Blame Cara Delevingne, but thick, glamorous eyebrows are really in style right now. I do want to blame her because I am exceedingly envious. My own eyebrows are so naturally skinny it looks like I have penciled-on 90s brows even when I haven’t tweezed them for a year. Excessively skinny eyebrows are a pain in the ass, but they are just one of the many eyebrow problems a person can have. Luckily, like most eyebrow problems, in the grand scheme of things, they are very small problems to have. Here is how to fix 10 of the most common eyebrow afflictions.
1. Thick, archless eyebrows
If your eyebrows have never been shaped before, you are lucky because you have probably not managed to fuck them up yet. Too many of us overplucked as teenagers and have lived to regret it, but you have avoided all that.
If you definitely want to change your eyebrow shape now, start small and ideally go to a professional for your first shaping. As a child, my sister had brows that grew thick and straight from end to end, so when she wanted to start tweezing, she wasn’t sure where to begin. Under the arch? What arch? Where does the arch go? But she knew she didn’t want spermy, overplucked brows like so many adults we knew, so she went and had them shaped by a professional waxer, and from then on, she just followed that shape and maintained her brows by herself.
When looking for an eyebrow professional, a good recommendation is crucial. Do not be embarrassed to ask people with exceptionally good-looking eyebrows if they can recommend somebody.
2. You are super lazy and don’t want to use a lot of tools
If you are lazy like me but are lucky enough to have dark hair, you are in luck! Julia Restoin-Roitfeld recommends putting on your mascara; then–when there’s almost nothing left on the mascara wand–just use the wand to brush up your eyebrows a little bit. Her eyebrows always look perfect, so she probably knows what she’s talking about.
3. Thin eyebrows
If someone tells you that you have “slutty eyebrows,” like what happened to Cupcakes and Cashmere blogger Emily Schuman, you can do what she does and fill them in with an eyebrow pencil to give them a little more definition and make them stand out more. (Schuman uses Laura Mercier). Promiscuous eyebrows are evidently those that are narrower than is fashionable at a given moment. And don’t forget to flip the bird to any jerk who tells you your eyebrows are slutty.
4. Overplucked eyebrows
Ashley had good results treating her eyebrows with Men’s extra-strength Rogaine. I look forward to trying it myself.
5. Patchy eyebrows
Filling in the brow with a brow powder and angled brush is a very quick way to disguise patchiness and make your eyebrows look full and lush. An eyebrow pencil can also work but do not press too hard, or you risk pulling out hairs and creating new eyebrow holes.
6. Invisible eyebrows
If your eyebrows are fair or just an unsatisfying color, they can be professionally dyed or bleached to your heart’s desire. (Mine are way lighter than my hair, so I like to have them darkened a bit.) I would love to provide a good DIY eyebrow-dying project, but it is probably not a good idea to do this at home.
7. Hard-to-match eyebrow color
If you have a hard time finding an eyebrow pencil that matches your brows—because you’re a redhead, for example—try looking amongst the eye shadows, or look for an eyebrow powder set that includes multiple colors you can blend to match your shade perfectly. I have had good luck with Laura Mercier’s brow powder duo in auburn, which gives a light red and a dark red that can be mixed to find the right shade.
8. Bushy eyebrows
If your eyebrows are thick and you like the thickness but wish they were a little less randomly hairy, you can try trimming them with some tiny scissors. First, brush the hairs up with a toothbrush (or a special eyebrow brush, if you’re fancy). Once your brows are brushed straight up, trim along the top of your natural brow line. That should just snap the heads of the longest hairs so you’ll lose the bushiness without sacrificing thickness.
9. Unruly eyebrows
If you have curly hair, your eyebrows might curl too. That’s pretty cool, but sometimes it means they wander around and develop cowlicks during the day. Clear mascara, brow gel, or an eyebrow-fixing pencil will help you stick them in place all day. (A bit of hairspray on a toothbrush can also work in a pinch.)
10. Eyebrows that are not blue
If your eyebrows are perfect but just not blue, get yourself to an art store. Artist’s pastels are a quick, effective, and temporary way to make your eyebrows any color at all. There are also fun, colorful mascaras that can work and also can be used to put streaks in your hair.
(Photos: Getty, Instagram/CupcakesAndCashmere, Instagram/MileyCyrus, Instagram/CaraDelevingne)