How to Achieve Natural, Full-Looking Brows

by Lilly Wallace

Full-looking eyebrows are not just a trend — they are universally flattering and give your face a more youthful appearance. If you weren't gifted with thick eyebrows at birth or if they used to be fuller but you over-plucked them (like almost every woman in the nineties), you can still achieve a naturally fuller-looking brow with a little makeup and a few simple tricks.

Items you will need

  • Mirror
  • Eyebrow pencil, wax, powder, or pen
  • Angled brush (only if using wax or powder)
  • Spoolie brush
  • Brow gel
  • Cotton buds
  • Concealer or highlighter (optional)

Choose the right eyebrow product.

These days, shopping for makeup can be an overwhelming experience due to the large number of options. Depending on your brows and your desired look, you may opt for a certain formula over another. Here's a breakdown of the formulas available on the market, and how to choose the one that best suits your needs.

Eyebrow pencils are very easy to use and do not require any extra tools. They often come in a dual-ended format with a colored pencil on one side and a spoolie brush on the other. Some of them do not even require to be sharpened like regular pencils because they are retractable and they only require twisting as the pencil gets used up. Eyebrow pencils (especially those with a very fine tip) are great if you have bald spots in your eyebrows because penciling with a fine tip allows you to mimic the look of real hairs. The downside is that they are usually very pigmented, so it is easy to overdo and end up with a very strong-looking brow. So, if you choose to use a pencil, keep in mind that you will have to use a light hand, and preferably, opt for one that comes with spoolie on one side for travel-friendly touch ups.

Eyebrow waxes are creamy, slightly waxy formulas that require the use of a flat, angled, slightly stiff brush so they can be used to create thin strokes like a pencil. They are usually very pigmented, so very little product is needed for each application, and one pot of brow wax can last for a very long time (especially compared to an eyebrow pencil). They are another great option for people with sparse eyebrows, although they require a bit more practice in order to achieve natural-looking, hair-like strokes.

Similar to waxes are eyebrow mousses, whose texture is more creamy and fluffy. They aren't as common as eyebrow waxes, but they work in a similar way.

Eyebrow powders work best for people who do not have visible bald spots to fill-in. They can be used to fill sparse area of the eyebrows and give a very natural result.

Eyebrow pens are another less common formula (very few makeup brands make eyebrow pens). They are an alternative to eyebrow pencils to achieve a softer look, and they work very well for drawing in missing eyebrows. They are an excellent option for people whose eyebrows are missing or are very light in color.

Choose the right color.

In order for your eyebrows to look naturally full, you should pick a shade that is very close to the natural color of your eyebrows. A general rule that seems to work well for most people is to choose one shade lighter than your hair color if you are a brunette and one shade darker than your hair color if you are blonde. If you have red hair, shades of warm taupe (for lighter red/blonde hair) and auburn (for deeper red hair) tend to be the most flattering. If you don't have eyebrow hairs, you may want to opt for a soft shade of taupe/light gray. The best way to find out if a color works for you is always to test it out on you (ideally, you could try to obtain a sample at a makeup counter or at an online makeup store), and take a photo of yourself to see how it looks when applied to your eyebrows.

Tips

  • Many eyebrow products, and especially those for brunettes, tend to have a warm (red/orange) undertone, which does not suit most people. Look for ashier colors like gray-ed browns and taupes, for a more natural-looking result.

Apply the product properly.

Once you've identified the type of eyebrow product and color that best suits you, apply it in the most flattering way with this simple tutorial.

Step 1

With a spoolie brush, brush your brows upwards. This is going to reveal the sparse areas in your eyebrows that you should fill-in.

Step 2

With a light hand, draw dash-like strokes in the sparse area of your eyebrows. Follow your natural eyebrow shape. Once the brows are filled-in, you will be able to see where shape correction is needed, if necessary.

Tips

  • If you don't have eyebrows or if your eyebrows are very sparse and you don't know where you should place the color, you can use an eyebrow stencil (like these ones from Anastasia Beverly Hills) as a guide. Place the stencil on your skin and fill it in with the product, keeping a very light hand to prevent it from looking harsh.

Step 3

Brush through your eyebrows to blend the color applied, and then brush your eyebrows downwards to reveal any empty areas on the top portion of your eyebrows.

Step 4

Fill in any sparse areas, and then brush through your brows one more time to blend any additional color you applied.

Step 5

Step back, preferably one or two steps away from the mirror, and look at the shape of your eyebrows. You should be able to notice if your eyebrows' shape needs any correction. Remember that "eyebrows are sisters, not twins," and they don't need to look completely identical in order to look polished. Don't spend too much time trying to make them look exactly the same. However, do make sure that they look fairly even on both sides.

Step 6

Set your eyebrows with a gel, brushing the product through your hairs. Preferably, you should brush all the hairs up, which gives the illusions of a bushier, fuller eyebrow.

About the Author

Lilly Wallace is an Italian certified health and nutrition coach. She writes about beauty and wellness on her website GenuineGlow.com. Passionate about skin care, nutrition and fitness, she loves to inspire her readers to pursue a healthy, eco-friendly and sustainable lifestyle.