Powder Brows 101: Costs, Healing, Aftercare, Pros, & Cons

Powder Brows 101: Costs, Healing, Aftercare, Pros, & Cons

Powder brows is a semi-permanent cosmetic tattoo procedure. It offers realistic and natural results with the use of a special shading technique via a handheld PMU (Permanent Make Up) machine. You can expect your brows to look soft with a powder-like style, well-defined, and expertly filled in.

Below, we discuss all there is to know about powder brows, including how much you should expect to spend, how long it can take to heal, what aftercare can look like, a summary of its advantages, and a look at the possible disadvantages.

Lastly, we explore the best alternatives to powder brows that are readily available on the market.

What Are Powder Ombre Brows?

Powder Ombre Brows

Powder brows, also known as ombre powder brows, are one of the most popular cosmetic procedures today. During the session, which typically lasts 2 hours, a professional inserts pigments into the first few layers of skin using a PMU machine. This method is known for its special shading technique wherein the pigments slowly build up through little dots. When done, this results in a soft, powdery effect that is just as defined and dramatic as you would want your natural brow to be.

How Are They Different From Other Treatments?

While it may be similar in many aspects to other semi-permanent cosmetic procedures for brows, it has key differences that give it an edge over the rest.

Perhaps one of the biggest factors is that no other method results in a soft, powder-like look that still holds its bold shape. If that is the look you are going for, powder brows (or at least combo brows) is the best solution.

Do Ombre Powder Brows Hurt?

While pain tolerance differs from person to person, the technique used in ombre powder brows is known to be less painful than other methods.

Moreover, your professional brow artist will be using very small needles, which not only reduce the chances of pain but also keep the skin from scarring. In fact, many of those who have gone through ombre powder brows treatments claim that they didn’t feel any pain at all.

What Is The Difference Between Microblading and Powder Brows?

Microblading and Powder Brows

Ever since the beauty world acknowledged just how big a role eyebrows actually play in our day-to-day lives, more people have been investing in them via a variety of methods.

The amount of trial and error has definitely led to some bad eyebrow tattoos since permanent eyebrow tattoo was once the more popular choice. However, a few treatments have consistently shown promising results over the rest. Two of these treatments are powder brows and microblading.

These two are often compared against one another. That is because they are quite similar in many ways, such as material used, cost, healing time, the fact that they are only semi-permanent, and the like. The main differences between the two are their technique and brow styles. Both offer natural and realistic brows, but microblading creates individual strokes while powder brows create layered shadows.

It can be quite challenging to figure out which treatment and style works best for you. Knowing that either one of them can last more than a year may be a little more of a commitment than most would have wanted. Because of this, temporary eyebrow stickers have greatly risen in consumer choice. These can be switched out instantly, or last up to 3 days, which greatly helps when you either want to update your brow style or try on different kinds.

My Two Brows Temporary Eyebrow Stickers
My Two Brows Virtual Mirror


How Much Do Powder Brows Cost?

Powder brows typically cost around USD $600, with many staying between the $500 to $800 range.

If you are set on getting powder brows done, it is important to go to a professional offering quality services at fair prices. We highly suggest staying away from those offering rates that are surprisingly lower than industry standard as these may not result in safe and well-done treatments. Moreover, always check for reviews and ask around before choosing an artist.

How Long Do Powder Brows Last?

Powder brows typically last longer than other semi-permanent eyebrow treatments. Most consumers can expect their brows to look fresh and natural for 1 to 3 years before starting an annual maintenance touch-up.

How Long Do Powder Brows Take To Heal?

Ombre powder brows can take between 4 to 6 weeks to completely heal. In some cases, those with shaved brows or at the latter stage of brow hair growth may notice their natural eyebrow hairs resurfacing while the powder brows settle in.

Powder Brows Process

If you have been waiting too long for your natural brows to grow back, or are having difficulties figuring out the best way to grow your brows, seeking professional help and availing of semi-permanent treatments is a great option.

When it comes to the powder brows procedure, each session has 2 main stages to it:

Powder Brows Process

Stage 1: A professional will insert pigment into the first few layers of skin.

Stage 2: Initial touch-up in 6 to 8 weeks, after it has completely healed.

After these two stages, your powder brows can last anywhere between 1 to 3 years before needing a maintenance touch-up. A maintenance touch-up is often needed on an annual basis.

