It’s one of the hottest new beauty trends in central Pennsylvania.

“It is catching on and it is catching on fast, said Danielle Stine, a microblading artist.

Microblading is a semi-permanent makeup procedure that allows you to dramatically change your eyebrows, making them look fuller.

“I have a thyroid condition and as a result of that, it causes some hair loss and my eyebrows were very thin over the years. This is exciting that I won’t have to pencil in all the time,” Leanne Via said.

The artist puts on a numbing cream then uses a blade to cut pigment into the skin. If it’s not done right, things can go wrong.

“There’s a lot of things that could go wrong, infection being one,” Stine said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requires microblading artists to take a class on bloodborne illnesses, but no one is checking to make sure that they do. In Pennsylvania, microblading is not regulated. at all.

“It falls under permanent makeup, which is the same as tattoo artists and they are not regulated,” Stine said.

That’s something state Rep. Tony Deluca (D-Allegheny) would like to change.

“The fact is it’s a health problem,” Deluca said.

Deluca’s House Bill 456 would regulate the tattoo industry and microblading.

“It doesn’t put too many restrictions on it, but puts the right restrictions as far as protecting peoples’ health and welfare,” Deluca said.

The bill would create a registry of licensed professionals. Tattoo artists would have to pass a written exam and undergo a blood screening for bloodborne illnesses like HIV/AIDS and hepatitis. If an artist tests positive for a bloodborne disease, they cannot be on the registry.

“The legitimate artists understand that and they want it,” Deluca said.

The bill doesn’t address the equipment used. Right now, you can order microblading supplies online. We also found classes online that claim you can train in just days.

“I don’t think that you could do it online and I don’t think one day is enough to go over everything and have a certification for what we do,” Stine said.

Stine has the bloodborne pathogen training required by the CDC and she took an in-person, several day class to get her certification. Both documents are hanging on the wall so her clients can see them, which is why Via felt comfortable getting her eyebrows done.

“It wasn’t as painful as I expected either. It wasn’t bad at all,” she said. Leanne.

Before you try out this latest trend, know what to look for.

“Do your research,” said Stine.

House Bill 456 has been sitting in committee for several years. Deluca is hoping it will move next session.

If you go to a licensed salon, you can file a complaint with the Department of State, which oversees licensed salons. Your complaint would be reviewed, but due to a lack of regulations, it’s not clear if any action could be taken.

Also, ask if your microblading artist is they use disposable tools. If not, make sure the tools are properly sterilized.