-Cosmetic Lip Tattoo FAQ's

How is my new Cosmetic Lip Tattoo shape chosen?

Unlike other features such as Brows, we are more limited with shape choice when it comes to shaping lips. When filling out your consultation card, you will write thorough notes as to what shape you do and do not have in mind. Emma Rose will always guide you as to what is best for you and together you will confirm your new shape which is tailored to suit your desires, face and bone structure measurements. When it comes to lips, we can only work with what you have, therefore we can't give you an extremely different shape, but we can make minor adjustments to flatter your features better.

Can you tattoo my lips bigger?

Again, yes and no. We can only tattoo within your natural lip shape. If your lips have blanched (faded in colour), we can make them appear bigger than they currently are by replacing pigment right out to the edges. However we can't tattoo onto normal skin outside of the lips (where hair follicles and sebaceous glands reside). If you wish to have bigger lips, we recommend looking into injectables such as lip fillers and lip flip procedures. Note, if you require paramedical tattoo for trauma and injuries, we may be able to tattoo onto regular skin.

Can I still have lip tattoo if I have lip fillers or plan to get then in the future?

Absolutely :) Please wait a minimum 2 weeks either side to have fillers or tattoo. Lots of our clients have their Initial lip tattoo appointment, and half way between their Initial Lip tattoo and Lip Refinement tattoo appointment they will get fillers. Clients who have fillers often swell a lot more, however this is not an issue for a highly experienced, qualified Cosmetic Tattooist. You are more than welcome to get in touch with us and ask who Emma Rose and most of our clients see for injectables.

Will I get to see the colour of my new Cosmetic Lip Tattoo before tattooing commences?

YES!!! No cosmetic tattoo will commence until Emma Rose and (especially) you are both happy with the proposed colour. Please note, Emma Rose custom mixes a colour for you, and that the colour she uses looks slightly different to how it heals as once healed, the tattoo intensity fades a lot, and your natural lip skin colour grows over top and influences the overall finish.

Will I get to see the shape of my new Cosmetic Lip Tattoo before tattooing commences?

YES!!! Emma Rose pre-draws your lip shape silhouette in first. No cosmetic tattoo will commence until Emma Rose and (especially) you are both happy with the proposed shape. Please note, Emma Rose is extremely fussy with shape and symmetry so this process may take a while!

Do I need to have my upper lip hairs waxed or shaved before my appointment?

It is preferable that you let the hairs grow out as much as possible, for as long as possible before your Cosmetic Lip Tattoo, with 4 weeks or more being ideal. This will mean that Emma Rose can see natural lip tissue and normal skin that has hair growth. It may be possible to have your upper lip waxed immediately post your cosmetic lip tattoo however you will need to check on the day whether the skin can handle it.

Can I still have my upper lip hair lasered/ IPL when I have my lips tattooed?

Yes and no. Yes you can still have the area around the lips treated with laser and IPL however you will need to let your technician know that you have tattoo. They will take precautions such as covering them with a white barrier to avoid light hitting the tattoo. Just remember, light scatters and travels under the skin too, so even if the tattoo isn't directly treated, the light may affect the pigment under the skin and cause adverse reactions such as colour change and burning sensation.

Can I still have Skin Needling when I have my lips tattooed?

Yes and no. Yes you can still have the area around the lips treated with Skin Needling with no issues. Please let your technician know that your lips have been tattooed, as if they are treated, it is highly likely that going over them will make them fade very quickly. If they use actives to needle in, we have no idea how they would react with the pigment already there. Please consider seeing our Skin Therapists for your Skin treatments as we are trained to know how to treat tattooed areas. 

Is Cosmetic Tattoo permanent?

Cosmetic tattoo is a semi permanent makeup (SPMU) procedure designed to fade over time, however it is possible that there may always be some evidence remaining that the skin has previously been tattooed. The colour may fade to a different tone than what it started, and this is normal due to colour lightfastness (how long it lasts with exposure to UV and visible light). This is somewhat unpredictable and depends on many varying factors including client skin type/ condition, client aftercare and tattooist skill. Please treat it as a permanent decision.

