Pre numbing is not advised as the skin will swells and then the strokes will not be in the same place when the swelling goes down, also, it will effects the retention and makes it harder to hit the “sweet spot”.
If you are light in your pressure explain to your client why you don’t want to pre numb them, and they will be perfectly fine with it, they will just feel very little discomfort on the first pass & after first pass you can use numbing Gel/Cream then they will feel comfortable afterwards,
Any topical anaesthetic applied before breaking the skin will also make it watery and hard, which will make the procedure more difficult from both precision and pigment retention perspectives.
So, First pass, as many strokes as possible (primary and secondary) then make numb and work again.
Which Anaesthetic to buy?
Topical anaesthetic has to be a cocktail of two active anaesthetics. “Lidocaine with Tetracaine”, “Lidocaine with Benzocaine”, “Tetracaine with Benzocaine”, to be efficient and help control bleeding,
Some people simply don’t get numb well & Red heads are known to have a harder time, Also, if there is a ginger gene they need 25% more time to get numb,