The REAL never-ending story: achieving the perfect brows

Learning how to properly deal with my eyebrows has been one of the most defining aspects of my beauty routine. Naturally, I have what I like to call “80’s Madonna eyebrows” (see image below), naturally dark and thick, and left unchecked could result in a Frida-esque unibrow. I wasn’t so hot on this look when I was younger, so I tweezed the sh*t out of them through most of my teen years, much to my adult dismay. When I grew up a little and learned to love my thick, dark brows, I started growing them back in and spending serious money on pro shaping, and later, threading (which I still swear by). My road to lovely brows has been a long one, my friends, and no one thing has had more impact on this important part of a makeup routine than learning to fill in my brows. All women have the bare minimum they like before leaving the house: for some, it’s a bold lipstick, or some good mascara – for me, it’s making sure the brows are on point. The rest – a bit of tinted gloss and mascara, some blush – is just a bonus.

Me and Madonna: eyebrows sisters.

Me and Madonna: eyebrows sisters.

I love it that thick, bold brows have come back into style, because it’s what mine want to do naturally. You can’t underestimate the power of good eyebrows for framing the rest of your face (if you want proof, just Google “bad eyebrows” to see the opposite of what you want). And, “they” say that thick, luxurious brows make you look younger. So, let’s go with that!

Still, my brows aren’t exactly easy: they’re thick and dark, but they’re also a little sparse in some areas, and they need to be tamed. I learned, with a bit of trial and error, how to fill them in with a fine angled brush and a dark eyeshadow, about a shade lighter than my black brows (a very dark brown). My goal is not to draw on perfect, over the top brows every day, but just to follow the natural line of my eyebrows and fill in any sparse bits:

photo 1


Me and my lovely friend Heidi, both proudly sporting our healthy brows.

Me and my lovely friend Heidi, both proudly sporting our healthy brows.

I recently came across a new product that promised to easily and quickly give you perfect brows: Maybelline EyeStudio Brow Drama is essentially a short, round mascara wand that you use to brush your brows into submission. I tried this without filling my brows in with shadow, and at first I wasn’t too impressed – it didn’t give the full, dark coverage I was looking for. But after applying the rest of my makeup, I kinda grew into the look—it’s a bit more natural looking, since it’s not so dark and so perfect. I’d definitely use this product if I didn’t have much time, or maybe if I was really going for the “I’m not wearing any makeup” look. If you’re looking for something a bit more polished, stick with with the shadow or a soft eyebrow pencil.

Brows are like anything else: work with what you got, but accept and love the flaws that make you who you are. Have crazy old-school Madonna brows like me? Fill those babies in and rock your thick brows!

I’d love to hear your eyebrow taming/shaping/loving stories in the comments!

1 Comment

  • Reply December 12, 2014


    I had the most unruly eyebrows in highschool/university. No wonder I was always single. I have since discovered the beauty of threading and I will never go back to waxing. It’s just as painful, but less harmful to your skin and about half the cost. I encourage everyone to find your local threader and support their business!

Leave a Reply