What Is Permanent Makeup?

Where Tattooing Meets Makeup

There are many reasons that people would like to have permanent makeup. If they have dealt with an illness or a skin or hair condition that has altered their appearance, then they may rely on permanent makeup to give them their eyebrows, lips, or even skin tone back. After breast reconstruction surgery it is common to have the areola tattooed back on the breasts. Another common reason for permanent makeup is to replace eyebrows lost from hair loss due to chemotherapy.

Technician applying permanent makeup lip coloring to young woman

However, it is becoming more and more popular for people to get permanent makeup solely for cosmetic reasons, such as if they would like to have more stunning and dramatic (and permanent) eyeliner. Some do it to give their lips a bit more shape and color as well.

The History of Permanent Makeup

What most people may not know about the use of permanent makeup is that it has a fairly long history dating back to the beginning of the last century. As it turns out, it was a method of tattooing that was done commonly, even at the local hair salon. The services were offered to women as an added beauty treatment. Usually the treatments were comprised of dyes from vegetables and inserted into the top-most layers of the skin.


Sometimes there are mistakes. People may not have the desired results. The color will go on dark and fades a bit over the course of the days following the tattooing. Because it is generally applied to sensitive areas of the face and breast, removal of permanent makeup, which is essentially a tattoo, is tricky. The method for the removal of permanent makeup is the same as used for tattoo removal.

Removal Of Permanent Makeup

It is very important to consider the alteration of your physical appearance that makeup can accomplish. More than that, permanent makeup is much more painful to remove than it is to apply. In addition, it is usually in a sensitive and very high-profile portion of the body — the face. Consider very carefully before getting permanent makeup tattooed onto your face.

Removing the makeup involves a few different approaches. A common approach is to break down the tattoo ink, using a laser. Dermabrasion through chemical exfoliation or physical removal is another method. There is also surgical removal, which is a third option.

Failing those, or as an alternative to those methods, camouflaging may be employed to create the illusion that the tattoo is no longer there. For example, the use of a different color may give the look of the permanent makeup appearing lighter.

Prevailing Fad Or Long-Term Trend?

For anyone deciding to get permanent makeup because they want to improve their appearance, thought needs to be given to the decision. For people who have dealt with life without eyebrows, then it may be an easy choice, with no potential downside.

For a teenager who is still in the exploration phase of life, tattooing makeup on may be a bad idea. There could be regrets, and the removal of the makeup is a painful and costly process.

If permanent makeup is a process you decide upon, consider carefully in choosing the right permanent makeup tattoo artist. Ensure they have a good record, good style, and keep a clean and hygienic workspace and tools.