Five steps to fuller looking eyebrows
Bold brows are still very much on trend, but what if you're cursed with sparse arches? Here's what to do
Just because Rihanna appeared on the cover of Vogue last year with super-skinny eyebrows does not mean that we should all be plucking and pencilling thin black lines above our peepers.
Surveying the SS19 catwalk shows, it was clear that bushy, brushed-up brows are still all the rage with backstage make-up artists, as seen at Fendi, Moschino, Jil Sander, Olivier Theyskens and many more.
But what if you haven't got lustrous brows like these lucky models? What if you overplucked in your youth and they've never properly grown back?
"Eyebrows through the ages have taken on many trends, from shaving them off, to super skinny and big and bold," says make-up artist Frey-ja Barker.
"I have always felt it important to try to stick to your natural shape, with a little added enhancement.
"If, however, you have succumbed to previous trends and removed what Mother Nature gave you, there is now a lot of help out there."
From growth-promoting serums to faking it with make-up, with the right products and techniques, you can build catwalk-worthy arches.
Here, beauty experts offer their tips to help you boost your brows...
1. Start with a growth serum
"If you have gone a little overboard with brow hair removal, there is what I would call a miracle growth product called Revitabrow," says Barker.
"It works by holding the hair in place for an extra two to three weeks, meanwhile encouraging the new hair to come through, revealing fuller, thicker brows.
"However, please note it will only work if the hair follicle is there and functioning - it won't bring back hair that has been missing for years."
- RevitaLash Hi-Def Tinted Brow Gel, £32
"If our clients want to grow their brows, we advise them to use the Shavata Brow Strengthener every night before bed," says Shavata Singh, founder of Shavata Brow Studio.
"This 100% organic pressed castor oil helps brow hairs grow longer, thicker and fuller over time."
- Shavata Brow & Lash Strengthener, £22
Lauren Hogsden, senior trend team make-up artist at Benefit, recommends the brand's Browvo primer as a good starting point.
"Browvo is a nutrient-rich primer, containing keratin and soy protein, known to help support healthy and fuller-looking brows," she says. "It will also enhance and extend the wear of your brow products."
- Benefit Browvo! Conditioning Eyebrow Primer, £24
2. Try a tint
"A brow tint will softly colour any fine blond hair throughout the brow and its border, helping to reveal hair you didn't even know was there," Hogsden says.
Much like colouring your hair, it's best left to a professional. See the Benefit website for your nearest location. Tinting starts from £13.
At Shavata Brow Studios, tinting costs £14 and the brand offers an at-home product, too.
"For instant but natural volume, try the Shavata Day-Long Brow Tint," Singh says. "Its clever applicator magically only tints hair, not the skin, so it makes brows bolder in the most natural way."
- Shavata Day-Long Brow Tint, £19
3. Build your brows
To add volume and definition to your brows, choose a product that contains microfibres that cling to your existing brow hairs.
"The formula of brow build is a little like applying mousse to the roots of your hair - it gives a fullness," Barker says.
"They are applied from a wand, much like a mascara wand. For the application, I would suggest brushing backwards against the hair growth, followed by a second swipe following the natural hair growth."
- BB Brow Styling Gel Clove, £20
You can add extra volume with Benefit Gimme Brow+, recommends Hogsden. "This tinted eyebrow gel contains tiny microfibres that adhere to skin and hairs, creating natural-looking fullness and definition in an instant. It's one of my personal favourites," she says.
- Benefit Gimme Brow+ Volumizing Eyebrow Gel, £21.50
4. Pick up a pencil
"Add colour with an ultra-fine brow defining pencil that delivers believable hair-like strokes," Hogsden advises.
"I would suggest looking for one that has a twist up applicator - look for either a super fine point or flat blade shape," Barker says.
"I've seen a lot of dark brows. This is a trend I would like to soften, especially if you are fair haired.
"My favourite brow colour is YSL pencil number 4, Ash. It is almost a grey-green shade, the colour of a shadow, and suits the majority of people."
- YSL Beauty Dessin des Sourcils Eye Pencil, £21
5. Paint with a pomade
"For anyone with more of an artistic flair, a brow pomade is another great option for creating the look of fuller brows," Barker says,
"It tends to come in a little ink pot, and is applied using a brush. I would suggest using a short-haired, slim-angled brush as it will allow you to mimic hair using little strokes."
- BBB Brow Sculpting Pomade Chai, £18