How to Trim & Train Eyebrows to Lay Down

by Goody Clairenstein ; Updated September 28, 2017

Trim and train your eyebrows to lie flat to create a natural-looking arched shape.

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Eyebrows are an often overlooked facial feature. Neatly trimmed and shaped eyebrows give your face a subtle but noticeable improvement, making your eyes appear larger and more awake. Shape and trim your eyebrows as part of your daily beauty regimen after washing and drying your face. You can create a look appropriate for daytime or evening wear with differently colored eyebrow pencils. Using basic beauty tools, you can sculpt modern and polished-looking eyebrows to present your best face to the world.

Determine the ideal shape of your eyebrow. Align a narrow straight edge - an emery board works well - vertically by holding it against one side of your nose. Tilt the straight edge until it touches the end of your eyebrow near the bridge of your nose, and make a small mark there with an eyebrow pencil.

Reposition the straight edge to create a diagonal line from the outside of your nose to the outer edge of your eye, by your temple. Make a mark with the eyebrow pencil where the straight edge hits the other end of your eyebrow. These marks delineate the ideal length of your eyebrow.

Reposition the straight edge so that it crosses over the center of your iris, through the pupil. The part of your eyebrow that the straight edge touches is where you want your arch to be; make a mark there as well.

Pluck any stray hairs underneath the eyebrow with a pair of tweezers. Look for hairs that stray outside the shape of your ideal eyebrow and tweeze them accordingly. Don't pluck hairs above the eyebrow, as this can negatively impact their final shape.

Brush the eyebrow hairs down with an eyebrow brush, an instrument that looks like a mascara wand. Brush the hairs so that they point downward toward your eye.

Trim any particularly long eyebrow hairs with a small pair of styling shears. Use styling shears because they are made specifically for cutting hair, and their narrow design can snip small hairs more easily. Look for any hairs that extend past the average length of most of the other hairs, and even the hairs' lengths by trimming their very ends.

Draw a small vertical line at the bridge of your nose where you want your eyebrow to start with an eyebrow pencil. Use a shade that's close to your natural hair color. Using short, horizontal strokes, pencil in your eyebrows wherever you can see your skin through the hairs. Gently smudge the outline to make it look more natural.

Pencil in any other small gaps in your eyebrow where you can see your skin through the hairs. Eyebrows grow more sparsely toward the outer edges of the eyes, so you may need to concentrate on this area to make your brows look more polished. Gently blend the eyebrow pencil with your finger.

Brush your entire eyebrow from the bridge of your nose to the outside of your eye with the clean eyebrow brush. The eyebrow brush will make your brows look more natural and less defined.

Dip a brush or small-tipped makeup applicator into the eyebrow wax, and wipe off any excess on the edge of the container. Eyebrow wax keeps eyebrows in place in much the same way that hair gel keeps a style in place throughout the day. Use a wax specifically for shaping eyebrows with a matte, translucent finish. You can also use a tinted eyebrow gel. Apply the wax or gel sparingly to your eyebrow near the arch, brushing the wax backward through your eyebrow hairs. Use an eyebrow brush or your fingers to brush or pinch your eyebrows into your desired shape.

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About the Author

Goody Clairenstein has been a writer since 2004. She has sat on the editorial board of several non-academic journals and writes about creative writing, editing and languages. She has worked in professional publishing and news reporting in print and broadcast journalism. Her poems have appeared in "Small Craft Warnings." Clairenstein earned her Bachelor of Arts in European languages from Skidmore College.