When most people think of tattoos, their thoughts usually drift to a meaningful (or not) piece of artwork that they would enjoy displaying on themselves for others to see. What most people don’t equate tattooing with is the permanent cosmetic aspect, such as eyebrows, lip coloring, scar camouflage and areola reconstruction. Jennifer Davis, the founder of Fiore Permanent Make-Up, who performs cosmetic tattooing in Edison, New Jersey.
C.J. Asher – First of all, thank you for this interview Jennifer! Tell us a little about yourself.
Jennifer Davis – My name is Jennifer Davis and I was born and raised in New Jersey. I have degrees in both psychology and nursing. I am currently a Wound Care Certified Registered Nurse, but I have not practiced nursing for the past two years since I decided to shift careers and become a cosmetic tattoo artist.
C.J. Asher – Tell us about Fiore Permanent Make-Up, its history, etc.
Jennifer Davis – After a decade of providing hospice care to terminally ill patients, I was looking for a change. I saw a video about scar camouflage and areola restoration. I thought it was a perfect way to combine my love of art and my clinical skills in a way that I could be creative and have fun while still having a positive impact on people’s lives. So, I sought out a formal permanent make-up training program and founded my business, Fiore Permanent Make-Up (“Fiore” is an Italian word for ‘flower’ or ‘blossom.’). A few months later, I approached the owners of Rorschach Gallery Tattoo Studio and I became a full-time artist on their team.
C.J. Asher – Tell us a little about permanent make-up, otherwise known as cosmetic tattoos.
Jennifer Davis – Permanent Make-Up and Cosmetic Tattooing both refer to the same thing: specialized techniques that are implemented for eyebrows, eyeliner, lip color, areola modification/restoration, scar camouflage and scalp micro-pigmentation. The primary goal is to restore and/or enhance a person’s own features in a way that appears natural. The tattooing methods require a different type of precision due to the delicate nature of facial skin. Pigments are designed to match hair color, skin tones and facial cosmetics.
C.J. Asher – What’s your most popular type of permanent make-up?
Jennifer Davis – Eyebrows are definitely the most popular. Women’s eyebrows naturally become thin over time and some past beauty trends had women over-tweezing them, only to never see them return again. A good eyebrow shape can make the biggest difference in a person’s appearance– it can literally take years off one’s image and restore a person’s self-confidence. It’s an amazing transformation!
C.J. Asher – How often do you have a client change their mind and want an alteration or removal?
Jennifer Davis – A small handful of clients have requested a color be made a little darker, but none have ever asked for a major alteration or removal.
C.J. Asher – Who is your typical client base?
Jennifer Davis – The majority of my clients are women in their late twenties all the way past retirement age. I have a small number of male clients; I really enjoy working with them and wish I had more!
C.J. Asher – How does the permanent make-up process differ from traditional tattoos?
Jennifer Davis – The biggest difference is that body art is supposed to look like tattooed art; it is typically obvious and serves as an adornment to the body. It conveys an image, words and symbolism. A cosmetic tattoo isn’t supposed to be obvious; it is supposed to hide in plain sight and look like something that the person possesses naturally. The best compliment I get from clients is when they say, “Everyone says I look better, but they can’t figure out what I did!”
C.J. Asher – Is there any type of additional application after the initial one? Do customers need to come back for a “touch up” in the future?
Jennifer Davis – For areola restoration or correction of another artist’s work, a second step is sometimes needed. My services always include a free touch-up within 3 months. If a touch-up is needed, it’s usually minor.
C.J. Asher – What are the advantages of permanent make-up over traditional make-up?
Jennifer Davis – Time is the biggest benefit– I’ve had clients say they sleep longer in the morning since they don’t have to worry about applying make-up. Saving money is also a major plus. Clients no longer have to waste money buying temporary products. My clients also love having peace of mind– they don’t have to worry about their make-up coming off in hot weather or at the gym. And they always look great at any time of day, no matter what they are doing!
C.J. Asher – Tell us some of the compliments you’ve received from your customers.
Jennifer Davis – “I got myself back!” “I feel like a new person!” “My friend/co-worker/sister/mom/cousin saw it and now they want to do it!”
C.J. Asher – What medical applications, such as for those with illness or trauma, does permanent make-up have?
Jennifer Davis – Any client who has had breast surgery can benefit from areola restoration and scar camouflage. Eyebrows, eyeliner and scalp micro-pigmentation are great options for clients with chronic permanent hair loss. Permanent Make-Up can also address scarring due to injury or surgery.