Yellow Brows After Laser

Written by: Lisa Henning



Time to read 13 min



🧡 Are you looking for microblading removal near me?

Visit our Find a Tech MapWe can also help remove yellow eyebrows after laser! Botched Ink saline solution removes all the colours in eyebrow pigments, even the funky ones! Works on fresh and old microblading and permanent makeup pigment. Botched Ink is a different kind of saline, made for all kinds of existing cosmetic tattoo pigments and client expectations. Think you know saline removal, think again! 🤩

The client in our header image is working with a trusted Botched Ink tech, and we all aim to get the results you want to see! Check back for updates over the coming months, however, if you want to see something now, click here! 

The Recent Popularity of Laser Eyebrow Tattoo Removal

Are you thinking about laser eyebrow tattoo removal? Or maybe you've already began permanent, semi permanent makeup or microblading removal and noticed some unexpected side effects, like yellow pigment suddenly becoming visible in your eyebrows

If you’re nodding 'Yes!' then this blog post is for you, and you're welcome to share it! 😊

I want to educate techs and their clients on the process of laser eyebrow tattoo removal, and most importantly explain the science behind yellow brows. I'll be offering some helpful practical tips to guide you along the way, so you (or your clients!) can make well informed decisions before proceeding

For clients who've had eyebrow tattoos, microblading, semi permanent, or permanent makeup, over time the pigment fades and changes colour, or maybe the shape went out of style or doesn't suit anymore. Unfortunately there's also clients who've been on the receiving end of poor or unsatisfactory work

This is when laser tattoo removal becomes a consideration, I mean laser has been used to remove tattoos for years, right? Well yes it has, laser is an effective method to fade and remove traditional body tattoo pigments. But it's recently become a popular choice for semi-permanent makeup removal, cosmetic tattoos including eyebrow tattoos, microblading, and other cosmetic tattoos

The problem lies in the fact that eyebrow tattoos are shades of brown, a colour not typically used for body tattoos. Problems removing brown colours have only recently been highlighted - Literally!

Did you know that's it's only since 2023 that laser's become popular for eyebrow tattoo removal . This means the majority of techs offering laser tattoo removal for eyebrows, are not yet the specialists a client might want them to be. Yes they're trained technicians, but being a specialist takes time, self education through experience, working on 100s of clients, seeing the healed results and learning how to adjust beyond the basic initial training

If you're a client reading this, ask to see the laser techs healed results on eyebrows, not just the immediately after photos often promoted, those are not a real results. Laser heats water in the skin, making it cloud over any pigment underneath, some is frosting that disappears after several minutes, the rest is pink warm skin

Results from laser removal becomes visible in the coming weeks and months, when the skin has healed, any shattered pigment is absorbed by the body, leaving remaining pigment for future sessions

"It's always easier to prevent than cure. However, Botched Ink can help either way"

Lisa Henning - Owner of Botched Ink

What Happens During the Laser Tattoo Removal Process

Laser tattoo removal works by using a high intensity light energy to shatter the pigment particles, these now mini particles are then processed out of the skin by the body's natural immune system. The tattoo gets lighter as more pigment is shattered in future sessions. The most common laser used for tattoo removal is the ND YAG Q Switched, because it effectively targets and shatters tattoo pigment. Pico is alternative type of laser

Different pigment colours need different values of light energy to have the shattering effect. Some colours respond better to laser than others, and here you'll start to understand the problem...

Patch Testing for Eyebrow Tattoo Removal

During the initial consultation, a tech will assess the tattoo, and carry out a patch test to ensure the clients skin responds well to the laser settings they intend using, they may carry out a few different spot test with different settings. There are many variables that affect laser tattoo removal, with factors such as depth of pigment, pigment colours and skin type

Patch testing also enables a technician to better understand the removal process, and the mix of microblading, permanent or semi permanent makeup pigment the skin contains. Here's where the tech also being a PMU tech helps, as they're more likely to know about all the different blends of brown pigment, like yellow based browns, red based, neutral, cool warm, however they understand colour theory. PMU colour theory is different to body tattooing colour theory, and is even less understood by a laser tech who doesn't tattoo

What you see is what you get with a body tattoo. Not so for eyebrows!

The initial patch test visit should also be the time to discuss likely outcomes, create realistic expectations, and what visible permanent makeup could be seen after laser, enabling a client to make informed decision and give an informed consent to treatments. When the client comes back, the healed results can be evaluated and the technician can now choose which setting to use on their machine to get the best results, while maintaining the skin's health

Understanding Brown Pigments used for Eyebrow Tattoos

To understand why you can end up with yellow brows, you first need to understand the brown pigments used for microblading, permanent and semi permanent makeup

Varying shades of brown 🐻☕🍪 🪵🦉🧳🍂🕰 are used for eyebrow tattoos, there is no such thing as brown tattoo pigment. Brown is a blend of several colours: ⚫️ black, 🔴 red, 🟡 yellow, 🟠 orange, 🟢 green and ⚪️ white. Not all at the same time! But who knows what's in there after multiple top ups and colour corrections?!

