Permanent Concealer: My Professional Opinion

What is a Permanent Under-Eye concealer tattoo?

We know from years of testing eye creams and concealers, dark circles are difficult to treat. They're primarily caused by dark tissues and blood vessels under the skin, which topical creams cannot treat.

Although the application method may differ, the concept is similar to other forms of semi-permanent cosmetic tattooing (think eyebrow, lipstick, and eyeliner). Likewise, under-eye concealer tattooing resembles other semi-permanent makeup treatments in that pigment is inked into the skin via a cosmetic tattoo gun.

The pigment sits one layer under the skin to buffer the source of underlying darkness and the skin surface.

PMU master Christopher Drummond performs semi-permanent eye-brightening treatment (permanent concealer) at @pfrankmd in NYC.

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How is the procedure done?


The pigment is deposited one layer beneath the visible under-eye skin. Holly Starcevich, a certified cosmetic tattoo artist, says that the ink used is cosmetic-grade in color customized to the client's skin tone. In addition, Holly says the needles used to inject the pigment provide skin-tightening benefits, similar to micro-needling. In short, it does more good than harm: placing pigment underneath the eyes can help smoothen fine lines and plump up under-eye hollows.

How does it work?

Dark circles result from dark tissues and blood vessels underneath the skin, which shows through the thin and transparent under-eye skin. The cosmetic pigment acts as a barrier between the skin and the underlying dark tissues; that nullifies the darkness before it can emerge onto the skin's surface.

How does it differ from a regular concealer?

Think of it this way: your makeup covers the under-eye darkness that has already penetrated through the skin. So only the surface discoloration is minimized, not the deeper darkness. As a result, the cosmetic pigment acts as a rejuvenating barrier below the actual under-eye skin – bypassing the need for heavy makeup.

How many sessions are required?

For most coverage (approximately 70%-80%), two sessions are minimum. The sessions are not continuous – injecting too much pigment at once can cause uneven texture. This is because the pigment requires time to slowly adjust to the under-eye. The results will last two to three years approximately.

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How is the recovery process?

Redness is expected after the treatment, so apply a protective ointment to soothe the skin and speed up healing (Bepanthen is a post-tattoo favorite). As the under-eye area is delicate, makeup must be avoided three days post-procedure. Taking extra precautions to protect the sensitized skin from sun exposure is vital, so use sunscreen with an SPF 30 at least, and always wear sunglasses.

What are the benefits of permanent concealer?


The benefits of permanent concealer are emotional too. Christopher Drummond reports that the treatment often boosts self-esteem. Though dark circles are usual (and often genetic), they can affect self-confidence.

What are the risks of permanent concealer?


Permanently brighter, fresher, and younger-looking skin is attractive. Still, some cosmetic experts worry about the long-term implications of permanent concealer, mainly as it targets delicate under-eye skin.

Holly Starcevich says that although the results immediately post-procedure are impressive, the long-term outcome of the treatment is unpredictable. This is because the eye region ages faster than the rest of the skin. As a result, the intensity of dark circles can fluctuate. In addition, as parts of the pigment shift with the skin's aging process, over time, the tattoo can start looking patchy or ineffective in covering the darkness adequately.

How long does permanent concealer last?

Depending on the procedure, skin type, body temperature, and aftercare methods, some semi-permanent treatments may last for two or three years. In other words, this treatment is severe. For maximum coverage, experts recommend three or more sessions. The procedure usually takes an hour, and the cost ranges between £600 - £2,500.

How do you stay safe after the procedure?

Though countless experts warn against permanent concealer, it is undeniable that it is popular. Suppose you are interested in permanent or semi-permanent makeup. In that case, your priority must be to do as much research as possible. Permanent under-eye concealer is a strict procedure, so finding a certified clinician, you can trust.

Like all cosmetic procedures, you must check your practitioner's credentials beforehand and book a consultation. It's also recommended to read past reviews to ensure that you're visiting a trusted professional and ask for as many before-and-after pictures (including final results months after the treatment) as you can.

Finally, follow proper aftercare measures and keep in touch with your chosen practitioner should you have any questions or worries.

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