Scalp micropigmentation is a general term in that is describes a procedure wherein pigment is applied to the scalp with the purpose of replicating the appearance of hair. Usually referred to as “SMP” the procedure involves the use of needles that inject a pigment below the skin surface. This is the basis for all forms of scalp micropigmentation in use today. There are two primary forms of scalp micropigmentation found on the market. They are permanent scalp micropigmentation and temporary scalp micropigmentation, also referred to as “temp smp” or more accurately for this website, “tricopigmentation” as performed by the partner clinics listed.
Many SMP clinics are simply using permanent makeup materials and techniques.Permanent SMP evolved from basic common tattoo procedures performed around the world. In many cases the procedure is performed by actual tattoo artists using the same “ink” and equipment used to apply standard tattoos. Most of the better known SMP companies you will find online use more advanced machinery commonly found in permanent makeup salons and are the same used for enhancements of lips, eyelids and even areola reconstruction procedures.
There is one fundamental underlying problem with scalp micropigmentation as a general procedure. It is permanent. This is marketed as an advantage by companies offering such procedures and while most will say that “touchups” are necessary every few years they do not get into detail of what this involves. SMPClinics.com will. When a permanent SMP “fades” it is the pigment migrating away from the initial point of application and this makes the intensity diminish. By having these “touchups” SMP companies are essentially filling in the spot that was the original application point of the previous SMP procedure and the new dot will be smaller and more concentrated in appearance than the previous application. This sounds fine in theory but the reality is that adding more ink or pigment to the original application only feeds the spreading process. It is the same thing as filling a hole in a dam by pouring more water into the lake. Depending on the rate of spread what once may have been a very good looking SMP result may eventually look like a helmet of diffused ink on the scalp with no definable spaces between the “stubble” replicated on the scalp. For any SMP result to look natural there has to be visible scalp in between the “stubble” as would be found on any normal looking non-balding scalp.
What are the other problems that develop from permanent SMP? What if you decide that you don’t like the work? It’s permanent. What if it starts to turn blue or green? It’s permanent. What if you don’t like the height or shape of the hairline? It’s permanent. If there is anything you do not like about your permanent SMP procedure, regardless of what any clinic tells you, you are stuck with it unless you are willing to go to drastic measures to get it removed. This is where laser tattoo removal comes in. SMP removal via laser is not as easy and simple as the permanent SMP companies will have you believe. Removing SMP with laser therapy can take many months of patience. You cannot simply have multiple removal procedures back to back. You have to wait several weeks in between each individual session. Multiple laser treatments can also leave you with long term or even permanent side effects.
WARNING!!! – SMPClinics.com highly recommends that if you are going to consider permanent SMP in any form you MUST consult with a local independent laser based tattoo removal clinic that has no affiliations with known SMP clinics. What you will find are the potential side effects listed below.
- The skin has a chance of forming visible scar tissue.
- There is a risk of hypo-pigmentation. This is when the treated area of skin becomes lighter than the surrounding, non-treated skin.
- You risk hyper-pigmentation. This is when the treated area of skin becomes darker than the surrounding, non-treated skin.
- Hair loss. If you have any amount of hair in the area that the SMP was performed you risk losing this hair permanently due to the laser removal process.
The SMP industry is highly unregulated and because of the fact that different clinics will use different inks and pigments the type of laser and the number of sessions can greatly vary as can the degree of discomfort and the final cost. SMP companies will not pay for your SMP removal so you will have this financial factor to consider as well. Expect laser SMP removal treatments to cost several hundred dollars at the very least.
Tricopigmentation is different. All the clinics listed on this website use tricopigmentation as developed and trained by Milena Lardi and Beauty Medical and the reason is because the issues outlined above as being problematic for permanent SMP applications are not experienced or seen in tricopigmentation applications. The pigment for tricopigmentation complies with standards established in the European Union specifically targeted for pigments used in the cosmetic tattoo industry in 2008. The FDA in the United States governs pigments as well but not the colorants that go into the pigments and this is why the FDA standards are lower than that of the EU. Beauty Medical pigments are a combination of organic and inorganic materials that are so small they are “eaten” by the body’s immune system and carried away by the lymphatic system. The EU has deemed this process to be safe and with zero carcinogenic properties to any of the ingredients.
The fundamental problems with permanent SMP listed above do not affect tricopigmentation. There is not a problem with having the “faded” SMP continue to build up and spread with subsequent “touchups”. The first session will eventually fade completely and before that happens a secondary application can be applied as a true touchup which will stand on it’s own as the first application continues the process of disappearing. This is a topic that is never discussed in permanent SMP consultations because it is not possible.
If an application of tricopigmentation is performed and then the hairline design is preferred in a more mature position as the client ages then it is a simple matter of letting time naturally dictate how and when this transition can occur. Once it is time for a new session a more mature hairline can be designed as a natural adjustment to the previous hairline thus giving the appearance of normal recession and age appropriate naturalness. And that is the fundamental strength of tricopigmentation as developed by Milena Lardi and Beauty Medical. The fact that it is NOT permanent is what makes it so great. As a patient, you are not locked into it if you ever decide you are no longer happy with it. Want to change the design? It’s not a problem. Scared of getting a result that looks completely unnatural needing multiple expensive and potentially harmful laser removal sessions? Again, it is not a problem. No scarring, no massive unnatural color changes and no permanent hair loss or permanent scarring from multiple laser removal attempts. There is no hypo-pigmentation or hyper-pigmentation and no lack of standards or mystery ink. Beauty Medical has the experience, the standards and the desire to just do better SMP. Better SMP for you, better SMP than the other companies.