To the editors:
Thank you for Mike Ervin's coverage in last week's Reader of my lecture on permanent makeup or intradermal cosmetics [Our Town, July 24]. Although generally accurate in what it said, I feel the article was also misleading due to what was omitted from my remarks. Hopefully, this letter will clear up any confusion in the minds of your readers.
Intradermal cosmetics are pigments implanted in the skin, much like conventional tattooing. But there are some very important differences. Only FDA approved, chemically inert, nonallergenic cosmetic pigments should be used for permanent cosmetics. Regular tattooists may use India ink, vegetable colors that cause allergic reactions, or oxides of certain metals that make beautiful colors but cause dermatological problems over time.
Also, anyone can do tattooing without any particular training or certification. In permanent cosmetics, there are national organizations and review boards that set standards of practice for the safety of our clients. I am a graduate of a medically supervised training program for permanent cosmetics, the Dermouflage Institute. I am the Illinois representative of the American Association of Permanent Color Technicians and a member of the National Cosmetic Tattooing Association, both of which offer advanced education classes which I have taken. I have been examined and certified as an Intradermal Cosmetic Technician by the American Board of Intradermal Cosmetics. I use the same methods of sterilization that physicians use, and I perform my procedures in a medical suite at the Chicago Medical and Surgical Center, 233 E. Erie St., in Chicago.
People bring different backgrounds to their practice of intradermal cosmetics, which can affect the quality of the result. Before I studied intradermal cosmetics, I was a licensed cosmetologist and leading makeup professional in the Chicago area for over ten years. Although doctors, nurses and electrologists may also offer intradermal cosmetic services, their medical background has little bearing on the quality of their work, which is fundamentally body art. I have both the trained eye and skilled hands in conventional cosmetics to give my clients the desired results. Anyone considering intradermal cosmetics should look carefully at the art and cosmetic background of the practitioner they select.
Finally, the most commonly asked question is: Is it safe? The answer is "yes," when performed with proper materials, techniques, and sanitary practice by a qualified individual such as myself. If anyone has further questions, they may contact me at 509-2943.
Jeffery Lyle Segal
Forever Beautiful, Inc.