Permanent Makeup

July 4, 2006

Being the vain Latina that I am, one of the pre-childbearing pastimes I miss most is putting on makeup every day. In securing those extra 10 minutes of sleep in the morning, my face usually goes bare except on special occasion.

Well, not anymore. To the chagrin of my accompanying stricken friend and DH who says my puffy eyes are “scaring” him, I got my eyeliner tattooed on Sunday. I got black lines on only my upper eyelids and while I am pleased with them I won’t be going back to get them retouched or get the bottom of my eyes done. Damn, it hurt like a motherf*%$@r! It felt like the esthetician was drilling my eyeballs. My friend who was horrified at the thought smartly got a 90-minute massage instead.

Now, if you are considering getting your makeup permanently tattooed — lips, eyebrows, or eyelids — please do as I say and not as I do, fellow mommies. Actually, um, do research first. I went into the spa on an impulse with my friend expecting both my upper and lower lids done — as I would with eyeliner — when the esthetician recommended against it. After swelling up, I am so grateful I did not do the entire eye. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to see!

This Oleda column offers fabulous advice on what to look for in an esthetician and what to consider before seeking permanent makeup.

Overall, I am pleased with the work done. For $200, which is scarily on the lower-end of the tab, and an hour’s worth of work (also on the lower end according to research I did after I had the procedure), the tattoo makes my eyes look bigger and I can wear it alone with lipstick, making it appear as if I spent time in the morning putting on makeup. It’s great for a harried mom.

Also, the tattoo is thin enough and close enough to the line that I can easily cover up with shadow, or thicken it up with more eyeliner for nighttime use. But when I examine it closely in the mirror, I don’t like how she evenly distributed the ink from the inside of my eye — motherf*%$@r! — to the outer edge of my eye. The inside looks great, but the top of my eyes have these little points and normally I would have gone heavier on the outside edges. Again, it was better that she went thin all over — I wouldn’t want to look like Mousie on Mi Vida Loca — but a true artist would have given it more shape, almond versus mere ovals.

Definitely seek an experienced artist versus the new girl at Super Cuts. I should have known better when my esthetician had no “before and after” pictures of her clients. She was honest and reassuring throughout the procedure though and told me that I would lose like 50 percent of the ink because of the oil in my eyes. She recommended that I come back for a (discounted) retouch if I wanted the lines darker. But so far they seem dark enough. It now looks like I am wearing black eyeliner with red eye shadow. Damn, I want to look good, but not enough to go back.