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Permanent Makeup- When we cannot work on old PMU/Microblading

I have many requests from clients looking for "a touch up" on their old Microblading/Powder Brows.

From my experience, since the first treatment was done by another artist, it cannot be considered a "touch up" but a full treatment comprehensive of perfection visit and perhaps even more. There are many reasons to support my statement and below a few of them.

First of all, an old Permanent Makeup (PMU) quite often needs colour correction. Due to the natural skin process of exfoliation, sun exposure and application of various skin care products, every PMU fades over time. In some cases, they may also turn out too warm or too cold in colour, therefore they require a correction.

Secondly, the shape requires the same attention as the colour does because a PMU when it fades may lose parts of it, either from the top or from the beginning of the eyebrows by making them looking uneven.

Thirdly, most of the old microblading may leave scar tissues on the skin, hence during the new session of PMU the skin will be more prone to inflammation and bleeding which will then result in poor retention.

The above mentioned are only a few of the issues which this process involves. In very rare cases, some old PMU cannot be even treated anymore unless removed by laser. Those are the ones which are still too saturated in colour presenting a very dark hue of blue/gray or black. For this type of eyebrows, laser removal should be a must before considering a new PMU as the new ink will be literally absorbed by the old one by giving zero retention. In this instance, when I get in touch with clients looking for this so called "touch up" it is a must to request a picture of their old PMU to verify whether or not the area can be treated.


It happened to work and correct some old/saturated PMU and I was able to do so only because the shape of the old PMU was thinner than requested by client so I had enough room to cover the old colour and to add a new shape. On the opposite, when the shape appears already too thick, I always refuse the treatment.

Another example where an artist is able to correct an old PMU is when the colour turned up too warm. In this particular case the correction is much easier as the warm hue can be neutralised and darkened. However, it is important to understand that this type of corrections can be only treated when covered by the Powder Brows technique. In fact, it is not recommended to attempt corrections on old/warm Feathered eyebrows with the same technique as the warm colour will be still visible. The same principle applies with correction of warm Powder Brows treatments, the most suitable technique will remain the Powder Brows. Additional feather strokes can be considered in an additional appointment and perhaps darker in colour but the initial process of colour correction must be performed with Powder Brows as this technique is the only way to effectively cover the old PMU.

To sum up, when considering to refresh old PMU clients should be aware that this cannot be considered a "touch up" but a full treatment which may require additional sessions of colour correction.

Old and saturated PMU can be corrected only when the old shape is thinner than the new shape requested. On the opposite, when too thick or uneven, the old PMU must be first removed by laser. In addition it is not possible to neutralise/correct an old PMU which turned up too warm in colour with the feather stroke technique. It is therefore best practice to treat every possible old PMU with Powder Brows technique only.

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