How to choose the right SMP artist? - 7 Derma Center

Beauty Blog

December 26, 2022

How to choose the right SMP artist?

Olga SMP artist

Okay, you’re down for having a Scalp Micropigmentation treatment. Woohoo! That’s super exciting. Now, the tricky part starts – choosing the right SMP artist to do the job the best way possible.

How do you know you’ve chosen the right professional?
We’ll help you with a comprehensive checklist and tips.

Check also: How to select the right SMP trainer for your career

#1 Background check and education

Professional qualification is your SMP artist research’s first and most crucial aspect. Check their website or social media channels for legitimate certificates and training.

  • Does that artist attend conferences or training?
  • Are they allowed to do SMP in Dubai (or UAE)?
  • Do they have a license to practice SMP?
  • How many years of experience do they have?
  • What is their background?

If the SMP artist works for a clinic, don’t settle for their advertisement. Ask the clinic for the professional space of the SMP artist (website or social media). They must have a portfolio that’s separate from the clinic’s properties.

Example: Our SMP artist Olga Lelekova has a medical background that allows her to practice SMP in Dubai clinics legitimately. She has certificates and diplomas from reputable SMP training institutions that are public to everyone. Also, she’s been awarded Best SMP artist in the Middle East for 2022 by LDR SMP Academy. You can also check her Instagram page for SMP results.

#2 Portfolio

You should always choose between SMP artists with a wide range of results. A good SMP artist should be able to share their work at least twice a week in their social media posts. You need to ensure that your SMP artist has worked on different cases and has enough results – especially examples of the results you’re looking for.

Please don’t settle for SMP artists that show how they do SMP in their stories and highlights. You need to look for accurate SMP results that are healed, long-term, and always visible in the SMP artist’s social media profile. Any content format that expires is not a reliable source.

Find proof that they’ve worked on:

  • Hair density cases – men and women;
  • Completely balding scalps;
  • Different hairlines – round, triangle, curved or straight;
  • FUT and FUE scars.

Important: SMP for scar camouflage is complicated and requires multiple skills. Find an experienced artist to provide good results and regularly share their results. If you’re unsure, don’t do the treatment.

Example: Our SMP artist Olga Lelekova has a vast portfolio with examples of many different cases – men, women, different alopecia types, and hair transplant scars. She also trains other SMP artists to master the art of SMP. Check her Instagram for SMP results.

#3 Is the SMP artist based in your location?

Every SMP treatment cycle lasts for at least 2-3 sessions. The gap between the first and the second session is a week. The wait time between the second and the third session is 3-4 weeks. If you need a fourth session, you’ll have to wait a few more weeks.

This time between the sessions is critical – in that time, your scalp heals and absorbs the pigments. Only by following the SMP protocol will you get great results.

Therefore, your artist must be available for you for the next 1-2 months. If they are a visiting artist that comes and goes, chances are that you’ll start with one SMP artist and continue with a different one.

The downsides are the following:

  • Mixed techniques;
  • Varying quality;
  • Difficulty repairing previous sessions if they’re not looking okay;
  • Different prices and additional charges;
  • Slow progress in treatment.

Every SMP artist has their own way of doing the technique and achieving results. Starting with one SMP artist and continuing with another hides the risk of getting an inconsistent result.

Important: Keep in mind that many visiting SMP artists don’t have a license to practice in Dubai. Therefore, no institution in Dubai will be able to protect your rights.

Example: Our SMP artist Olga Lelekova is based in Dubai, and she will plan your sessions according to your schedule. We welcome even SMP candidates from all over the world flying to get SMP with her.

#4 Price range consideration

NEVER go for the cheapest SMP.

Ask yourself why there’s a significant pricing difference between the SMP artists on the market. Some are cheap, some are expensive, and some are in the middle.

You must know the typical price range for SMP – per area or session. For example, Dubai’s expected price range for the whole head (2 sessions) is AED 10,000 – 14,000. If you get an offer for 2,000-7,000… something’s wrong, or the SMP artist is hiding something. For example, there is a lack of experience, good portfolio, education, license, or appropriate place to conduct treatment.

The price range depends on several factors. Learn more about those factors in this article.

Important: Don’t fall for the lower price. This is your scalp, your health, and your appearance. Botched cases are much more expensive to repair, and you might pay more than ever planned.

#5 Facility and room

Is the SMP artist practicing at home (or hotel) or in a legitimate workplace? The best place to get an SMP is in a clinic because:

  • The SMP artist is fully aware of SMP contraindications and cross-infection factors;
  • Everything is sterile and infection-free;
  • You’ll get medical monitoring;
  • There’s an option to combine SMP with hair growth medical treatments;
  • If you’re interested in a Hair Transplant as well, the SMP artist can refer you to a good specialist (as they are in the medical field);
  • You can get an SMP repair session from previous tries with laser tattoo removal

Also, if you choose an SMP artist that does their sessions at home or in a hotel, you won’t be able to get protection from DHA if anything goes wrong. Why? Because you won’t be able to prove that you’ve been their client. You may never find them again in the same place.

