Do you remember a while back when I stepped out of my NYX micro pencil safety zone and tried something new?? Well, as expected, it dried out pretty fast, but now my eyes were open to exploring all* the new stuff that has been hitting the shelves in the name of giving you some serious brow:
First, a little about my brows. At this stage in my life, I’m pretty lucky to still have some fullness, thanks to never being able to tweeze them myself- I’d try, then eventually my face would start looking like a Picasso, you know?? So I’ve always left it to the professionals (I’m a fan of threading). That being said, I am still recovering from a wonky wax a few years ago that robbed me of some of the inner part of my left brow. (Pro tip: if you’re getting a pedicure and the tech takes you into a shady back room and also takes a phone call while waxing you, RUN.) I also have a few hairs that have, um, lost pigment. Because I am old. So my main concerns are a) filling in the gaps and holes and B) tinting the greys. I am not personally into the “Instagram Brow”- it is gorgeous on some people but crazy looking on me- and I’m not quite brave/baller enough to get microbladed yet, so to the drugstore we go!
High end makeup brands have been edging into the brow game for a while now- think Anastasia Beverly Hills and Benefit- but the drugstore has really been stepping up the game lately. Over the course of a few months, I’ve tried a few hits, a few misses, and maybe found one or two new holy grails. Ready? Let’s go!
Revlon ColorStay Brow Mousse $8.49
A mousse? For your eyebrows?? Intriguing! This product is unique in that it’s kind of halfway between a brow tint and a brow gel- the color really grabs onto the hairs, but doesn’t do a lot in the way of management or filling in the gaps. When it works, I actually really like this one for a natural, no-makeup look. The bummer is the applicator- there are only 2 little holes on each side of the spoolie that you click the product through. After a few uses, these holes get blocked with dried product and it becomes a mess. So… maybe if you’re really good about cleaning it after every use it would be great? Ain’t nobody got time for that, though, so NEXT…
If taming your brows is your jam, then this might be a good one to pick up! It does a good job keeping your brows in place while giving them a nice tint. Again, it doesn’t fill in gaps, but it goes on quickly and doesn’t smudge or run. I vote that it’s a pretty close dupe for Glossier’s Boy Brow for half the price (but twice the wand… use a light hand!). I tend to reach for this one if I’m going a bit bigger with my makeup look- it’s not a heavy product, per se, but it does look a little more “done” than the mousse- used in tandem with a pencil or powder to give it more of a finished, polished, fancy feel. Worth having in your kit!
Maybelline Tattoo Brow Waterproof Eyebrow Gel $12.99
Ok- now we’re getting serious. This product claims to create fuller, thicker brows that last for up to 2 days. Mmmmhmmmm. Obviously my lazy self is into this. But holy cats- this product needs a REALLY light hand. The instructions even say to start in the middle of your brow and work out, because it is supes gloppy. It does, in fact, tint and fill in. The applicator, however, is pretty big, so for more precision I’ve found using an angled brush both works better and gives me less anxiety about having cartoon brows. My mom has recently started using this one, too, and also prefers using a brush to apply, then following up with a spoolie after it’s dried down a bit to make it look less plastered down. The overall effect is nice, and I like this one for super dressy times, but both my mom and I will tell you that if you are a fan of, say, washing your face, this will NOT last you even one extra day.
Flower Beauty Brow Vixen Tattoo Effect Stain $9.99
I really thought this was it- the perfect thing. It’s basically a marker! For your face! The color was perfect, it tinted my brows and filled in the gaps quickly and effortlessly, and didn’t budge when I rubbed it. I was in love…. for a few hours….
I caught my reflection in a mirror at work and gasped. My brows had a legit orange halo around them, as if the color had bled out into my skin. Luckily I was able to duck into the bathroom and scrub it off. YIKES. HARD PASS. Also: tears.
Wet n’ Wild Ultimate Brow Retractable Pencil $2.99
You guys, THIS. This has quickly become my daily go-to pencil! It has a wide, wedgey tip that makes filling in your brows super quick (like, SHOOP SHOOP DONE!!), but you can still “draw” hairs with the pointy edge. It is so fast and easy, the shade is perfect, and held up great poolside in Mexico. A client- who takes her brows seriously and is loyal to ABH pomade- recently complimented my brows, and this was at the end of my workday! For under three bucks, you really can’t pass this guy up. My only challenge was finding the right shade- for some reason, Target and Walgreens don’t carry the darkest brown shade, but CVS did. ??? GO GET THIS ONE and keep one in your bag and one in your bathroom and one in your car and that’s still less than $10.
Kat Von D Brow Struck Dimension Powder $20.00
So this isn’t a drugstore find, obvs, but it just so happened that the most recent Sephora VIB sale coincided with the launch of Kat Von D’s new brow line, so obviously I had to go try it out. I was put off at first glance- the powder is glittery! I don’t want glitter brows! But I do trust KVD so I pushed forward and borrowed a brush from a Sephora employee to test it out. Here’s the thing- the “glitter” isn’t really glitter, but adds some sheen and dimension (duh, it’s in the name) to the application, which makes it look more natural than a flat powder. It’s really cool, actually! Since it was brand new to the store, a few Sephora employees came over to check it out on me, and we all agreed that it was way better than we expected. I’ve been reaching for it on days where I have an extra minute and dig it for a little more of a polished natural look; on top of a pencil, it adds some nice richness and depth. Plus, the packaging is gooooorgeous. Good job, KVD!
I know what you’re thinking: “Jess, why didn’t you include pictures of your face with these brows on??” Well, I tried, but I just wasn’t able to capture the differences that well with my dumb phone.
Yep, I spent all my own money on this, but usually with some kind of deal because I’m hella saavy. JK I impulse purchased half of this. Anyway, what are your brows doing? Do you tweeze, wax, thread, or just have naturally amazing brows? What are your brow challenges? Will you ever microblade?? Tell us in the comments!
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