Please Introduce yourself
So my name’s Tori Robbins, and I’m a Tattooist and SPMU artist from Liverpool. I do training, and I have appointments for both Tattoos and Semi-Permenant Makeup, and I’m the creator of the UK’s first Tattoo Training course.
So how did you get started in the industry? Like what kind of led you to doing what you’re doing now?
Tori: So, I was at uni, and I’ll be honest, I just didn’t have a job. So, um, I did prosthetics at uni, and there was obviously, even now, there’s like no jobs in it at all. So I, um, wanted to do tavan, but I didn’t feel like I was creative enough. Um, so I ended up going into a studio and then obviously becoming a tattoo artist with them. I then wanted to kind of branch out to permanent makeup, but again, I didn’t really know any training providers cuz I think back in, like, 2017 I couldn’t, there wasn’t many, um, great permanent makeup artists that were training.
So I ended up doing two microblading courses, and honestly like, I felt like I couldn’t microblade. Like even today, I still feel like microblading just isn’t my thing. And then, obviously, I then branched off into the cleft tattoos and then eventually the powder brows. But lip tattoo has always been, kind of like, my favourite treatment to do. I think cuz I do like the cleft lip and stuff, it’s just, it can be quite rewarding, and I feel like I’ve perfected my technique over the years. But definitely, like, I wouldn’t consider changing careers cuz I feel like it’s such a lovely industry to be a part of as well.
Dawn: Oh, definitely. It sounds like you’ve really found yourself in it.
Tori: Yeah, no, definitely. Yeah, it’s a hard industry, but I feel like when you’re, you know, you network with other artists and, and you know, you do different master classes, and you really wanna like, you know, progress your work. You can definitely find your little niches in the industry, of course.
Dawn: So, why did you kind of get into Semi-Permanent makeup? Was it kind of drawn on from experiences, or did you just kind of get intrigued about, uh, doing it?
Tori: I think, to be honest, it’s probably just cuz I was like obsessed with makeup and applying makeup myself. And the thought of, like, actually tattooing some of these people, I dunno. It just really excited me. So I’d say, yeah, I think that’s kind of why I got into it as well. And again, no one was really like, there were people doing it, but like, again, it wasn’t like a big thing and like a huge thing is what it is now. Um, so I think that kind of excited me as well.
So you said you’ve got a favourite treatment, which is Cleft lips. Could you tell me a bit more about that?
Tori: Yeah, of course. So with Cleft Lip and stuff it’s quite special actually because there’s actually a lot of people that have cleft lift that, you know, don’t want to kind of walk around without any lipstick on or anything. They feel quite self-conscious. So to me, to be able to do like a life-rewarding treatment for somebody is like really special. And again, not everybody wants it done, but again, the way that I can do that for somebody just makes me feel really good as well as get them feeling good if that makes sense. You just adapt your techniques to be able to do that for somebody, and I feel like there are no limits with permanent makeup as to how far you actually can go.
Dawn: Do you reckon you’ll go into kind of other reconstructive techniques, or is it that kind of like your specialism that’s what you’re gonna go with?
Tori: I feel like for me, I have a focus on the cleft. That’s as far as it’ll go for me for now. But again, I still feel like areola tattooing is of in interest to me because it’s like creating realistic nipples. With like my tattooing background, I feel like that would aid me to be able to do that, but not at this moment in time. I don’t think I’m gonna go down that route, but it’d still be something that I would be interested in in the future.
Dawn: That sounds amazing. It’s really great how you get enjoyment out of it, you know, if, especially with any job, you know, if you don’t enjoy it, you’re not gonna produce your best kind of work really.
Tori: Of course. Yeah. It’s like if, if you’re not passionate about something you’re never, you’re never gonna like it and you know, this day and age you don’t like your job like, you know, it can be hard to be like productive as well. So it’s, I think it’s good if you absolutely love what you do, which I do.
You said you developed a training course around tattooing. Could you tell me a bit more about that?
Tori: Yeah, so I’ve been tattooing for years now. And fine line is massive in America, and obviously, there’s a lot of training in America for, in the UK, there was nothing. And at the time, I was talking to the client, and the client was like, ‘You know, you should train this,’ and I was like, ‘Oh no, you have to go for an apprenticeship or go on like a larger training program.’ I couldn’t just, you know, train anybody. So I started kind of looking into stuff; regulations and things like that and going through like tattoo safe and just kind of seeing what I could actually do to open this kind of like this industry that’s quite to build. So I spoke to my accreditation company instead. Is this something that we can do like together? Can we create a fine-line training course both for tattoo & permanent makeup artists, something that’s never ever been done before?
