If you’ve been hovering anywhere near the beauty scene over the past decade or so, you’ve heard of Sharon-Lee. Known as the maestro of eyebrows, she has expanded her business, ever-so-slightly to include eyelash lifts and permi-make-up. Yes, that means what you think it means: make-up, tattooed onto your skin.
Don’t click out of the page! I can explain!
You might remember Kim Kardashian tearfully recounting her burglary in Paris to her sisters. You might also remember that, even though she was clearly upset and crying, she still looked perfectly made up. That’s the power of permi-make-up.
I confess I was extremely sceptical when I heard about it, as I’m sure you might be also. I elected to have eyeliner done and in my darker moments, I worried that I might emerge from the procedure with a close resemblance to the late, great Amy Winehouse. A woman with unspeakable talent and soul, but one who obviously did not believe in subtle eyeliner.
Sharon-Lee’s publicist assured me I would be “loving myself sick” after the liner was applied, but being in possession of extremely deep-set eyes (somewhere between Michelle Williams and Bjork, with a heavy emphasis on Bjork) I was worried that permi-eyeliner would only accentuate them and make me look, frankly, half asleep.
I was wrong.
Sharon-Lee uses a blended technique, originating from Germany. It’s known as pointillism eyeliner because she uses a small, hand-held machine to add pigment amongst the lash line, giving an ombré effect. This ombre is key – it means it’s subtle enough to blend in and look like just another row of lashes. It’s not a solid line – thank goodness! So, it doesn’t look like a cat eye.
As Sharon-Lee said, before she applied my liner, the effect is a slightly blurred, higher volume to the lash line. Of course, it helped that I had a lash lift prior to getting it done.
Sharon-Lee insisted I have a glass of champagne before she began, and to further minimise any soreness, a top line anaesthetic was applied to the area.
OK, now, real talk: it hurts. But honestly, no more than a wax. It’s also over in about 30 seconds, so by the time Sharon-Lee is doing your second lid, you’ve forgotten the pain of the first. It’s also super-quick. Over in minutes. No fuss, no weirdness, no swelling.
The procedure is done in just two sessions, generally 3-6 weeks apart, and lasts up to three years. And it needs to because it’s expensive, $1550. But, come on, three years! You’d spend that much on avocado toast in three years!
You could get it done before an event. In fact, you should. Look at me, pressuring you! But that’s how great it is. I wake up in the morning, and I may have bags under my eyes, but dammit, my eyes look like they’re on their way to a red carpet event.
This is the enduring appeal of permi-make-up. It saves time. I mean, that’s the main point, it saves you loads of bother. I don’t have to apply eyeliner or mascara in the mornings. This has been liberating as I have two very small children and the likelihood of me running into a person I know during the day is exceptionally high. It takes a village and it takes being friends with everyone in that village to properly benefit from said village, you feel me?
So, to continue, I might be wearing what could generously be referred to as “athleisure” gear, and sure, my hair might be scraped tight into a bun and yes, ok, ok, the only make-up I’ve got on is sunscreen, (if I remember, otherwise, I’m sorry to say I’m wearing nothing on my face and I then I wonder why I have pigmentation and rosacea).
My point is, if you see me in my natural habitat, I look a little haggard. But with this eyeliner, I now look, a little less haggard.
But it’s my vanity that has benefited the most. You know when you have those sleepless nights, you wake up in the morning, look at your face and think, “surely not!” I mean, “this can not be my real face now, can it?” Well, I still do that, but my eyelids now seem to reply wordlessly “Darling, absolutely not! You are finnnne.”