There isn't just one red pigment, or one yellow pigment, there's loads of different pigment powder manufacturers in the world, and they each favours different shades for their blends. Why would tattoo pigment be any different to eyeshadow, there isn't one blue 🔵 Certain pigments are bold, others more soft and muted

Each laser treatment is colour selective, typically removing black first, revealing the other colours to remove in future sessions

When you have a laser patch test on dark brows, you may see red pigment being revealed, or indeed russet brows turning grey. The laser tech should know why and be able to reassure you, hopefully before you start! If they don't know, choose another tech

As black removes, other colours show up, and finally 🟡 yellow is the stubborn colour laser just can't see! 🟢 Green and 🟠 orange are difficult too

"The problem lies in the fact that eyebrow tattoos are shades of brown, a colour not typically used for body tattoos. Problems removing brown colours have only recently been highlighted - Literally!"

The Unexpected Yellow Pigment in Eyebrow Tattoos

Even though eyebrows may look dark, the patch test can reveal red, orange, yellow, green and white that were hidden by the visible black and darker pigment. The laser removes black pigment first and other colours are targeted in future sessions, if the laser technician has the correct filter for their machine, and they know how to use it, or when to stop using it. Stopping laser treatments is just as important as starting!

It's only with experience that a specialist will know there are many different types of black, red, yellow, orange, green and white pigments. And then there's the carrier fluids which also have an effect on the pigment! Some colours remove easier than others, and many shades of orange, green and yellow pigments are almost impossible to remove using laser

If you're a PMU artist reading this, if you've only ever used the long lasting brands on your clients, you won't fully understand the variables and colour blends of organic, non-organic and hybrid pigments, and the differences of how they fade over the next few years. Plus think of all the colour correction pigments techs use, in just the shades laser has difficulty with!

The laser’s energy is absorbed differently by various colours. Dark pigments break down more easily, while lighter pigments, such as orange and yellow, colour may persist and become more prominent during the removal process

This is considered a normal part of the treatment - But hey! Was the potential for this happening discussed during the consultation and after the patch test?  Ok so it's easier to cover yellow and other sunset colours with more permanent makeup pigment, but isn't that also moving the problem on for another day, when corrections or removal will be needed again

laser eyebrow tattoo removal semi permanent makeup

Botched Ink can Fix Yellow Brows After Laser Removal

We’re seeing a growing number of clients left with yellow pigments after the laser removal process, and they're a bright neon yellow that's often used in brow pigments by some of the big name pigment brands. It's pretty much impossible for laser to remove

Botched Ink can fix yellow brows after laser, but we’re now dealing with permanent makeup pigment that's been shattered and drawn deeper than it would have before the laser removal process. The remaining tattoo ink particles are now held in skin that's been exposed to the trauma of removal, there will be some scarring, even if you can't see or feel it

Botched Ink will still improve the colour, however 2-3 session will be needed to get the pigment moving again, back towards the surface and released from any scar tissue. We advise Botched Ink techs to work with a bit more purpose on the area, dense needling, and visualising they're stirring up the pigment. At this stage, working too gently or superficial will only tickle the surface, not get anything moving and the desired results we all want to achieve

Thankfully, what's different about Botched Ink saline removal is that it our serum soaks deeply into the skin, easily and with little discomfort. Botched Ink treatments are nothing like the saline removal videos you'd see on YouTube! Ours truly is a 'no tears' method!

It's the initial needling that wakes up the skin and stirs the pigment around, also improving any scar tissue. Botched Ink also dries out skin super quickly, catching any pigment caught in the treated area. I love it when clients say they expected it to be painful, but it wasn't!

laser eyebrow tattoo removal semi permanent makeup

Eyebrow Tattoo Removal Using Chemical Solutions

When using chemical solutions for eyebrow tattoo removal, I'm talking acid and alkaline, the products contain the ingredients that you'd also see used in skin peels such as glycolic acid and lactic acid. This type of skin peel is time dependant for optimal results, and also why we see them used in skincare products to improve skin texture

Glycolic acid used as a skin peel is placed on the surface of the skin, allowing time to absorb into the skin. Solutions with a higher percentage absorb deeper. The skin peel effect happens as the acid loosens the bond between skin cells, like dissolving the mortar holding a brick wall together

However, chemical methods have limitations, and considering the skin peel is now being tattooed or implanted into the skin, not just on it, often this not the best solution for tattoo removal

Alkaline solutions are a little bit different and include different oxide powders that form a hard bond with the tattoo pigment, sounds great till you consider how that now heals. The implanted powders form a hard bond with the pigment in your skin, and that needs to heal... Up and out! I.e. the scab gets thicker as it heals out, and you as a client need to manage that!

There's also removal solutions that are a mix of skin peels, powders and saline, all excited to get involved, all because saline might be considered a little too basic and safe after 30+ years. Times and products can evolve!

