I have been fiddling with my eyebrows for about 15 years. But while I have just about got the hang of tweezing (super sharp tweezers, magnifying mirror and always restraining yourself a few hairs before you think you should), give me an eyebrow pencil and there is still a danger that I will come out looking like I've drawn two worms on my brow.
Given the ridiculous amount of time and money I have spent on my brows over the years (waxing, tweezing, threading), it drives me mad that they still seem to do whatever the hell they want. I have become convinced that if I could just learn how to use an eyebrow pencil, the never-ending cycle of too thick, too thin would finally be over.
"Filling in with a very dark pencil gives a Halloweenish look," warns Wende Zomnir of Urban Therapy, whose double-ended Brow Beater, which comes in Brilliant Blonde and Brunette Bombshell, is a power tool of an eyebrow pencil.
"Start by filling in your brows with the 'fill' end of the pencil," she says. "You'll immediately notice two things: first, the pencil is not very dark, and that is a good thing." (Zomnir's brows are almost black, but she uses a light chocolate shade for a more natural look.) "The second thing," she continues, "is that the pencil is quite firm. Make little feathery strokes with it, to fill in brows subtly and naturally. Then use the attached brush to brush brows up. Again with the brush, smooth your upwardly brushed brows across from the inner to outer corner, making sure to lay down any of those brushed-up hairs. That way, brows will look lifted and polished."
Also great for pencil dunces is Clinique's Brow Sculpting Duo, a wonderfully easy-to-use powder and wax combination to tame the angriest brow. And finally, my favourite, Brow Zings, the shaping kit by Benefit, which has a soft pigmented wax (in redhead, blond, brunette and dark brown) and a setting wax, as well as a tiny pair of tweezers, hard angle brush and blending brush. A shoddy workman looking to blame their tools should look elsewhere.