Your brows can change your entire face – beauty editor Kelly Fung shares how to tame them once and for all.

STEP 1: GROW YOUR BROWS

Not so long ago, eyebrows were just an afterthought – nothing to be too concerned about and probably only given attention when you felt the need to pluck (or over-pluck). But beauty houses, make-up artists and brow specialists (yes, they exist!) have discovered that our eyebrows do more than just protect the eyes. They’re now considered face-changers with the ability to enhance eyes and even take off a few years.

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, After Party, TAO Downtown, New York, America - 10 Nov 2015

With all the waxing and threading and tweezing, along with Cara Delevingne envy, it’s difficult to determine what exactly is the best shape for your face (spoiler alert: it’s your natural shape). Most of us have plucked with wild abandon in search of the perfectly defined and groomed shape. But no more! You should leave your brows alone for two to three months, says LA-based brow guru Kristie Streicher. This ‘brow rehab’ works with the hair’s natural growth cycle, allowing them to fill out in full. The trick to the perfect brow is getting them to look full, feathered and soft, making your face look more youthful.

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STEP 2: CHOOSE YOUR HUE

Warm almond blonde or ash brown? Keep these points in mind when picking your colour:

  • Avoid grey tones as they can make your brows look flat.
  • You don’t have to match your brows to your hair colour – a darker colour will create a more pronounced frame while a lighter shade will soften the face.
  • Play with both matte effect and glossy brow pencils to create dimension and ensure your brows don’t look drawn on.

Anna Sui show, Spring Summer 2016, New York Fashion Week, America - 16 Sep 2015

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STEP 3: PENCIL THEM IN

If you don’t have Frida Kahlo genes and your brow shape is sparse, it’s time for the power tools. The fundamental rule when taking make-up to your eyebrows is to never make them look drawn on. Begin by brushing the hair upwards and outwards and use a gel or wax to keep everything in place. With small, light strokes, fill in the gaps and strengthen the shape. As a rough guide to finding your optimal shape, draw an invisible line from the corner of the nose straight up towards the forehead – this is where the eyebrow should start.

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, Backstage, Lexington Avenue Armory, New York, America - 10 Nov 2015

Next, take the invisible line from the corner of the nose through the pupil to find where the highest point of the arch should fall. To find the end of the brow, take the line from the corner of the nose to the outside corner of the eye – don’t go further. Luckily, your perfect brow pencil or crayon isn’t hard to find – every make-up brand has an eyebrow enhancing gadget, from at-home tints and shadow palettes to pin-thin pencils and brow mascara. Pick one with a slightly waxy texture, which will help the hairs stay in place.

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STEP 4: A LASTING SOLUTION

LONG-TERM: If you don’t want to create perfectly full, arched brows every morning, you could go the more stay-fast route. Johannesburg-based permanent make-up specialist Melissa McC deAraujo says the two-hour process of tattooing your brows is relatively painless, but you should be very clear about what you want since the result is permanent. With the latest techniques, tattooed brows can look completely natural. After a consultation discussing shape, angle and colour, eyebrows are tattooed on to the skin (treatment costs from R1 800). It’s worth the splurge if hassle-free beauty is what you’re after.

SHORT-TERM: Eyebrow enhancement (from R950) is a similar technique to eyelash extensions, with eyebrow extensions applied to the skin and existing hair with adhesive. It creates a natural look that lasts up to four weeks. Decadence Salon, Sandton (011 784 6699)

TIPS AND BROW ESSENTIALS:

Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Longwear Brow Pencil R505

Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Longwear Brow Pencil R505

Bobbi Brown Natural Brow Shaper and Hair Touch Up R290

Bobbi Brown Natural Brow Shaper and Hair Touch Up R290

Keep unruly hair in place with this handy brow shaper. Get the technique right and your brows will instantly look more lush with this gel.

Bobbi Brown Dark Brow Kit R650

Bobbi Brown Dark Brow Kit R650

A good-quality slanted brush is a must for precise application.

Shop the Bobbi Brown products online at bobbibrown.co.za

Beauty photos via Rex Features

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