A Word of Warning: Covering Previous PMU

It can be hard as a Permanent Makeup or Microblading Artist when you meet a client desperately looking for someone to cover or fix the substandard work that another artist has produced for them not to immediately try and rectify the damage. But it isn’t always the best idea, and sometimes even the most talented artist in the world wouldn’t be able to fix it…

Tracie Giles Working On a Client

Queen of Brows Tracie Giles has over 40,000 treatments under her belt and always approaches cover-up work with caution. She reminds us...
"When you touch someone else’s work, (whether good or bad), it becomes your work and therefore potentially your problem if it was previously substandard."

We’ve seen some pretty horrific things when it comes to bad Permanent Makeup, whether it’s an absence of knowledge in colour theory leading to bright blue, green, red or purple brows, or mismatched brows and unnatural shaping. We’ve also seen the impact this can have on the client - causing severe mental suffering and huge knocks to their confidence.

If you are confident that you can cover the bad Permanent Makeup and correct the mistakes to a high standard, leaving their Permanent Makeup at level you are proud of and you feel represents you and your business, then completing cover up work can be one of the most rewarding moments in an artists career. However, if you don’t think this is within your capabilities or it is simply not possible, then we recommend advising a tattoo removal service and then working on the customer once their previous Permanent Makeup is removed.

Our Advice for Correctional Colour Theory 

Some work is easier to cover or correct than others – and techniques have advanced over the years to help you achieve amazing results that both you and your client are happy with. If it is a case of colour theory gone wrong, with bright garish looking brows then you can use pigments from the opposite tone to neutralise this. For example, a bright red eyebrow needs a pigment with a blue or green undertone to cool down the warm tones in it. We have a few cooler pigments in our Colour Trend Brow Pigment collection which are perfect for circumstances such as these, for example, our Dark Cool Brown, Mid Cool Brown, and our Darkest Impact Brown pigments. For eyebrows that appear blue, green, or greyish we have developed our modifying colours - Don’t Go Grey and Grey Fix. We have also introduced a Hairstroke Concealer which can be used to correct and cover very small areas, but only those with cool undertones – not to be used on red or orange brows! 

Best Techniques to Cover Mishapen Brows

If your client is looking for you to cover the area this tends to work best when the previous work is either very thin, or just a little out of shape, so you can correct and fill it in. If the bad Permanent Makeup is placed in completely the wrong place on the face then this will need to be removed, as no camouflage technique can move Permanent Makeup. 

It’s also important to note that only certain eyebrow techniques will work to cover other art as it has to give full coverage over the treated area. For example, you wouldn’t be able to cover other artists eyebrows with a really soft, natural hairstroke technique as this is leaves blank space between the hairstrokes and you would still be able to see the unwanted Permanent Makeup underneath. A good technique to cover work is an ombré, powder or combination brow as the colour and opacity is more dense, hiding work below.

Covered Permanent Makeup

Ultimately, it is up to you what work you as the artist feel comfortable covering up, and only you can know what end result you will be able to achieve – so you should meet clients for a consultation and assess each one on a case by case basis. Training is available focusing on covering and correcting work if this is something you are interested in offering as a service.

Invest properly to begin with, and you won't have to pay the price further down the line!

One final reminder to be cautious and careful as possible deciding whether to cover another artists work as, although it can be tempting, if the final result is not up to your normal standard and it does not reflect your talent, then this could be detrimental to your business and reputation - especially as so many clients in this industry find technicians on a referral basis and from what they see of tagged and posted photos across social media.

Also, a warning to any potential clients looking for permanent makeup, to always invest wisely and do your research! It is always better to opt for a reputable clinic with amazing reviews, rather than take a risk that you will inevitably spend far more attempting to correct. As always, if you’re ever in doubt, we know a place that does the best work in the business – our very own Tracie Giles London clinic in Knightsbridge.