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Microblading vs. Eyebrow Tinting — How to Know Which One Is Best for You

The brow technique you choose depends on what lengths you'll go to get the brows of your dreams.

September 18, 2023

If you aren’t blessed in the brow department, waking up with thick, luscious eyebrows every morning is not a given. Luckily, this can easily be your reality if you opt for something like an eyebrow tinting or microblading. Both are beauty services commonly used to get the appearance of fuller brows, and they could be just what you need to give your sparse brows an aesthetic boost. 

When you think about microblading and eyebrow tinting, the first thing that probably pops into your head is — what’s the difference, followed by, which one is better? For starters, eyebrow tinting is a temporary fix while microblading offers a more permanent solution. When done correctly, both can offer the appearance of fuller brows with a natural finish — it just comes down to what you’re looking for. Take notes as we share the main differences between microblading and eyebrow tint to help you decide which one is the best option for your brows.

What Is Microblading?

Microblading is a cosmetic procedure that uses a needle to place pigment under the skin, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). It’s similar to a tattoo but microblading uses pigment (which fades faster) and doesn’t fade into a blue-green color like tattoo ink. Microblading uses hair-like strokes to give the appearance of naturally fuller brows. The procedure takes around one to two hours and offers a more permanent means to achieving fuller brows, although touch-ups are recommended after the initial treatment to help your brows maintain their color and fullness.

Since microblading is considered a permanent cosmetic procedure, finding a professional that can get it right is paramount. They’ll be the ones to help you map out the shape and length of your brows and determine the best color. Plus, you want to take every precaution to avoid infection and potential scarring. 

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What Is Brow Tinting?

Brow tinting is a non-invasive, quick and relatively easy way to achieve fuller brows. Similar to the way your hair is dyed, dye is placed on the eyebrows to achieve a darker, fuller look. Tinting is a temporary solution, especially compared to microblading, considering the tint on the skin lasts one to two weeks while the tint on the hair lasts four to six weeks. It doesn’t hurt, and it can be done in as little as ten minutes. 

It’s important to note that if you have sparse areas in your brows, an eyebrow tint is not going to fix that. All it does is simply dye the hair that you have, leading to the appearance of darker and fuller brows. While a brow tint is less invasive than microblading, you still want to leave it to a professional as they'll be the ones to determine the right shade of dye for your hair and skin tone. If you go with a color that is too dark, your brows will look very harsh, and you’ll have to wait a few weeks for it to fade.

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Editor’s tip: In between tint sessions, maintain the full look with the L’Oréal Paris Unbelieva-Brow Longwear Waterproof Brow Gel. The waterproof formula effortlessly fills in your brows for long-lasting, natural-looking fullness.
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What’s the Difference Between Microblading and Eyebrow Tinting?

There are a few factors that really differentiate microblading and brow tinting. If you don’t mind touching up your brows every couple of months or you like to switch up the color, brow tinting is probably more your speed. On the other hand, if you want a permanent fix and brows that you never have to spend time filling in, microblading is definitely the better choice. Before you commit, check out the  major differences between microblading and eyebrow tinting, below. 


When you get your brows tinted, dye is brushed onto your brows and left on for a few minutes before it’s washed off. Overall, it’s pretty quick, easy and painless. As for microblading, a needle is used to place pigment under the skin. As we mentioned, this technique is similar to a tattoo and while many places numb the area before starting, it can still be uncomfortable and even painful. 


No surprise, eyebrow tinting needs to be touched up often to maintain the look. Since the whole process is quick and relatively cheap, this may be something you can easily overlook. As for microblading, the upkeep is likely the biggest downside since the whole process is expensive, and touch-ups go for $400 or more. Pigment fades, which is why a touch-up is recommended after your brows scab and heal, as well as every few years to maintain their initial dark hue and fullness.

Editor’s tip: We understand that microblading is a big commitment so if you want the look of microbladed brows without the permanence, pain or price of the treatment, try the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Volumizing 24H Wear Brow Mascara. This brow mascara coats each hair to add definition and volume that lasts all day long. With a couple swipes, your brows will look naturally full without looking overdrawn or stamped on. 

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This is without a doubt, the biggest and most important difference between microblading and eyebrow tinting. As we said, brow tinting is temporary, so to maintain the look, be prepared to get your brows touched up every four to six weeks. 

Microblading is the more permanent solution, lasting 18 to 30 months and most times, even longer. While touch-ups are recommended, there’s no going back once you commit to microblading. So, that ‘90s skinny brow trend that’s currently making the rounds on social media is probably not the shape you want to pick for your microblading.


Since microblading is a cosmetic procedure and a more permanent fix for fuller brows, the price definitely reflects that. While it will vary from city to city and differ by salon, microblading may be anywhere from $500 to $2000, not including touch-ups, while a brow tint can cost around $10 to $40 a session.


After a brow tint, you’re advised to keep your brows dry for 12 to 24 hours. You can continue with your normal skin care routine but it’s recommended to avoid harsh scrubbing and oil-based cleansers as they can speed up fading.

As expected, the aftercare for microblading is a bit more robust. The healing process takes around five to seven days and includes swelling, scabbing and redness. Sealing your brows with petroleum jelly is recommended as they heal, and retinol and exfoliants should be avoided in the first week after treatment, according to the NCBI. Waxing and threading can resume six weeks post-treatment.

Next: How to Trim Your Eyebrows At Home

Photographer: Stephanie Price, Photo Assistant: Evan Mann, Digi Tech: Sergio Colon, Art Director: Hannah Packer, Creative Producers: Becca Solovay and Hannah Lee, Content Director: Shalwah Evans, Visual Designer: Sarah Duvivier, Makeup Artist: Jonet Williamson, Hair Stylist: Daniel Lutz, Wardrobe Stylist: Rika Watanabe, Wardrobe Assistant: Serena Orlando, Model: Dara Woo

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