after my last "comeback" a few readers have noticed that my brows look different now, so i planned to share my new brow routine and some mini reviews regarding this topic.
here is my former brow tutorial - click! - my philosophy about them still remained the same: rather thick and bushy, not to draw beyond the outlines too much and a natural shape.
however, i have added an extra step to my routine which i think makes them look more sharp but natural at the same time, thus i want to share it with you.
i managed to grow my brows (as previously intended) more straight and much less arched than before, i still need to work on the length. i admit that it's much straighter than i initially wanted, but as i embraced the korean "ulzzang" look since last winter, i aimed for the very straight and quite thick brow. i find that it gives me a softer look, brighter and more youthful.
this is how my brows were last year, medium thickness, quite arched, for my taste too short at the front.
growing out the arch back to a straight line was the hardest part of this project (plus realising that my face is a lot more asymmetrical than i supposed - that's what made it even harder). after many years of plucking underneath the arch to get a neat curve, the hairs don't want to grow back anymore, especially not in the right directions - i'm actually still in the process to get more fullness in this area.
i have to admit that, contradictive to my previous statements, i went and trimmed my brows. they grew so stubborn and messy that i was pissed off enough to let the scissors speak. well, it did look very very weird, i disliked it. but i still trim the too long hairs at the very start since i prefer to brush this part upwards now rather than sideways like before.
so this is what i do:
here you can see my bare brows, at the moment the left side is a lot nicer than the right, but i feel like this changes periodically (about once a year it will turn the opposite way).
you can see the hairs are still quite sparse where formerly the arch of the brow was and how they grow quite messily in this area. here i just try to brush them into nice shape and clear the ground and the hairs from excess foundation and powder with a simple spooley wand (#1 in the top pic)
just with foundation on - i think my face looks quite "undone" with naked brows, i find nice brows make such a difference even though everything else is left bare.
now i'd use brow powder or a brow pencil to have a base shading. these days i favour the Shu Uemura Hard Formula Brow Pencil in 02 Seal Brown when it comes to pencil form (will review it later), but more often i use a brow powder.
my brush of choice is the Louise Young L31 Angled Brow Sable (#3 in top picture). it's densely packed, evenly shaped and has a nice flexibility that still lets you get the right curve even though it's moderately firm. picks up the product nicely and dispenses it evenly. i never pay much attention to brow brushes, but am slightly intrigued to try out the Chikuhodo Z6 or a RMK one...
MAC Copperplate - MAC Omega
as brow powder, i alternate between two MAC eyeshadows: Copperplate for a distinct look or Omega for a softer, warmer brow. i much prefer the Matte² texture of Copperplate, Omega is quite hard and has very poor pay off - can you recommend a similar lightish colour from another brand with a bettter quality?
swatched: MAC Copperplate - MAC Omega
today we're working with Copperplate (#2 in top pic): i start at the outer 2/3 of the bottom line and fill in the desired shape and prepare the sharp tail that my natural brows don't have. i would concentrate the saturation in this outer area and only gradually shade in the front for a more authentic appearance. then go over the brow with the spooley again or a MAC 219/medium stiff pencil brush to smudge the colour evenly into the skin.
if i'm in a rush, i could leave it at that, it already looks much neater than without any shape at all.
key product in this step is a liquid brow pen, i was inspired by the fabulous Lisa Eldridge who often uses the SUQQU Brow Pen. the one it have is a cheaper and more widely available alternative: the K-Palette 1 Day Tattoo Real Lasting Eyebrow (#4 in top pic).
i chose shade 02 Grayish Brown, i think it's darker and more ashy than shade 01. i'd recommend the ashier colour for people with undyed natural black hair. this pen contains liquid ink and has a brush tip which is wide and flat. the synthetic fibres are dense and stiff. the brush tip creates very fine lines of a diluted dark taupe colour. i use it with a light hand in short and fine strokes to create the illusion of brow hairs where there are none. needs some practicing, but it's better to only draw in fine "hairs" than to cover the whole brow shape in a solid colour with these pens since you want to fake a full natural brow and not a tattooed one!
i especially like that the ink is very light and the tip is so precise, it delivers a much more natural result than the darker, more intense liquid versions (for example by Gosh or Anastasia etc.) or classic brow pencils. the staying power is phenomenal, even on my quite oily summer skin it looks just like freshly applied even after the whole day.
you can find this on ebay, it costs about 20$ with shipping. i've been using mine for over 6 months now and it still goes strong.
i'd concentrate my strokes on the sparse areas and where my brow hairs are too thin, that's on the arch area and in the front. it adds more structure and definition to my brows compared to just powder alone.
to round it up i use a coloured brow gel. i use one by P2, it's a back up of a discontinued product. my brows are so stubborn that i rather want to enhance the existing brow hairs (especially at the front) than to glue them into a particular shape.
here is the final result:
bare brows vs. done brows