Who Should Not Get Microblading?

Microblading is a popular semi-permanent tattooing technique used to create the illusion of fuller, more defined eyebrows. However, the procedure is not suitable for everyone due to factors that could impact healing, ink retention or increase the risk of complications. Certain medical conditions, skin sensitivities, medications and lifestyle factors should be considered before undergoing microblading.

In this post, we will identify who should potentially avoid the procedure due to contraindications related to health, skin type and the use of certain products. We will explore specific conditions that either prevent individuals from achieving optimal results or pose health risks. Understanding if microblading is advisable can help determine whether alternative options may be a better fit for achieving one’s desired brow shape and color.

1. Pregnant Or Breastfeeding

Pregnancy and breastfeeding are two periods where extensive precautions are needed due to the rapid developmental changes occurring within the body. The microblading procedure is not recommended for the following reasons:

  • Potential ink transfer: There is limited data on whether pigment particles implanted into the skin during microblading could potentially be transferred to a developing fetus or via breast milk. To err on the side of caution, the procedure is typically avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
  • Risk of complications: The tissue trauma from microblading causes an immune response and inflammation within the skin. While temporary and mild for most individuals, these same processes are closely monitored during pregnancy due to their potential to induce early labor or complications for the fetus.
  • Boost in estrogen levels: The inflammation triggered by microblading has been linked with a mild increase in estrogen levels in some individuals. For pregnant women, whose estrogen production is already vastly elevated, limiting unnecessary triggers is important. High estrogen can raise the risk of conditions like preeclampsia.
  • Unpredictable healing: Hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy and postpartum can greatly impact how skin regenerates and heals. This translates to more unpredictable outcomes and potential issues with microbladed brows such as prolonged redness and uneven pigment retention.

So, the lack of extensive research on safety during pregnancy, potential for Ink transfer, risk of complicating factors like elevated estrogen and hormonally impacted skin healing collectively indicate that the microblading procedure should be avoided during both pregnancy and breastfeeding. Individuals in these stages of life are best served by alternative options for achieving fuller brows.

2. Keloid Scars

Individuals with a genetic predisposition to form keloid scars following any type of skin wound are not good candidates for microblading. Keloid scars develop when the bodies natural healing response following an injury results in an overgrowth of collagen at the wound site. This causes raised, thickened scars that extend beyond the initial wound borders.

Those with keloid scarring tendencies have a higher risk of developing hypertrophic or raised scars following the tiny puncture wounds created during microblading. The trauma from the procedure can trigger an exaggerated healing response that causes ink deposition sites to form thickened, raised scars and nodules that distort brows.

Additionally, pigment may not be evenly retained within keloid scarring tissue. As wounds attempt to close abnormally, certain areas of brows can end up trapping more pigment while ink is excluded from other regions. This results in an uneven, patchy result.

In summary, the heightened risk of forming thickened, raised scars that distort brows shapes and retain pigment irregularly indicates that microblading is not a good aesthetic option for individuals with a family history or personal track record of keloid scarring. Alternative semi-permanent techniques or regular makeup may provide more attainable, symmetrical brow shaping for these individuals.

3. Autoimmune Conditions

Several autoimmune conditions that impact the body’s immune system and ability to regulate inflammation can adversely impact outcomes from the microblading procedure:

  • Lupus and rheumatoid arthritis: These conditions involve autoantibodies that attack healthy tissue, mistaking it for foreign invaders. The immune response triggered by microblading injuries may cause flare ups of autoantibody activity that increase inflammation for weeks. This can prolong redness, delay healing and impact pigment retention.
  • Multiple sclerosis: MS involves an immune system that mistakenly attacks the protective myelin sheath surrounding nerves. The trauma from microblading may exacerbate this abnormal immune activation, impacting sensation in brows and potentially influencing how ink deposits integrate within tissues.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease: Conditions like Crohn’s and colitis that involve chronic intestinal inflammation have been linked with a heightened immune response throughout the body. Microblading riskscausing further immune system stimulation that aggravates IBD symptoms and complicates brow healing.
  • Skin conditions like psoriasis: Autoimmune skin conditions with dysfunctional skin barrierand chronic inflammation place individuals at higher risk of reactions to the tissue trauma of microblading. Healing may be prolonged and outcomes unpredictable.

