Makeup and MRI scans

private brain mri

Safety is our paramount concern at Newcastle Clinic, and we take every possible measure to ensure patients are safe throughout their scans.

Some of the measures we take may seem extreme, but there is a good reason for everything we do. For example, did you know that you should not wear makeup at an appointment for an MRI scan?

This is because makeup actually often contains traces of metal.

Since makeup is created using minerals, almost every type of makeup contains some type of metal. Metal is used in synthetic colorants and powders, so brushed powder, skin creams, eye shadow and lipstick contain higher amounts. Even hairspray can contain traces of metal.

We recommend not wearing any makeup the day of your scan, or removing your makeup before the scan.

Although our open MRI scanner is spacious, it is still a very powerful machine that uses strong magnets. If even tiny particles of metal are present during an MRI scan, they may do more than negatively impact the quality of the scan images. The particles could also heat up and burn your skin.

Patients are required to remove all metal objects—including jewellery, watches, hairclips, zippers, hearing aids and credit cards—before entering the scanning room. And especially if you are scheduled for a head or neck scan, please plan on not wearing makeup in order to prevent any potential harm.

But speaking of makeup, here’s one occasion you should wear it for.

The Smear for Smear campaign, which you may have noticed on social media, promotes awareness about the importance of being screened for cervical cancer.

Led by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, the campaign asks people to spread awareness by taking a selfie with their lipstick smeared and post on social media using the hashtag #SmearforSmear.


Cervical cancer is the most common cancer in women under 35, with eight women diagnosed every single day in the UK. It’s also preventable if it is detected on time.

This campaign aims to remind women to get screened for the disease regularly by getting a cervical smear.

Join in on social media with the hashtag #SmearforSmear, and remember to attend a regular cervical smear as recommended by your GP.