What Makes SofTap® So Special?
By Alexis Lawson
SofTap® permanent cosmetics is one of the easiest and gentlest ways to implant permanent color into the skin. The SofTap® needle configurations are designed to provide maximum comfort, fast healing, complete control, little or no touchups, and most important of all, the most natural look in the world. All SofTap® tools are pre-sterlized and single use.
They are also patented by SofTap®.
The SofTap® hand method provides you with a lot of versatility so that your end results will be completely soft and natural looking. Many of the procedures that can be done with the SofTap® hand method are as follows: You can design individual hair strokes in the eyebrows, fill in brows lightly, fill them in solidly, do thin, fine lines for eyeliner and lash enhancement, smudgy effect for eyeliner, combination smudgy liner and lash enhancement, thick upper and lower eyeliner, full lip color, lip liner, lip extension, any of these combinations for lips, scar camouflage, beauty mark, or nipple areola reconstruction.
How does the SofTap® method work?
It is very simple. The SofTap® needle configurations come in groups of 3's, 5's, 7's, 9's, 12's, 28's, 42's, 56's, 84's, and 114's. The signature trademark of the SofTap® TM technique is the 12, 28, 42, and 56 needle assemblies. All of your permanent cosmetic procedures can be done with the 12 prong needle assembly. Through years of testing, we have found that the 12 prong needle is the right length to create a natural length hair in the brow area, the right length to go around the curves of the bow in the lips, and a great length for doing eyeliner and lash enhancement. The needle configurations are tightly set next to each other flat at an angle like this .The needles are gently placed on the skin, scooted slightly forward, and then gently rolled and lifted from the front needle to back needle off of the skin to deposit color.
Examples of Needle Size Uses
Use needles only once
Never reuse needles. It is against U.S. Federal law to re-use needles. Show the client that you are throwing them away in a sharps container. This is your best defense against anyone trying to accuse you of reusing needles. Some technicians like to save their needles and reuse them on the same client. This is not acceptable. You are leaving yourself open for litigation if you do so. You never want anyone to be able to point a finger at you and say that you gave them some disease.
Also when moving from brows or liner to lips, change your needle. You do not want to be accused of a brown color from the brows being implanted into the lip when the cause of the brownish tone was hyperpigmentation. Do not leave yourself open to this. At the same token, do not use the same needle that you used on the lips for the brows and eyes for the same reason, but more importantly that you do not want to transfer the herpes virus into the eye area from the lip.
Because this is a machine less method, there is no loud noise, and no worries about putting color in the wrong places because you will have complete control with the SofTap® hand method. Color will not be deposited into the skin until you gently roll and lift the needle assembly off of the skin. If you set your needle assembly onto the skin and decide that that's not exactly where you want the color to go down, then no problem! Just take away the needle assembly from the skin and no color will be deposited. Furthermore, you can have exact precision in all of your work with SofTap®. The two procedures where precision is an absolute must are the eyeliner and the lips. SofTap® allows for ease of exact placement of pigment. Eyeliner can be done as thin as this line with the SofTap® method. Because of such precision and control, you can target the most discriminating clients.
The first question that your client's friends and family ask them is "Did it hurt?" The most common answers are "It wasn't bad at all", "I fell asleep", "Tweezing hurts more", I'm going back to get everything else done". SofTap® provides the maximum amount of comfort for all of your procedures. It is so gentle. You have to feel it to believe it.
Fast Healing Time
Because SofTap® is so gentle, little or no topical is required for your procedures. Brow procedures can be done without any topical at all. This is great because the less topical you have to use, the faster the skin will heal. What topical does is block the message to the brain that there is pain. Therefore, since the brain is not receiving that message, it does not send out its armies to begin healing the area until after the topical has worn off. With SofTap®, you can control any discomfort with the speed at which you are rolling and lifting off of the skin. If you’re most sensitive client becomes slightly uncomfortable, you can quickly put her at ease by slowing down your lift off. In addition, to expedite the healing process, we strictly use the SofTap® post treatment ointment. It is fabulous! It immediately traps the color into the skin and begins the healing process immediately.