All of these autoimmune conditions share an underlying dysregulation of the body’s immune system and inflammatory response – the very processes excessively stimulated by microblading. This imbalance increases the likelihood of:

  • Prolonged or abnormal inflammation that impacts results
  • Exacerbations of underlying condition flarea ups that delay healing
  • Unpredictable or hypersensitive wound responses that impact pigment retention
  • Altered sensory experiences that distort recipient’s satisfaction with results

In summary, the unpredictable and often heightened inflammatory response common to autoimmune conditions creates risks that healing and results following microblading may become excessively disturbed or unsatisfactory. Alternative options for brow shaping that minimize breaking the skin barrier are often better suited for these individuals.

4. Blood Thinners/Bleeding Disorders

The microblading procedure involves making numerous, minute punctures in the skin in order to implant pigment. Individuals who are taking blood thinning medications or have conditions that impact coagulation are at higher risk of issues like:

  • Prolonged bruising: Thinner blood has a harder time clotting, so the tiny wounds created during microblading take longer to stop bleeding and heal. This can result in significant bruising that lingers for weeks, distorting brows during the crucial healing period.
  • Excessive bleeding: Impaired clotting puts individuals at risk of heavier bleeding during the microblading procedure itself. Bleeding that is not able to be quickly stopped intra-procedure increases the risk of medical complications and unsatisfactory results.
  • Delayed wound healing: The body’s ability to repair tiny wounds and regenerate tissue is impacted when coagulation is altered. This slows the healing of microblading injuries, extending the timeline for brows to fully stabilize and recover.
  • Loss of pigment: Wounds that take longer to close and scabs that are slower to form provide more opportunity for implanted ink to potentially dislodge or migrate high within the dermis prematurely. This can lead to fading and unevenness.

In summary, the myriad risks of prolonged bleeding, bruising, delayed healing and pigment loss indicate that microblading is a procedure best avoided by those on blood thinning medications like Coumadin or Eliquis, or with diagnosed bleeding disorders. Alternative brow defining options that do not involve breaking the skin are likely better suited for these individuals.

5. Botox Within Past 2 Weeks 

The microblading procedure aims to create the illusion of individual brow hairs using finel ine pigment deposits along natural hair follicle directions. Achieving an organic, symmetrical brow shape requires the ability to raise brows into correct positions during the procedure.

However, Botox injections administered to the forehead and brow muscles within the past 2 weeks can temporarily weaken or paralyze these muscles needed to properly orient brows for microblading. This compromise in control and mobility often leads to:

  • Asymmetrical results, with one brow sitting higher or lower
  • Strokes placed at unnatural angles that distort the shape
  • An overall less precise, more distorted brow shape

Botox effects peak at around 2 weeks post-injection before muscles begin to regain function. Waiting until full brow mobility returns – typically 2-4 weeks following Botox – helps ensure microblading practitioners have sufficient muscular control to strategically place pigment for the most natural, symmetrical results.

6. Stop Retinol/Retin-A 1 Week Prior

Retinol and retinoid products help accelerate skin cell turnover and boost collagen production, helping to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

However, in the days following application they can also make skin much more sensitive, reactive and prone to irritation – a risk for those undergoing the tissue trauma of microblading. Skin that is hypersensitive or reactive at the time of the procedure is more likely to exhibit issues like:

  • Prolonged redness or swelling that discolors brows during healing
  • A heightened immune response that impacts pigment retention
  • Added discomfort during the microblading process itself
  • Slower wound healing times that impact results longevity

Retinol effects typically peak at around 3-5 days following application before fading as it is metabolized. Waiting at least 1 full week after the last use of products containing Retin-A, Retinol or other retinoids helps ensure skin is in its least reactive state at the time of microblading for the most comfortable experience and best results.

7. Accutane Within Past Year

The acne drug Accutane (isotretinoin) works by targeting oil glands and reducing production of sebum, a key trigger for acne.

However, Accutane also impacts the entire process of skin renewal and healing – effects that can persist up to a year following the last dose. Individuals who have taken the drug within the past year are likely to exhibit:

  • Higher skin sensitivity
  • Altered wound healing responses
  • Unpredictable inflammation
  • Less effective skin regenerative capacities involved in ink stabilization

All of these potential side effects translate to a heightened risk of issues following microblading like:

  • Prolonged redness and discomfort
  • Distorted results
  • Uneven pigment retention
  • Faster brow fade times

While some individuals may still pursue microblading after Accutane, the procedure is generally not recommended until at least 12 months have elapsed since last use. This allows sufficient time for the skin to fully recover its regular functions and wound response patterns.

