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Beauty ISH: Eyebrows 101 [Sponsored by Operation Glam]

Eyebrows are probably the most important feature on your face, they create the shape and tone for your entire look. Now of course we can all spot out a brow "Don't" (too thin, too thick, black brows). But now we are ready to give you the brow "How To" compliments of Operation Glam!!

First Glammy Tip:
The ideal shape of your brow depends on your face shape.

As well as spacing between your eyes:

Close-set eyes: make sure your brows aren’t too short—you definitely want your tail as it helps make the eyes appear more evenly spaced

Wide-set eyes: leave more hair in the inner parts of your brow (though not as far as a unibrow) to visually “close up” some of the space in between your eyes

There are several methods in which to achieve your ideal brow shape…
Tweezing: can take out one to a few hairs out at a time, is relatively inexpensive and quick, but can be painful and often leads to over-tweezing. Great for quick clean-ups. I love using slanted tip Tweezerman tweezers in conjunction with a pointed tip one perfect for the smallest, most stubborn hairs.

Waxing: warm wax is placed on the brow area using strips of cloth to remove several hairs at a time. Best performed at a salon or with a trained eye and hand. Not ideal for those with sensitive skin or those using dermatologist prescribed skin care treatments like Retin-A. I used to only get my brows waxed about five years ago, but my favorite person moved and I had several bad experiences: skin getting ripped off with the wax, breakouts, misshaped brows, and one genius got the wax in my bangs.

Razor: a tool that looks somewhat like a shaving razor is used to remove stray hairs and sculpt your brows. The razor can be super sharp so be sure you’re very comfortable with this method first.

Threading: a method which has origins in India and other areas of Asia. Actual thread is used to remove entire rows of hair from the brow area. It’s more precise and not as painful as waxing (although the first few times can be doozies). This is my preferred method of grooming my brows (thanks to the five year relationship I have with my brow stylist Rajni over at Aveda Natural Look in Queens Center Mall).
I always recommend getting your brows professionally groomed at least once a month (I get mine done every 1-2 weeks because I’m a brow fiend…lol) and then if you can’t get back to the salon, keep them up with careful tweezing in between appointments.
Since I’m still technically challenged, here’s a quick video from Seventeen magazine on how to shape your brows if you want to do your brow grooming at home:

What if you weren’t blessed with thick eyebrows? Or even little to no brows at all?
You can fake it by filling in the sparse hairs with:
Brow mascara/gel: comes in hues to closely match your hair color and is in mascara form. Use this to both tint and keep brows in place. Take the wand and carefully use it to comb through your brows. Use a disposable mascara wand to remove any excess. Clear brow mascara works wonders on keeping unruly brow hairs in place. Try MAC Brow Set.

Brow pencil: using quick, hair-like strokes, you can fill in the sparse areas with this. The idea is not to simply draw on brows (a la Marlene Dietrich), but to mimic the way brow hairs look. To blend the pencil in with your natural brows, use a clean, disposable mascara wand to “comb” through the pencil. Try MAC Eye Brow Pencil.

Brow powder: can be as simple as a matte eyeshadow close to your hair color applied with an angled brush
OR you can try a trick used by some eyebrow hair-challenged girls and apply a bit of Rogaine to the area with a Q-tip. I’ve never tried this, but some people swear by it. Proceed with caution, but see your dermatologist first.

To add some drama to your brows, sculpt them with your preferred brow makeup item and add a highlight on the brow bone a la Rihanna (above). A highlight shade can be a sheer shimmery gold or silver color or a matte eyeshadow 2-3 shades lighter than your skin tone. The idea is to create a contrast between the two areas. For even more drama like the brows sported by Lala, Kim K, and Kelly Rowland…

…use a cream concealer 2-3 shades lighter than your skin tone (try MAC Studio Finish SPF 35 Concealer) on your brow bone and brow set about 1 shade lighter than your hair color on your brows. Fill in additional sparse areas with brow pencil as well as define the area where the brow hair meets the brow bone.

If that was too much here are some quick glam tips:

Quick brow tips:
1. To find out where your brows should end, grab a pencil and angle it from the outer tip of your nostril to your outer lashes and where the pencil lands is where your brow should end.
2. Find out where your brows should begin by placing the pencil straight up from your outer tip of your nostril to the inner corners of your eyes. Where the pencil lands is where your brow should begin.
3. Find your arch by taking the pencil again at the outer tip of your nostril and angle it across your eye.
4. When filling in your brows with a brow pencil, use short and light feather-like strokes that mimic actual hair.

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