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Ahead of the curve: The latest technique in brows is making them centre stage this season

By Rylie Chervinski

Thick, strong brows are no longer reserved for runway models. Now, there are gels, pencils, brushes, tints, and even permanent ink to achieve a Cara Delevingne-level brow status. Hashtags like #BrowGame and #BrowsOnFleek have hundreds of thousands of hits on Instagram, and lately, a new trend has cropped up on the brow scene.

It’s called microblading, which is a semi-permanent procedure done by an aesthetician depositing pigment into the first layer of skin using light, thin strokes that mimic natural hair. The entire procedure takes about two hours (plus frequent visits for touch ups), and clients come away with fuller and more symmetrical-looking brows.

Microblading is different than traditional cosmetic tattooing, which deposits much more pigment into a deeper layer of skin by a specialized tattoo machine. Permanent cosmetic tattooing, or micropigmentation, typically lasts one to five years, while microblading lasts anywhere from eight to 16 months.

Microblading is not a new procedure (it started more than 10 years ago), but it’s one that’s quickly gaining popularity in North America.

Giovanna Minenna, the lady behind Brows by G, and Winnipeg’s first specialist provider of microblading, says the demand for microblading has grown rapidly over the last few years.

2-2“There has certainly been a huge surge in popularity and demand for the procedure. This is likely attributed to an increased awareness of what it is and the results. Many salons have started to offer the procedure,” said Minenna, who opened her clinic in 2015.

Brows by G is located on Grant Ave. in Winnipeg, and currently has four brow specialists, all three others trained by Minenna herself. The brow proprietor completed microblading courses and a master’s program in both Canada and Europe, as well as a micropigmentation certification program in Toronto.

“We take everything into consideration when microblading— face shape, bone structure, skin colour, eye placement, hair colour and brow hair colour,” explained Minenna.

“We have a special way of measuring to ensuring the brows are even and a unique way to colour select so that we choose the proper colour once the skin has healed.”

Now, Minenna is using her expertise to educate others in the art of the eyebrow. She’s pairing up with MC College to offer a Microblading Technician Training Program across Western Canada.

The course offered in Winnipeg sold out quickly, and Anna McGregor, director of the MC College Winnipeg campus, said she’s not surprised.

“Students and professionals alike are always interested in furthering their education in the beauty industry. You have to stay current if you want to meet the needs of today’s consumer,” said McGregor.

The course will offer innovative techniques to develop qualified microblading technicians and help meet the increasing demand for microblading services, which McGregor predicts will only grow with time.

“[Microblading is] definitely here to stay! It’s amazing how a good set of eyebrows frames the face, giving a youthful appearance. Women all over the world are after the perfect eyebrow. Microblading will evolve with the beauty industry and technicians will only get better and better at what they can offer their clientele,” said McGregor.

And for most clients, Minenna said microblading is a dream come true.

“Some clients cry in happiness as they finally have eyebrows. We definitely see the difference in a client from when they walk in to when they leave. We want to give everyone a boost of confidence and make them feel absolutely beautiful,” she said.