Try This Tip for Bangin’ Brows

Published in: Makeup Tips/How To

Where my brows at?!

“It’s complicated.”

My relationship with my brows. It’s complicated. I’ve been growing them out for what seems like millennia (but has only been about a year).


They’re just so damned moody! Moody little brows.

Weeks will pass without so much as a peep out of them — no dramatic diva outbursts whatsoever. I’ll go about my days filling them in with eyeshadow or a brow pencil and be done in the blink of a fuzzy caterpillar’s eye.


They turn against me and become totally uncooperative.

It’s weird…and it usually happens overnight, like the follicles all had a meeting while I slept and voted to revolt.

All of a sudden, they all have their own little ideas and refuse to lay down correctly, and I start feeling like I have to use more product than usual to get them to behave. Consequently, I end up unintentionally crossing that invisible line that separates bold brows from Groucho Marx.

Told ya. Complicated.

Seriously, though, if your brows consistently behave, cherish it. You’re lucky.

Mine have been going through one of their spells… The outer tail areas (the sides closer to my ears) have been particularly ill-tempered lately, and I just haven’t been able to get them to look as crisp or defined as I like with my usual slate of products, so I’ve been brainstorming possible solutions.

And I think I found one…

MAC Brun Eye Shadow (left) and Dipdown Fluidline (right)

MAC Brun Eye Shadow (left) and Dipdown Fluidline (right)

Instead of filling in each entire brow with a single product, I’ve been using a combination of two — a powder eyeshadow and a matte gel liner.

First, I fill in the inside half of both brows with a dark brown eyeshadow (usually MAC Brun) using an angled brush.

Applying MAC Brun to the inner portion of my brows with an angled brush

Then, I quickly clean my angled brush by wiping it across a paper towel, and use it to fill in the outer half with a matte gel liner. I’ve been using MAC Fluidline in Dipdown for this, a dark brown with a flat matte finish.

Filling the outer tail with MAC Dipdown Fluidline

The result? Brows that start softly defined closer to my nose but get progressively darker and crisper and more defined as they move out toward my ears. Natural, yet bold, and not Groucho Marx, LOL!

Naturally bold brows, yo!

If you don’t happen to have a gel liner on hand, any kind of long-wearing cream or gel brow filler should work fine. Alternately, you could replace the eyeshadow in this equation for a brow pencil, if that’s more your style.

Try it sometime! Even if you don’t experience Broadway-caliber brow drama (lucky!), it might be fun to change up your brow routine.

That moment when you have central heating and hot water again…



No more washing zombie apocalypse-style, WOO-HOO! Yes, my gas line is operational again, and I will definitely not miss freezing my butt off tomorrow morning.

I have to say, though, that living without hot running water and central heating has given me a new appreciation for both of those things, as well as an appreciation for flannel sheets.

My mom-in-law gave us of some Martha Stewart Flannel Sheets for Christmas, and they’ve been wonderful this past week. They’re super soft, warm and, wouldn’t ya know it? — on sale now at, if you’re interested.

Your (finally warm again) friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 20 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Alison M says:

    I’ve used this trick also! My current favorite “curse you brows, you won’t win!” combo is in the form of powder fill and colored gel to set. NARS Bali and Anastasia Espresso to be exact. The gel defines the hairs themselves while the powder creates more of a shadow/fill effect.
    Alison M recently posted … Inspired by New York Fashion Week for Autumn/Winter 2014

  2. MonicaP says:

    Oh, this is a good idea! I have dipdown (er, somewhere) and I’m sure I have a nice brown shadow as well.

    Will have to give this a try.

    MonicaP recently posted … Moonshadow Baked Palette – In The Nude

  3. Cindy says:

    It’s the simple things in life that matter…heat & hot water I always say 🙂 On another note, I recently heard that MAC’s Braun is THE color to get for eyebrows from another big time blogger. I love finding products that are universally flattering.

  4. Gowthami says:

    Thanks for sharing this tip! I’ll try out soon…

    Gowthami recently posted … L’Oréal Paris Presents 6 Oil Nourish

  5. Denise S says:

    I use Anastasia brow gel and fill in with the Benefit’s brow zing dark brown powder.Your technique looks great and since I I own Dipdown I’m trying this!

  6. Steph says:

    So glad your heat is working and you are “roasty toasty” again. Even happier to hear the hot water is back. Years before I was married the electric would always shut off at my folks and bc they have a well you were unable to use any water. No faucet , no flushing toilets and no showers. My grandma who lived across town saved our butts many times by graciously extending the use of her bathroom, followed by a hearty “supper” ( because she just couldn’t resist feeding you ).

