditions or uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Artificial heart valves or joints
  • Use of certain medications such as blood thinners or topical steroids


If you do not like doing research, permanent makeup may not be right for you.

Please be aware that there are potential side effects and complications that may occur after any type of cosmetic tattooing even if you go to a licensed professional with raving reviews. These include:


Pain – Like any other tattoo, permanent makeup tattoos can be uncomfortable. Some may even say they are slightly painful since you’re getting work done on sensitive areas of your body. Find an experienced permanent makeup artist (like myself) that believes “a numb patient is a happy patient”. Ask them to spare no expense when it comes to your comfort during the procedure!


Allergic Reactions – Although rare, allergic reactions to pigments do occur. If you know that you have sensitive skin or have had allergic reactions to pigment in the past, request that your practitioner tattoo a tiny test area before your big day. Please note that pigments used in permanent makeup applications are not regulated by the FDA.


Wounds – Is it safe to say that it is common sense that tattoos puncture the skin and create wounds? This means complications like bleeding, crusting, and swelling can occur. If you are on your period, you will have more bleeding. If you take Advil, have a glass of wine, or consume any other type of blood thinner before your procedure, you will have more bleeding which will lead to more bruising. Call/Text/Email your practitioner a couple days before and see what you should stay away from. With eyeliner procedures, corneal abrasions can occur. This is where the cornea is scratched, poked, or overly irritated.


Infection – There is always a risk where needles are concerned and especially if non-sterile needles are used. HIV, hepatitis, staph and strep infections can be caused by the use of dirty needles and also by dirty tap water in which the needles may be dipped. When it comes to permanent lip procedures, cold sores, fever blisters, and canker sores are known to occur. Did you know that the lips are the most germ-prone area of your entire body?! Infection can also occur if follow-up care is not adequate. This includes touching the area excessively, not applying antibiotic cream that’s given to you before you leave, not applying sunscreen if exposed to very sunny events, or exposing the area to bacteria through facial products used at home. 


Scarring – As you may already know, scarring can occur with regular body tattoos, so it’s safe to say scarring can happen with cosmetic tattooing as well. Incorrect techniques done by inexperienced practitioners can cause permanent scarring. I have seen this too much in my practice and it is typically due to using a heavy hand or overworking the area due to inexperience. Scarring occurs when the body reacts to a wound by producing excessive collagen, keloids, or hypertrophic. Scarring can be permanent and I’ve seen it destroy the self-esteem of even the most beautiful people. If you are prone to keloid scarring, permanent makeup may not be for you. To avoid scarring, stay out of the sun while you are healing, follow all post-procedure care recommendations to a T, and avoid picking scabs! I should not even have to say that one… but, we all know that one person!


I hope that I have put your mind at ease if you came here wondering if a permanent makeup procedure was safe for you or someone you care about. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, prefer hole-in-the-wall tattoo parlors, are a bargain shopper who doesn’t care about quality, have certain medical conditions, or you don’t like to do research, permanent makeup may not be right for you. Again, each permanent makeup procedure carries its own unique set of potential risks due to where on the body it is being performed. You can avoid many of these risks by using an experienced practitioner with a clean facility with clean equipment.


Contact Vicki’s Making Faces to book your appointment today! (Currently booked 3 months out.)

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