Ombre Brows Vs. Microblading: 4 Important Differences

Two of the most common types of semi-permanent eyebrow tattooing techniques are ombre brows and microblading, but what exactly is the difference?

Ombre Brows Vs. Microblading

The main difference between ombre brows and microblading is the finished look. Microblading uses fine hair-like strokes that blend in the actual hairs for a much more natural-looking brow. Ombre brows have a more powdered-in appearance, as the pigment is shaded into the eyebrow making them appear more bold and defined.

What Are Ombre Brows?

Ombre brows give the brows a much more bold and defined finish.

The eyebrow artist utilizes a machine that is very similar to a traditional tattoo machine to create this look.

Tiny dots of pigment are deposited into the skin shading the brow rather than adding individual hairs.

In order to get the ombre effect, the pigment is least saturated in the inner brow and gradually becomes more saturated moving towards the tail of the brow.

In some cases, eyebrow artists will even use a lighter shade in the inner brow and a slightly darker shade towards the end of the brow.

This is based on your brows and preferences, so this should always be discussed in the consultation before getting the actual procedure done.

What Is Microblading?

Microblading is the first semi-permanent eyebrow tattooing technique to take a storm in the beauty community in recent years.

Using a small handheld tool, eyebrow artists create tiny divets in the skin in which the pigment is placed.

They will draw fine, hair-like strokes that mimic the flow of the natural eyebrow hairs.

This method gives a very natural appearance that isn’t as dramatic as ombre brows.

If you only want certain areas of the brow filled in where the hairs are sparse, microblading can be a great option for this.

The Main Differences Between Ombre Brows and Microblading

The Main Differences Between Ombre Brows and Microblading

Both ombre brows and microblading is going to give you the advantage of not having to fill in your eyebrows with makeup every day.

But to determine which style is best suited for you, it is essential to know the main differences between the two.

Read on to find out the key differences between ombre brows and microblading to help you decide which style you want to commit to:

End Result

The main difference between microblading and ombre brows is the end result.

Depending on what you want your eyebrows to look like, you’ll be able to make a more clear decision on which style is better for you given the end result of their appearances.

Microblading provides a natural finish, as it is created by tattooing fine, hair-like strokes that move with the flow of the natural eyebrow hairs.

If you only need to fill in a specific area, microblading can be perfect for customizing the brow and only filling in areas that are necessary.

Ombre brows go from light to dark, and they look much more defined and bold compared to microblading.

Instead of creating hair strokes in the brow, the brow is completely shaded in to enhance the color and definition of the brow.

This gives a more powdered-in finish that doesn’t look as natural as microblading does.

However, eyebrow artists are still able to create a natural-looking brow using the ombre brow technique.

Skin Type

Microblading is not the best option for those with oily skin.

When oil from the skin interferes with the pigment done by microblading, the pigment tends to fast faster and lose its definition.

This can require more touch-up sessions which adds more trauma to the skin.

The great thing about ombre brows is that they are suitable for all skin types.

The pigment is more saturated in the skin, so it tends to last longer and it can withstand oily skin types.

Application Method

Microblading is done using a handheld tool to carve minuscule indents into the skin where the pigment is placed.

This is done in fine, hair-like strokes to mimic the appearance of actual eyebrow hairs.

On the other hand, eyebrow artists utilize a machine to create ombre brows.

This machine is very similar to a traditional tattoo needle, as it deposits hundreds of tiny dots of pigment into the skin for a more shaded effect.

Also, ombre brows are less invasive than microblading. This means less pain and less bleeding.

Of course, pain varies from person to person and your eyebrow artist should always apply a topical numbing cream to minimize any discomfort.


Another key difference between microblading and ombre brows is how long they last.

Microblading does not last as long as ombre brows, even with the recommended touch-up sessions in between.

With the recommended touch-up sessions, microblading lasts around 18 months to 3 years depending on lifestyle, skin type, etc.

Since the pigment is only placed in the areas where the hair-like strokes are placed, there’s less of it and it will fade away faster.

Ombre brows can last 2 to 5 years with the recommended touch-up sessions.

This is because the pigment is more saturated in the skin and can withstand the test of time better.

In terms of recommended touch-ups, most eyebrow artists will want you to come in for your first touch-up appointment about a month after your initial appointment.

This gives the brows time to heal properly, and then they will make any changes that need to be made and make sure the pigment is completely saturated.

From there, a touch-up is usually recommended a year after getting them first done.

However, with microblading, you’ll often require more touch-ups in between which means more trauma to the skin.

Since both methods use pigment that absorbs into the skin, they will both fade over time.

Therefore, a lot of people choose ombre brows simply because the treatment causes less trauma to the skin.

Microblading Vs. Ombre Brows: Which Is Better For You?

Microblading Vs. Ombre Brows

Both microblading and ombre brows are great options for defining and filling in the brows so that you won’t have to fill them in with makeup every day.

Although they both have their advantages, they are very different techniques that have different results, so it’s important to recognize the differences between the two.

If you want a more natural appearance that increases the volume of individual eyebrow hairs, microblading is going to be your best bet.

If you want a more shaded-in, defined brow, ombre brows are the way to go. Furthermore, if you have oily skin, ombre brows are automatically going to be the better option.

Even if you don’t want something super dramatic, eyebrow artists are still able to create a natural finish using the ombre brow technique.

Other things to keep in mind is how long these methods last and the trauma they do to the skin.

Microblading is more invasive to the skin, doesn’t last as long, and requires more touch-up sessions.

The ombre brow method is less invasive, lasts a bit longer, and does not require as many touch-up appointments in between.

However, the reason a lot of people do go with microblading instead of ombre brows is that the overall result is much more natural-looking.

Your eyebrow look can be much more customized when getting them microbladed.

Can You Microblade Over Ombre Brows?

Yes, microblading over ombre brows is a common technique that most eyebrow artists offer.

This service is called ‘combination brows’, and it’s many eyebrow artists’ preferred technique.

The combination between the powdered in effect and the fine, hair-like strokes oftentimes makes for the perfect brow for most people.

Also, since the ombre brows technique is being used, this style of brow does tend to last longer.

One thing to keep in mind is that this service can be higher in price, as the eyebrow artist is essentially doing two services in one.

However, for a lot of people, the end result is well worth the price.