What is a contraindication – What does contraindication mean?
If it’s a term you haven’t heard before, a contraindication is a condition or factor that will prevent a certain medical treatment from going ahead due to the harm that it may cause someone. In medical terms, it’s the opposite of an ‘indication’, which is a positive reason to use a certain treatment.
What is semi-permanent makeup?
Semi-permanent makeup (sometimes referred to as micropigmentation) is the process of implanting pigments into your skin to create a more natural, fuller look. Although the process is similar to tattooing, it’s not permanent and the effects begin to fade over a period of months. When done correctly, it’s a fabulous way to look and feel great by enhancing the overall appearance of your face. The most common treatments we carry out are for scalp micropigmentation, eyeliner, lips and of course, microblade eyebrows.
For microblading, we use a small hand-held device with tiny needles to apply the pigment. As this involves breaking the skin, having a skilled practitioner is vital as there can be a risk of infection if it’s either done by an untrained practitioner or carried out in an unhygienic environment.
The Important of Cleanliness and Hygiene
We really can’t emphasise enough the importance of hygiene and it’s one of the main reasons that having a fully trained and properly qualified technician is so important. Not only should they be aware that using properly sterilised equipment is essential, they should also understand the importance of working undistracted without risking contaminating their clients. Having your practitioner nip off for a break or answering their mobile phone during a treatment session is completely unacceptable. Even something as simple as taking a phone call or reading a text message can put you at risk of infection from the microscopic bacteria being transferred from the keypad to your skin.
Can Anyone Have Semi-permanent Makeup?
The short answer is no. Whilst it’s suitable for most people, there are certain reasons that we can’t treat everyone. Before undergoing a treatment at our Kent clinic, clients are always made aware that certain contraindications can prevent us from proceeding. These include those that:
- Have high blood pressure or a heart condition
- Take blood-thinners such as aspirin or similar medication
- Have diabetes
- Are pregnant or lactating
- Have glaucoma
- Have herpes simplex
- Suffer from certain skin conditions e.g. rashes, blisters, psoriasis or eczema
- Take steroids such as cortisone, Accutane, Retin-A or Renova
- Have an allergy to makeup
- Have acute acne in the treatment area
- Are susceptible to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation
- Have hypertrophic scarring or keloids
- Have spider veins or a birthmark in the area they want to be treated
- Have a blood disorder e.g. sickle cell anemia, haemophilia or a platelet disorder
Whilst the above list is by no means exhaustive, it’ll give you a good idea of the types of scenarios that may prevent us from going ahead with a treatment. For some of the above, we may also ask that you provide written authorisation from your GP before we can proceed. You can also find more information on the NHS guide.
If any of these apply to you, let’s take a look at some in greater detail so you have a better idea of the specific contraindication and why it may prevent us from providing any form of semi-permanent makeup:
Blood pressure/heart conditions
Whilst this may not actually prevent you from being treated at our clinic per se, we’d always ask for written permission from your doctor first. We list this as a contraindication as it’s always best to err on the side of caution as we won’t know the severity of your condition nor will we know what medication you’re taking. Furthermore, if you’ve suffered from mitral valve prolapse, have an artificial heart valve or have any condition that means you need to take prophylactic (intended to prevent disease) antibiotics, you’ll also have to take them prior to being treated at our clinic.
Blood thinners (anticoagulants) such as aspirin or other forms of medication you’ve either bought over the counter (e.g herbal) or have been prescribed by a doctor, can increase the time it takes for the blood to clot. Bearing in mind that having semi-permanent makeup involves breaking the skin, it’s important that the time it takes for your blood to clot is within a reasonable timeframe. If not, you may experience increased bleeding time and higher than average bruising. Once again, this would require explicit consent from your GP before we’d considering treating you.
If you’re diabetic, it could lead to complications with the healing process and increase the risk of infection.
There are a couple of reasons why any semi-permanent makeup procedure should be postponed under these conditions. For starters, your skin tone can change slightly during pregnancy which can make it more difficult to achieve the desired results in the long-term. Secondly, whilst complications are extremely rare, if one did occur whilst pregnant, this can add an extra undesirable factor into the equation. For the sake of you and your baby, it’s always best to put off the procedure until after you’ve given birth and stopped lactating (breastfeeding).
If you’re seeing us for semi-permanent eyeliner, the procedure involves some mild pressure around the eye area, which could complicate your condition further.
People who suffer from ‘ fever blisters’ or cold sores are more susceptible to an outbreak after having treatments in and around their lips. Whilst this can be helped with antiviral medication, careful consideration should be taken before contacting us. You must also inform us if you decide to go ahead and contact us as we’ll need to be fully informed to assess whether or not we’re able to treat you.
Skin conditions – Rashes, blisters, psoriasis, eczema etc.
Any skin condition such as the ones mentioned above can complicate things and can affect the overall long-term results of semi-permanent makeup. It doesn’t necessarily mean that we won’t be able to treat you, but we’ll need to discuss your condition in more detail prior to undertaking any treatment.
As keloid/hypertrophic scarring is associated with adverse wound healing factors, you may not be a suitable candidate for microblading or any other form of semi-permanent makeup treatment as a uniform healing process without additional complications is more desirable. The same would apply if you were looking to have a permanent tattoo.
Cortisone steroids, Accutane, Retin-A or Renova
In case you’re not aware, the ongoing use of topical steroids can lead to a thinning of the skin, particularly if used long-term. For this reason, semi-permanent makeup isn’t recommended. If you’re only using topical steroids for a very short time, treatment is still possible afterwards provided some time has elapsed after your last application. If you’re using any of the above medications, please speak to your GP prior to contacting us.
Also known simply as hyperpigmentation, this often affects the facial area, particularly after the skin has been traumatised by certain procedures such as chemical peels, microdermabrasion, laser treatments etc. This also applies to microblading and other forms of semi-permanent makeup and isn’t recommended.
Spider veins or birthmarks
If you have either of these in or around the area you’d like us to treat, it can be problematic so you’ll need to discuss this with us in more detail first. We do offer spider vein/thread vein removal at our Kent clinic as well, so this may be an option to consider prior to any semi-permanent makeup procedure.
If you suffer from this type of condition (such as haemophilia) you’ll obviously be aware of the problem with your blood clotting. Similar to ‘blood thinning’ above, having any kind of semi-permanent makeup e.g. microblading involves puncturing the skin and the treatment will, therefore, most likely be unsuitable for you.
Compromised immune system
If you have any condition or are undergoing any treatment that can compromise your immune system, you MUST speak to your doctor first. A good immune system is important for the healing process to go smoothly so anything that puts this in jeopardy should be avoided.
Any treatment, medication, or illness that compromises the immune system/healing would NOT make you a good candidate for micropigmentation procedures.
We hope the above has given you more of an insight into the possible contraindications relating to microblading and semi-permanent makeup. As we’ve mentioned several times in this post, it really is a good idea to have an informal chat with your doctor if any of the above conditions apply to you. If you’ve already spoken to them about your intentions and they’ve indicated that they’re comfortable for you to go ahead, please get in touch with us to arrange an appointment.