Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Eye Brow 101: The Ideal Shape

The perfect brow is a bit like the comfortable stiletto. It's rumoured to exist, but you could easily spend your entire life trying to find it with little success.

Brows are probably the most important overlooked feature on the face. They frame the eye; providing structure and balance. The right brow shape can not only make they eyes seem larger, and more lifted, it can actually change the appearance of the face itself. A round brow can soften an angular face. Flat, shorter brows can help those with long faces look softer and rounder. Though it's important to work with the shape you were given, there are a few simple guidelines that can help you make the most of what you've got.

The easiest way to figure out the proportions of your brows is to grab a pencil or makeup brush and use it as a visual guide. The following picture illustrates the "ideal" brow shape. Universally flattering, it can be worn by a variety of face shapes to create a cleaner, more groomed, brighter eye. Here's how to get them, in three simple steps:

Step One
The Inner Corner- this is where your brow should begin. Using your pencil, lay it against the nostril on the same side as the eye you're measuring. The pencil should go straight up, intersect the inner corner of your eye, and go up onto your brow. The point at which the pencil lies on your brow is where your eye brow should begin. If you're coming up short, consider filling in a bit with a brow pencil. If you're coming in any closer toward the other brow, grab your tweezers and pull the errant hairs one by one until you're at your desired point.

Step Two
The High Point of the arch. Keeping your pencil against your nostril as before, angle it so that the pencil goes across your eye to the outside of your pupil, and over on to the brow. The part where the pencil intersects your brow should be the highest point of your brow. The area between the inner corner (Step 1) and the highpoint of the arch (Step 2) should all be pretty much the same thickness, it is at the high point that the brow should begin to slope down and slightly taper off.

Step Three
The Outer Corner- again, start with the pencil along your nostril. Angle it toward your temple so that the pencil lines up with the outer corner of your eye and reaches outward. The point where the pencil touches your brow is where it should end. As you can see, the model in the picture falls a bit short, as do I. I like to use an angled brush and a brow powder to extend the line of my brow a bit.

So, there you have it. In parting, there is one thing I feel like I need to mention. I poured through several hundred stock images searching for a model with perfect brows to use for the diagram above, and what I found was that NO ONE, including the model I used, has perfect brows. Technically, this model's brows are too close together, and not long enough. Does that mean they're not beautiful, or that she looks hopelessly out-of-proportion? Of course not. Remember- guidelines are just that, follow them as closely as your shape allows, and take the tweezing slow!


Ashwini said...

Great post. I personally leave my brows up to the pros. I get them threaded, which doesn't leave burn marks like waxing. I just stumbled across your blog and am loving it so far!

Unknown said...


So glad you're liking the blog! I hope you'll feel free to leave any questions or comments, I'm happy to answer as many questions as possible, and welcome suggestions on how to make your blog-going experience even better!

BTW, Like Ashwini mentioned, Threading is a great option for those that are a bit wary of trying brow maneuvers at home- I've tried it myself. Though claims that threading is painless are just plain silly (it pulls hair out at the root, like waxing, and in my opinion, is similar on the discomfort scale) it could be a good alternative for people who have sensitivities to wax.

I feel like I should mention, no waxer worth her salt should ever burn a client! That's a sign that either the person isn't knowledgeable about the product she's using, or is too busy triple booking clients to notice that her warmer is too hot! Either way, say goodbye to repeat business!

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