During the Pigmentation Procedure
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What To Expect – Scalp Pigmentation Concerns
This page is a result of the many questions from clients whom have undergone a scalp pigmentation procedure from another company concerned about what they had experienced. Many of these previous clients have expressed the same despair, that the technician(s) did not take the time to consult first, ask them what they wanted, or even answer any specific questions. Most were told “don’t worry, it will be fine” throughout the procedure(s). In addition, many of these clients wished in retrospect that they had stopped the session. You may read What To Expect on our new website.
Some techs even advised that the additional sessions needed would “fix” any problems. Again, many of these clients experienced even more despair during each of these additional sessions. So why is this happening?
Some of the questions regarding these experiences are:
QUESTION 1: Why are most scalp pigmentations done in numerous sessions?
ANSWER: This is a common practice in this field. There are two main reasons for this. The first one being so the providers can schedule numerous clients during one day, as each “session” is only a few hours. This results in a higher profit bottom line, more customers, more money. The second reason is training of technicians. This is discussed in depth in Question 3.
Artistry Concepts: The ACHM2® and ACHM2.5 is a one time, one appointment only permanent scalp pigmentation application. We had one client that had a scalp pigmentation done by one of the “session” companies. He was 15 minutes late due to heavy traffic. When he arrived, he was told he had to reschedule after travelling from Pennsylvania to New York City. This is because the provider had a set schedule to accommodate numerous clients that day. Artistry Concepts schedules only one client per day.
QUESTION 2: I didn’t have much of a consultation. The technician seemed to be in a rush and really did not listen to my concerns or answer specific questions. He just started on me right away.
ANSWER: Unfortunately, franchise and numerous clinic companies can be “production line.” These technicians were hired for a specific task only, to put “dots” on your head. Some do not have the experience or knowledge to answer any specific or technical questions. In many cases if the client persists, another individual, perhaps a salesperson, will enter the room and try their best to calm your concerns with double talk.
Artistry Concepts: You will receive a phone consultation when your initial photos are submitted. Then upon arrival, Mr. Weston will spend approximately an hour with you answer any additional last minute questions and/or to address any concerns. You will not be pushed off to a third party. Mr. Weston will then layout your hairline based on your natural hairline that you have lost. You will then review with Mr. Weston any modification that you wish at that time. He will specifically review with you exactly the ACHM2® and ACHM2.5 process and what you shall expect. Weston will also open all sterilized equipment packing and needles in front of the client (termed “set up”). Some clients have experienced entering the procedure room with all equipment, supplies and needles already opened.
QUESTION 3: Why did several different technicians work on me, why not just one?
ANSWER: Applying scalp pigmentation is an extremely demanding physical task on the part of the technician. Most techs lack the stamina and experience to continue after two or three hours. But that is why the “numerous session” treatments last only this length of time for the first initial treatment. But in some cases, the first session is performed by a technician with the least experience, followed by a second, third and sometimes even fourth session, graduating to the most experienced tech for your final session. This can also be a training method on the part of the provider; the final tech will correct or “clean up” errors by the previous three techs.
Artistry Concepts: Mr. Weston has been tattooing (custom, medical and cosmetic) for almost 40 years. He personally performs all ACHM2® and ACHM2.5 scalp pigmentation procedures on each and every client in our Sarasota Center. As a long-time artist experienced in many fields of art, he understands the importance of completing one project at a time. For example, would an oil painting artist permit another person to work on their art canvas? Absolutely not, and scalp pigmentation should be no different, and this is the concept that Weston instructs to all of his students.
QUESTION 4: Why does the technician apply numbing cream?
ANSWER: This is a common practice in the scalp pigmentation field. While the client is advised that this is to help alleviate pain, this is more intended to assist the technician in applying your pigmentation in a very hurried manner. He/she is able to cover a lot more scalp in a short amount of time with your scalp numb. However, there are FDA warnings regarding side effects associated with these creams.
Artistry Concepts: Weston ceased using numbing creams more than fifteen years ago when performing permanent cosmetics. These creams affect the cellular structure of the skin by actually causing the skin to initially reject the pigment. By overcompensating for the rejection, pigment is applied again and again into the same area. In fact, the skin has accepted the pigment, but has taken several minutes for the pigment to be seen. By that time, the technician has applied the pigment numerous times to the same area, resulting in dark, deep “follicles” which spread into each other immediately (bleeding).