  7. hanna says:

    I love your tip.
    hanna recently posted … Prom Outfit Style on a Budget

  8. Natalie says:

    This is super nifty! I love it, and I’m going to have to try this one out.

    On a side note, what eyeshadows are you wearing here!? You looks gorgeous!!
    Natalie recently posted … NARS Amour Blush is My One and Only

  9. Camille says:

    No way! You have brows like mine! I have always had light brows (thanks, dad!), and I’ve been keen on getting them a little more defined these days. (brow wax/shape and tint next week!)

    I wanted to try Anastasia’s Dip Brow Pomade, but the Ulta I went to didn’t have Ebony. One of the associates suggested the Too Faced Bulletproof Brows. I gave it a (skeptical) go since I had my heart set on Anastasia, but I actually like it! I like that it adds some colour, but not too much. I don’t think I could get used to seeing bolder brows on my face. The Man did notice the difference, though. 🙂

    I tried Anastasia’s Pomade in the store. I didn’t like the consistency, but I know that would probably be something to practice. I might give it a try, if I’m feeling bold, but for now, Too Faced has me sold.

    I’ve been using this lash accelerator serum from Rimmel, since my brow wax suggested I grow out my brows for 2 weeks before my appointment. (the stray eyebrow hairs are driving me crazy, by the way!) I can’t say it’s doing too much for my brows (maybe. duno), but I did notice the bald spots in my lash line are filling out slowly. I still use it on my brows. I hope the Benefit brow girl doesn’t make my sparse caterpillars disappear! 🙂

    Thanks for the tip, Karen! I have been looking into finding a shadow to use as brow filler. 😉

  10. Sylirael says:

    I am filing this in the ‘very useful to know!’ section of my brain folder marked ‘must try to something with brows someday’ 😀

    Seriously, if I ever manage to actually commit to trying something with my brows, your wisdom shall aid me!
    Sylirael recently posted … Rainbow Milk? Etude House Play Nail Polish in #113

  11. Justina says:

    This was such a great post! I was wondering, could you recommend a lipgloss for me? I’m looking for something with a touch of shimmer, and pretty natural looking but with a little bit of color. Something I could throw in my pocket and use on a day to day basis without having to wear lipstick underneath. I’m not very familiar with MAC’s line but I thought they might have a good one. Every time I go in there they’re really busy and they don’t always have time to sit down with me so maybe you can come up with something. I have light skin too! Thanks 🙂

  12. Sunny says:

    Oh hey, I’ve never thought about filling my brows in with a gel liner!!! What a genius idea! Got to give this a go when I find the right shade!
    Sunny recently posted … Givenchy Euphoric Pink Le Prismissime

  13. Emae says:

    Oooooh, great tip, Karen! 🙂 I should try this out! I only use one product when filling in my brows, lol

  14. meganlisa says:

    Love this tutorial! I need the help. Thanks
    meganlisa recently posted … NARS Matte Multiple Review Altai and Siam

  15. Amanda says:

    I had a mishap with brow tinting a couple weeks ago. My brows had filled out quite nicely, and I had been getting them tinted every four weeks because they’re so light (I’m naturally platinum blonde). The tinting has been too harsh and left me with a bald spot and some (very minor, but noticeable to me) hair loss around the arch and outer third. NEVER AGAIN! I’ll stick to my MAC Omega and Eye Brows pencil in Lingering.

  16. Fancie says:

    This is also how I fill in my brows! I suffer from bald brows too lol. Your brows make mine look like they’ve been through rounds of chemo though lmao. I hate that my brows are naturally sparse! I like using pencils but I’ve switched to gel and I think I like if better for bald brows. Still testing though!
    Fancie recently posted … Maybelline Truffle Tease Color Sensational Lipstick Review

  17. Danielle says:

    Great tips – your brows look amazing! I have been getting back into tinted brow gel and I use that after I fill them in with a pencil to highlight the hairs more. I already have fairly full brows, but they need a bit of help and are patchy in certain areas.
    Danielle recently posted … Ipsy February ’14 | First Impressions

  18. Trude says:

    They look great! All that patience has paid off! I use a combo similar to yours (which has become super important this week, the closer I get to my regular brow tint & wax appointment), where I apply taupey eyeshadow with an angled brush, but I prefer Maybelline’s Define-A-Brow pencil to really define the edges and tails. It has a nice fine point and I never have to sharpen it. 🙂 Then I finish with a light swipe of clear mascara to wrangle them.

  19. Piu says:

    Apply castor oil on brows to thicken or grow them

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