Updated: Jul 8, 2021
The brows are the nipples of the face. Over the last few years, eyebrows have stormed our Instagram feeds. Instagram brows, wavy brows, fluffy brows, soapy brows - what does this all mean, and how should you be filling in your brows according to your face shape?
Before you even start to fill in your brows, you should have a basic understanding of brow mapping. This is a technique which using angles and measurements to show you exactly where your brows should be according to your face and eye shape. Point 1 is the start of your brow, point 2 is the arch or highest point of your brow, and point 3 is the end or tail of your brow. Use the following diagram and a brows pencil or brush to mark out the different points of your brow.
After you've mapped out your brows and they look even, tweeze any hairs that fall outside of the map. Brush up your brows with a spoolie or brow brush and trim any long hairs. Now your ready to start filling in your brows.
The type of brow product you use is up to you, and should be chosen according to the type of look you want to achieve. For 'Instagram Brows', a brow pomade for gel is best. For more natural looking brows, a brow pencil or brow powder works well. You can still get a defined look with powder or a pencil, it just depends how you apply it. Use a compact angled brush to fill in brows.
Match your hair colour to your brow shade - you don't want very dark brows if you're blonde or pale. Darker skin tones should stay away from black. Even if your hairs look black, use a dark brown shade - this will result in less harsh-looking brows.
Begin by applying a thin, precise line along the bottom of your brow with an angled brush. Fill in the outer tail first with short brush strokes to mimic the appearance of hair. You want to follow the natural shape and colour of your brows, so the tail or end of the brow is naturally darkest. Follow the brow down towards the tail, ensuring that the highest point of your brow, your arch, is also as dark as the tail. As you move more towards the inner part of the brow, the hairs naturally become lighter or thinner, and begin to grow upwards, rather than sideways. You want to mimic this appearance when filling in your brows.
The best way to get this appearance is to place the brush at a 90 degree angle against the bottom of your brow at the inner part of your brow. Then with short movements, flick the brush softly upwards. This helps to avoid block-shaped brows and looks much more natural.
Once filled in, use a brow brush to brush the product through your brows, so it doesn't look too thick or dark. If you have accidentally filled in where you shouldn't have or you feel your brows look too thick or uneven, simply take some concealer (only 1 to 2 shades lighter than your foundation) and a flat compact concealer or eyeshadow brush. Carefully clean up around the brows with the concealer to ensure they look clean and even. Blend out the concealer and set with powder. If you have wild brows, you can set them with a clear brow gel, or hairspray if you don't have the former.
Lastly, apply a small amount of shimmer highlighter along your brow bone, which is the small section underneath the arch of your brow, and in the inner corner of your eye. This will draw attention to your brows and eyes and will make your brows look more arched and defined. Once you have practiced with brow mapping a few times, you will begin to know exactly where your brows will be and how to fill them in perfectly! Remember, practice makes perfect.
Brows really do make such a difference to the face when applying makeup. Don't be heavy handed otherwise your brows will look thick and heavy. Use light movements with your brushes, and clean up where you need to.