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Permanent Cosmetics

Permanent Cosmetics

Permanent makeup (also called cosmetic tattooing, micropigmentation or dermapigmentation) can be used to enhance facial features or to correct skin pigmentation problems. This form of tattooing is an increasingly popular alternative to conventional makeup. People with rushed schedules, allergies to makeup products, skin disorders, poor eyesight or poor hand-eye coordination, may find this procedure to be a great help.

If you are considering permanent makeup, the following information will provide you with a good introduction to the procedure. For more detailed information about how this procedure may help you, we recommend that you consult a plastic surgeon who is board certified or has completed a residency program that includes instruction in this procedure.

Permanent makeup can be used to enhance certain facial features, or to give scar tissue a more natural appearance. Some of the most common permanent makeup procedures include: permanent eyeliner, permanent eyebrow definition, lip liner, and lip color. The fuller and more defined eyebrows and lips that result from this procedure can completely change an individual's appearance, and can create a more youthful, put-together look. It can also save time for those who want a new look without having to reapply makeup daily. And it can be a big help to people who are allergic to cosmetics, suffer from skin disorders, or for other reasons cannot apply makeup.

How is a permanent makeup procedure performed?

Permanent makeup is made from vegetable products that are injected into a deep layer of the skin. Fine needles are used to inject the pigment. These needles may be attached to a coil machine (the machine used for most tattoos) or a rotary machine. The needle is dipped in pigment and then injected to insert the pigment into the skin. As the needle penetrates the skin, a small amount of bleeding may occur. At the end of the procedure, the skin is washed and an antiseptic cream may be applied.

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How long does a permanent makeup procedure take?

The length of the procedure depends on the area being treated and the particular technique used. This procedure generally takes an hour to complete.

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What type of anesthesia is used?

A topical numbing agent may be applied or an anesthetic injection may be used to numb the area.

Where is the procedure performed?

Permanent makeup treatments are performed in the surgeon's office-based surgical suite, or in an outpatient surgical facility.

When can I return home and resume normal activities?

The same day and normal activities may be resumed immediately.

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How do I prepare for a permanent makeup procedure?

During the initial consultation, you and your doctor will discuss the changes that you would like to make in your appearance. He/she will explain the different options available to you, the procedure itself, as well as its risks and limitations. He/she may review your medical history. He/she will also explain the kind of anesthesia used, the facility where the procedure will be performed, and costs.

Be sure to ask all the questions that you have about the procedure. Ask to see photos of the doctor's recent patients, before and after the procedure.

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What precautions are necessary during recovery?

Around four to six weeks after the initial procedure, a follow-up visit is scheduled to make any needed changes to the pigmentation. The color of the makeup may fade and need to be touched up on an as needed basis.

What are the possible complications after a permanent makeup procedure?

An extremely rare complication is an allergic reaction to the permanent makeup. No procedure is without risks; however, the majority of complications known to be associated with permanent make up are minor when the procedure is performed by an experienced board certified plastic surgeon. It is always important to be informed about the possible complications before any procedure. Be sure to discuss any concerns you may have with your surgeon.

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What results can I expect after a permanent makeup procedure?

The treated area is usually sensitive and swollen for the first couple of days following the procedure. A scab will form and naturally fall away as the skin heals over the next 7-10 days. During this time, the skin must be kept clean to avoid infection, and the doctor may recommend that an antibiotic cream be applied to the area. During the healing process, it is important to avoid sunlight because the sun may have a lightening effect on pigment in the treated area.

If you are unhappy with the results, it may be difficult but possible to remove the makeup with dermabrasion or laser skin resurfacing.

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Choosing the right surgeon

To obtain further information regarding ear surgery, we advise you to consult with a qualified and experienced board-certified plastic surgeon. Regardless of the type of procedure you are considering, it is crucial to choose the right surgeon for your individual goals. To receive a complimentary consultation with a specialist in your area, simply fill out our Online Referral Form or call Toll Free 800.434.6760.


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