Eyebrow Grooming Essentials

By:    Published: October 25, 2012

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Changing your eyebrows changes the way you look, so it's important to know the essentials of eyebrow grooming, from finding the right shape for your face to maintaining your brows long-term. Here is a complete guide of everything you need to know about basic, eyebrow grooming essentials.

Finding The Right Shape

Certain eyebrow shapes are more complimentary to your face, depending on the shape. Your look can be softened or exaggerated, all by the look of your eyebrows. Here's a guide to help you find the best eyebrow shape for your face:

  • Long-shaped face: A flat eyebrow can make a long face look shorter.
  • Square-shaped face: An angled or curved eyebrow looks best with this face shape because it balances out the face and softens sharp lines and a heavy jawline.
  • Diamond-shaped face: As with the square-shaped face, a curved brow can soften lines and can even make the wider part of the face look slimmer.
  • Oval-shaped face: A soft-angled eyebrow looks best with this face shape.
  • Round-shaped face: Eyebrows with a high arch can elongate the face and make it look less round. Try to avoid a rounded brow - it makes enforces the round shape of the face.
  • Heart-shaped face: A soft curve to the eyebrow compliments this face shape. If you want to elongate the face, add a high arch. For a more natural look, make the arch lower.

How To Shape Eyebrows

Now that you've decided on the shape, it's time to decide how you want to shape your eyebrows. There are a few different options, depending on whether you want to get your brows done professionally or if your prefer to shape them yourself.

If you want to get your eyebrows done professionally, here's how you can get it done:

  • Waxing: It may sound like a scary process, but it actually isn't. The eyebrow technician should first consult with you about how you'd like your eyebrows to look. Your brows may be trimmed beforehand and they may be tweezed afterward, but that's just to give your brows a sleeker, cleaner look. A soothing cream or lotion may also be applied after waxing to reduce irritation.
  • Threading: This technique has recently become more popular in Western cultures, but has been used in China and India for centuries. This method involves a cotton thread, which is rolled and twisted across the eyebrow. Unwanted hairs become entangled in the thread and are quickly pulled out of the follicle. Threading is said to be more precise and creates cleaner lines than waxing. If you want to avoid any chemicals or the messiness of wax, than threading is a good option to try.

If you're more of a do-it-yourself person and feel ready to tackle your eyebrows on your own, the most accurate way of getting a clean and symmetrical shape is to use a eyebrow stencil. You can find them at Ulta, Sally Beauty Supply, Sephora or online at Amazon.com. If you want to try it freehand, here's how you should do it:

  • Your brow should begin parallel to the corner of the eye. If you hold an eyebrow brush straight up against your nose, the point where the brush meets the brow is where your brow should begin.
  • Your eyebrow should diagonally from the end of the eye. Take a brush, hold it diagonally from the tip of your nostril and follow that line past the corner of your eye to the brow. That's where the eyebrow should end.
  • If you want to add an arch to your eyebrow, make sure that the arch is parallel to the outside edge of the iris.

Tweezers are the best tool to use for shaping but remember to go slow and steady. Check your work every few hairs because if you over-pluck, you can't turn back.

Maintenance

Now that your eyebrows have been shaped, you're going to have to maintain them. Here are some tips for keeping your eyebrows sleek and chic:

  • When stray hairs grow in, pluck them with tweezers. If you don't like the pain of tweezers, you can use an eyebrow razor instead. They have a long handle and a small blade, which makes it easy to shave away those stray hairs.
  • If you prefer to trim stray or long hairs, be sure to trim in the direction the hair grows. Trim conservatively and check your work often, as you would with plucking If you cut the hair too short, it will stick out and your eyebrow will look uneven.
  • If you over-pluck or make a mistake, don't worry. You can fill in any gaps with an eyebrow pencil.

If you are a male and want to tame your brows, or if you're trying to get your boyfriend or husband to ditch his uni-brow, here are some tips for grooming men's eyebrows:

  • Trim, trim, trim. When your eyebrow hairs get too long, trim them. Comb the eyebrow upward so the longest hairs are easily visible, and snip them off.
  • Do not pluck. Tweezers are not a man's best friend. When you pluck hairs out by the root, it takes longer for them to grow in and some hairs may not grow back in at all. This can make men's eyebrows look feminine. Only pluck hairs that have really grown wild.
  • If you have really thick eyebrows, you may want to wax them for a thinner, cleaner appearance. But get this done professionally - doing it at home may result in the eyebrows looking too thin or too light.

Now that you know the basics of eyebrow grooming, there's no excuse to have hedges growing above your eyes. Giving your eyebrows a little shape and definition can transform your look and even compliment the shape of your face.

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