Eyebrows have long been subjected to the whims and shapes of various trends. Whether the look was pencil-thin and drawn on in the 1930’s or bushy and natural in the ‘80s, we’ve seen dozens of different styles. Luckily, we’re fortunate enough to learn from some of these. . . questionable decisions others have made with their features.
The makeup industry has grown exponentially since the time of silent movies and pinched cheeks, which means we have a gigantic pool of products to choose from. The problem today is feeling overwhelmed by the sheer amount of pencils, pomades, and powders that claim to give you perfect eyebrows. Products can help achieve the desired look when used correctly, but if applied with the wrong technique they can quickly turn into a hot mess. With hundreds of options and bunches of methods, knowing what to do when in front of the mirror can be a daunting task. Below are 10 rules to stick to for fuller, healthier, and natural looking eyebrows.
1. Put down the tweezers
You might be thinking “but won’t it suck to grow them out?” Yeah it probably will. However you should also be thinking “is it worth it?” And again, yeah, it probably is. There was a dark time in my life around the 9th grade where I went a little tweezer-crazy. I then let my brows grow back all on their own, only plucking between them to avoid a unibrow. Within a couple months, you’ll see major growth, but it’s all about patience.
2. Nourish them
To speed up the growth process and also make your brows healthier overall, it’s important to nourish them, and moisturize the skin underneath. Something as simple as Vaseline or coconut oil work great, but if you’re interested in some high-end products, brands like Shiseido and Brow Bar have some top-rated options.
3. Follow your own shape
Icons like Cara Delevingne and Zendaya have worship-worthy brows, but just because their eyebrows grab a lot of attention doesn’t mean they’ll work for you. Each person’s face is unique, and their eyebrows should follow suit. While stencils and templates can be useful for beginners, it’s important to know that your natural eyebrow shape is almost always the one that compliments your face the best.
4. Don’t be blocky
We all know the infamous “sharpie brows” that rose to undeserved popularity in the mid-2000s. I consider this trend the growing pains of moving from barely-there to defined brows. People probably didn’t know how to make their brows look fuller without creating a dark outline and filling it in. That’s okay, we all make mistakes. But we know better now, and it’s time to let go of the opaque method.
The trick with eyebrow pencils is to use small strokes that mimic real hairs. Pencils are the best method if you have asymmetrical brows or tiny sparse spots, and can be really great when you’re short on time or on the go (I’ve done my brows in the car more often than I’d like to admit). Try to find the color that matches your brow hairs the closest, and make sure to use an eyebrow brush or spoolie to blur any super harsh lines. Some eyebrow pencils I like are from E.L.F., Wet ‘n Wild and Cargo (Bonus: they all come with a spoolie on the other end).
Powder is how I started my eyebrow journey as a tween. It’s super forgiving, and can be found in virtually any color. For application, use a spoolie to brush your hairs into place. Next take an angled brush and use upward strokes to fill in any sparseness or uneven spots. If you want more definition, feel free to line the bottom part of your eyebrows, but make sure to brush the line with your spoolie when you’re finished to dodge any accidental strippy brows. Some eyebrow powders I like are from Anastasia Beverly Hills and NYX Cosmetics.
Pomade is the most “advanced” method of achieving your desired look. The texture can vary brand-to-brand, and has to be used with a light hand and small angled brush to avoid blocky brows, though a benefit is that the formulas are usually long-lasting and waterproof. With something as pigmented as pomade, it’s usually best to go a shade lighter than your brow hairs. Start by softly lining the entire bottom and outer half of the top of your eyebrows, then lift the leftover product up or down in an angle that matches your hair growth. Once you’re happy with the shape brush them with a spoolie and admire your lovely ‘lil self. Some eyebrow pomades I like are from NYX Cosmetics and Anastasia Beverly Hills.
8. Brow mascara
Have you ever gone through an entire day only to get home and realize one of your eyebrow hairs was sticking STRAIGHT OUT OF YOUR FACE? I’m talking horizontal. Parallel to the ground. It’s not fun, but brow mascara/gel is like magic when it comes to taming unruly brows. Tinted brow gel is great for slightly filling your brows in and giving them some color. Clear brow mascara is usually my go-to for topping pencils, pomades, and powders. Brow mascara can create a fuller look instantly by defining individual hairs. Simply brush in upward strokes and lightly move around to mold them into the general shape you want. Some eyebrow mascaras I like are from Billion Dollar Brows, NYX Cosmetics Anastasia Beverly Hills.
9. Clean them up
After applying your product of choice, using a concealer under (and/or over) your eyebrows is a good way to clean up any wobbly lines or rogue marks. Concealer can both define your brow shape and highlight your brow bone for a more lifted look. Choose a color that matches you and blend until it melts into your skin. You’ll create a “frame” for your brows that no one else will notice, but will enhance the work you’ve done.
10. Do what feels best
The biggest rule about makeup? There are no rules. Do whatever makes you feel good about yourself. Confidence and beauty go hand-in-hand, and whether you feel best with no makeup or a full face, the style that makes you feel like a queen is the way to go.
An extra important thing to remember is that practice makes perfect! When I was learning how to do makeup I would practice every night before I took it off to sleep. All of these methods can be combined or modified to create your ideal brows. Makeup is truly a one-size fits all, and the best part is customizing a routine that works for you and your life. Eyebrows have been a hot topic for a while now, and it can be intimidating to try something new. So, test these techniques out and find the one you like. Lastly, embrace whatever features you’ve been bestowed with. Beauty is subjective. We’re all unique and we should embrace that.
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