QUESTION 5: Why did my scalp bleed?
ANSWER: Pigment should NEVER be applied so deep into the scalp that it bleeds. Bleeding is a sign of an inexperienced tech who has injected the needles way too deep. This will result in large “points” resembling those of a Sharpie pen. Most technicians utilize permanent cosmetic equipment which have an automatic preset length on the needles, which depth is set too deep. This preset equipment is not designed for the scalp, and it is designed for ease and simplicity for inexperienced and new technicians. This also will result with the use of conventional or oversized needles.
Artistry Concepts: Again, experience counts here. In addition, Weston’s ACHM2® and ACHM2.5 needles are 6 times smaller than other provider’s conventional needles. Weston has the experienced touch to individually place each follicle point at the correct depth. His proprietary equipment is manual, permitting him to feel each point being applied.
QUESTION 6: Why was I not permitted to look at my application during intervals?
ANSWER: This is one of the most common questions that we receive. This reverts back to the technician being in a rush, not wanting to take the time. They have another client just behind you. They don’t want you to stop them to examine the work, both to save time and to alleviate the client seeing any substandard work until it is done.
Artistry Concepts: Weston establishes the client’s natural hairline and gives the client sufficient time to approve or make any changes. Our clients are always permitted to have a hand mirror at hand to inspect the work. Approximately every hour, a break is taken for the comfort of the client as well as allowing them to inspect the work.
QUESTION 7: Why was I charged for additional “sessions” that were originally not quoted?
ANSWER: As previously mentioned, the numerous session treatments take advantage of training new technicians. You are the one to must bear the cost should the techs not be experienced enough to apply your scalp pigmentation right the first (second, third or even fourth) time.
Artistry Concepts: We will never increase your price. You are given a $500 estimate range, which is firmed once you arrive and Mr. Weston can assess you in person. If in fact we underestimate based on your photos, we absorb the cost. Additional cost is never passed on to our clients.
QUESTION 8: Why does my scalp still shine even with pigment in the loss areas?
ANSWER: If you had an oily scalp before your pigmentation, you will have one after. But most pigments being used by providers are plant-based, which have added oils to the compounds. These pigments will only compound your already oily problem.
Artistry Concepts: Weston’s SMART Pigments do not contain any added oils. In fact, they contain an anti-shine agent to assist in alleviating any overly oily scalp.
QUESTION 9: Why was I told I need their special aftercare products?
ANSWER: Scalp pigmentation does not need any special aftercare products, even those that are marketed with the company’s own label. There are strict FDA laws regarding cosmetic products, and it is highly unlikely that these companies have received FDA approval for their products, as it takes years and years of lab testing to receive FDA approval. These products are simply other manufacturer’s products that have been relabeled for their own use to provide additional residual income for their company. Don’t fall for “special” products!
Artistry Concepts: We do not offer nor require “special” aftercare products. Simple over-the-counter products such as baby shampoo or Lubriderm for dry scalp are more than sufficient.
QUESTION 10: Why does my scalp have almost a solid, shaded look now?
ANSWER: This comes from numerous applications. After three to four applications required, most of the skin on your scalp is covered with pigment. You now have a shaded look, without any skin showing through like a natural scalp. This can be compounded by numerous techs during your applications. This is what some companies also refer to their “3-D” look.
Artistry Concepts: As Weston is the only artist that will ever apply your ACHM2® and ACHM2.5 in our main Studio, you can be sure that you will not end up with results like the above.
QUESTION 11: Why does my hairline look so unnatural?
ANSWER: Your hairline can be both too solid with no graduation in color or density, or the hairline was recreated below your natural one. There is an obvious difference in the forehead skin from the scalp skin relating to texture, tone and color. Many providers create widow’s peaks even for clients who did not possess one naturally. Many scalp pigmentation techs, like robots, have to apply the same amount of pigment at the same depth in all areas of the scalp because of the automatic machines that are used.
Artistry Concepts: Weston never establishes a hairline below the natural hairline that you lost. Any deviation to your natural hairline will result in pigment being applied to non-scalp skin (forehead). The pigment cures differently in forehead skin and you will end up with a stripe on your frontal hairline, which will be darker. Weston does not utilize automatic pre-set machines, but manually places each follicle point strictly by touch. This allows pigment to be placed deeper or shallower where needed on various places of the scalp.
©2015 Mark A. Weston