Little or no touchups
If you are doing the SofTap® technique correctly, you will have little or no touchups. One of the biggest problems that the permanent cosmetic professional faces is having to do so many touchups. The reason why there are so little touchups to do with SofTap® is because for the eyeliner and brow procedures, there is little or no blood. What does this mean? This means that the blood supply is in both the papillary and reticular layers of the dermis. SofTap® is gentle enough so that you do not have to draw blood. The SofTap® TM method places pigment at the surface of the dermal layer. This makes the procedure permanent. The gravity of the color particles then brings it lower into the dermis without unnecessarily traumatizing the reticular and papillary layers of the dermis. Too much blood will help to wash away any color and if blood comes to the surface, so will the macrophages of the immune system which help to engulf any foreign matter that enters the skin.
The Most Natural Looks
The SofTap® hand method provides you with a lot of versatility so that your end results will be completely natural looking. You can design individual hair strokes in the eyebrows and thin fine lines for eyeliner and lash enhancement. Make sure that when you are setting your needles down that all of the needles are touching the skin. As you roll the needles off of the skin, the skin should fall off of the needles like dominos. Practice this slowly so that you can see this effect.
1. Gently place your needle assembly on the skin in the place where pigment is desired. Make sure that when you are setting your needles down that all of the needles are touching the skin.
2. Do not depress the skin with the needles. This is a frequent cause of unnecessary pain for your client.
3. Scoot the needles slightly forward till you feel them catch into the skin.
4. Gently lift the front needle through back needle off of the skin thereby depositing color into the skin where the needles originally made contact
As the needles come off of the skin, the skin should fall off of the needles in sequence (like dominos). Practice this slowly so that you can see this effect.
5. You can achieve a shorter line such as the 3 or 5 prong needle by using a larger needle assembly and use only the first few needles or back few needles of the larger needle assembly (such as the 12 prong needle assembly). The 12 prong needle is the most popular choice of most professionals for all of the procedures because you can work faster than with the smaller needle assemblies. Sometimes, however, you will want a shorter line than the 12 prong needle. The places where a shorter line may be desired is in the inner portion of the brow and the bow of the lip.
6. If you have one tiny little spot that you need to implant color into or you want to do a beauty mark without having to use an addition 3 prong needle, then you simply flip the needles upside-down and pick the spot on the skin with the first needle.
Rules To Work By
1. Silence is not golden. Because this is a non-machine method, there is no loud or buzzing noise. The hand method is extremely quiet except for one small sound. This sound can be described as a Velcro sound that is emitted as the needles come off of the skin with each tap. You must hear this sound or else you are not going deep enough. If you do not hear this sound, your pigment will not stay.
2. Stretch that skin. The skin should be pulled tight as a drum when the needles are tapping into the skin. The skin must not move at all when the needles are lifting off of the skin, If the skin is loose, there will be less resistance against the needles which can cause unnecessary pain.
3. Tap quickly and gently. Quicker tapping is much gentler than slower tapping. Tap very fast when filling in areas, but do slow down where extreme precision is required. How fast is fast enough? About 3-5 taps in one second.