How Long Does The Procedure Take?

With the powder brow technique, pigment is inserted using a PMU machine. This can take up to 2 hours to finish both brows. The length of each treatment can vary based on the skill level and experience of your chosen artist.

What Is It Like Getting Pigments Inserted Under Your Brow Area?

While there are generally only 2 stages to the powder brow process, the first stage has many steps to it. Below, we discuss each step to get a better idea of what it’s like getting pigments inserted under your brow area:

Step 1: Consultation

Before starting the treatment, you will first have a consultation with a professional artist. In this consultation, you will discuss the style that you want to achieve, what you can expect, and any concerns you may have regarding the process.

During this time, it is also good to come in your usual eyebrow make up (if you regularly have some on) in order for the artist to get a better sense of your preferred style.

Step 2: Cleansing

Once everything is clarified and you feel confident enough to proceed, the professional will then prepare the area around your brows. It is important to clean it properly in order to lessen the risk of infections, allergies, and other side effects.

Step 3: Numbing The Area

Once cleaned, topical numbing cream is then spread throughout the brow area. It will take roughly 20 minutes for the cream to activate, and only then should the artist start working on your brows.

While the process is generally not painful, numbing cream can help those with varied pain tolerance levels, and also ensure that the area isn’t too sore during the 2-hour treatment.

Step 4: Choosing Your Pigment

Pigments come in a variety of colors. It is highly suggested to choose one that is similar to your hair color and also compliments your skin color.

Step 5: Measuring and Mapping Your Brows

Drawing and filling in brows takes a little math to pull off. Your brows can be used to enhance your face shape, highlight certain features, and also offer better symmetry. Because of this, the brow area is first measured and mapped out to have a good arch shape and tail length.

Once you are happy with the outline, the pigments can be applied

Step 6: Needling

The shading process takes place in the 6th step. At this time, a special machine creates layers of very fine dots and covers them with pigment.

Those with more sensitive brow areas may request another layer of numbing cream, if necessary.

Step 7: Applying The Last Layer

Once the entire brow area has been covered, a final layer of pigment is inserted into the skin. After which, the brow will be gently cleaned.

Powder Brows Healing Process

scabbing of powder brows

The healing process can be different for everyone since a variety of factors come into play, such as any medications taken, skin type, pH balance, alcohol components in the bloodstream, smoking, and how one handles their aftercare routine.

What can be expected by everyone, however, is some redness and swelling for the first 4 days or so. Also within the first 4 days, you can expect your brows to look 50% darker than they should be. After which, it will gradually lighten in time. More often than not, the true colors settle in 1 month after the initial procedure.

Perhaps one of the most inconvenient side effects is when the brows start to scab. Just like any other scabbing situation, it is important not to pick at them since this can cause sparse brows. Allow your skin to recover and breathe through this stage - it will definitely be worth it!

Powder brows take an average of 4 to 6 weeks to completely heal, so you may only need to endure the different stages of healing for a little over a month.

Powder Brows Aftercare

While healing could take between 4 to 6 weeks, the aftercare is only especially crucial in the first 10 to 14 days. After the initial 2 weeks, you can slowly start to relax your aftercare routine, but this does not mean to say completely stop! Just make sure to get past the scabbing and flaking stage, then it’s all good.

The general aftercare guidelines for every powder brow procedure are:

  • Never touch, scratch, or rub on the brows
  • Do not wear makeup on top of the brows or near the area
  • Do not pick on the scabs or peel off any flaky parts
  • Do not sleep face down, or with your brows touching the bed
  • Avoid excessively sweating
  • Avoid environments that expose your brows to dust and dirt
  • Avoid saunas and swimming pools, and keep your showers short
  • Do not tan or expose your brows directly to the sun
  • Avoid any type of facial treatment while the brows have not completely healed yet.

There are two ways to go about your aftercare, namely a dry healing process and a wet healing process. The wet healing involves gently washing your brows with sterile water, gently patting them dry with a clean cloth, and then applying a thin layer of aftercare ointment. The ointment is known to lessen the risk of contamination, offers benefits to the cells, and also helps the skin heal faster.

The dry healing can work in 2 versions. The first version also involves gently washing brows with sterile water and then patting them dry, but this time, there is no ointment applied. The second version is for purists wherein there is no washing or ointment at all.

