Despite my overflowing makeup bags (yes, there are multiple), and a beauty closet packed with cosmetics, I didn’t really wear makeup until I graduated college. I just didn’t have time. The thing is I love the way makeup looks on me. I have way too many shades of Urban Decay eye shadow, three sets of makeup brushes, and an obsession with EVE LOM mineral powder But, beyond the 10 minutes each morning I actually have to put on makeup before work, I’d rather spend an extra five minutes nestled in bed.
So I decided to try solution that gave me the look of makeup, without all the prep time—semi-permanent makeup. I could sleep a little longer, run to Flybarre without scrubbing my face, and, to boot, I would have the freedom to hashtag morning Instagram selfies #IWokeUpLikeThis and mean it.
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Eager to clean out my drawers of products, I booked an appointment with Dominique Bossavy, a micro-color infusion specialist. She does permanent and semi-permanent eyebrows, lips, and eyeliner on clients in Los Angeles, New York and Paris. I wasn’t ready to fully plunge into permanent cosmetics just yet, so I decided to get my feet wet with semi-permanent makeup.
I opted to do my eyebrows, because the thought of a needle on my eyelids freaks me out. Dominique assured me that my enhanced, but temporary, set of brows would last 2-3 days (which was a relief, if I didn’t like it). There was also a longer-lasting option, which would only require touch ups every three years. I went with the 3-day route to test drive it. Here’s how it went down:
The author before
Prep: After a breakfast meeting, I arrived barefaced at The Core Club in NYC. Along with makeup, it’s best to avoid Aspirin before the procedure. Using a soothing, cleansing mask (to remove dead skin cells) is a plus too.
Consultation: Before laying down for application, we ran through a consultation about my preferences. Did I want a natural look or a more exotic one? I wasn’t sure, so Dominique showed me both – one on each eyebrow. I picked a more natural set. I had previously been worried that I wouldn’t like the results, but there was no way that could happen – she literally drew on my face (with a makeup pencil) how they would appear.
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The author after semi-permanent brow makeup
Aftercare: I walked out with a little redness that was easily covered with powder. As for my eyebrows? They could compete with those of Brooke Shields circa the 1980s. Although I love my Clarisonic Aria, I had to break up with it for a few days because my skin was too sensitive. To keep the skin around my brows from drying excessively I had to apply a ton of Aquaphor. I also had to avoid any scratching, picking, rubbing and exfoliating.
Back to Me: After three days, my brows were back to normal and so was my crazy schedule. I had had more time when they were already on my face, saving spare seconds for other things like sleep, and sipping lattes in peace. For those 72 hours, I grew to like them. I noticed a slight difference in my look – and so did my friends. Some even felt they looked more natural than my own eyebrow makeup. I felt more natural with them, too. Did I feel like a supermodel? Not really, but I’m contemplating going back for the real deal—permanent makeup. Those extra five to ten minutes over the years will really add up.
A model with semi-permanent brow makeup. Courtesy of Dominique Bossavy