16 Jul 2021

Brow Focus: “Brows Are Sisters Not Twins”

Time for power brows.

The Marlene Dietrich pencil lines are hard to pull off and the Groucho Marx rugs a little over the top. The Frida Kahlo monobrow – forget it.

Eyebrows are the frames to our eyes and they emphasise our expressions.

The solution would seem to an easy one.

Follow a natural line and leave them well enough alone. Take away the minimum from underneath, allowing for a shaped brow and a clean canvas to apply eye make-up. It all sounds simple enough but the reality is a different matter. I know very few women who haven’t over-plucked their eyebrows at some stage and find as they age the shape is far from perfect. Mine aren’t too bad these days but I certainly wish I had left well enough alone when I was younger. Like most young girls, I could not be told.

As we know looking natural is not as easy as all that so the perfect brows do require some application and maintenance. Eyebrows are like haircuts, if they are well-groomed we are ready to take on the world, a lack of care and attention and we want to stay home and hide under the covers.

To Shape

We think it is so obvious but for some reason, it does not seem to be. Eyebrows are often too thin, too short or uneven where they should not be. No eyebrows are perfect but with all the products and assistance available, we have a good shot.

Imagine a line drawn from the outside of the nose upwards towards the brow. This will be the starting point. A line drawn diagonally from the outside corner of the eye will be the finishing point.

The brow should be bushier at the beginning and gently taper down to a soft point.

To Colour

With dark hair, the colour used should be one shade lighter than the eyebrow hair colour.  For lighter hair, it is advisable to use one or two shades darker, depending on your preference.

I tint my eyebrows regularly and ask the beauty therapist to mix a slight amount of grey tint in with the dark brown tint. I leave the tint on longer than necessary so while the coverage is a bit too dark for the first two days it does ensure the tint lasts me well. She also applies the tint to the grey patches in the first instance as this hair is harder to take colour. One of my eyebrows is thinner than the other and this one I tint fractionally darker to create the illusion the brows are the same. To guarantee the best results I don’t wet the brows for 24 hours afterwards and cleanse around them.

To Apply

Even with a regular eyebrow tint, I still need to use an eyebrow product to fill in the gaps and shape certain areas.

Avoid harsh lines always and begin by brushing the brows outwards. When applying eyebrow colour use light, feathery dashes so the eyebrows are not a solid block of colour. Follow the natural line of the brow using the eye pencil and don’t over-extend the length as this can drag the face down. Remember your imaginary line. Once the colour is applied, brush over the brows with a light hand, to remove any excess.

To Use

The easiest and I think by far the best eyebrow sculptor is from Tom Ford. I use this in taupe to fill in any gaps and elongate the brow where necessary. The Brow Sculptor comes in five shades, Blonde, Espresso, Chestnut, Granite and Taupe. This one from Chantecaille is also excellent and a bit more price friendly; a little less colour range so that’s the clincher.

This brow gel from Anastasia is always in my make-up bag ; it is a lifesaver in-between tints.  The Chanel gel is also a good one. Not too sticky and not too dry is what I look for with moderate colour or clear gel if I have just been tinted. A quick touch-up with this and the brows feel well-groomed, they stay in place, the stray greys get covered and the eyes look less tired.

The eyebrows are a small part of our daily beauty but if well shaped, coloured and groomed they make the most difference. My eye-makeup routine may have become more minimal in the last few years but my brows are still a focus. xv

Start Here For Power Brows

anastasia tinted brow gel  ||  tom ford brow sculptor  ||  chantecaille brow definer  ||  angled brow brush

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images, julia stiles, sharon radisch for rose & ivy

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In This Post:



Jacki F.

Ah, the brows……. I’ve been grooming (plucking) mine in an increasingly magnified make-up mirror since I was in my teens. I’m lucky– mine haven’t disappeared but I’ve noticed the brows have become longer and wavier (unrulier) as I’ve aged. I have to regularly brush them upwards and trim them with a small scissors. I use Anastasia’s clear gel as soon as I get out of the shower or wash my face, so they dry straight. Then I go over it with Tom Ford’s tinted to gel to color the white ones. Depending on the day, I may fill in with Anastasia’s brow powder using the angled brush. And sometimes, I also have to use the brow wax in a stick to tame a straggler! Oh and I also occasionally need to use a pencil. Every day is a new day but I agree–they frame our eyes and are worth getting right! Brows & lips are always done before I will leave the house.


When I was young….(not the song)…I plucked my brows because it was in fashion. What a mistake which I
have regrets about till today. But it is at it is and I do my best. First I go along the original line with the brow
powder and then I paint (literally like van Gogh) the hairs with Anastasia brow pen which is a bit liquid and has a very thin brush. The result is natural perfect.


I was hoping you’d speak on this topic Vicki after the embracing the grey hair post as I wanted to ask how you deal with those grey eyebrows coming through and how you thought the brows should compliment the hair. I was born with yellow corn coloured hair and black thick eyebrows. Accused of colouring the hair from about 14 as “you can’t have black brows and that colour hair”. My answer was to bleach and pluck the eyebrows to obscurity. When I look at my attempts now to colour the grey and fill them out I just keep chanting at the mirror “Why? Why?Why?” Grateful for the tips x


Desert island. Forever. ONE makeup item allowed. Dark ash brown brow pencil. No contest.

Angela Muller

Well, I was a Lucille Ball eyebrow devotee for decades…plucked to my hearts content! Now, no brows, so to speak! I’ve used pencils, but realized they were too stark and fake looking. For over ten years now, I’ve used Bobbi Brown’s powder applied with a small, tight, short bristled
brush. It comes with two color shades of powder; for me, a light brown and a darker brown. I am very proficient, now, at sculpting the brows I feel give me the best appearance. However, this skill takes time to develop, with lots of trial and error. I wish I had some hair left to use as a guide, but I don’t. One warning, however, never shave your brows or anything else on your face! I never did, plucking or waxing if it was required! Thank you for addressing this issue!


Hello Vicki!

I no longer get notifications on my blog roll when a new post comes up so I’m very late!

Eye brows….I think once I started to pluck my very thin-to-begin-with brows back in high school, they always seemed to maintain the shape I first started out with! I haven’t plucked my brows in years!


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