Let's be honest: At one point or another, we've all had an eyebrow disaster. Whether it was over-plucking (me) or not realizing you had a unibrow for the first 13 years of your life (also me), each and every one of us has had at least one life altering experience of eyebrow induced drama. And afterward, we've all also had to bear the wrath of our eyebrow artist looking at us and asking "Why the hell did you do this to yourself?!"
As adept as we may think we are with a pair of tweezers, the reality is that we're all better off putting them down and stepping far, far away from the bathroom mirror. "If you would just stop tweezing, your brows would become so much more manageable," says Boom Boom, owner of NYC's Boom Boom Brow Bar (which, FYI, happens to be a supermodel favorite). "Maybe your brows would grow in fuller because each random hair could connect to another."
For those of us who want to avoid a lecture the next time we go in for a touch up, here are seven things your eyebrow artist wishes she could tell you, care of Ms. Boom Boom herself. Her most important advice? A magnifying mirror, a glass of wine and a pair of tweezers is a always a terrible idea.
1. Leave The Work To The Professionals
As anyone with a magnifying mirror and a pair of tweezers knows, it's hard to do your own eyebrows. When we're dealing with our own brows, it's often hard to remember that they're "sisters" not "twins," which may inevitably lead to over-plucking. "No two eyebrows are alike, so it’s all about symmetry and proportion, and it's hard to do that being so close to a magnifying mirror," says Boom Boom. "Also, people do not really understand how to get a better arch, so they tweeze in the wrong place and get rainbow brows." Do yourself a favor and toss your tweezers, and leave the artistry to the experts.
2. Clean-Ups Should Happen Once A Month
...Or whenever you start to see your brow hair getting unruly. Regardless of your ideal schedule, it's important not to tweeze in between so that all of your hair stays on the same growth schedule. "A clean up is when you are in maintenance mode, the shape is already there and you’re just cleaning up strays," says Boom Boom. "If you would just stop tweezing, your brows would become so much more manageable."
3. Consult An Expert For A Re-Shaping
No matter what sort of brows you were born with, you technically aren't stuck with them... as long as you're willing to work with the right expert. "A reshaping is when brows are all overgrown and a client comes in for the first time," says Boom Boom. "That's when we discuss shape and style and have options to reshape." Keep in mind that you can get a totally different shape without actually removing a lot of hair, so over-waxing is not necessary. For the best results, wait four to six weeks before going in for a shaping.
4. Your Eyebrow Shape And Face Shape Should Work Together
"You've got to work with what you have and tweak according to face shape," says Boom Boom. A round face could have an arched, longer brow to off set roundness, while for long faces, work best with pushed-back natural arches. Heart shaped faces look nice with a softer arch to help soften the point of the chin, and square faces need a well-defined angular arch to help draw attention up and away from the jaw. Oval faces look good with a strong defined brow to draw attention to the eyes, away from the longer chin/forehead.
5. Keep Your Cowlicks
Did you know just like your hair, your eyebrows can have cowlicks, too? This happens when small sections of hair grow in a totally different direction than the rest of the brow. Managing them is tricky, but possible. "Cowlicks are tricky," says Boom Boom. "Trim it and work around it. Approach doing your brows as if [the one with the cowlick] is the same as the other," says Boom Boom. "Brows are about symmetry, so if you remove it, your brows will be really off." Take it from someone who has tried this once — she's right!