How To Get Polished (Natural-Looking!) Brows

Loads of great brows were on display last night at the Fox All-Star Party—check out Olivia Wilde and Aisha Tyler, above, rocking pretty, natural (but definitely filled-in) eyebrows. I was never a brow filler-in-er, but as I recently learned, a polished, full, neat set of eyebrows really does transform your entire face. (A rule of thumb with brow shape: Thin, highly arched brows can make you look older, and fuller, darker, more natural-looking brows are easier to pull off and usually much more flattering.) When brows are filled-in and full, your makeup looks better and if you aren’t wearing any, your face just looks more pulled together. And even women with the thickest brows benefit greatly from a little filling in. A few tricks for getting it right…

  • Go with a brow powder rather than a pencil. Powders look more natural than pencils, and give a longer lasting, deeper color.
  • What color? The general rule of thumb is that the lighter your brow, the closer you should stick to your natural color. Darker haired ladyfolk can actually match the powder to their darkest hair tone or go one shade deeper.
  • Use an angled brush to apply the powder—I like this Laura Mercier Brow Definer Brush. Get just a little bit of powder on the brush, tap off the excess, and sweep it in an upward motion onto your brows.
  • Get a pretty (natural!) arch. So many women think that it takes loads of plucking to achieve a great arch. Wrong. The way to create a higher arch is to make sure your brows are long enough from end to end. It’s all about the illusion. To figure out where they should start and end, hold a pencil or makeup brush handle against the outside of your nostril and line it up with the inner and outer corner of your eye. (If you want to further emphasize your arch with filler, find it by aligning a pencil along the side of your nose at an angle and pointing the end toward your iris. The tip of the pencil should point to your natural arch.)
  • Finish with either a mousse or a gel, brush brows upwards and outwards instead of diagonally with the natural grain. This gives more volume and helps plump them up for a more dramatic effect.

What are your tricks to getting great, polished brows?