Eyebrows are sort of a big deal in my family (as is hair removal in general, but that’s for a different blog). When I was in junior high (that’s what we called it then), my mother would heat honey to make “halawa” for waxing our legs, eyebrows, even arms. She took it very seriously. (We are Egyptian, and hair removal is a huge part of our culture.) It was, essentially, a DIY version of sugaring. Anyway, the point is that, eyebrows are important, and to this day, if I show up at my mom’s house with straggly brows, she will break out the tweezers and immediately remove the offending strays. It must be a genetic thing, because I swear I can see better with well-groomed brows.
Beautiful brows are like a little face lift. They make your face appear fresher, cleaner, and more youthful. Pluck a few hairs too many, however, and you have the opposite effect. Thin, severe brows are so aging! And in case you haven’t noticed, models like Cara Delevigne have brought back the fuller (yet still polished) brow, prompting many others to follow suit.
So how do you get gorgeous brows? Here, eyebrow shaping in 4 simple steps.
1. Enlist a Professional
As a beauty editor, I was fortunate enough to have my brows shaped by brow experts so famous they go by only one name, like Anastasia (Soare) and Eliza (Petrescu). Unfortunately, I no longer have access to these pros, but now I know how my brows are supposed to look, and I make sure they stay that way through regular maintenance. Many salons, spas and even malls have brow experts, so get a recommendation (this is not the time for risk-taking, friends) and find your best shape. Techniques for brow shaping include waxing, tweezing, sugaring, threading or a combination.
Note: If all else fails, and you are unable to locate a decent brow artist in your area, you might consider eyebrow stencils, but start slowly and be careful. It’s far too easy to mess up with these. If you choose to try it at home, check out eyebrowz.com for stencils sets, tutorials and other helpful information.
And now, a few guidelines based on the shape of your face:
Round or Square Face Shapes
Look for a sharper brow shape with a dramatic arch to elongate the face
Long Face Shape
A straight brow makes the face appear shorter.
Oval Face Shape
A natural shape will maintain the balance in your face.
2. Maintain Your Shape
Invest in a great pair of tweezers, and every couple of days, examine brows for any stray hairs that might have cropped up, but be careful. If you do this too often, you’ll overpluck; too seldom, and you’ll lose the shape of your brows.
3. Fill Them In
No matter how full and lush your brows are, unless you are Camilla Belle, you will need to fill them in. Brow hairs, for the most part, don’t lie flat and even and perfect, and there will be gaps. Filling in those gaps in a subtle way is the key to defining your brows. My suggestion? Skip the brow pencil. It is nearly impossible, unless you have a professional touch, to make brows look natural when they are drawn in, and a natural looking groomed brow is the goal. Instead, select a powder 1-2 shades lighter than your brows if you are a brunette, and 1-2 shades darker if your brows are blonde, and use a small, stiff eyebrow brush and short, feathery strokes to fill them in. Less is more! Here, my favorite brow powders:
4. Keep Them in Place
A clear mascara or clear brow gel does the trick, but I find that they darken brows a bit, so if you want to avoid this, try a waxy brow fixative pencil instead.
And no talk of eyebrows is complete without mentioning Talika, which is wondrous at adding volume to sparse brows. (Highly recommend the eyelash product as well!).
I hope this inspires you to take a second look at your eyebrows. They are such an easy way to wake up your entire face!