Here's some points to consider:

  1. Depth of penetration : Chemical tattoo fade products rely on the depth the pigment was placed by the technician to work effectively. If the technician works superficially, the chemical peel will only affect the pigment in the superficial layers. Deep pigments will still remain and be visible

  2. Damage to the skin : Chemical peels work by creating a controlled injury to the skin in order to remove the outer layers of skin, and repeated applications of chemical peel solutions can cause skin irritation, redness and possible long term skin damage, especially if the solutions are not used according to instructions or if the skin is sensitive

  3. Pain & discomfort : Using chemical peels, clients experience pain and discomfort during and after treatment, especially if the tech did work deeper to reach the tattoo pigment. Burning sensation, swelling of the surrounding skin, and prolonged healing may occur

  4. Scarring may occur : Chemical tattoo fade products pose a high risk of scarring during the healing process, especially if the skin is sensitive and does not tolerate the chemicals well, or if applied incorrectly by the technician. If scarring occurs, the scars can be more noticeable than the eyebrow tattoo itself

  5. Multiple treatments needed : As for any type of eyebrow tattoo removal, multiple treatments are usually needed. Careful consideration must be placed on how well a clients skin can handle these invasive skin peels

It's clear that chemical removal it isn’t the ideal solution for eyebrow tattoo removal. Other methods like laser removal can be considered, although as you've seen, this has its own challenges with the sunset colours. So maybe there's a way of combining laser with a more gentle non-laser method, like Botched Ink

laser eyebrow tattoo removal semi permanent makeup

Prevent Yellow Brows, and Still get Consistent Removal Results

Combining Removal Treatments, a Personal View

Combining removal treatments is new, and requires open thinking. I'm one of the first people in the cosmetic tattooing and removal industry to talk about this, and we include this process in our Botched Ink training, so our techs are aware and prepared, not only for yellow brows, but combo removal treatments

As more laser techs are experimenting with laser treatment on eyebrows, and more PMU techs are learning laser, we're now seeing more clients with red, yellow and orange brows, as laser technology has more difficulty with those colours

Our industry is evolving, and Botched Ink is a forward thinking brand, we can only try to educate both clients and laser techs about all the colours in brow pigments. For laser, black removes easily and first, then laser has more difficulty with the other colours 🔴🟡🟠, I call them the sunset colours, with other filters, skills and knowledge needed from techs using these machines

I'd rather embrace combination treatments when mainly black pigment is left after Botched Ink treatments, than deny laser works, or worse, say laser is bad or risky

However, PMU laser removal trainings may well say saline doesn't work, and we have to share the reality, just look at our Instagram feed which is full of results! That's why I keep saying about teaming up with a 'saline friendly' laser tech

Clients being against laser is different, and you can quite rightfully explain that less than 5% of laser techs even understand about cosmetic tattoo pigments. Most laser techs don't offer tattooing, and with most body tattoos, the colour you see on the outside is the colour on the inside. There's so few brown tattoos for them to learn from, that what you see is not what you get with eyebrows. Not only do we have ⚫🔴🟡 plus white ⚪ in our pigments, we also touch up and refresh over the years, probably using colour corrections with orange 🟠 and green 🟢, more colours laser has difficulty with. Who tops up and corrects body tattoos over the years...

I've always thought it's a shame when a client still has deep black pigment left after say 6 Botched Ink sessions, when I know laser could now just zap the black. Worth me saying at this point, that some removal solutions only remove superficial pigment, leaving the deep pigment with a cloud of clear skin covering it, which makes the pigment look more grey. Botched Ink also floats up any deeply implanted pigment

Most times clients have great results with less than 6 Botched Ink sessions, as after the 3rd session if pigment isn't moving quickly enough, we can work with more purpose and get the results happening. I'm not saying combination treatments for all clients, only those left with deep black pigment

It's a good discussion to have, but when there's expensive laser tattoo removal machines to be bought and sold, and high value training courses to invest and compete with (business talk 🙈🤣), a small independent brand like Botched Ink needs the voice of others to help spread the word about the info I've shared with you today 🙏

I appreciate your support!

Lisa 🧡

Key Takeaways

  • Considering laser eyebrow tattoo removal? Be aware of potential yellow and sunset color pigment issues
  • Laser removal, popular for microblading and semi-permanent makeup, can reveal hard-to-remove pigments
  • Eyebrow tattoos use brown pigments, a mix of black, white, red, and yellow. Correction colours are orange and green. Laser has difficulty with some colours
  • Laser shatters pigment particles, which the body then processes, but lighter pigments like yellow can persist
  • Always ask your laser tech if you can see their healed results for eyebrow tattoo removal, so you can see how experienced they are working on brows
  • Laser relies on technicians knowing the best settings for their machine, and the pigment colours they're working on
  • Using Botched Ink first, or combining removal methods, helps to prevent or fix yellow brows and the sunset colours

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Lisa Henning owner of Botched Ink saline solution

The Author: Lisa Henning

Lisa Henning is the owner and developer of Botched Ink, an industry leading saline removal brand offering comprehensive training, online and in-person, and our exclusive Botched Ink® saline removal solution. Contact Lisa directly on Instagram, Facebook, or by Email