What is brow lamination – and what are the alternatives?
Brow lamination is a popular eyebrow styling technique, and many beauty experts say it’s a great way to get the fluffy, feathery brows of your dreams. But just what is this treatment, and how does it work? And, more importantly, is it the right choice for your brows – or could an alternative, such as Brow Fix be a better choice?
Years ago when I first developed the HD Brows treatment, I tested the brow lamination process to combat some of the problems we would see with unruly brows. Back then we were using products that were suitable for lash lifting and perming and applying the same methods of application. Some results were great but many were awful so I was reluctant to release anything that wasn’t 90 percent satisfaction proof. Now the solutions and methods available are so much better and I think with the right education and more experience the results are so much better
How brow lamination works
Eyebrow lamination is a form of brow perming, setting the hairs into a new position using a chemical process. The process of brow lamination begins with the application of a cream that breaks down the protein bonds in the eyebrow hairs. This allows the hairs to be easily brushed into a new upward position. Then, a second solution is applied, which reforms the protein bonds into this new position, holding the brow in its new shape for up to six weeks. So, if you have unruly, flat or downward growing hairs, eyebrow lamination can change the direction of growth to create a more uniform look with a higher arch and a more desirable brow shape.
Is brow lamination right for me?
Lamination can be a good choice for people who have eyebrow hairs that grow in an undesirable direction.
For example, the treatment is popular among people whose eyebrows grow in a downwards direction making the brows look flat. With brow lamination, the direction of growth can be turned upwards to create an arched look.
Brow lamination can also be used to help people who have very thin brows where the hairs lay flat. By just brushing the eyebrow hairs up and setting them into place the brows can look much wider and fuller.
Brow lamination is also good for those who have microblading and semi permanent brow tattooing. By resetting the hair that is there over the tattooing makes them look more textured, uniform and natural.
However, results can vary, and it does seem that lamination is one of those treatments that isn’t really good for everyone. I have found some client’s just don’t suit the look and some hair doesn’t respond well or becomes weaker. And I don’t think that we have yet found the exact hair types that it works best on. I am already seeing huge improvements in products and methods even over the last 12 months but I think it will be another 12 months at least for the industry to have carried out enough treatments to be able to clearly identify which types of brows and hairs it best suits.
What are the downsides of brow lamination?
Although brow lamination is a popular styling technique, it may not always be the best choice.
For instance, each hair is in a different stage of it’s growth cycle so after a few days some laminated hairs will fall out and a new one will grow back in its usual direction. Other hairs that are in the middle of the growth cycle start to form a kink after a few weeks. On many this isn’t that noticeable but if we have drastically changed the direction of the hair it is very obvious. Approx 50% hairs will have replaced themselves over 6 weeks so if a client has them redone there will be some hairs left that will then have been processed twice.
Also, since it is a chemical process, lamination sometimes damages some of the finer hairs in the brow leaving the brows looking frazzled and resulting in breakage. We need to condition and preserve our brow hairs as hair growth slows down as we age and We don’t know yet if repeated treatments will affect future hair growth.
The process can also lighten the brow slightly and I see a lot of people tinting them on the same day which I am not keen to do as it is another chemical process that can further damage the hairs as the hair is so porous. I would advise to tint them at least a week later after using a brow conditioning solution. On some clients the brows lighten so much they have no choice but to tint on the same day so If I do have to tint then I put it on and remove it immediately. The hair is so porous it takes so quickly anyway.
We’ve also seen cases of brow lamination where the treatment leaves eyebrows laying really flat against the head, with an unnatural, almost shiny appearance. The result is reminiscent of a sheet of paper that’s been laminated with plastic – that’s the wrong type of lamination! Usually this fluffs up after a few days but some hairs become so floppy they just lay flat.I designed the EyebrowQueen’s Brow Fix to create a laminated effect but without the commitment or the chemical treatment. I am a huge fan of the brushed up and fluffy brow and could never find anything that was strong but flexible. I could create the effect with The old soap brow method but It would be too stuck down or look dry and flaky. The Brow Fix is a lightweight solution that holds your brows in place until you wash it off. Brow Fix is a good option if you want to try the laminated look to see if it suits you or if you aren’t suitable for the chemical process. If you really love the results, you could consider going for lamination in the future. My tips for getting the best Brow Lamination results:
- Choose your brow artist carefully. Make sure they have been trained properly and use a credible certified system and solutions
- Ideally leave a week before or after lamination for tinting brows.
- If you must tint on the same day then just ask for the tint to be put on and taken of immediately.
- Don’t lighten your brows if you have lamination the bleach and perming will increase risk of breakage
- Avoid glue during the process
- Use a brow conditioner/growth serum daily after the process
- Don’t get your freshly laminated brows wet for 48 hours. Use the brow fix immediately after treatment to hold the brows in place while you sleep and to protect them from water during this time.
- Try not to repeat the process more frequently than every 10 weeks to allow for new untreated hairs to grow through
- Use the brow fix in this inbetween stage to keep them brushed up.