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Want perfect eyebrows? We talk to Karen Betts about why permanent makeup is the treatment to try

KAREN HEADSHOT (19 of 26) - v2

With over 20 years of experience and an inspirational story behind her success, Karen Betts is widely regarded as one of the UK’s leading permanent makeup artists.

Karen is the CEO and founder of the Nouveau Beauty Group, a leading training provider in the beauty industry specialising in permanent makeup, microblading and beauty treatment training as well as offering a full range of professional makeup, treatment and beauty products.

We sat down with Karen and discussed why there has been a global boom in permanent makeup and microblading in particular.

karen betts
Karen Betts is widely regarded as one of the UK’s leading permanent makeup artists

Why has permanent makeup become so popular lately?

Brows are having a big moment in beauty and I don’t really think that’s going to change, especially now we all know the power of a good set of brows; your brows frame your features, and when designed properly, can give a more youthful look to the face. But we’re not all brow experts! I think that’s why permanent makeup (brow treatments especially) has surged in popularity over the past few years.

Because of this increased interest in permanent makeup for brows, people have also become more curious about other permanent makeup treatments and I’ve seen a rise in lip blushing treatments in my clinics. A lip blushing treatment is a great way to get full looking lips without fillers.

Are there any celebrity fans?

There are a lot of celebrity fans of permanent makeup. Helen Mirren has been very open about her brow treatments and a lot of other familiar faces and TV stars have visited myself and my industry colleagues’ clinics.

Helen Mirren at the 90th Annual Academy Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, USA on March 4, 2018.
Actress Helen Mirren has been very open about her brow treatments. Image cedit: Starfrenzy/

How does permanent makeup – and specifically microblading – work?

Microblading is a permanent makeup technique that uses a handheld tool to implant pigment into the skin. The arrangement of pins on the end of the tool create a channel in the skin, and the pigment is implanted into this.

What do our readers need to consider before getting the treatment?

I think it’s important to do your research and ensure you book with a properly trained technician, and ask to see examples of their work. I would also recommend avoiding sun exposure as you heal, so plan your holidays around your healing time.

Eyelash extensions, lamination, waving, coloring. Long false eyelashes. Fresh looking eye. Clear skin. Eye lash extension close-up.
Permanent makeup has never been more popular

What are the most popular permanent makeup looks?

Just like the rest of the beauty industry you do see PMU (permanent makeup) trends. However, I personally prefer the natural look. I want my clients to leave my clinics with amazing results, but results that people can’t tell are permanent makeup. My treatments are all about enhancing my clients’ natural beauty and making them feel more confident in themselves.

Is it painful?

With an experience and properly trained technicians permanent makeup treatments can be mildly uncomfortable, but I wouldn’t say painful.