Learn How to Shape Eyebrows Like a Pro
There are a few key features that have the power to transform your face. Your eyes. The shape of your nose. The curve and colour of your lips, the angle of your cheekbones... and, of course, your eyebrows. Depending on how you decide to shape them, they can make you look younger or older, more natural, more made-up, more androgynous.
Many of us aren’t that happy with the shape and thickness of our eyebrows in their natural state. This can be often fixed using a simple spoolie like the one by Diva & Nice, or a clear gel product like the BHcosmetics Flawless Eyebrow Gel, but occasionally, we need a tinted product to fill our brows in. Or maybe we just fancy playing around with their shape and changing up our daily look.
Do Your Brows Need a Trim?
Have you ever shaved or cut off part of your eyebrows when you were a kid? It seems to be a pretty common story in family gatherings, especially because it tends to end well, with your brows growing back in (and perhaps your siblings calling you Voldemort for the rest of your life, if you’re lucky). However, it is entirely possible that your eyebrows could actually do with a little trim before you try to give them a neat shape with some filling products.
You obviously need to work very carefully and with precision, which is generally the key to successful eyebrow shaping. First, brush your brows directly upwards and see how much they extend above the upper line of your eyebrow. If they’re very long, it means they will be difficult to tame and keep in place throughout the day. Take sharp nail scissors (for instance the Sally Hansen Finest Fingernails Scissors) and cut off the tips that stick out too much, working with as much caution as you can.
To get rid of stray brows growing where they’re less than welcome, reach for a pair of good-quality tweezers and remember to only pluck out the hair that grows below and outside the desired shape of your eyebrows. Take great care not to overpluck, it’s always better to work with more than less. The Magnum Slant Tweezer will make your job much easier. For a more professional result, you can go to a reputable salon and get your eyebrows waxed or try something more gentle like threading.
Shaping Your Eyebrows Without Colour
To find the perfect length of your eyebrow, take a pencil or a brush with a straight handle and connect the side of your nose to the inner corner of your eye. Following this line will show you where the brow should start. If you then connect your nose with the outer corner of your eye, you’ll find the perfect spot to end your brow. Finally, look straight ahead and do the same thing once again, this time with the iris of your eye, to determine where the highest point of your arch should be. Obviously you don’t need to treat any of this as the gospel. You can for instance try bringing your eyebrows closer together to make your nose look slimmer, or play with the height of your arch and make it lower and straighter for a more boyish look.
There’s a whole lot of different products that can help you make your eyebrows look the same for hours and not get messy or patchy. You can use wax that’s often included in many eyebrow kits, for example Makeup Revolution Brows Kit or the Freedom Pro Eyebrow Palette. There are even wax-based eyebrow fixers in the form of a pencil, like the Givenchy Mister Eyebrow. Their main advantage is that they can be thrown into your daily makeup bag and easily reapplied any time you want.
All of these can also be used in place of a clear brow gel or a clear mascara. If you do want to fill your brows in with some colour, use these waxes only after you’ve applied a tinted product.
How to Fill in Eyebrows
Let’s face it, pigmented products are always the most fun when it comes to eyebrow makeup. They are the ones that allow you to play around with your expression, or they can fake thick, luscious brows where there are hardly any. They can make your eyebrows match your coloured hair, or even take on a daring, unnatural shade. The possibilities are really endless.
The softer eyebrow pencils, like Le Crayon Sourcils by Lancôme, are best used to give your brows an even, soft shade, while the more precise ones like Shiseido Natural Eyebrow Pencil can be sharpened to give a detailed result. To be able to actually draw individual hairs onto places where your eyebrows are particularly sparse, you’ll need a product that resembles an extremely thin felt-tip marker. Catrice Long Lasting Brow Definer is exactly that and will look amazing if you apply it with a light hand. For a less striking and more natural effect, try Nars Eyebrow Pencil which only deposits pigment on the usually oilier skin under your brows.
Cream and Powder Eyebrow Products
To use powders and creams designed to shape eyebrows, you will need a thin, slanted brush with a very fine edge to it. The Diva & Nice one should do the trick perfectly, because in this case it doesn’t really matter if your brush is natural or synthetic. Fill in your brows drawing lines as thin as possible and in the same direction your brow hair naturally grows (or the direction in which you’ve brushed it). Since the inner part of your brows tends to be thicker and darker, make sure not to add too much colour if you want your eyebrows to appear natural. Also avoid square shapes and sharp edges, unless of course that’s exactly what you’re going for.
Cream eyebrow products tend to set after a few moments and become more lasting, while powder products usually need a setting layer on top. This is where the wax or eyebrow gel come in, although you can also try the very popular Benefit Gimme Brow eyebrow tint, which can be used either on its own or on top of other products. If none of those sound great to you, here’s a little tip: Use eye drops with your brow powder to get a more precise line and make the result last longer. Simply drop a tiny amount of the liquid into the pan, let it soak in and pick up the wet powder with your brush.
A good eyebrow powder can be found at different price points, from the cheaper ones like Rimmel Brow This Way (complete with tinted brow wax) to the slightly pricier ones such as the FAB Brows kit that includes a set of eyebrow stencils.