YOUTH ENHANCINGLips denote youth, and this technique makes the lips look younger in two key ways:
-Lips appear fuller.This is a very exciting development, as women have long shied away from permanent lip color because they believed it would create a sharp and obvious lip-line, which they would be left with after their lipstick or gloss wore off.
-Natural color.Natural looking color is another factor in youthful looking lips. As women mature, the vermillion border of the lip flattens out and the color starts moving away from the once defined frame. The natural lip line tends to become fragmented and faded, resulting in an aging effect this technique can address.
COLOR CHAMELEONThe question clients most often ask about permanent lip color is whether they can wear any other lip color once the lips are tattooed. The answer is yes, they can wear any color over tattooed lips since it is under the skin and the lipstick or gloss is being placed on the surface of the lips. So even if a natural lip color is tattooed, they can wear a bright red (or any other) lip color to match their party dress!
The ProtocolThe outline of the selected lip shape is tattooed and clearly defined before applying the blending technique to create this nude lip color tattoo. This effect is created using a blending technique because it allows the artist to define a full and flattering lip shape without an obvious or delineating lip line.
CUSTOMIZE BY FACE SHAPEThis process begins by noting the facial shape of the client, particularly her jawline, which is the key to re-establishing her face shape for the most flattering, balanced effect.
PEAR SHAPED FACEA pear-shaped face has a jawline that appears broader or wider than the forehead. To bring this entire face into balance for the most flattering effect, avoid drawing the peaks on the bow of her lips widespread and low.
This only widens the appearance of her jawline, making it appear broader. Keeping the points of her bow closer together and a bit higher draws the eye inward, creating the appearance of a narrower jawline. Also, dip or “pout” her bottom lip slightly downward in the middle, as this also lends the appearance of a narrower jawline.
LONG OVALA long oval face shape requires the direct opposite approach of the pear shaped face. The bow of the lips should be lowered, rounded and widened to create the appearance of a broader jawline. Bows that are high and pointed will appear harsh, and make the face appear even longer and narrower. The bottom lip should be straighter across so as not to elongate this facial shape, so skip the dip or pout in the middle for the oval face shape.
*There are many different ways the blending technique can be performed, and various needle selections can be chosen to achieve this effect. This is simply determined by the preference of the practitioner.
PRECAUTIONSThere is a limit to the amount of fullness this tattooing technique can achieve. Tattooing does not have the same effect as a filler procedure, which plumps the lips but nonetheless makes them appear fuller and is very dramatic. However this tattooing technique can work in conjunction with filler procedures. Clients should wait one or two weeks after a filler procedure before getting a lip tattoo procedure.
TIMELINESince the topical anesthetics blanch the natural lip color, the full effect of the blending cannot be seen until fully healed, which takes approximately two weeks. Lips also take longer for the full effect to take place because pigment color tends to hide in lips and re-surface over a four-week period.
POST-PROCEDURE CAREOptimizing moisture during the healing process is critical to color retention with gentle ingredients following tattooing.
– Avoid sunscreens until the lip tissue is completely healed, which takes approximately two weeks.
– Any active skin care ingredients that encourage exfoliation should be permanently avoided. Products containing ingredients such as retinols and glycolic acids can cause loss of pigment.
Average time: 45 to 90 minutes, depending on the amount of color the client desires and the size of lips. Tattooing only a lip line is very quick. A blended effect takes longer, and a full lip color procedure takes the most time.
Average price: $500 – $1,000 for the entire procedure (range depends on the amount of color selected), which includes two sessions, including the initial procedure and a touch-up six to 12 weeks later.
Duration of results: Lip tattoos last three to five years, and longevity depends on the following factors:
Age of client: A mature woman’s lips can hold color longer than a young woman’s, due to less cellular activity in the skin. Also, there is often less fat in the lips of mature women, helping sustain the color and appear more intense.
Depth of color: Earthy tones that are closer to the actual lip color may fade quicker than a brighter color.
UV exposure: Exposure to sunlight greatly reduces the retention of all types of permanent makeup.
Skin care products. Active skin care products, such as retinols and glycolics, fade permanent lip color and should not be applied following lip tattooing, as they may accelerate fading.
PRECAUTIONS FOR CLIENTEnsure your clients know what to expect during and after the procedure. For lip tattooing, they should know the following:
Although topical anesthetics are used pre-procedure, the first pass around the lips may feel scratchy. However, once the skin is broken there should be complete comfort due to the efficacy of the topical anesthetics used for this phase of the procedure.
Lips will feel dry and chaffed for approximately two weeks following tattooing.
If a client has a history of herpes simplex and is not properly pre-medicated with an anti-viral drug, she may have an outbreak. If this occurs, she may experience loss of color in the area of the outbreak and healing time would be greater. However, this can be fully avoided with pre-treatment.
WHO SHOULD AVOID LIP TATTOOING?Clients seeking color significantly lighter than their natural lip. The only way a color lighter than the actual lip color can be achieved is by adding white to the formula, which appears chalky and extremely unnatural over time. White or beige pigments are opaque and never leave the skin, and other colors used in tattooing are translucent and fade over time.
Clients seeking a white or beige line around their lips for a fuller appearance. This becomes unsightly over time and even begins to yellow.
Fitzpatrick Skin Types 5 or 6. Hyperpigmentation surrounding the lips is a risk for this group. In addition, the amount of color that’s actually visible when healed is low, leading to client disappointment.