Don’t be embarrassed— there comes a time in every guy’s life when he needs “The Talk”. For any first-timer, the topic of eyebrow grooming can feel a little intimidating. And if you’ve been avoiding the issue, you’ve probably learned that there’s no amount of gel or saliva that can glue those gorillas in place. So, welcome to your crash course in Grooming Ed. We’ll review the rules and tools needed to achieve your best-looking eyebrows. Because let’s be honest: tangly, messy brows flatter no man— unless maybe you’re Jason Momoa.
As for the other 99.9% of gents who don’t resemble a hybrid of Thor and a barbarian, basic grooming skills matter. Let’s start with rule one: guys should trim their brows. As for the rest, take notes, lads.
Men’s eyebrows have invisible boundaries. We’re referring to the natural outline formed by the main bulk of your brow.
Outside this shape, you’ve got little hairs that disrupt your brow contour. To tidy up the mess, the idea is to remove the outliers, while leaving the general shape untouched.
This approach will keep your eyebrows neat and masculine.
Be careful about removing too much hair. If you overdo it, you might resemble a 90’s guido-- not exactly a natural look. Instead,you should only remove the excess hairs, skimming off the weight from your brows. The result should appear fresh, but in an effortless sort of way-- a “humbly handsome” type of feel.
Tools of the trade
Some eyebrows demand serious attention, while others just need a quick tune-up. But no matter how badly your brows need attention, every gent should begin at the same starting point: trimming. Using eyebrow scissors, you can tidy around your natural brow shape before deciding whether to tweeze or wax.
Eyebrow scissors let you clean up your eyebrows without doing anything dramatic. Sometimes, all it takes is some trimming. Once you remove the longer hairs, your brows will appear lighter and more groomed.
There’s a proper art to brow trimming. It’s all about taking a less-is-more approach. Otherwise, if you get too scissor-happy, you’ll have butchered brows with awkward sparse areas.
To know how much to cut, there’s an easy trick: Use your finger to push the long hairs upward above the main bulk of your brow to expose stray hairs. These are the ones that should be cut. Carefully trim away the tips of these hairs, about 1-2mm, or 3mm if they’re quite long. Once trimmed, brush the hairs back down into place, leaving a neater overall brow.
Whether you’ve got a unibrow or just a few stragglers, you’ll need tweezers. But be cautious not to over-tweeze. You should only remove hairs that sprout outside the “No Pluck Zone”. These are the stray hairs that scatter around the main shape of your eyebrow.
To establish the boundaries of your eyebrow, you can measure it against your other facial features. The start of the brow should begin directly above your tear duct and arch slightly at the outer part of your iris. The tail of your brow needs to end diagonally from your outer nostril (about 45 degrees). These measurements ensure the most flattering shape for your brow, so try to visually map out these areas before tweezing.
Keep in mind, you don’t need to bulldoze through every single stray hair. Focus on the random thick ones, while leaving the finer hairs alone. These baby hairs are light in color and not dense enough to be noticeable (except if you’re staring at them at a micro-close level). There’s no reason to pluck these little guys or else darker hairs will grow in their place.
Invest in a good set of tweezers, making the job way easier and quicker. Since it’s all about the gripping action, look for tweezers that firmly hold onto hairs without slipping off. They should also have a sharp, slanted tip, which gives you more control and accuracy over your plucking action.
Wax on, wax off
Got the eyebrows of Chewbacca? You’ll need to wax. Eyebrow waxing is faster than tweezing and far less painful when there's a lot of collateral to bulldoze through. Plus, you get more definition from waxing because it achieves smoother lines.
It’s not recommended to wax your own brows unless you’re experienced in grooming. To be safe (rather than botched and humiliated), go to a professional who’s qualified and trained to work with men’s eyebrows. Before lying down on the salon bed, be sure to explain what you want-- just like how you’d talk to your barber before a haircut. You can even bring a picture to show your ideal eyebrow style.
Never shave them
Whatever you do, never (ever!) shave your eyebrows. Sure, it seems like an obvious warning, but don’t pretend like the fourteen-year-old you never razored through your unibrow in a desperate, last-minute attempt to look less nerdy.
Hopefully, that chapter is closed. And in case it’s not, let’s review why you shouldn’t shave your eyebrows. First off, the razor isn’t precise. You might think you’re staying within the borders, but the blade can be deceiving; it’s too large to cover such tiny areas, making it easy to accidentally slice off a larger chunk of brow. The other problem with shaving your eyebrows is razor burn. Without a pre-shave cream or oil, the blade’s tugging action can cause chaffing, bumps and redness.
If you’re not a DIY kind-of-guy but also refuse to enter a beauty salon, you can ask your barber to groom your eyebrows. Although they’re not usually trained for full-on brow shaping, most of them can, at least, trim the excess hairs. Yet, if that’s not an option, you can always trust in the handiwork of your girlfriend (hopefully). Or in desperate times, you can take desperate measures: ask mommy dearest-- and maybe get some yummy tupperware meals while you’re at it.
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