Tori: And I remember saying to her last July it was, and she was like, ‘Yeah, of course, we’ll go through what everything that you need to do and then hopefully we’ll have you something, you know, accredited.’ So honestly, it was such a lengthy process, but I look back, and I’m grateful of that, that it wasn’t rushed. So yeah, so I’ve developed that training cost for payment make was and I was the first in the UK, and I’m still the first accredited training course in the UK. However, I travel to Ireland and Scotland now. So I’m also the first in those countries as well, which is amazing.
And I get so much enjoyment out of training in this particular course because it’s such an exciting industry to be a part of. It’s very creative, and like if you are kind of wanting to get into the fine line and stuff, it’s definitely a really interesting course as well. Especially cuz you learn a lot about like the history of tattooing as well. So yeah, I’m really kind of grateful that I came up with that idea and kind of put that out there on the market, and I’m just glad we did it.
Dawn: It’s amazing as well because you not only got your passion in your work, but you’re passing it on to like new students as well.
Tori: I think that’s what I’m really passionate about as well, is like giving them everything that I’ve done, seeing them absolutely smash their businesses, and they have kind of that passion as well and that fire in their belly to continue. So I get a lot of buzz outta that as well, and it’s really, really nice to see, you know, someone you’ve trained, and they’re absolutely just smashing it and the work, the producing is amazing. So yeah, honestly, it’s a really good feeling.
What would you tell those, or what advice could you give to those looking into going into semi-permanent makeup?
Tori: So I would research the artists that they’re kind of wanting to train with. So I don’t mean just kind of like looking at a few pictures, like really get to know them before you commit to the course. And I wouldn’t base it on price as well cuz I see a lot of the time like there’s a lot of like very unregulated training courses and you know, in five days you can, you know, create lips, eyeliner, eyebrows and god knows what else and like they come outta the training, and they feel like they can’t, they can’t even pick up on machine or a micro blade. So I wouldn’t base it on price; I would base it more on the experience and the artists that you want to go into; just research the hell out to them, reach out to them, talk to them, cuz you want to go to someone reputable with experience and I feel like that is the best way you can get into the semi-permanent makeup industry and do well with it as well.
Dawn: What about any techniques they can do in the buildup? I guess whilst hopefully gaining an apprenticeship.
Tori: So I actually have an online training platform that’s actually coming out for people that just don’t know what route to take. So this kind of involves a sort of like a taster into the industry. So like, you have a lot of like procreate tips on there. They have interviews on there, so it can really get a feel for like what to expect when you get into it. Even down to, like, how would you set up your business because in school, we don’t tell you anything like that. Some courses don’t even tell you. Like, I feel like that’s a good starting point for anybody who wants to do it. Just get a little subscription, try it out, and then invest in a course. I feel like that’s how you’re gonna get the best value as well.
Dawn: Well, definitely. Do you have a date that, uh, it’s gonna be coming out? Is it still in the works?
Tori: Still in the weeks; however, we are hoping it’s gonna be the next few weeks, and it’ll launch. Um, again, this is the first in the Tattoo and Permanent Makeup industry, so that’s again something that I’ve done that I thought would aid everyone from different backgrounds. Like you don’t even have to be, you know, a tattooist like you could own, you know, a construction company, or you could own like a cake business. Like it just really, really helps you to get into the business side of things as well. And yeah, that’s, again, something I’m passionate about delivering, kind of like what I’ve done wrong in the past and what you can do right. If that makes sense.
Is there anything you’d like to add?
Tori: I would probably say like about different techniques as well. See what you can learn in, I’m gonna say, the online training. So, it doesn’t kind of stuff where it’s not just permanent makeup, like some of the techniques that you’re learning in permanent makeup, like on the online, like you get, like if you go for, we have a standard package and a mentoring package with the mentoring one, which is the highest one, you can request custom videos. So if there’s a particular technique, what a lot of people ask me for is the full freckles. So if there’s a particular technique that you’re interested in learning, I can make custom videos to send to you as well. Which I think is a really good resource for people who kind of just wanna learn different little tips and tricks that can help.
Dawn: That sounds brilliant. I guess. And also, they should probably practice on a piece of fruit or maybe some fake skin rather than just going straight onto a person?
Tori: Oh yeah, a hundred per cent. I’d say definitely, the best thing you can get is a fold of real skin, and you can get that from killerbeauty.com. They’re really good for all the supplies I use.
Dawn: Yeah. Cool. That’s amazing. Well, thank you so much for taking time at your day to speak with me.
Tori: Oh no. Thank you so much for asking me. Thank you.