Frequently Asked Questions 

Lip ColorLink to Lip Color Photos

Q. What does it cost?
A. Permanent makeup is not inexpensive, but it can be priceless.  It has been estimated that the savings in daily makeup is about $400 per year, and in time that you may save 380 hours per year. Most people don't get permanent makeup to save money, they do it for convenience and to know that they always look their best. If you compare other non-surgical procedures such as Botox or wrinkle filler it gives you a good idea of the value of permanent makeup. For about the same cost as some Botox or filler, which may last only 3-4 months, you will get permanent makeup that lasts for years and saves you time every day. 

Q. How long does a procedure take?
A. Usually, each procedure appointment is one to two hours.  The majority of the time is spent in adequately consulting and selecting the appropriate color for your skin; in measuring and artistically drawing on the planned procedure prior to actually implanting the color; and allowing for the application of topical anesthetics.  Complete after-care instructions will be reviewed verbally and then sent home in written copy form. 

Q. Is it the same as a tattoo?
A. It is a form of tattoo, although different techniques and pigments are used. Anytime color is implanted into the dermis of the skin, it is technically a tattoo, regardless of the manner in which it is performed. 

Q. What is micropigmentation?
A. This is the name of the process used to implant color in permanent makeup. Many people refer to permanent makeup by fancy names such as micropigmentaton, dermal pigmentation etc. It is all correct, however, it truly is a tattoo process. 

Q. Is the procedure safe?
A. Unlike many technicians that re-use or sterilize via an autoclave the various components of their equipment, we use all pre-packaged, sterile and disposable needles and needle casings. With the highly technologically advanced digital implantation system used at Newport Permanent Makeup, we use medical-grade needles that are encased in a special permanent cartridge.  This patented cartridge system contains an internal diaphragm that prevents any bodily fluids and airborne contaminants from entering into the system. This ensures that you will receive the safest, most sterile form of cosmetic tattooing available. In addition, all of your procedures are done under Federal OSHA standards that regulate the sterile, safe and healthy practices for prevention of cross-contamination from person to person. 

Q Are there other health concerns?
A. Cold sores may be set off by the lip procedure, you should take cold-sore medication in advance. This is true if you have EVER had a cold sore or “fever blister” even if it has been years. Any disturbance of the lip area, from aggressive dental work to too much sun exposure can cause the Herpes Simples virus to come out of its dormant state and react in a blister-like sore. It can negatively impact the successful healing of the lip color.    You must contact your doctor, dermatologist or dentist to get a prescription for an anti-viral medication as a preventative for this condition.  
Diabetics may have slower healing times. There may be some situations where you would need medical clearance first.  A thorough health history will be taken prior to your procedure. Any contraindications or medical alerts will be discussed prior to receiving the procedures.

Q.  Does it hurt?
A.  A topical anesthesia is used as needed to help numb the areas to be treated.  This helps to alleviate any minor discomfort you may experience during the procedure. Everyone has their own unique level of pain tolerance. Some people feel that certain areas of the face are more sensitive than others;  a special emphasis is put on making the client as comfortable as possible. A variety of topical anesthetics are on hand to ensure that your procedure is as pain-free as possible.  As recently as 4-5 years ago there were not many effective topical numbing agents available for the permanent makeup industry.  Today there are a variety of highly effective topical anesthetics to choose from. 

Q.  How will I look immediately after the procedure? 
A.  You may experience minor to moderate swelling on the procedure day that may last for up to 3 days. The application of ice packs as home will assist in quickly reducing any inflammation and may be used for 24 hours for effective reduction of swelling. The lips are unique in their healing process from any other permanent makeup.  The lip tissue does not have a true dermal layer like the rest of the facial and body skin. Immediately after the lip color procedure the color will look like a medium to dark lipstick even if the healed outcome is super natural. This will resolve in about 3-4 days post procedure after a surface layer “peels” and the natural color tone is revealed underneath. 