4. Don't travel around when trying to achieve a solid look. Traveling around means that you are not tapping in the same exact spot. You need to tap in the same spot in order to achieve a solid look such as thin solid lines for the individual lines for the hair simulation on brows, eyeliner, lip liner, and filling in the lips. These areas require tapping in the same spot. If you hear the Velcro sound, but your color didn't stay. This means that you did not tap enough times in one spot
5. How many times to tap. This is going to vary from skin type to skin type. Some skin types will accept pigment with only 3 taps in the same spot while other skin types may require much more tapping in the same spot. With practice, your movements will be swift enough that you will be tapping 3-5 taps in one second. With that speed you will sweep through each eyebrow in 10 minutes with a range of 3-12 taps in one spot. Try and remind yourself to stay in one spot longer before moving to a new area. This is the opposite of machine work where the user is told not to stay in one spot. This is very important to keep in mind especially when doing lips. When filling in the lips with a 28 or a 56 prong needle assembly, you must tap at a pace of 5 taps per second and stay in one spot for about 30-45 seconds before moving to a new area. Do not count how many times you tap, but instead pace yourself by staying in one spot for a certain length of time. By doing this, you will be able to do lips only once or with only one touchup. Make sure that there are absolutely no holidays (no spots of skin showing through) because this will be even more exaggerated when it is healed.
6. Do travel around for a smudgier, softer look. Do tap your needles around randomly when trying to achieve a soft, smudgy look. Do this for filling in between hair simulation on brows, smudgy eyeliner, and texturizing or blending of a lip liner into the lip.
7. Control the darkness of your color by how many times you tap. You will be controlling the darkness of a color by how many times you are tapping into the skin at the same spot. For example, you can have two sets of brows done with the same color and one set is darker than the other. How can this be? One set was tapped in at 5-6 times in one spot whereas the other set of brows, the color was implanted at 2-3 taps in the same spot. With this in mind, you can create the most natural looking brows by tapping in the least amount of times at the nasal zone or inner tear duct area (this will make this the lightest), the most amount of tapping in the central zone or arch area (this will make this the darkest part of the brow), and the second most tapping in the same spot in the Temporal Zone or outer eye portion (this will be the second darkest area). For example, for a completely natural look with a medium toned color, you may tap 1-2 times in the same spot in the nasal area, 3-4 times in same spot in the central arch area, and 2-3 taps in the same spot in the Temporal Zone. If after healing, your client wishes it darker, and then just tap in the same color more times in the same spot. You will find that you will have to do much less touchups if your clients leave your office feeling that they are a little too dark. That way when they heal, the color intensity should be just right. For solid eyeliner, there should be no holidays. If there are holidays present, they will become more obvious after complete healing. This is probably the most important aspect to keep in mind. I always find myself telling my students that they need to implant more color in the same spot for the eyeliner procedures. Your eyes must scrutinized the skin like a hawk and look for any spot of skin showing through. So just to be on the safe side, when you think that you are done with your eyeliner, go over it again a couple of times more. Of course for a smudgy appearance around the eyes, you would want to have some holidays showing. This would create a softer appearance. You will want to tap into the skin randomly for this. For the most part, however, you will be filling in your eyeliner lines solidly. Also make sure that you wipe thoroughly with your moistened q-tips in order to get off any leftover pigment on the skin because if you do not wipe the area well enough, you will think that the color is implanted into the skin when it just hasn't been wiped off well enough.
Good luck to you and have fun. Your clients will love what you do for them. If you have any questions, please call your instructor. Alexis Lawson - founder of SofTap® Permanent Cosmetics.
SofTap® pigments are "The pigments you can trust since 1988 [tm] ". To date there has never been a reported adverse reaction with any SofTap® pigment. These revolutionary pigments are pre-mixed into warm and cool brows, eyeliner, and lip and specialty colors. They are iron oxide and glycerin. This means inorganic. However, some lip colors do contain "Carmine" an organic color. Each tube of color is labeled with ingredients, lot number and expiration date. SofTap® pigments do not contain FD&C or D&C dyes that can be linked to allergic reactions.
SofTaps® after care product Recoveral® is a wonderful healing ointment. Do not use if allergic to "Tea Tree Oil".
SofTap® continues to improve products offered to their trained clients. The new C14 curve tool (eyebrows only) is all I use for the most natural looking eyebrows you will ever see. I have mastered this tool and can honestly say, "I have almost no touch up work." --Jane Adler
Brows done with a C14 & Cappuccino
Article edited by Jane Adler