Eyebrows have made a huge comeback in the cosmetic industry. People are paying more attention to their ‘furry friends’ now than ever, so it’s no wonder microblading has become so popular. Eyebrows are the perfect accessories of the face and the way they are styled can tell a lot about the person underneath. Unlike traditional cosmetic tattooing, microblading employs a small micro blade that inserts pigment into the skin; each stroke mimicking a thin strand of hair. I have struggled with the appearance of my eyebrows for years and was relentlessly teased by my brother and classmates for having “no brows.” My natural eyebrows are extremely fair and thin and I had for years wished I had fuller eyebrows, so when I heard about microblading and the differences from the not-so-appealing cosmetic tattooing, I decided I had to try it out for myself.
I wasn’t going to let just anyone add permanent marks to my face, so after a lot of researching about the process and the artists, I came across Linda Bishop, a tattooer that specializes in botanical tattoos and cosmetic microblading. I’ll admit I had been following Linda on social platforms beforehand after reading about her in an Inked magazine, so when I saw that she began venturing into cosmetic tattooing, I was immediately interested. Linda now is the owner and business woman behind Koneko Studio, an interior design dream studio that specializes in tattoos, microbladed brows and freckles, and lash extensions.
Earlier this year in June, I decided to take the plunge. My wonderful husband drove me to Dallas, Texas with some extra time for exploring. We ate at Pepe’s and Mito’s Mexican Cafe right before we made our way to the Deep Vellum bookstore for Caleb to pick up a good read. We made our way to Heart in Hand Gallery, a rad little shop with handmade goods, where Linda used to tattoo at. I made my way back to Linda’s studio and she applied a numbing cream to both of my eyebrows. We chatted about American Apparel a little bit and then she left for a bit to let the cream do it’s magic. I have to say that the numbing cream was the worst part for me of the whole procedure. I felt as if the cream was comparable to a mini migraine at the forefront of my skull. Thirty minutes passed before the microblading began. It was fairly painless.
I didn’t feel any pain from the blade, but I did hear the scratching-like sounds.It was done before I knew and I was most pleased with the whole experience from start to finish. Linda is an expert at brows, hands down, and I felt completely comfortable the whole way through. After a waterproof clear bandage was placed, I left the Studio feeling confident in my new look. Linda and her staff sent me with a goodie bag full of wipes, lotion, and care sheet, and of course a lollipop and sticker for good measures. I didn’t take any photos of myself for the first couple of weeks because at first the brows are very bold and as my husband mentioned (on multiple occasions), they tend to make you look surprised all the time. I made sure to follow the aftercare instructions to ensure proper healing. No makeup for two weeks afterwards, no sweating, no excessive sunlight. I kept up with the cleaning and moisturizing as indicated and the results were life changing. The people closest to me noticed a change, but quickly adjusted to it. I got tons of compliments on my eyebrows and hardly no-one notices that they are not my natural brows.
I decided to schedule a retouch in mid-November because the pigments on the outer edge of my eyebrows didn’t take as well as I would like. I booked my touch up with the understanding that you cannot change or miss your appointment for any reason of you lose the complete payment of the procedure (this caused a few messes, as my appointment was moved up two hours (which they state on the booking please be prepared that your appointment may move up or down a couple hours) causing a work interference I had to adjust with my coworkers). We arrived in the knick of time, as I had to leave an hour early from work and drive straight through, no breaks, no food beforehand, but worth the threat of losing the deposit and payment.
Koneko Studio is absolutely gorgeous. It has a very open layout with high ceilings; it takes a modern meets industrial interior design with pops of green for a both welcoming and healing atmosphere. A velvet green couch sits in the waiting area alongside a beautiful mountain book and a bowl of blow-pops, warheads, and other assorted candies. The space is filled with greenery: gorgeous plants cover the window seals and the corners of Koneko with plenty of maneki-nekos figurines. The second go-round, I was called to the back for my touch-up. The numbing cream was applied on my brows, but this time around it didn’t give me a migraine sensation. Caleb was told that he should wait up front because most people go alone in the procedure area, but what they don’t know is I have extreme anxiety of being in public with out my husband or someone I know near.
After the numbing cream had set in like last time, Linda went over my previous brow streaks, boldening the appearance of each one stroke by stroke. This time around, the procedure hurt much more. I felt every streak and internally cursed as my toes tightened with every touch. Although more painful, it was much faster. I was in and out in no time. I made sure again to properly obtain to my follow-up rules. Nothing would explain why the second round was more painful. I was not on my cycle and my body shouldn’t have had any reason to be hyper-sensitive. Possibly the amount of cream used may have affected my change in pain, but either way it was totally worth it.
If you haven’t gotten a tattoo before or another similar cosmetic procedure, the pain is part of the process. For myself, my tattoos are usually most meaningful in my life and the pain helps with the process of healing. For instance when my grandmother died, I got a memorial tattoo of a heart-shaped pin holder in the fold on my inner elbow. The tattoo artists at the shop warned me that the spot would be extremely painful (they don’t sugarcoat anything) and that none of them had their inner elbow tattooed because of this. Sure enough I looked around at all the artists and despite being covered in ink, the inner crease of their elbow had a gap of bare skin showing! This definitely made me begin to question my placing, but I went ahead. Although it was painful, I related every line with the pain of losing my grandma. I even cried (for the first time while getting a tattoo), not from the pain of the tattoo, but from the pain of the loss I experience. Although, nothing compared to that experience, my eyebrows is just another accomplishment to defeat the person I once was; one that never stood up for herself and let other criticize everyday.
If you’re thinking of getting your eyebrows microbladed, here’s what you need to do and know:
- research your artists in the area, the location, and the techniques
- be prepared to go makeup free for at least two weeks
- if you’re a gym junkie, your face must remain sweat-free for two weeks after the procedure
- commitment: you have to be able to abide by the follow-up regimen – using the wipes/lotion provided twice a day after the first initial three days following
- keeping your face water free for two weeks after
- keep your budget in mind: you get what you pay for! If you’d like pricing information for Koneko Studio, contact them at Info@Konekostudio.com
- If you’d like to book your eyebrow appointment with Linda, you contact the studio at firstname.lastname@example.org
After the appointment Caleb and I even got to enjoy Dallas for just the moment. We ate at an amazing little Thai joint called CrushCraft that serves up fast and cheap, but oh-so-good thai food with inspiring and colorful decor in a totally unique industrial building! Such an instagram worthy lunch that topped off a perfect day trip. When can we go again? That day was so amazing. I love traveling with my husband. Dallas, Austin, any nearby cities… I love it and breathe for exploration. Our day trip to Dallas was mostly a trip for me to touch-up my beloved brows, but it was so great to briefly explore. We cannot wait to move to the city (we’re thinking San Francisco!) in 2018.
Have an amazing New Years and enjoy your brows!