3D Scalp Micropigmentation and Scalp Tattooing 101 by Tino Barbone in Elevate Magazine

What is Scalp Tattooing?

Firstly, Scalp tattooing goes by many names as industry leaders try to take their space in the Scalp Micropigmentation industry.  Scalp micropigmentation goes by Scalp Tattoo, Hair Tattoo, Tricopigmentation, Scalp Hair Tattoo and SMP.  Other names such as Hair Follicle Replication, HFS, and even 3D Scalp Micropigmentation are also in the mix, but are less popular.

Scalp Hair Tattoo is the act of implanting thousands upon thousands of simulated, pigmented hair follicles into the scalp by means of an SMP Machine (some artists use a rotary machine, some use a tattoo gun and some use a rotary pen).  These simulated hair follicles are implanted in the epidermal/dermal layer of the skin in the scalp.  Unlike tattoo or permanent makeup, SMP Artists do not inject a lot of pigment to flood the area because we are not creating a line.  We are literally injecting enough pigment to form a single dot the size and shape of a hair follicle.

Unfortunately, there are many names for the Scalp Micropigmentation treatment, however, NOT all Scalp Micropigmentation Treatments are the same.  Because this process seems easy, many tattoo and PMU artists believe that they can do this treatment without any formal training or understanding of the key components to a perfect SMP treatment.  In order to have a good SMP treatment and be able to replicate it many times over, you need the following items:

  1. SMP Training

  2. SMP Power Source

  3. SMP Machine

  4. SMP Needles

  5. SMP Ink

If any of the above items is missing, or the Artist is using cheap imitation materials, or materials not used specifically for SMP, then chances are they are not doing the treatment correctly, and their work, and especially their customers, suffer from having a bad SMP treatment.

At the Scalp Micropigmentation Training and Treatment Center (SMC), we only use SMP Certified products, meaning that all our equipment, supplies and materials are used ONLY for SMP Treatments.  You wouldn’t want your surgeon to use mechanic equipment for your surgery, so why would you use Classic Tattoo and PMU equipment for your SMP treatment?

What about 3D Scalp Micropigmentation?

This is a scam, and is only used for marketing and to get the client to call the company to get your business.  There is NO such thing as a 3D Scalp Micropigmentation treatment.  The pigment injected into the skin is 2D and will remain 2D until it fades away.  Be weary of clinics that are trying to get your business by stating that they can do your SMP treatment in 3D.  3D means Three Dimensional – meaning: length, width and depth.  Of course, pigment or ink does not have depth.  There are 3D paintings and 3D tattoos, however, you wouldn’t want a 3D dot on your head that gives depth.  Therefore, there is no such thing as a 3D Scalp Micropigmentation Treatment and a good SMP clinic will not state that they can do this for you and are just looking for a leg up on other clinics by promising something that they cannot deliver.

Here is a great intro article about Scalp Micropigmentation in Elevate Magazine with contributions by myself and a couple of my colleagues.



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