There are different Permanent Makeup techniques available to well skilled and well trained Brow artists. Artists may have undertaken PMU Training on some or all techniques.

Sometimes we refer to cosmetic tattooing as semi permanent, as it is designed to fade in the skin, but it is potentially long term and although all types of micorblading and permanent makeup will need refreshing it should be considered permanent.

ALL forms of permanent makeup are a tattoo. A tattoo is defined by being “a mark, figure, design, or word intentionally fixed or placed on the skin”

But what are the different types of permanent makeup?

What should we be asking for as a client and what should we be training in as a student?

There is an umbrella of techniques that can be condered with PMU. Permanent makeup can be applied using manual techniques like microblading or manual microshading, or it can be applied using a machine/device (like a tattoo machine)

Using these microblading/microshading tools or PMU Devices we can create a number of different looks, but they mainly fall into three categories.....


The application of lines in the skin, to replicate the look of natural hairs and hair pattens.

  • Can be done manually - known as the popular technique of Microblading or Nanoblading
  • Can be done with machine - known as machine hairstrokes, or nano strokes (because they are done with a tiny needle)

Sometimes called 3D realism, Featherstyles, Hyper-realism, Nano Brows….and a number of other terms which artists create to name their styles.


The application of an effect, almost like “airbrushing” the skin with colour via a needle. This can be done in a very sheer manner, or can be more solid and powerful depending on how many layers of colour are built up in the skin, what needle is used- , hand speed and a number of other factors.

  • Can be done manually - known as manual shading
  • Can be done with a machine - known as powder styles.

Sometimes called a Classic Powder Brow, Ombre (light to dark), Soft Powder, Shaded Brow or Instagram Brows


A combination of both powder and hairstrokes.

  • Can be done manually, with a machine or a combination of both!...

Microblading or Permanent Makeup Which is Best VA Training Education Courses

Who Are These Looks For and What Should I Choose?


Hairstrokes by Microblading or Machine method are the most natural of looks. Ideal for filling sparse areas, whilst still framing your eyes beautifully. Choose this if you don't wear any makeup usually and like an almost undetectable look. Best suited to dry & normal skin types only. Not best suited for oily skins, or those with large pores between their brows

Powder Brows

Soft shading, giving the effect of light powder on the skin. If you are used to wearing some natural looking make up on your brows, or if you have very little natural hair this is the best choice for you. These styles heal soft and natural, with a shadow of colour on the skin. They generally last longer than hairstroke styles, and are suitable for all skin types.

These styles can also be done with added depth and colour for more of a “makeup” look

These styles are often best if you already have old existing PMU that needs to be colour corrected, or if your old strokes have merged together.


Hairstrokes by Microblading or Machine can be complimented by soft subtle shading throughout for a slightly more enhanced and defined look. Think "very light daytime makeup". Best suited to dry and normal skin types, and those looking for a very subtle but more defined look. Not really suitable for oily skins, or those with large pores between their brows.


Hairstrokes through the front, to keep a soft and fluffy look, blended into shading. Still can be very natural, choose this for a light, natural "daytime" makeup look. Suitable for all skin types except very oily or very large pores

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