Scalp micropigmentation (SMP) is when you get a cosmetic tattoo that makes it look like you just got a fresh buzz cut. It’s also known as a head tattoo, scalp tattoo or often referred to as “tattoo hair.” But is scalp micropigmentation a traditional tattoo? The answer is NO. Scalp micropigmentation is very different than a traditional tattoo.
Scalp pigmentation is actually unlike a tattoo in almost every way. Everything from the needle, type of ink, and the depth of pigment deposit are different. Let’s explore…
Scalp Micropigmentation vs. Tattoo Needle Size
To begin with, a regular tattoo needle is simply too big and imprecise to approximate the appearance and texture of tiny hair follicles. The needle used for SMP is called a “3-point-micro-needle.” It’s 75% smaller than the smallest needle a traditional tattoo artist can get! The result of using such a small needle is that you can’t even tell the difference between an actual hair follicle and ink deposited by an SMP needle!
Scalp Micropigmentation Ink
During your consultation, your SMP practitioner will work with you to create a pigment hue that compliments your skin color and match your existing hair color. We use the Fitzpatrick scale to accomplish this match, which is commonly used in the permanent makeup and cosmetic industry.
At Scalp Micro USA, we manufacture our own scalp micropigmentation ink called Folicule. Our SMP ink has been tried and tested by practitioners to ensure consistency for every impression. Traditional tattoo ink meanwhile, is often non-organic and can be both harmful and irritating to your skin. Our Folicule SMP pigment is also not made from composite sources, so over time the colors won’t change.
Depth of Skin for SMP
Scalp Micropigmentation is a non-invasive treatment because we are only going 2 layers into the dermis. Unlike traditional tattoo ink, which is deposited five layers into the skin. Why? Because at this depth the pigment keeps it’s shape and form without any spreading. SMP practitioners get greater control over the final shape of the ink deposit while still going deep enough into the skin to stay permanent.
Scalp Micropigmentation vs. Tattoo Technique
One of the biggest differences between scalp micropigmentation and traditional tattoos is the technique. Traditional tattooing uses a scraping method to get the design desired. Scalp micropigmentation uses a dotting and pointillism method where the practitioner places tiny dots into the skin to create the appearance of hair follicles.
This difference in technique is also why scalp micropigmentation is significantly less painful than a traditional tattoo. The pain for tattoos is fairly consistent for most, while scalp micropigmentation most describe it as a 2-3/10. Some clients even fall asleep and find the treatment to be very manageable. At Scalp Micro USA, we have never had a client not finish their treatment.
SMP vs Tattoo Training & Certifications
In order to operate a scalp micropigmentation business in most states, they require a tattoo license and blood borne pathogen certificate. While both tattoo artists and scalp micropigmentation artists require similar certifications to open a clinic, having a scalp micropigmentation certification from a reputable source is a must for anyone seriously considering an SMP company or artist.
At Scalp Micro USA, all of our practitioners must undergo extensive training including a 6-month apprenticeship – by far the most extensive in the industry. In addition, we have the most experienced practitioners amounting to over 10 years of work with over 10,000 scalp micro pigmentation clients – by far the most in the United States.
Scalp Micropigmentation for Hair Loss
Wondering now, “Am I a good candidate for scalp micropigmentation?” now that you know all about it? Explore Scalp Micro USA further to find out! You’ll have all your questions answered, including questions you didn’t even think to ask. If you decide to move forward with the process, make an appointment for a consultation and soon enough you’ll have the hair loss treatment of your dreams!