Welcome to Zen
The PMU store by Team Micro

Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP) Pigments

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

These products are proven and trusted and will not discolour following proper use, however they should only be used by trained scalp micropigmentation artists.

Carbon blacks

Most leading scalp micropigmentation pigments are straight carbon blacks. We supply all leading brands including Alivio, Folicule, 5PM Shadow, Ghost and Iccon.

Artists looking for the darkest black available should try 5PM Shadow BLVK.

Although the composition of professional SMP inks is quite simple, they’re all formulated differently. As a result, each carbon black product is quite different to work with, and needs to be handled and diluted differently. Dilution guides and safety sheets can be downloaded here.

Although many SMP artists use bottled water as dilutant, the correct dilution solution is distilled water, or a specially formulated dilutant.

Brown pigments

A range of brown pigments is now available, providing additional flexibility and customization options for SMP artists.

We sell all leading brown pigments including Folicule Deep Brown, 5PM Shadow Midnight Brown and Ghost Universal Brown (previously Espresso).


Many artists choose to modify carbon black pigments to add warmth and reduce cool tones when healed. The most commonly used modifiers are Ghost Neutralizer and Micro Mod by Perma Blend.

Pre-modified and colour pigments

The new breed of SMP pigments embrace the full spectrum of colour options, and provide unprecedented flexibility for SMP artists to truly master their craft.

The leading product is Reclaim, a Perma Blend range of pre-modified blacks developed by Steven Greitzer. He also developed Restore, a brown range formulated for density procedures. The old Perma Blend scalp range is still available, although it is likely to be discontinued soon.

German manufacturer Hanami also produce an exceptional quality range of modified carbon blacks, called Hanami SMP.

We suggest training in scalp color theory before using these new coloured scalp pigments. We recommend the online course by Taryn Quinterri, available at Team Micro. However, Reclaim and Restore are supplied with excellent usage guides in the box.

New or inexperienced SMP artists

if you’re relatively new to SMP, we recommend a carbon black pigment like Alivio, Folicule, 5PM Shadow, Ghost and Iccon.

Whilst carbon blacks lack the flexibility of other options, they have been the mainstay of the entire industry since 2009. World class results are achieved daily using carbon black pigments.

Seasoned SMP artists

Are you an experienced SMP artist? If you have not done so already, you should expand your colour theory knowledge and widen your repertoire using coloured pigments.

If you’d rather not take a colour theory course, we suggest purchasing one of the new Perma Blend kits, as they come with detailed instructions to enable artists to use colour pigments right out of the box.

Scalp micropigmentation artists who have performed a larger number of procedures, tend to stick with what they know. However, coloured pigments will become the predominant choice in the near future.

If you require a scalp pigment compliant with REACH, you should purchase Perma Blend Reclaim or Restore, or the Hanami SMP range. Currently, these are the only products that are REACH compliant.

EU artists

You are required, as per REACH, to use compliant pigments only.

The majority of SMP artists within the EU are using non-compliant pigments. When the REACH regulations were introduced, most SMP artists continued to use the same products they’d always used. However, we are yet to see if using non-compliant pigment could cause complications with insurers or licensing authorities.

We supply both compliant and non-compliant pigment to EU artists. Whichever pigment you choose, your purchases remain strictly confidential at all times.

UK artists

Scalp micropigmentation artists in the UK are not subject to EU REACH regulations, and can therefore use any pigment that is acceptable to their insurer and licensing authority.

REACH, or a version of it, may come to the UK at some point in the future, however nothing is likely to change in the near future.

Carbon black SMP pigments contain no constituent colours. For this reason, it is impossible for professional carbon SMP pigments to discolour in the skin.

The appearance of discolouration is actually caused by the skin, not the pigment. SMP artists using carbon blacks should always follow best practice:

  • Depth management is the most important skill for any SMP artist. if you penetrate the skin too deeply, you will cause blowouts, dermal staining and discolouration.
  • Pale skin and dark pigment dilution is a high risk combination and should be approached with extreme caution.
  • Over-saturation of the scalp by placing pigment deposits too closely together, or by performing too many top-ups, can create a solid look that will amplify any discolouration taking place.
  • Never use standard tattoo inks for SMP as they can easily discolour and cause all kinds of problems for your client.

If using colour pigments, the risk of discolouration is much higher. Specialist colour theory training is recommended before using any coloured scalp pigment.

Before purchasing from our store, ensure you have received correct, adequate and authoritative training from a reputable source, and observe best practice at all times.

If you would like recommendations for reputable trainers, please contact us.