The Ultimate Brow Guide
Whether your approach to makeup is no makeup, minimal or heavy, nothing beats beautifully shaped eyebrows. They frame your entire face, and nothing else has the power to dramatically alter your appearance like a perfect set of brows. The way you shape and fill your eyebrows can do a myriad of flattering things to enhance your beauty: create more balance to your face, help your features look more defined, make you appear younger, more sophisticated, or even like you just stepped off the runway!!! But, just as easily as the perfect brow can enhance your looks, the wrong brow can leave you looking, not your best! That’s where this guide will come in handy. I am sharing all of my brow tips & tricks. Use these beauty tips to help you achieve the best brows for you!
Choose the Right Products
When picking out your brow products, knowing how each specific formula works best is an absolute must! Learning the benefits of each can help you decide what you need vs. what you don’t need. Here is a quick breakdown of each!
Brow pencils are perfect for creating an outline for your brows. They can also be used to create a more defined, bold brow, but you can also achieve a natural brow by using them to create hair-like strokes. Choose a water-resistant formula with a fine tip.
My Pick: Motives Arch Definer Ultra-Fine Brow Pencil
Your brows don’t have to be your arch enemies; make them your BFFs with the Motives® Arch Definer Ultra-Fine Brow Pencil. Featuring a retractable, super-fine tip for filling and lining with precise hair-like strokes this pencil helps you achieve full, natural-looking brows. This smooth, creamy formula is water- and smudge-resistant, so your brows stay on fleek from day to night.
- Water-resistant, long-wearing and smudge-proof formula keeps brows on fleek
- Retractable, ultra-fine tip creates precise hair-like strokes for natural-looking brows
- Superior formula provides the perfect amount of color and texture
- Includes a convenient spoolie brush end for shaping and blending
Brow pomade is a great choice for filling in the gaps in sparse brows. They are also a great option if you are looking for a more defined brow, or if you are looking to darken your brows.
Brow pomade can be intimidating for newbies, as you need to apply it with an angled brush which can take a bit to get used to.
My Pick: Custom Blend Brow Pomade
I am able to custom blend brow pomade with my custom blend make-up kit and I love that it allows me to create ANY shade! I am able to match my client’s brow color, or create the tone that they are looking for. It’s truly the only thing that I use as I have perfected the formula.
Brow powder is a great option for a natural, softer-looking brow. It’s also a great go-to for people with sparse brows, as powders can make them appear fuller and denser!
I should also add that if you’re a newbie to filling in your brows, you may find brow powder less intimidating. You can use them to achieve a more natural look.
Brow gels contain ingredients like polymers and waxes that help tame and shape brow hairs, plus hold them in place. Brow gels come in both tinted and clear versions; those that are tinted can also help fill in gaps in the arches and add definition and come in a tube with a handy brush that creates easy application.
My pick: Motives Gel-ous Brow Gel
Swipe on your power brows with Motives Gel-ous Brow Gel. Formulated to tame, fill and give life to the most barely-there brows, this creamy gel catches each hair, coating them in color and holding them in place. Transform brows from boring to powerful and never be gel-ous of any other brows again!
- Creamy gel formula available in five shades to match every brow
- Helps fluff and tame brows with just one coat
- Adds volume and color to sparse brows
- Small spoolie applicator allows for a precise application
- Vegan, paraben-free, gluten-free and sulfate-free
Brow wax is a great choice for those that want to achieve full, feathery brows. It even works well on coarse, stubborn hair, and since it doesn’t set like a gel, you can keep molding your brows to get the look you want.
My Pick: Motives Essential Brow Kit
The Motives Essential Brow Kit is a complete kit for expertly shaping, grooming and defining your brows. The all-inclusive kit contains wax to sculpt the brows AND two powder shades to create a natural look.
- Astonishing powder/wax brow combination that is effortless to apply and provides striking gleam
- Apply the smooth powder for striking color and the wax for brow-sculpting control with enhanced shine
- Enjoy glamorous, shaped and sexy brows all day long
Use Brow Products In Their Correct Order
The above brow products can be used separately or together, depending on what you’re trying to achieve. If you decide to use more than one brow product at a time, make sure you apply them in the best order. Generally, the ideal order is: a pencil, cream/pomade, powder, and lastly clear wax. But if you follow me, I teach that there are NO set rules in makeup application, so the goal is to find what works best for you.
Choose the Right Shade
It can be difficult to choose the right shade of brow products. Here are a few tips to help you determine which shade is best for you and the look you are trying to achieve.
- If you are going for a natural look, it’s best not to go too dark when selecting a brow color, as this can look rather harsh. Generally, if your hair is on the darker side, you should choose something that is lighter than your natural hair color. For example, if your hair is black, don’t use black on your brows (this looks unnatural), instead, choose a cool dark or medium brown color. If your hair is a warm medium brown, try a shade lighter like a warm light brown. If your hair has highlights and lowlights, you can pick something matching the lightest part of your hair, rather than the base color.
- However, there are a few exceptions to consider, especially for those with lighter shades of hair. If you have light hair, you may want to choose a shade that is a bit darker than your hair. Example: If you have light blonde hair, choose a color that is one shade darker or one that matches the darkest shade in your hair.
- If you have natural light red hair, you can try shades like taupe, ashy blonde, golden brown, or a very light brown with a touch of auburn tones. Those with darker red hair may want to try auburn or a warm medium brown.
- If your hair and your natural brow color are totally different, choose a color that falls in between them. For example, if you have blonde hair, but your brows are naturally brown, choose something that falls in between them.
