Beauty Tips for Eyebrows


For Fall, 2009, and for the foreseeable future, embrace everybody’s new favorite fashion motto: “Every girl must get lashed!”  Big eyelashes are the “It” look—so much a fashion essential you may request prescription medication for lengthening and thickening your anemic little lashes.

 aPhoto by Ben Kokolas

The fashionistas have neglected to tell you, however, without thick and healthy eyebrows to complement those luscious lashes; you will look more than a little out of proportion.

Especially because you won’t glam-up your lashes every day but you do wear your eyebrows wherever you go, you must pay at least as much attention to your brows as you lavish on your fluttery and flirty lashes.

Simply assume that great lashes without proper brows represent the moral equivalent of a teacup without a saucer—major faux pas. What would your mother say?

Carefully Aim for the Goal

Before you begin plucking, tweezing, trimming, waxing, and submitting to lasers, you should understand the objective. Most women—and most men, too—don’t know. More or less according to Nature, and especially according to aestheticians, your eyebrow should start directly above the inner corner of your eye, curving to its peak just beyond the iris’s outer corner. Then, it should taper gently to the end.

Originally intended as a functional piece of your anatomy, your eyebrow shades and protects your eyes. Now upgraded to the status of fashion essential, your eyebrow shapes, defines, and adds drama to your eye.

Set the Stage for Proper Eyebrow Care

Do not pick-up the tools until you have set-up the workspace. First, you need plenty of time. You cannot do the task justice if you attempt it on a Monday morning while the engine idles and the carpool waits. Proper brow-care requires about fifteen minutes, and it demands reasonable concentration—not one of those things you can do well while multi-tasking, and not really a great idea in rush hour traffic.

Next, you must make certain you can see what you’re doing. Drench your area in natural sunlight if you can; otherwise, crank-up those CFL’s to maximum wattage. Use a magnifying mirror for best results, and take time precisely to define where each brow begins and ends. Do not rush to pick-up the tools. Give yourself a clean and clear work area—meaning deep-cleanse your brow and forehead. Exfoliate or use a Biore strip, following up with your best glycerin soap and your favorite toner. If you fear plucking will hurt, apply Orajel or Anbesol to numb the area.

The Right Tools Give the Right Eyebrow Shape

Expert eyebrow care requires using every tool in the kit. Given that eyebrow essentials probably do not rank high among your priorities during the Great Worldwide Recession, you need not budget $20 per month for professional help. If, however, you have neglected your brows for a while, you may want to begin your new fashion-brow regime with a pro’s assistance. One good wax for the sake of establishing the correct length and shape ought to do the trick.

Many women pluck too much. The human face is fundamentally symmetrical: In theory, you could fold your face in half and the two sides perfectly would align. Although no face achieves that perfect symmetry, the basic design rules still apply. Your brows should be as far apart as your eyes—closer and you start developing the “uni-brow,” further apart and you look off-balance. The professionals mark the start of your brow by holding a mascara brush parallel with the side of your nose. Where brush meets brow, eyebrow should start.

 aPhoto by leahface

Use both scissors and tweezers to perfect your shape. Begin your grooming by brushing your brows up, trimming those that extend beyond all the others, making all the hairs uniform. Because your eyebrow tapers, your brows, strictly speaking, will not all be the same length, but they will end in one smooth line. Resist the temptation to pluck extra-long hairs, because you do not want to thin your eyebrows. Simply trim the long ones into line with the others. As Brooke Shields will testify, thick brows look better than thin, and eyebrows may not grow back after plucking. Pluck only those hairs that fall outside the natural boundaries you marked with your mascara brush.

Add Natural Color

Most women eyebrows are just slightly darker than their natural hair. After you have shaped your brows to perfection, use eyebrow pencil to add just the right tint and hue; use a graphite-based pencil for best results. After you carefully have streaked-on color, take a clean mascara brush to work-in and smooth the color, defining each hair in your brow as you do each eyelash.

With your eyebrows properly groomed and colored, you may proceed to lashing.

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