The affordable alternative to microblading is becoming popular in salons.

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The beauty industry is all about trends. Whether it's hair color or makeup looks, everything goes in and out of style. Right now, in the brow world, it's all about thicker, natural-looking brows. (Goodbye pencil-thin eyebrows from the '90s!) First, microblading became popular, which is a process that gives your brows a semi-permanent tattoo to make them look fuller. But recently, a more affordable, temporary treatment became available—it's called brow lamination. If you've never heard of it, that's not surprising as the technique is quite new and has only been offered in salons for about a year. Here's everything you need to know about brow lamination so you can book an appointment with your stylist ASAP.

before and after brow lamination
Lisa Casino's client shows her brows before and after a brow lamination session.
| Credit: Courtesy of Lisa Casino

What Is Brow Lamination?

"Brow lamination is basically a keratin treatment for your eyebrows that helps to smooth unruly hairs and give you your desired shape," explains celebrity makeup artist Katherine Dorn from Pierre Michel Salon in New York City. (Keratin is a protein found in hair, skin, and nails.) "It's an alternative if you don't want to microblade." Here's how the process works. First, "the brow is brushed up into its optimal shape and secured with a gentle, water-soluble fixative," explains makeup artist Lisa Casino, owner of Chroma Makeup Studio in Beverly Hills, California. "Then, a specially designed keratin formula is brushed through the brows." Casino explains that the coarseness of the persons' brows determines how long the solution stays on the hair.

After the product is removed, a neutralizing cream is applied. After that's taken off, the final step is the application of regenerating cream. "It is the perfect finishing touch to the lift," Casino explains. "It nourishes, moisturizes the hair, as well as protects from the harmful effects of the environment." Once you're done with the process, Casino says you'll immediately see results. "The brow looks lifted, and any unruly brows are tamed and set into place," she adds.

Typically, clients pay about $100 to $150 for one brow lamination session. (In comparison, microblading can cost anywhere from a couple of hundred to more than $1,000.) An appointment takes 45 minutes to an hour, and the treatment lasts about two months.

At-Home Brow Lamination

Although we all love a good DIY, you'll want to leave this one to the pros. "I would definitely only recommend going to a professional to do this because it involves keratin," Dorn says. However, she does offer a safe at-home alternative. First, wet your brows with water and brush them up with an eyebrow brush ($6, Amazon). Then, very carefully, spray with a bit of hairspray. "The hairs will stay up until washed out," Dorn says. "This will give you a similar, temporary effect."


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