I've been a long-time fan of the skinny brow-pencil. But as I've become more and more brow-obsessed, and begun to notice the variety of shapes on the market, I had to wonder: Does the shape of my brow pencil matter? What If I've been using the wrong type this whole time? Well of course this is a matter of utmost importance, so I corresponded with an expert: Alexandra Goodman from the Anastasia Beverly Hills Salon. You guys, she knows, like, everything about brows. Here's what I learned.
Before even considering the best shape of pencil for your brows, there are a couple of other qualities to keep in mind: Color and consistency. Goodman let me know that not only the color of your brows but also your skin tone can have an effect on the way a brow pencil looks on you. So it's important to select a pencil that isn't too warm or too ashy according to your coloring. (Psst: Here's how to tell your undertone if you're unsure.) And the best way to keep brows from looking unnatural? Don't select a pencil that is too dark.
As far as consistency goes, it's good to find a happy medium between dry and waxy. As Goodman explained to me, a pencil that is too dry will have a spotty and unnatural application, whereas a pencil that is too waxy will not last as long on the skin (especially in warm weather or if you have oily skin). But as to whether you should be using a pointed or angled brow-pencil? Here's what you need to know.
If you're a beginner and/or have naturally full brows, Goodman recommends trying an angled, or triangular brow-pencil. This is because its shape allows the user to "draw individual hair strokes as well as define the natural shape of the brow." And I have to say, after trying this shape for the first time, I was surprised at how quickly I was able to fill in my brows. The triangular shape offers a variety of edges and surfaces to work with, so you can fill in your brows however is most comfortable for you.
The only drawbacks with this shape are that it may be too large to fill in thinner brows comfortably, and it does lose its sharp edges after a couple of uses. However, Goodman noted that to redefine the edges, all you have to do is rub the tip over a piece of paper.
On the other hand, for those who are more comfortable wielding brow pencils, have thinner brows, and/or want more definition, Goodman recommends trying a skinny brow-pencil. The fine, pointed tip on this type of pencil makes it easier to avoid mistakes on smaller brows, plus it never needs to be reshaped. I've always been a fan of this shape because the super-fine point makes it easy to see exactly where you're drawing for the most precise line.
However, especially if you have fuller brows or prefer to draw on a fuller brow, the small size of this pencil type means it will take much longer to fill them in, and you will go through the pencil much more quickly.
So which is better? Ultimately, both shapes will work well to fill in your brows any way you like them. But after comparing the two side-by-side, here's my takeaway: Yes, an angled brow-pencil can still be used in a way that makes brows look natural and feathery, but the shape makes carving out brows and getting those crisp edges easier than a skinny, pointed brow-pencil. And yes, a skinny, pointed brow-pencil can still offer definition, but its shape makes feathering in natural-looking hair-like strokes easier than an angled brow-pencil. So if factors like time and brow size don't matter, reach for an angled pencil when you want a sharper brow and a pointed pencil when you want a more natural brow.
Images: Miki Hayes (4)