Which brow makeup is best?
Everyone has a favorite feature they like to highlight when they do their makeup. Whether it’s your complexion, your lips or your eyes, any makeup look can appear more balanced and proportionate with full, defined eyebrows. The ultrafine pencil tip and built-in spoolie brush in Benefit Cosmetic’s Precisely, My Brow Pencil are easy for brow pros and beginners alike to use. Here’s how to shop for the best products for your brow goals.
What to know before you buy brow makeup
Brow product types
For such a small part of your face, the number of brow products available can be intimidating. Here’s a breakdown of the most common choices:
- Brow pencils can be used to line and define brows and fill in sparse areas. They’re often paired with brushes or spoolies to help distribute product and shape brows.
- Brow pomades are made from pigments in a creamy or waxy base that’s applied with a brush. This formulation is good for bold, dramatic brows.
- Brow powders help create the appearance of fuller brows by filling in gaps in your brow line. They can look natural or dramatic depending on how much you apply.
- Brow gels are one of the most beginner-friendly choices for filling in as well as shaping brows. They also work as a finishing touch to lock in your brows after using a different brow product. They’re available clear or tinted.
How to fill in brows
Filling in sparse brows can be accomplished with a variety of eyebrow products. Eyebrow pencils are a popular choice because they’re usually the easiest to use, thanks to their fine points that can draw hair-like strokes. However, powders, pomades and tinted gels can also fill in brows depending on the volume, texture and tint you’re looking for.
Remember your brows won’t match
Nobody’s brows are perfectly symmetrical. When you’re using brow makeup, work with the natural shape of your brows, even if they look a little mismatched. Use tweezers or, if you really need them, brow scissors to enhance your natural arches.
What to look for in quality brow makeup
Brow products for beginners
Not sure where to start? A brow gel is a great choice for beginners. Pick a tinted one if you want a filled-in look or a clear gel for quick fixes to unruly brows. For more color coverage, try a pencil with an ultrafine or angled tip to easily replicate the appearance of brow hairs.
Take the hassle out of doing your brows by choosing products that include the tools you need for application and blending. Many pencils feature pigment on one end and a spoolie brush (like a mascara brush) or smudger on the other. These two-in-one products are also great for traveling.
Brow product colors
Just like choosing a foundation, picking the right brow product shade is essential for a natural look. Many users can get away with taupe shades. However, it can be helpful to pay attention to the color undertones in the makeup. For example, brown eyebrow pencils can lean either red (warm) or gray (cool). If you’re blonde, choose brow makeup with warm undertones to avoid making your brows look gray.
How much you can expect to spend on brow makeup
Brow products range in price from $2-$50. Many high-quality products of any formulation can be found for $22-$30.
Brow makeup FAQ
Are brow stencils worth it?
A. Brow stencils are often suggested for beginners to help them identify where to tweeze or fill in. These flexible plastic stencils are available with or without adhesive, and they come in a variety of brow arch shapes so you can find the one that best matches your natural shape. However, they tend to have a learning curve. Even stencil kits that offer lots of different arch shapes may not have one that’s right for you.
How do I fix my overplucked eyebrows?
A. We all get overzealous with tweezers from time to time. Along with filling in sparse areas with a tinted brow gel or pomade, try a brow serum or oil to stimulate hair regrowth. Most importantly, be patient: Brow hair can take from two weeks to a few months to grow back.
What’s the best brow makeup to buy?
Top eyebrow makeup
What you need to know: This ultrafine-tipped pencil gives brows up to 12 hours of defined, natural color.
What you’ll love: It has a textured grip for better control and a built-in spoolie to blend out pigment. The formula is waterproof and resists transferring and smudging. It’s available in 12 shades, including gray and auburn.
What you should consider: Despite being waterproof, it can be prone to smudging. The pencil doesn’t contain a lot of product for the cost.
Top eyebrow makeup for the money
What you need to know: This cult-favorite tinted brow gel now comes in 10 shades (including gray) and three sizes.
What you’ll love: Microfibers help build up fuller yet natural-looking brows. The small spoolie applicator is simple to use and allows for building up layers of product depending on how dramatic you want your brows.
What you should consider: While most users can find a perfect color match, some may prefer a product with more hold and volumizing power.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: A little goes a long way with this beauty multitasker, which can be used as brow pomade, eye shadow or eyeliner.
What you’ll love: Its vegan and cruelty-free formula includes kaolin clay for creamy, workable texture. It comes in 15 shades, including unusual colors, such as magenta and green to match dyed hair as well as white for customizing or lightening shades.
What you should consider: Its texture may make it too challenging for brow beginners. It doesn’t come with a brush.
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Laura Duerr writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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