Does it hurt?

A tattoo procedure is causing an open wound to the skin therefore sensation can be felt. Some clients describe it as pressure only, some clients feel the sharpness of the needles. Occasionally clients fall asleep during the procedure. You may experience tightness and tenderness for the days following your tattoo procedure.

Is numbing cream used?

We use local topical anaesthetic cream both immediately before your procedure, and during your procedure. It is both for client comfort and also to constrict the blood flow which leads to a better result.

We are unable to supply clients with topical anaesthetic cream as it is deemed to be a medication. Clients will need to order their own pre procedure numbing cream and during procedure numbing solution and pay for it themselves as part of their own cost. We can provide the order form once an appointment has been scheduled and confirmed via deposit. It needs to be ordered ASAP to allow for manufacturing time and also post from our supplier in QLD. The parcel will arrive at our studio and be stored in the fridge until you're appointment. DO NOT APPLY ANY NUMBING BEFORE YOU ARRIVE AT OUR STUDIO.

How can I reduce the sensation of cosmetic tattoo?

-avoid stimulants such as sugars and caffeines on the day in the lead up to your appointment

-pain threshold is always at its highest first thing in the morning

-avoid where possible having your appointment in the lead up to and during menstruation

-educate yourself before the appointment so you are relaxed, a relaxed client always feels less

-don't run late or arrive flustered, an organised calm client is always able to handle more sensation

-practise deep breathing techniques

-allow enough time for your appointment in your calendar to prevent feeling rushed

-consult with your Doctor as to whether you are able to take pain killers beforehand (please note you are unable to take any blood thinning pain killers prior to your appointment e.g iburpofens)

-order the topical numbing cream that we find to be the highest strength possible, some clients choose not to order form our supplier however results may not be as great, and over the counter numbing agents can't be used on mucous membrane such as the lips (lip tattooing without numbing would likely be too painful to tolerate)

Is it normal to be nervous?

Absolutely, some clients attend their appointment highly nervous but also very excited. Try and ask yourself what is causing your nerves (the commitment, the unknown of the procedure, the "what if" it doesn't turn out how I want, the pain/sensation). Once you have identified the cause of your nerves, you can then research and get prepared, this is one of the best techniques to calm your nerves!

How long does it last?

There is no exact answer. There are far too many varying factors to be able to pinpoint an exact timeframe (ie skin type, client aftercare, tattooist skill, activities including sweat/exercise/swimming, method of cosmetic tattoo used, pigment colour chosen, quality of the brand of pigment line used). It might fade down completely over 2-5 years, or you may always have residue in the skin. Most clients aim to have annual refreshers between 12-15 months to keep their features looking the freshest.

Can I still wear lipsticks or other colours with lip tattoo?

Yes, absolutely :) Once healed (wait 7 days or a little longer if you are a slow healer and there are still scabs present) you can continue to wear lipgloss, lipliners, lip stains, lipstick or even just a lip balm. Most clients love that they can just "gloss and go" on a daily basis, and then add extra colour and intensity on days they wish to glam up more.

Is there a limit on how often I will be able to have Cosmetic Tattoo treatments?

There may become a time where the skin is too heavily saturated to accept any more pigment, or the skin has scar tissue present which rejects pigment. It isn't very likely with lips as the pigment lasts such a long time in comparison to other areas and the skin is tattooed very superficially, therefore constant touch up appointments aren't as necessary. This is why it is extremely important to choose a FULLY qualified Cosmetic Tattooist who is familiar with proper lip tattooing technique.

Can I have Cosmetic Tattoo treatments during pregnancy?

