For anyone who has experienced the wonders of professional brow grooming, it’s quite something to see how strategic plucking and a little shading can transform your face.
There’s something so polished about strong, defined brows. The good news is that it’s easy enough to rehab them at home, if you know where you’re going. Here, we tackle some curly questions about how to handle gaps, dated shapes and barely-there hairs, and ensure the make-up you add has an impact.
Problem 1: Not quite thick enough
The good news is that it’s easy enough to bulk up brows. Once you have filled any spots, brush a tinted brow gel in the opposite direction of the hair’s growth, from the tail to the inner corner of brows.
To finish, sweep the wand through your brows in the direction of hair growth. This is a handy make-up artist hack: by coating the hair on all sides you instantly make them appear fuller.
Problem 2: Great shape, but patchy
Put down your tweezers, and pick up some make-up. If you like your shape, but the hairs look a little sparse in spots, make-up artists recommend a pomade or a super-fine brow pencil for those who want to sketch in the missing strands. Opt for a firm, yet creamy texture to ensure that the colour sticks to skin with ease. When choosing a shade, look for one shade darker than your brow hairs for a natural-looking finish.
Problem 3: You can’t find your shape
The basic rule of thumb is that your arch should line up with the outer edge of your pupil. How high, long and thick you go depends on your face shape, which is why a professional shaping can help get you back on track. If your brows lack arch, then carefully remove one hair at a time beneath the highest point of your brow, just beyond the iris. And leave length alone – eyebrows that fall short are less flattering
Problem 4: Bald spots
If you’re growing out more than just sparse-looking brows and have gaps to fill, use a putty-like pomade. With an angled brush, paint on the brow shape you ultimately want to achieve, covering the patches and baby hairs with the pomade, which will both tame hairs and add dimension. The catch is that you must always stay within your natural brow line. To finish, blend with a brow brush.
Problem 5: Wherefore art thou, brows?
Beyond pomades, pencils and shadow, there are more permanent options. The quickest and most straight-forward is tinting, which bulks baby-fine hairs and creates a more defined shape. For those with blonde or light brows, this fast treatment can find brows you never knew you had.
Micro-blading, a semi-permanent tattoo treatment, is also popular. It uses a tool made up of micro-needles that inject ink into the top layer of skin, making hair-like strokes. Unlike tinting, there is healing time and aftercare, although the treatment can last years.
Problem 6: Too darn bushy
This problem is a little like when supermodels complain they don’t like their elbows – it’s a great one to have. Removing bulk doesn’t mean removing hairs and pruning them. For a full brow with a modern shape, it’s more likely you need a trim.
According to brow expert Kristie Streicher, fill your brows with a pencil as if you’re heading out, which creates a guide and prevents over-trimming. Then use a strong clear brow gel to brush hair upwards toward the hairline and out towards the temple. Let them dry, and then only trim the ends sticking beyond your desired shape. Go one at a time, to avoid overdoing it.