The Girlfriend Guide to Microblading microblader best eyebrow shape Illustration by Sunny Gu

The Girlfriend’s Guide To Microblading

For any of you who’ve overplucked your eyebrows, or who just want a lush look without having to fill them in every day, put down the pencil and let’s talk semipermanent cosmetic tattooing — or microblading.

But tattooing? On my face? Relax — microblading doesn’t even use a tattoo gun. Instead, it’s performed by hand using a pen-like tool with a row of tiny needles on one end. The practitioner deposits small amounts of pigment just beneath the skin’s surface, creating a refined, natural appearance. Microblading can create a fuller brow shape and also fill in bald spots, with results lasting up to two years.

Does it hurt? It shouldn’t. The practitioner will apply a topical anesthetic to keep you comfortable. Immediately after, the area may feel tender and inflamed, but it’s typically nothing Tylenol can’t handle.

How do I find a reputable microblader? Ask about training — you don’t want someone who’s just taken a one-day course — and whether the practitioner has  the required state licenses or certifications for permanent makeup application. You also want someone with eagle eyes, so study other clients’ before-and-after photos. Before the procedure, your practitioner should sketch the desired shape onto your skin. If you’re not happy, speak up or move on to someone new.


Illustration by Sunny Gu