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How To Properly Shake Pigment Bottles

by Teryn Darling January 22, 2019

Believe it or not, there are technicians and artists out there that are not properly shaking their pigment bottles, and you might be one of them. But if you are…  do not feel bad because you are NOT alone! The reason I know this, is because I am a Distributor for Li Pigments, and we constantly get emails and messages from customers just like you who are frustrated.

So, you may ask: “What am I doing wrong??” Continue reading to find out!

  • Current artists are picking up their bottle of pigment, and just shaking it. They shake their bottle of pigment then take the cap off, and pour into their pigment cup. They recap, and put away until next time.
  • Next time they have a client, they grab that same pigment bottle, shake with the cap on, then take the cap off, pour into their pigment cup, recap, and again… put away until the next use.

So, you ask: “What is this doing?? Why is this causing issues and frustrations?” I will tell you…

Because artists that are shaking with the cap ON, they are making a mess! You can see, [see video] all that pigment collecting into the cap! As you shake the bottle, pigment is going up into the cap and accumulating there. Then, when you put your cap back on your bottle, it is getting all over your tip and all around the rim. Eventually, pigment starts leaking down the bottle, getting all over your label and again, causing a mess! The pigment starts to harden and get ‘gunky’ and it can even end up clogging your tip so your pigments won’t pour out properly. PLUS, it wastes pigment as well! So simply put, if you are improperly shaking your pigments, you are:

  • Causing a mess.
  • Clogging the tip of your bottle.
  • Wasting pigment (AND your hard earned money!)

NOW, let’s show you the RIGHT WAY! (Continue reading for instructions on how to properly shake your bottles)

Alright, so you have your bottle of pigment…

  • The very FIRST thing you are going to do is take the cap OFF.
  • With your gloved finger, put your finger on the tip and shake - (I use gloves, but you can also use paper towel, cotton pads, tissues, gauze… just something VERY clean like that. DO NOT use a naked finger!)
  • Shake your pigment bottle for a solid 30 seconds. If you are wondering “why 30 seconds?” don’t worry, I will go over that next!
  • Once you shake the pigment really good, remove your finger from the tip.
  • Grab the bottle, with the fingers that do NOT have pigment on them. If you grab the bottle with the finger you used to cover the tip with, you can get pigment on the label and create the mess we are trying to avoid. I am a Virgo so I am VERY particular… I like nice clean bottles, and you should too! 😊
  • After you grab the bottle with your clean fingers, pour into your pigment cup.
  • When you’ve finished pouring, take a paper towel, tissue, etc and use it to clean off the tip really good, removing any excess pigment.
  • Recap and put away for next time.

Now, NEXT TIME… Grab your pigment bottle, and remember to take the cap off before starting the process all over again. (Repeat, steps 1 through 8)

As you can see once you properly shake, you have no pigment in your cap, on the tip, or on the rim. Nothing is dripping onto your label. Your bottle will no longer clog and cause frustration. And you are not wasting any more pigment. No fuss, no muss, no waste! It’s Fantastic!

Now that we all know how to properly shake our pigment bottles, let me tell you why it is important to shake for 30 seconds. [continue reading]

The reason it is really important to shake for 30 seconds is because you have got to mix all that pigment of the bottle with the liquid. When using Li Pigments’ Aqua line, there are 3 main liquefiers; Sterile water, Glycerin, and Alcohol. When manufacturers make pigments, they use different colorants (5, 6, 7 colorants and sometimes more). They take these colorants that start out in a powdered form, and they mix to create one beautiful shade. They then mix the powdered colorants with the liquefiers which then creates your bottle of pigment.

Once a pigment bottle has sat for a while, the colorant (i.e. pigment load/concentration of color) settles to the bottom of your bottle. Shaking for 30 seconds makes sure that all of the concentrated pigment at the bottom, is coming up and churning and mixing with all of the liquefiers. This process allows your pigment to be fully concentrated and that is what we want and need to get optimum healed results. I am ALL about optimum results. I want my work healing with as much color as possible, and doing as little touch up work as needed.

If you only shake for 5 to 10 seconds which a lot of people do, you are only getting SOME of that concentrated pigment load up and churning, right? And when you do that, when you pour into your pigment cup, you are pouring a WEAKER pigment. Hence, you are tattooing your procedure with a weaker pigment! So, it is super important to shake for 30 seconds to make sure that what you are pouring into your pigment cup is highly concentrated to do your procedure(s) with. We definitely don’t want to be doing our procedures with a weaker version of what we COULD be using. 

So, that is my tutorial on properly shaking your pigments, keeping your pigment bottles clean with no waste, and making sure you are doing your procedures with a fully concentrated bottle of pigment.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and thank you for joining me. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us… we are happy to help.  

Please subscribe to my YouTube Channel for more in-depth videos and tutorials: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoMC14Z51SiXsIkSvU-kvtQ

Follow me on Instagram at @tatgirlzink 

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