8. Sunburned/Dermatitis

The skin must be in an optimal state of health in order to respond appropriately to the tiny injuries created during microblading. Individuals who currently have:

  • Active sunburn
  • Irritated, inflamed or reddened skin
  • An eczema or dermatitis flareup

Are likely to exhibit a more extreme and prolonged wound responsefollowing the tissue trauma of the procedure. Issues that often arise include:

  • Prolonged swelling and redness that lasts beyond the normal healing time
  • Aggravated immune activation that impacts ink stabilization within tissues
  • Unpredictable alteration of wound response that complicates results
  • A prolonged recovery period that distorts brows during crucial healing phases
  • Negative impact on the overall experience and satisfaction with outcomes

Sunburn, dermatitis and other forms of skin irritation stimulate the release of inflammatory chemicals within the body. These same responses are then excessively activated during microblading, leading to a hyper-elevated and extended immune reaction that often complicates results.

9. Chemical Peels/Facials Within 4 Weeks

Any procedure that removes or disturbs the outer layer of skin can impact how the body responds to further traumatizing that same skin within a short time frame. Individuals who have undergone:

  • Chemical peels
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Extractions
  • Lasers resurfacing
  • Intense facial treatments

Within the past 4 weeks are likely to exhibit issues following microblading like:

  • Slower wound healing times as skin regenerative capacity has recently been taxed
  • Altered pigment deposition and retention as dermal layers are still recovering
  • Prolonged release of inflammatory factors as the skin’s immune response remains activated
  • An overall more extensive immune reaction that impacts results longevity

The standard recommendation is to wait 4 full weeks following any aggressive skin resurfacing treatment or facial session in order to fully reset and normalize the skin’s immune response before undergoing microblading. This reduces the chances of an overly-exacerbated wound healing cascade that leads to unevenness, prolonged effects and potential pigment loss.

10. Allergic To Ingredients Used

In order to be effective and comfortable, the microblading procedure relies on the use of various ingredients including:

  • Lidocaine (numbing agent)
  • Nickel (component in some pigments)
  • Epinephrine (controls bleeding)

However, individuals with known allergies to any of these ingredients are at risk of both a ineffective procedure and adverse reactions including:

  • Numbness failure if allergic to lidocaine
  • Hypersensitivity and irritation if allergic to nickel pigment
  • Raised blood pressure and heart symptoms if allergic to epinephrine

Because patch tests cannot always fully predict how severe complications may become – and given the lack of readily available alternatives – it is currently standard practice to consider any ingredient allergy a definitive contraindication for undergoing microblading.

Those with allergies to lidocaine, nickel or epinephrine are therefore advised to avoid the procedure entirely and instead pursue alternative options for brow shaping that do not require direct skin contact with these potentially sensitizing ingredients.

Microblading is a popular semi-permanent brow shaping technique for creating the illusion of fuller, more defined brows. However, the procedure comes with certain health risks and considerations that make it unsuitable for some individuals. Factors like keloid scarring tendencies, autoimmune conditions, skin sensitivities, recent cosmetic procedures and the use of certain medications can all impact wound healing, pigment retention and overall results following microblading.

While some situations are definitive contraindications, others require a more nuanced evaluation based on an individual’s specific circumstances. Understanding who should likely avoid microblading can help both practitioners and potential clients determine if alternative brow shaping options may provide a more viable aesthetic outcome.


1. Can diabetics get microblading?

Yes, but healing times tend to be longer and unpredictable for diabetics. Strict blood sugar control, wound care and avoidance of infections are key for optimal results.

2. Which medications affect microblading healing?

Several classes of drugs can impact healing including steroids, chemotherapy drugs, immunosuppressants and some antibiotic medications. Their effects must be considered.

3. What skin conditions prevent microblading?

Skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis and vitiligo that involve chronic inflammation, barrier dysfunction and unpredictable healing can impact outcomes and are best avoided.

4. Should asthma patients avoid microblading?

While well-controlled asthma is not a definitive contraindication, the risk of infection and delayed healing is slightly higher. Close monitoring of brows is needed.

5. Can those with high blood pressure get microblading?

Yes, as long as it is well-managed and individuals are not on blood thinning medications. However, those with severe hypertension may want to consult their doctor first due to risks of delayed wound healing and bruising.

6. What age is too young for microblading?

There is no definitive minimum age, however many practitioners refuse clients under 18 due to rapidly changing brows and slower healing at younger ages which impacts results and longevity.

7. Does hair loss prevent microblading?

A: No, as long as individuals have some visible brow hairs present. However, those with extremely sparse brows may require growth stimulation first in order for implanted pigment to have a natural foundation to build upon.

8. Can those with anxiety get microblading?

Yes, as long as individuals can tolerate the procedure itself which involves making many tiny punctures near the eye area. Practitioners can employ calming techniques to make clients with anxiety as comfortable as possible.

Leave a Comment