Machine Shading: Choosing the Right Speed Settings and Depth

“What speed should I use when microshading? What should be the depth?” 

I get asked these questions a lot. Choosing the right depth and speed of your machine is crucial as it will significantly affect the results. Whether you want to achieve a lighter shade or a seamless fading effect, the speed of the machine for shading plays an important role.

If you want to know the difference between microshading and microblading, click here

The Beauty Slesh PMU machine and the sample lines created when doing machine shading

When using the shading machine, the needles make pinpoint dots on the skin as you move the machine while shading. When you set the machine to the highest speed settings, the dots created are closer to each and will look more like lines. When you decrease the speed, the dots created are farther apart from each other. This will result in lighter shades and is very important for achieving the powder brows effect. So what exactly should you consider when choosing your speed settings? 

Three Factors to Consider When Setting the Shading Machine Speed

1. Is the speed right for your client’s skin?

You should consider whether a certain speed will damage your clients’ skin or if it is too painful for them. You should also note whether their skin is sensitive and gets irritated quickly or is prone to bleeding.

2. Is the machine speed strong enough to insert the pigment? 

If the machine you’re using has poor quality, there may be instances when the machine is not strong enough to break into the skin’s superficial layer. For machines with poor quality, increasing the speed settings might damage the skin, but if you’re using a high-quality one, this won’t be a problem. 

3. Which speed should you choose when shading different areas of the brows? 

The speed setting I commonly use is versatile and will work well whether you want darker or lighter shades. However, different machines will have different speed settings and results. For starters, the distance between the dots in the photo is the ideal distance. Adjust your machine speed settings to achieve the same effect and distance between each dot. 

Staying on that speed setting will make it easier for you to control the machine and the darkness of the shades that you want. Take note of your hand movement and position as well. Even if we’re using the same machine, but our hand movements and position are different, then we’ll have different results even if we set the same speed. Again, practice with your latex skin first and play with your machine’s speed settings until you achieve the distance of the dots in the photo.

Hand Movement and Pressure

Once you know the ideal speed setting for your machine and can achieve the same distance and pattern, you can start playing with creating different shades using the same speed settings. 

If you want a lighter shade, you can achieve this by doing wider hand movements and applying lighter pressure. To achieve darker shades for the tail of the brows, you can do slower hand movements and focus on one area of the brow until you get the desired darkness. Apart from identifying the correct speed, make sure to practice your hand movements and the pressure you apply as well.  

You can watch my YouTube video showing the different results when using different settings here.

The Right Depth When Microshading

You can practice on a radish (in photo) or latex skin. You can see the hand movements when machine shading through this video.

Whether you’re doing microblading or microshading, keep in mind that you should only make cuts or pinpoint dots on the superficial layer of the skin. They should be shallow and shouldn’t hurt even when you’re not using a numbing cream during the first pass. If you go deeper on the skin, you’ll end up with bluish and patchy healed results. 

Ideally, the depth should not be more than .5 mm. But again, make sure you’re only working on the outer layer and not any deeper. If you want to achieve a darker shade, do not apply more pressure or stay in one area for too long. Instead, do more passes and go over the same area a couple more times while still applying light pressure still. I can’t emphasize enough how much better your results will be if you just work on the superficial layer of the skin and not go any deeper. 

I hope you find this post about the correct speed and depth for machine shading helpful! Once you’re done with the treatment, make sure to take photos of your clients from different angles so you can use them for promoting your service. You can read about different ways to attract more clients here

I can’t wait to share my editing course with you and teach you my tricks on how I created photos that got me more clients. Don’t forget to sign up here to get notified once the registration is open.

Heads up! This post contains affiliate links and I will earn a small commission for any purchase you make at no extra cost to you. This will help me provide you with more free and helpful microblading content in the future! Don’t worry as I will never recommend anything on Beauty Slesh that I don’t personally believe in and won’t be beneficial to our microblading career. 

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