- If you’re looking to add more depth to your brows, you can use two different shades. The first can be similar to your hair color, while the second can be a bit darker. In this case, you want to use the lightest shade through the full brow and use the dark color in the middle and through the brow tail.
How to Achieve Perfect Eyebrows for Your Face Shape
Knowing your face shape can help you to determine which eyebrow shape will best complement it. If you need help finding your face shape, check out my article: How To Determine Your Face Shape. Here are my tips for shaping eyebrows based on 6 common face shapes.
Square Face Shape
- If you have a square face shape, the goal is to soften and add balance to the face with a fat brow and a soft arch. Avoid hard angles and keep them more rounded.
Long/Rectangle Face Shape
- If you have a long or rectangle face shape, the goal is to draw attention horizontally rather than vertically to add width to the face. A flat, straighter, elongated brow shape works best.
- Do not create a high arch, instead opt for a very low arch.
Round Face Shape
- If you have a round face shape, the goal is to create the illusion that your face is longer. High arched, angled brows can help lengthen your face and draw attention upwards and make a face look slimmer. Brows that are sharp and angled add more definition to the face, thereby taking attention away from the softness of a round face.
- Avoid round, curved, or flat brows, and be sure that, while you want to make your arch a high arch, you keep it natural-looking.
Heart Face Shape
- To soften the sharp features of a heart-shaped face, try soft, rounded (only very slightly angled) brows. Keep the arch low and avoid a high one.
Diamond Face Shape
- If you have a diamond face shape, you have strong, wide cheekbones that taper off towards your chin and forehead. To give yourself a softer and less wide look, round out your brows
Oval Face Shape
- There are no hard rules for those with oval-shaped faces. But, the most flattering option is a soft-angled, softly arched brow.
Understanding Mapping Basics For Eyebrows
Now that you have a plan for the best brow for your face shape before you start shaping your brows, here are some mapping basics and a few general guidelines to keep in mind.
These are not 100% solid, set-in-stone rules, as other factors can come into play like your face shape and eye positions, but knowing the basics can help give you an idea of where your eyebrows, should begin and end along with determining where your arch should be.
- Your eyebrows should be analyzed in two sections, beginning to arch, and then arch to the tail.
- When mapping your brows, you can use your brow pencil to measure and mark.
Steps For Mapping Your Brows
Step 1: Find the starting point for both brows by lining up a thin eye makeup brush or eyebrow pencil vertically along the side of your nose just slightly outside your tear duct.
Step 2: To map where your arch should be, align your brow pencil from the center of the tip of your nose diagonally through the middle of your iris. This will be where the highest part of your arch will be. This will also be where your brow bone stans out and also about 2/3 from the start of your brow.
Step 3: To determine where your brow should end, angle your pencil from the corner of your nose, through the outside corner of the eye. This is where you generally want your brow aka tail to end.
Determine if Your Eyes are Close-Set or Wide-Set
This may be a bit advanced for some, but before you skip this section, trust me and keep reading. The distance between your eyes can determine where you start your brows. You can change the illusion by understanding whether your eyes are close-set or wide-set. It actually does sound a bit more complicated than it is, so don’t panic!
Take a look at your eyes, in the mirror. Measure the width of one of your eyes. If you are an overachiever, you can hold a ruler in front of your eye and measure from corner to corner. Once you have this number, hold your ruler in between your eyes.
Is the width between your eyes, the same width as one of your eyes? If so, your eyes are perfectly spaced. If the width in between your eyes is LESS than the width of one of your eyes, you have close-set eyes, if the width between your eyes is greater than the width of one of your eyes, your eyes are wide-set.
If you have close-set eyes, you will want to make it appear as though your eyes are wider apart than they actually are, in order to balance out your face. To give this illusion, start your brows further out than was suggested above with brow mapping. This will create more space in between your brows which will give the illusion that your eyes are also spaced further apart. Just use caution to not go too far out, as you still want your brows to look complementary to your face.
If you have wide-set eyes, you will want to make it appear as though your eyes are closer together than they actually are to help balance out your face. To give this illusion, start your brows further in than what was suggested above with brow mapping. This will create less space in between your brows which will give you the illusion that your eyes are closer together. Be sure not to go too far in, as you want your brows to look complementary to your face.
Connect the Dots
Phew, you did it!! Now that you determined where to place your brows, using your chosen brow product:
- Start by connecting the bottom of your arch to the and of the tail.
- Followed by connecting the start of your brow to your arch.
- Fill in-Using your eyebrow pencil, or Essential Brow Kit and angled brush, create short, fine hair-like strokes sweeping along the brow in the direction of your hair growth ending at the tail. Imagine you are drawing in each individual hair.
- Use your spoolie to brush through your brows to help soften or a more natural
Use Concealer To Hide & Define
If you are due for a brow waxing, threading, shaping session, or simply want to define your brows even more, use Motives Eye Base, or Cream Concealer a shade lighter than your skin, and a small flat-tipped brush to outline above and below your brows, right outside your brow. Be sure to apply in the same direction and very close to your brows. Use the same brush to blend it out.
Brighten & Highlight
You can also use the Motives Khol Eyeliner in Angel to enhance your brows and give them an instant lift.
- Lightly trace below the arch extending under the tail of the brow. You can even trace under your entire brow, just stay right outside the brow line.
- Next, smudge it out with a makeup brush to blend it in.
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Congratulations, you did it, you now have the perfect brows!