Q. Can I have lip liner only, and leave the lips natural?
A. This is not stylistically recommended. It is recommended that the lip liner and lip fill-in color be the same. At Newport Permanent Makeup we do a Blended Lip Liner.  This means that the liner is done in the select color tone and then the color is lightly blended in to look like it becomes a part of your own natural lip tone.  It avoids that look of lip liner only but gives beautiful definition, fullness and color-enhancement to a natural lip tone. 

Q.  Can I still wear regular lipstick if I want to change the color sometimes?
A.  Absolutely!  Since the permanent lip color is implanted within the lip tissue, you can wear any color you wish over the top and still get variety in your look. The lipstick will “cancel” out the color of the permanent lip makeup. 

Q.  How long will it take to see the healed results?
A.  Lip color is unique.  For all other areas of permanent makeup, you will heal in approximately 5-10 days with the final result visible at that point.  Due to the nature of the lip tissue which is not the same physiological makeup of the rest of the facial or body skin, you can expect that it will be much darker for 3-4 days, you will have a “peeling” process (much like having chapped lips) for a day or so, and then the color will actually appear too light.  The initial reaction will be wishing you have chosen a darker, brighter or less natural color.  Not to worry – the color is sharing the same space as the blood flow in the lip membrane.  It take 3-4 weeks for the color to find a permanent “home” in that lip tissue and develop into the true healed intensity desired.  After 4-6 weeks you will return for a follow-up visit to check the results and it is sometimes necessary to have a minor touch up to perfect the results. 

Q. Which technique do you use?
A.  The most state-of-the-art technology today is the computerized digital system. We are proud to use the German-engineered Nouveau Contour Intelligent system.  This system allows for precision artistry, medical grade sterility and with the computer “brain” the settings for the needle speed and depth can be individualized for each person’s skin type and texture.  This allows for preservation of the skin’s integrity, minimal to zero chance of scar tissue or other complications often associated with permanent makeup tools or machines. 

Q.  I have lip filler injections already. Can I still get permanent lip color?
A.  Yes, but it is important to share this information with your permanent makeup technician.  The filler and the color will be sharing the same space within the lip tissue.  Color selection can need adjustments to ensure that the long-term color results don’t change.  It is recommended that the color be implanted first, and after it is healed get the lip augmentation.  This ensures proper placement and symmetry of the lip filler that nicely compliments the shape and symmetry of the permanent color.

Q. I am planning a cosmetic facial procedure. Should I wait until after that for my permanent makeup?
A. It is often advised that you have your permanent makeup first. You will have great guidelines to ensure symmetry and placement when adjusting facial structure as is done in a face or brow-lift. When having lip augmentation with temporary or more permanent fillers, I like to do the lip color first.  This gives the doctor beautiful guidelines to follow for symmetry and fullness.  The other bonus is that you look better when you are healing from surgery while you are not allowed to wear traditional makeup. 
If you have surgery first, you need to wait until your doctor clears you to have any procedures done, usually 6-12 weeks. 

Q. I am planning on some laser facial rejuvenation treatments. Can I do this after having permanent makeup?
A.  You may have laser treatments such as IPL for photodamage, fraxel-type lasers for skin tightening and skin restoration but you need to inform the medical professional that you have permanent makeup. Certain colors can turn to an undesirable shade or get lightened or removed. It is simply avoiding direct contact between the laser and the permanent makeup areas. 

Q.  I heard that you can’t have an MRI if you have permanent makeup. Is this true?
A.  No.  You can safely have an MRI even if you have permanent makeup. In rare, isolated cases of facial/head MRI scans, a warm sensation can manifest in the makeup areas.  Statistical data indicates this is rare and usually related to heavy dark eyeliner. Simply tell the MRI technician that you have had permanent makeup (or any form of tattooing) so they know to watch for any unusual reactions. Visit  to read published medical articles on the subject.

Debbie Miller, CPCP
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