Not a lot of people realise this, but eyebrows can make or break a look. The way your eyebrows are shaped and coloured can determine whether you look like a diva… or a drag queen. Emily Quak offers some tips on helping you find the right eyebrow shape and maintaining it.
Let me start off by saying, if you can afford it, go and see a professional brow stylist for a one-off brow shaping session. These people are experts and will know what brow shape is perfect for your face. Once you’ve got the perfect shape, all you have to do is a little pluck here and a little tweeze there.
But, if you’re determined to save some cash and put it to better use, like on textbooks, for example, then follow my tips and tricks below.
To get the perfect eyebrow shape, you’ll need a pair of tweezers. The quality of your tweezers is really important because anything less than the best will not be able to get those tiny hairs and will make your brows look unkempt. Tweezerman makes amazing tweezers, but you have to take good care of them. Tweezerman sharpens your tweezers for free when they become blunt.
You’ll also need a white eye pencil, an eyebrow stencil of your choice and a pair of small, sharp scissors. You can purchase eyebrow stencils from eBay, Priceline or Daiso on Victoria Street. Most stencils come in packs of 4, so you can choose your shape from one of them or just freestyle it.
To start, take your white eye pencil and anchor the blunt end on the tip of your nose. Then rotate the pencil so that it forms a line from the tip of your nose, through the centre of your iris, and up to your eyebrow. The point where the pencil touches the eyebrow is where the tip of the arch should be.
Next anchor your pencil again, this time to the edge of your nose. The eyebrow should begin at the point where your pencil touches it when it’s straight, that is, aligned with the edge of your nose and the inner corner of your eye.
Then using the same method, rotate the pencil so that it’s at a 45 degree angle from the line of your nose. This is where your eyebrow should end.
Picking the Right Shape:
When picking a brow stencil, bear in mind the shape of your face.
Rounded arches are perfect for people with thin faces as they make the face appear rounder. Angled brows are great for hooded eyelids or mature skin because they give the illusion of ‘lift’. Flat brows with hardly any arch (think Natalie Portman) are great for long faces as they make the face appear shorter and more proportionate. A more subtle angled brow is a safe shape for any face.
Once you’ve decided on the right shape, use some lip balm or water to hold your brows down. Then position your eyebrow stencil and fill it in with the white pencil.
Your basic aim when tweezing is to get all the hairs that have not been coloured with the white eyebrow pencil. Stay away from the hairs that are white at the roots but not at the tips – you’ll get them with your scissors later.
As a rough guide, you shouldn’t pluck too much from the top of your eyebrows. You should only pluck from the top to tidy the upper line. Always pluck from the bottom because the top line is an indicator of where your natural brow is meant to be. Leave the top line plucking to the experts.
While you’re tweezing, make sure to have a mirror close up. That way you can see exactly which hairs you’re tweezing. You should also have another mirror at a reasonable distance away from you, so you can get an idea of the overall shape of your brows while you’re working.
Always, ALWAYS take a step back and look at your work before continuing! Eyebrows are a very prominent feature, one mistake and you’ll end up chopping your bangs to hide them (another thing that can go wrong very easily, but that’s another story for another day).
Finally, take your scissors and cut off any hairs that are sticking out or don’t conform to the shape of your brow.
If you have thin eyebrows, you’ll need a brow pencil or brow powder to finish your look.