There are two ways to tackle aftercare, but the dry method works the best for the most skin types. The first rule of the dry method is do not get your brows wet for at least the first five days. To protect the pigment and avoid drawing the color out, protect brows at all costs from water, sun, soap, sweat, and oil.

If your brows feel itchy and dry, or the idea of not cleaning them gives you the ick, there’s the wet method. “In some cases it may be recommended to apply a thicker healing ointment like Vaseline,” Dr. Garshick says. If you decide on this method, your PMUA can explain how to use healing ointment or balm to protect the pigment.

Sun exposure can lighten your brows, especially when the ink is fresh. “Only after your eyebrows are completely healed can they be exposed to the sun,” Medetskaia says. She recommends applying a layer of at least SPF 30 on your eyebrows when exposed to the sun as a continued practice to keep your powder brows looking fresh and vibrant. (Should be easy since you’re already wearing sunscreen everyday, right?)

Around day five, my brows started to get flaky. This is the skin’s way of exfoliating and healing. “It’s super important not to pick or peel the scab, because it will remove pigment,” Ferguson says. Not flicking flakes out of your eyebrows takes an incredible amount of willpower. Visualizing each flake as a twenty dollar bill helps.

Over the course of three weeks, the pigment had darkened a bit, then mellowed to a perfect medium-brown. The final result was a powdery, diffused shape that makes me look like an expert just did my brows — all the time.

Do you need a touch up for powder brows?

During the healing process I’d lost a small patch of pigment, so I returned for a touch up six weeks after my original appointment. Even if your shape is still tip-top, a touch up can help make your investment last longer. This round only took about an hour, and I was surprised to find I preferred the darker, bolder post-touch up look. Turns out I’m a brow girl after all — and will be returning yearly for upkeep.

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