Have you ever looked at someone and suddenly realized that they had cosmetic tattooing? Done well, you might never notice. I had a former co-worker that I had worked alongside for just about two years before it dawned on me one day that her eyebrows were actually tattooed on! Although they were a more angular,1940s-style eyebrow shape, the coloring and placement were so perfect, they had always struck me as just being her eyebrows.
The only form of tattooing to be done with anesthetic due to the intense amounts of nerves in the facial skin, most often cosmetic tattoos are worn by women. Eyebrows, eyeliner and lipliner are the most common requested form of cosmetic tattooing. And it's a growing trend. The US Army had to revised their tattoo code recently to allow for cosmetic tattooing that was natural in appearance as they revised their rules to ban more outrageous and dramatic styles of skin art. And with the recent revealing of details from singer-dancer Michael Jackson's autopsy, one thing is clear: the King of Pop was tattooed too.
Unlike sister Janet Jackson, who has gone for a much more mainstream style of tattoos, Michael's ink work was designed to never been noticed. His eyebrows had been tattooed, a little eye lining had been done and his lips had been realistically outlined. A more interesting use of dermatological tattooing was the large swath that ran across his head from ear to ear, darkening his scalp. He'd had the front part of his hairline tattooed to fill it in, which effectively camouflaged the fact that his hair was thinning in front.
Jackson isn't the first male musician to have cosmetic tattooing. The Godfather of Soul, James Brown, had his own eyebrows tattooed permanently. Brown claimed he been in so many fights as a young man, the pounding his face took resulted in him hardly having any more eyebrows. He had them tattooed on permanently in 1991.