Frequently Asked Questions
Is it painful?
The actual sensation varies from person to person. Though topical anesthetics (lidocaine, tetracaine, and benzocaine) are used, some experience minor discomfort and/or minimal pain described as a stinging, burning, or tickling sensation. Only a physician can provide lidocaine injections, though some clients prefer to get novocaine injections from a dentist prior to the lip procedure. This is not necessary as Ellie's numbing agents do a very good job, however; some choose this option as assurance.
Is it safe?
Pigments used are inert iron and other oxides which have been used in traditional tattooing and cosmetic tattooing makeup for many years. Strict OSHA requirements are followed and needle cartridges are individually packaged, sterile, and disposable. Please make sure that the practitioner that you choose is licensed and has ample experience. It is your face and mistakes can be very difficult to repair and safety precautions are critical.
What is the process?
Ellie uses a state of the art digital machine and hand tools. First she applies a lidocaine/tetracaine cream over the target area. After about 15 minutes, she breaks the skin lightly and applies the second numbing agent. This takes 15 minutes to work and at that point the area is numb for working. Next, the design is applied according to client preferences and used as a template. The pigment is then deposited on the top of the dermis through the thin melanin layer which determines the color of your skin. The process takes from about one to three hours which includes numbing time, depending on the procedure and the client's skin.
How long does it last?
Permanent cosmetics will fade gradually and you may want a touch up for your brows after a year and perhaps every year at a greatly reduced price. Eyeliner and lip enhancements last longer. Permanent makeup does not last as long as other tattoos because the pigment qualities are uniquely formulated for facial procedures and the face is more highly exposed to elements and procedures such as sun, cosmetics, washing, etc..
How soon can I go out?
Right away. For the first few days, you may look like you are wearing your makeup a little heavier than usual. Some faint puffiness or redness may occur. Lips will take longer to appear “normal.”
Should I wear makeup to my first appointment?
If you choose to have the permanent makeup applied as you wear your makeup, this is a good idea. With her extensive art and design background, Ellie can also help you with color and design to enhance your individual beauty.
Is it economical?
Just for fun, Ellie decided to run the numbers. If a person spends just three minutes a day applying makeup, that equals 18.5 hours per year. Over a five year period, that's 92.5 hours. How much is your time worth to you? If you add in the cost of traditional cosmetics, the cost is even higher. Ellie has not applied lipstick or liner since 2009!
How do I choose an artist/practitioner?
Oregon requires 360 hours of study, practice, and state testing to perform cosmetic tattooing. While there are many excellent practitioners in Washington, there are no training requirements. Be sure that whoever you choose has plenty of experience, photos of their work, and continuing education. It is advisable to have a consultation prior to your procedure(s)
What are the pre and post procedure instructions?
BEFORE YOUR PROCEDURE It is best not to work out, drink coffee, take aspirin, ibuprofen, or drink alcohol prior to your procedure. These precautions will help prevent bleeding. It is also best not to take any blood-thinning medication for three days prior to your procedure. If a client is known to have cold sores, oral antiviral medication is required to be taken 3 days prior to a lip enhancement procedure, the day of, and three days post procedure. Please make sure your lips are well-exfoliated proper to this procedure as well. For eyeliner procedures, be sure to wear glasses if you need them as you won't be able to wear contacts during or immediately after the procedure. Lash extensions are discouraged at the time of the procedure and should not be placed while healing. AFTER YOUR PROCEDURE It is important to keep the area clean. Wash lightly with unscented soap once a day. Keep a thin layer of non petroleum-based aftercare product (given to client after the procedure) on for ten days to help the skin heal and breath at the same time. Avoid direct sun, chorine, and salt water for ten days after your procedure.