In Part One of this series, I talked about grooming and assuming you have [achieved the brow shape of your dreams, sort of], lets talk about getting things further. No matter how great a state you made your brows out to be, if you’re into brows, you still NEED to put some sort of product to further define them, so that’s next up in our brow convo. But before that, here are some of my favorite celebrity brows:
Hands-down, [brow] makeup or no makeup my favorite brows are Natalie Portman’s. I think she has the perfect pair!
I also like Rooney Mara’s, more to the point I like how they DO her brows.
I like Sandara Park’s and as a representative of all Korean brows. They tend to do them straight and full.
So anyway, I keep images of brows I like, and it wouldn’t hurt if you do too. If the images are clear enough, you can actually see how the brows were done and what sort of products went into them. As I was saying, products. Here are some [types] of mine:
I like to equate products with the doneness of my brows. From I want to look really fuss-free effortless to I’m going for a made up, photo-op levels. To illustrate:
1. Brow mascara – What do you want to look for in a brow mascara? It depends. Do you have long brow hairs that needs to be gelled in to place? Go for a one that gives a good hold (like Art Deco Eyebrow Filler). Do you have dark brow that need a bit of lightening up? Get one that is tinted and with probably some sort of shimmer to reflect light (MAC Brow Set n Girl Boy/Beguile, or other cheaper drugstore equivalents—Korean/Japanese brands make good ones). But whatever you choose, bear in mind that brow mascaras only work on the hairs you apply it to, it has the least intervention thus the least effect. I like using it as a finishing product.
2. Brow Pencil – I go crazyyy with brow pencils because, usually, they’re cheap. I can get away with buying 2 or 3 colors from the same brand (Tony Moly and Face Shop, usually). In terms of filling in and making out any sort of brow shape, pencils are the easiest to play with. It can be as simple as mimicking brow hairs with short, flippy strokes, extending the tail and faking an arch or to actually trace a different shape altogether. It’s effective because you draw on the skin beneath and brows, like a backdrop, thus giving the illusion of fuller/shaped brows. If you are to master any brow product, pencils should be it. You should look for a pencil in a hard/semi-hard formula that gives off not-so-pigmented lines so it’s easier to draw with. Try to look for colors that are on the gray-brown spectrum, nothing too warm or red. And is you want sharp brows, sharpen your pencils well; if you want softer brows, blunt tips are great.
Here I used an automatic brow pencil:
3. Brow Powders – are a bit more tricky to use although you can have more flexibility as it’s not as exact and opaque as pencils/markers. You can go as light or as hard, as subtle or as defined—but, you actually need the perfect brush to go with it, something hard and dense and can render broad and sharp strokes. Of course, you also need the perfect powder—something matte, mildly pigmented, in a soft taupe-y brown color devoid of any red and coppery undertones. I’ve been fiercely loyal to my Face Shop brow powder duo (which has been sadly phased out), and when I inevitably hit pan, I’m looking into some MAC eyeshadows (yes you, Omega and Charcoal Brown) or maybe Korean and Japanese brands again! I’m weirdly excited, go figure.
Here I used powder and eyebrow mascara:
4. Gel Creams – are quite new to me, and I’m really digging the long-lasting and budge-free wear. It’s probably the hardest medium to use, just cause you cant control the amount and pigmentation so much (ah, you cant build it up, in other words). But once you’ve gotten around the application part, I find the gel cream not only fills in your brows well, it hold down hairs effectively and to a certain extent tints them as well. I only have one, from MAC, but I’m quite curious about the Make Up Forever tubes as well. Those come in more colors and are part of their permanent line.
Here I used a pencil and gel cream:
Some more notes:
– On a day-to-day basis I’m more inclined to use at least two brow products, which are usually a pencil and a mascara. But for really finished brows, I’ll use three or all!
– BEWARE THE ARTISTA BROWS. It might look great on TV (but really not to on print ads, you can see how light and how super thickened and extended those brows are on high-res/close up prints, yikes!) but don’t be a media victim to succumb to doing your brows like some of our artistas do. Well, one, we’re not celebrities, and more often than not, people see you in person, face to face, and they can see how super-extended your brows are. So just don’t.
– Try and match up the rest of your makeup with your brows. If your makeup is on the natural side, brows should follow suit. If your brows are too done up from the rest of your face, you’d risk looking, uh, theatrical.
– The products you use would dictate the brows you come up with. Again for me, it’s better to be under-browed than over-browed so choose products you can layer and build up. You can bring a pencil and mascara to add intensity throughout the day.
– Lastly, I don’t mean to be a tease..the tutorial part will be next (FINALLY).