Always think of: What protection will I get if things go wrong?

Example: Our SMP artist Olga Lelekova is a licensed cosmetologist and can practice SMP in medical centers. Therefore, you have guarantees for the best SMP results and legal protection if anything gets wrong. Recently, the number of botched SMP cases has increased, and she does a lot of SMP repair sessions (usually done by inexperienced SMP artists or SMP enthusiasts who don’t have a license). 

Learn more about SMP repair.

#6 Check reviews

Your research is the foundation of your successful results. Always check what other clients are sharing about the SMP artists. The best way to do that is through Google reviews, forums, social media groups, review websites, and more.

If an SMP artist is good, others will know about this and share the same opinion.

Check for reviews that cannot be hidden or edited (manipulated). Reviews on websites are unreliable sources because the SMP artist publishes them.

Important: The worst cases for your SMP artist’s reputation are bad reviews or no reviews. The first situation shows that they’re not a good fit. The second – is indifference to their work or, worse – too much effort to hide their public presence.

Example: Check our 7 Derma Center Google reviews about Scalp Micropigmentation. We’re super happy that Olga Lelekova is a rock star. She’s genuinely passionate about SMP and always delivers excellent results. 

#7 Hop on a consultation to meet the SMP artist

The best way to choose your SMP artist is to meet and feel them.

Make sure you’ve done your research before reaching out for consultation. Ask the artists only questions that you can’t find online.

Examples of good questions:

  • How many cases similar to mine you’ve worked on?
  • Do I need to avoid X, and for how long?
  • What would you do if anything went wrong? (for any reason)
  • I have ‘this’ lifestyle. Will SMP be a good fit?
  • What can I do in addition to SMP?
  • In my case, what touch-ups do I need?
  • How many sessions would I specifically need?
  • What haircut will help me look the best?
  • Questions regarding specific results you’ve seen
  • Is SMP suitable for me?
  • What expectations should I have for my results?

Ask anything you can’t find on Google.

Examples of wrong questions:

  • What is SMP? (if you don’t know what SMP is, you’re not ready to do it)
  • Why should I choose you? (keep in mind that the good SMP artists are very busy, and they don’t consider the treatments as job applications)
  • What is your Instagram? (you can ask this in WhatsApp)
  • Why should I trust you? (SMP artists can tell you anything. You have to determine whether you can trust them based on all the information you have and your gut feeling)

#8 Do they give you a guarantee?

First, you need to know that there’s a difference between a warranty and a guarantee.


Very few SMP artists can give you a warranty – for example, a 5-year warranty that your color will not fade. Why? Because keeping good results depend on your skin type, scalp health, and scalp hair. Sometimes, the color fades because the client lets their skin dry and build up on the pigment. The only solution is to constantly hydrate and exfoliate your scalp skin and get touch-ups once in a while (every other year).

Some artists provide a warranty package (that costs additional charges) with touch-ups when the tattoo needs refreshment. Ask your SMP artist if they offer this option.


On the other hand, a guarantee means that the SMP artist is confident enough to tell you that you’ll get the best results possible – because they believe they have the skills and experience needed.

DO ask for a guarantee and watch how the SMP artist will respond – are they confident they can get you the result you want?

Important: No one can guarantee results with FUT scars. Be mindful of that.

Example: Olga Lelekova will always give you a guarantee for the best results – her experience, results record, and awards give her the confidence to meet your expectations. 

#9 Does the SMP artist provide training?

A promising sign for experienced SMP artists is if they offer training. Of course, that also should come with the following criteria:

  • They should be licensed trainers;
  • Their certificates should be legit – UAE and/or internationally recognized.

Everyone can come to Dubai and train whomever they want. The most important thing is accreditation.

Example: Olga Lelekova is a licensed SMP trainer in the legit training center – 7 Derma Academy. Her SMP courses provide internationally recognized certification allowing graduates to start working as SMP artists in Dubai or UAE. Check her hands-on training programs.


Choosing a good SMP artist for your scalp case is essential for your future results. If you’re serious about getting high-quality SMP and care about the outcomes, do your research diligently and only start the treatment if you’re 100% sure you’ve found the best SMP artist for your specific case.

Check also: How to choose the right SMP trainer for your career

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About 7Derma
7 Derma Clinic is an Aesthetic clinic where professionals with more than 20 years of experience are taking care of your appearance. Our mission is to bring more beauty into your wold and show you how perfect you can be in our imperfect world.

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