Your chosen professional artist should be able to explain each aftercare routine thoroughly. They should also be able to help weigh out the pros and cons of each method with you.

What Can Cause Powdered Brows To Fade Faster?

It is normal for powdered brows to fade at different times for everyone. Your skin type, lifestyle, aftercare routine, and immune system all play roles in how the pigment is absorbed and maintained on your skin. Moreover, exposure to the sun, tanning, exfoliating, and some medical conditions can also make your brows fade faster.

Who Is A Good Candidate for Ombre Brows, and Who Shouldn’t Get Them?

Who Is A Good Candidate for Ombre Brows, and Who Shouldn’t Get Them?

Ombre brows are great for those who are experiencing patchy, thinning, or absent brows and want an alternative to drawing them in every day. While most individuals qualify for the procedure, there are some who should avoid getting powder brows.

For instance, those taking thyroid medication, Accutane, steroids, blood thinners, or who have fairly recently undergone botox should refrain from undergoing treatment.

Those with the following conditions are also not suitable:

  • Pregnant or Lactating
  • Glaucoma
  • Psoriasis
  • Eczema
  • Allergies to cosmetics or pigments
  • HIV, Hepatitis, and other transmittable blood conditions
  • Skin cancer in the brow area
  • Hemophilia
  • Healing disorders
  • Diabetes
  • History of keloids or hypertrophic scarring
  • Cancer and are undergoing chemotherapy

Moreover, some conditions may be eligible so long as they have a doctor’s permit to proceed. These conditions include:

  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Organ transplant
  • Pacemaker or other major cardiology problems
  • Epilepsy
  • Undergoing treatment that affects the immune system.

When Should You Get A Powder Brow Touch-Up?

It is required to get a touch-up after 6 to 8 weeks after the initial procedure. This ensures that all gaps between the strands are filled in, and that pigment has properly settled and healed in your skin.

After which, ombre powder brows will require a touch-up every 1 to 3 years, with the average time frame being 18 months.


What Should I Know Before the Treatment?

There is a little preparation needed before getting the treatment such as:

  • Bring references of what you want to achieve
  • You will need to fill up a medical history form
  • Refrain from drinking caffeine and alcohol at least 48 hours prior
  • Refrain from taking any blood thinners at least 1 week before, with approval from your doctor
  • Do not book your treatment the same week you are expecting your menstrual cycle
  • Refrain from waxing, tanning, or tinting the area at least 3 days prior
  • Avoid anti-aging treatments, chemical peels, facials, and the like at least 2 weeks prior
  • Avoid facial injections at least 1 month prior

What Should I Know About Powder Brows Aftercare?

Swelling and redness are expected and should subside within the first week. You may also need to apply ointment and listen to your professional artist’s instructions regarding when and how to apply it.

In general, it is best not to touch the area or apply any other product, and allow the skin to go through its natural healing process.

Can I Remove the Results of the Powder Eyebrow Treatment?

If for any reason you want to remove your powder brows before they naturally fade out, make sure to first let them heal completely. After that, you can accelerate the fading process by sunbathing, washing the area often, doing activities that allow you to sweat out more, and the like. You may also opt for saline removal or laser removal for faster results.

How Long Does It Take for Your Powder Brows to Heal?

Many factors affect just how long your powder brows take to heal. However, most can expect their brow area to completely settle in 4 to 6 weeks.

How long does powder brows last?

Your skin type, aftercare routine, lifestyle, and other factors can shift how long your brows can last. On average, they stay bold and defined for 1 to 3 years before requiring another touch-up.

Is powder brows better than microblading?

Between the two treatments, one is not necessarily better than the other since they are very similar in many ways. It all boils down to the style you prefer - either the fluffy natural brows of microblading or the softly defined pair of powder brows.

What does powder brows do?

Powder brows achieve a soft, powdery effect that is well-defined and filled in.

Is powder brows worth it?

For many individuals having difficulty growing back their brows or finding the best eyebrow replacement options, powder brows are a great choice.

You’re All Set!

Living with thinning or patchy brows can be a hassle, especially needing to use eyebrow products every morning, or applying growth serums and oils daily. If you are looking for semi-permanent ways to lessen the routine, powder brows are a great choice.

Not yet ready to commit? You can also opt for temporary eyebrow tattoos as an affordable, user-friendly, and low-commitment alternative. 

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