Today’s case study will focus on the challenges of creating natural brows for my senior client, Anne, who has blonde hair, blue eyes and fair skin with a pink undertone. She is classified as a Fitzpatrick Skin type 1. This skin type has the following characteristics:
- Skin Color (before sun exposure): ivory
- Eye Color: light blue, light gray, or light green
- Natural Hair Color: red or light blonde
- Sun Reaction: skin always freckles, always burns and peels, never tans
During Anne’s consultation, she expressed wanting a really soft and natural brow transformation that was undetectable since she had never really had much eyebrows. I also felt that keeping it natural and discreet was a high priority due to her lifestyle of being a senior- it’s important to look classy and understated, less is more here!
When choosing a color for blondes, it can be tricky as some women prefer a taupe-y blonde, while others want darker looking colors for more impact and definition. You really have to discuss your client’s goals and expectations when choosing the right color for her because if the color is too dark, the result is difficult to reverse and may look too stark for a blonde-haired, fair-skinned client.
The entire range of I ❤️ INK
One issue that is very challenging for PMU artists is choosing the right color for blonde clients. The “undertone” of the skin must be carefully considered when tattooing as the coloring of each person’s undertone can greatly affect the outcome, especially in women who display a lot of “pink” in their skin.
When you tattoo skin, you are adding color to a canvas that already contains color vs. a white, colorless canvas. Remember that all color outcomes of any tattoo is existing undertone + color = end result.
Anne comes from an English heritage with a lot of pink undertones in her skin. Her skin type is considered very “cool”. The strong cool undertone of her skin will greatly influence the healed results. Experience has taught me that this skin type is most prone to “ash” out and will pull any color cooler once healed.
Knowing this, instead of using a blonde color that has a neutral or ash undertone such as I ❤️ INK BLONDE, I chose the color I ❤️ INK SUNSET that has a very warm, golden undertone. The warm undertone of this color will help to prevent the healed results from “ashing-out” since warm helps to cancel cool.
Using my signature style of Blade and Shade, I microblade hairstrokes to create the pattern and simulated hair-flow. Anne has very delicate, thinner skin due to her skin type and aged skin, so I use gentle yet direct pressure to implant the strokes at the right level in her dermis. When I work with thinner skin, I know that I must implant extremely effectively as the skin is not strong enough to withstand much pressure before “breaking” thus becoming compromised. Her skin only allows for 1-2 passes of the microblade. Wearing a headlamp really helps me to clearly see each tiny pore, checking for deposit into the sweet spot which is where I need to deposit for the ink to stay in the skin. Read here for more tips on microblading technique.
Once the microblading is completed, I added a soft veil of machine shading right behind the fresh strokes in the same color, Sunset. This keeps the result from looking too sheer and provides enough saturation after 1 treatment. I perform Blade and Shade on 90% of my clients because it typically guarantees great results after one session. When performing machine shading, I will use the pigment undiluted and control my deposit in layers, tattooing to the level of a light saturation. When performing manual shading, I will use the pigment diluted by 80% as not to over-deposit yet still controlling my deposit in layers.
Side note: I personally prefer microblading hair strokes for my brow designs vs. machine hairstrokes or powder fill because I like the look of loose, wispy edges. Choosing which technique to perform, microblading or machine is a matter of personal artist preference - you will choose your tools based on what works for you, your client, and your level of experience and comfort.
Anne returned for her follow-up two months later and was thrilled with the results. The color and shape healed spot on, so natural yet discreet at the same time. The color was golden blonde with no ash present whatsoever. She was especially happy because her husband loved them too and complimented her wise decision to have her brows tattooed. We made 2 people really happy!
Anne's healed results after 2 months in Sunset.
Close-up of Anne's healed results after 2 months. No touch-up necessary
📝 Procedure Notes
🙍🏻♂️70-year-old Caucasian woman
🖋Method: Microblading with the Essential 18 U and machine shading with Kwadron 7 Magnum
🎨 Color: I ❤️ INK Sunset
🌸 Skin type: F1, Grape,Sensitive