Tweezing your arches to perfection—or creating the illusion of perfection with pencil or powder—is like giving yourself a mini-facelift of sorts. Poorly shaped brows can make you appear tired, unhappy or much older than you really are (and a pair that’s too thick or too dark simply screams Browzilla!). If yours are sparse, let them grow in a bit before following these grooming tricks and tips. In the meantime, you can sample a fresh look with our new brow sculpting tool.
Step One: Pick the Proper Tools
For a truly arch-altering experience, invest in a well-lit magnifying mirror, brow brush with stiff bristles, eyebrow scissors, white eyeliner pencil (a nail white pencil also works) and stainless steel tweezers. Tweezers with a thin, pointed tip are made for plucking miniscule or ingrown hairs; a square tip grasps short, coarse hairs; and a slanted tip offers optimal control. Cheap tweezers can break hairs instead of pulling them out at the root, so splurging on quality is encouraged. Be sure to sanitize them with rubbing alcohol, and if you anticipate sensitivity have ice cubes on hand to numb the skin a bit.
Step Two: Devise a Plan For Plucking
Good tweezing requires patience and a blueprint. It’s best to remove hairs one at a time since mistakes can take several weeks to grow out. To begin, brush brows upward and trim long, unruly hairs with small eyebrow scissors. With architectural precision, you need to determine where your brows should begin, end, and arch. To figure out where they should start, hold a pencil next to your nostril, lined up at the inner corner of the eye. This will illustrate where the brows should begin (mark this point). Use the same pencil to line up the nostril with the outer corner of your eye and—voila!—that’s where the brow should end (mark this point). The arch is the highest point, found by holding the pencil at the nostril and angling it outward so it lines up with the outer part of your iris (mark this point). Connect the dots with soft, feathery strokes of a pencil or powder that matches the base of your hair, and mark strays with your white eyeliner pencil (these are the hairs you will remove). As a general rule, strong features call for thick brows; petite features can carry off a more slender shape.
Step Three: Soothe the Skin
Post-tweezing trauma, avoid makeup. Instead, apply ice and a natural astringent like witch hazel to irritated skin. Aloe vera gel is helpful for relieving redness.
Step Four: Style Like a Pro
Taking the time to groom your brows each day will make a marked difference in your appearance. Brush them upward when you want them to appear fuller, or sideways to make them appear more slender. As they grow, you can tame unruly hairs with clear or tinted brow gel, or even a bit of hairspray applied with an eyebrow brush or dry toothbrush. While no two brows are identical, they do prove useful for diverting attention away from under eye ick. Simply define the tops of the arches with powder tint or pencil that’s a speck darker than your hair color on days when dark circles abound.