The Fine Art Of Brow Beating

Architecturally, brows are the most dramatic part of the eye and, by extension, the entire face. You may have a great eye makeup application but, if you don’t have a properly shaped brow, you have bubkis.

When your brow job is closer to fascistic than fashionable, an angry, constantly happy, surprised or sad look may take up long term residence on your face. Before you even consider tweezing solo, study the brows of the sad girl in your office or local cocktail lounge who always appears miserable or worried. Is she suffering under the weight of a bad brow? Look closer. Then, put down your tweezers till you finish this article and nobody gets hurt.

Tweezers
So, what to do if you have a big ol’ bushy brow or – alternately – a soft, blonde and practically non-existent brow? 

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin…

Have fun with your brow, but beware of the little devil at your side that tempts you to over pluck. 
The most important thing when brow beating is proper measurement. To measure your brow, start with a pencil or the handle of one of your brushes and make a line from the outside of your nose (nostril) to the inner corner of your eye. See how far in or out your brow goes from that line. The inside line of the pencil next to your brow is where your brow should start.

Next, angle the pencil from the outside of your nostril to outside edge of your pupil. Where the end of your line meets the brow is where the peak of the brow should be.
Finally, use the pencil to measure from the outside of your nostril to the outside corner of the eye. Where the line of the pencil meets the “tail” of your brow is where your brow should end.

 Brow Measured  Brow After Brows Cleaned & Measured 

 brow measured (before)

 groomed brow 

 groomed brow measured 

Now, emulating Catherine Zeta Jones’ fierce brow is all about your arsenal. Today, we talk tweezers – future columns will delve into waxing and threading.

 

 

A great brow is only as good as your tweezers. My favorite brand is Tweezerman, but there are armies of stellar tweezers on the market. What I like about Tweezerman is the lifetime warranty:  if ever they become dull you can return them to the company for sharpening. FYI, I have never had to send my Tweezermans back in the ten years I’ve had them at my side.

If you’re a novice, the best-shaped tweezers that you can get are angled. These darlings boast a flat, angled edge that comes to a point on one side. This shape both allows for grabbing a forest of hair with the flat edge, and fine-tuning with the pointed end. 

When pruning, the most important thing to remember is to think, I am just cleaning up the area. Don’t go overboard and end up with tadpole brows or stark lines reminiscent of Gloria Swanson or Jean Harlow. I have heard hundreds of stories over the years from clients who were tweezer-happy back in the day and must spend eternity looking like Liza circa Cabaret. Take it easy, girls, a few hairs won’t send your true love scrambling for a weed whacker or divorce lawyer.

Use your measurement guides – trust me on this.

 What Not to Do: 'Walking the Line' Brow  What Not to Do: 'Tadpole' Brow

 don’t walk the line

 don’t make tadpoles

For those of you in the know who opt for a high maintenance regime, use tweezers that come to a fine point. This allows for maintenance and fine-tuning under and over the brow.

If you are lucky enough to have a robust brow, you’re unlikely to need a pencil or powder shadow. At the same time, if you are follicularily fortunate, you may wish to invest in a brow gel to keep the brow from being too wild kingdom.  (Try the gel in lieu of clear mascara; I have found that clear mascaras in the brow often flake!).

If you’re the gal that has either fine hair or blonde hair, you opt for the aforementioned brow pencils or powder shadows. Personally, if I’m using a pencil, I prefer one that has a powder content rather than a wax for you can go over it with a hard angle brush or mascara wand to soften out the look.  Wax, on the other hand, often has all the flexibility of JLo’s pre-nup agreements.

So, before you grab your instrument I have one last word of laving caution: Have fun with your brow, but beware of the little devil at your side that tempts you to over pluck.  It’s true that tweezing can soon become addictive and we’ve all seen the grim handiwork of an obsessive plucker.  Don’t succumb to the demons! Flick them away or poke them with your tweezers. But the fashionable girl need be ever diligent; for just like your brow hair, those demons just keep coming back.

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2 Responses

  1. Can’t wait for the future columns 🙂

    Finding the right tweezers is a pain. I had my dad custom remake the ones I got at a store, just so they grab better.

    Excellent tips, by the way. This should be a must read for anyone with eyebrows 🙂

  2. just doing a springtime groom and thought I would come to the expert…seeing as my wax girl is four hours away…and let’s face it…I have been really lazy….thanks for the tips Jake…this is one girl that needs it today …luckily I am in the know..with those pointy tweezers!

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