Unfortunately not, you will need to wait until your baby has arrived to have Cosmetic Tattoo treatments. There is no known reasons or reports of adverse reactions, it is more a preventative measure. As you can imagine and understandably, no one has been willing to risk being a test model during pregnancy! Insurance policies DO NOT cover Cosmetic Tattoo during pregnancy.

Can I have treatments during breast feeding?

Yes, you can. However if you are breastfeeding you need to be aware of the potential risks that cosmetic tattoo can cause. In particular,

You will need to present a Drs note to clear you to have treatments.

How do I choose a Cosmetic Tattooist?

It is very difficult to choose a Cosmetic Tattooist, or even what to look for. Here are some good questions to investigate;

-are they a fully qualified Cosmetic Tattooist able to provide machine wor/k such as brows, lips, eyeliner AND microblading feather touch as well as opposed to JUST microblading

-are they trained in removal in case their work needs to be corrected?

-have you seen unedited before and after photos of their work? (at least 100 procedures)

-have you seen unedited photos of their healed work? (anyone can produce a pretty look immediately after the initial procedure but it takes super skill to have good results when healed)

-do you like their style?

-do they specialise in Cosmetic Tattoo or just do it on the side?

-are they a current member of Cosmetic Tattoo organisations such Advanced Practitioner Advisory Network?

-do they continue to upgrade their training/ education and skills (ie attend seminars at least twice per year)?

-do they use a reputable pigment brand and are they trained in colour theory?

-are they council approved/ following local council guidelines?

-do they have insurance?

-do they wear PPE (glasses, gloves, disposable masks and disposable aprons)?

-do they run through a full consult and consent before commencing the tattoo procedure?

-and most importantly, what does your gut say?

Can I wear makeup after my Cosmetic Tattoo appointment?

Yes, you can wear makeup on all areas of the face except the Cosmetic Tattoo site itself (and close to it). You will need to wait a minimum of 7 days before applying makeup on the tattoo site itself. It is best to get a new lipstick post lip tattoo to prevent infecting the area, or at the very least, clean it down with isopropyl alcohol. Please ask for recommendations of makeup as we may be able to match you with something.

What is the Lip Tattoo process on the day?

-come in (alone and relaxed!) and fill out paperwork thoroughly

-read through your copy of the aftercare advice information

-thorough consultation including answering any questions

-clean the Lips and take before photos (and lots of them, sorry!)

-numb the Lips (topical anaesthetic cream needs to be supplied by yourself)

-mix up a custom lip pigment colour blend, apply a swatch og pigment colour to the chin and agree or make changes

-pre-draw new shape with concealer/colour, and agree on shape or make changes

-start tattooing the Lips (up to 5 passes)

-confirm you are happy with the finished tattoo

-clean face/ apply makeup if requested

-take after photos (lots, again!)

Can I do anything to speed up the healing?

Yes you can, we recommend the following;

-having LED in the lead up to your tattoo (48 hour intervals)

-having LED immediately post tattoo

-having LED treatments after your lip tattoo (48 hour intervals)

-making sure you wipe the for the first 24 hours to avoid the scabs becoming too huge

-icing the lips (making sure it's clean/covered in fresh plastic or paper towel to avoid infection) may help reduce swelling and tenderness

-drink lots of water

-eat healthy food so your body has the nutrients to heal

-start taking your fish oils again immediately after your procedure (remembering to stop taking them again 7 days before the next tattoo)

-doing some lymph drainage massage on your face, neck and decollete leading up to your tattoo and post tattoo procedure (not on the lips directly post but around them is ok)

-rest so that your body can start to recover

-sleep elevated so your body can drain the swelling easier

-keep a thin layer of balm on during the first 7 days so the body can focus on healing underneath

Do I get to have copies of my transformation photos?

Yes, if you send an email on the day :) Please send a message to emmarose@thistleandrose.com.au requesting your transformation photos (on the day of your procedure) and Emma Rose will reply once they have been made up. We may SMS them back if the email doesn't allow the size of the photos.