My quest for a strong eyebrow game dates back…way back. I've always maintained that a bushy, untamed brow is in, even when my friends were waxing everything but a single file arch of hairs. Was I lazy or a beauty visionary? Tough to say.
Mega Clear Mascara, $3, wetnwildbeauty.com.
In order to tame my bushy brows during my first foray into makeup, my go-to product was a Wet 'n Wild clear mascara (clarification: not brow mascara, regular clear mascara). A quick application used to quite literally glue my brows in place with the slightest glossy sheen. This product served its purpose for at least six years until I graduated high school.
"Nothing was repeatable. Nothing was easy."
Entering college, my brows took more of a backseat because I was too busy playing with mascara (for my lashes this time, though!) and blush. My brows were finally free from the glue that held them together all those years prior, but freedom came with a cost. The cost meant looking at pictures of when I thought I was dolled up and wondering why my brows occasionally looked like they were best described as having an aesthetic most attributed to mad scientists. Obviously, my brows couldn't hold their own and I needed to find a compromise between frozen in place and growing wild.
During post-college life in Manhattan, my makeup routine became slightly more sophisticated, especially around age 25 when I started working in the beauty industry. Now there was absolutely no way to avoid brow attention, because a new product crossed my desk at least once per week. Not to mention every time I worked with a makeup artist, he or she told me how much "potential" my eyebrows had, if only I just took the time to show them some love. That's when I decided I was ready to commit to better brows. And so the search for the right product began.
I'll spare you the details, trials, and tribulations, but I can confirm that I tried everything from pencils and crayons to palettes and mascara-wand applicators—from numerous brands ranging from mass to prestige. Occasionally, I would work on my brows long enough for them to have a moment, leaving me with hope that I might have found the one. The next day, in the rush of the morning grind, that cool-brow moment had no chance of happening. Nothing was repeatable. Nothing was easy.
"Was I lazy or a beauty visionary? Tough to say."
I vividly remember my experience with the famous Urban Decay Brow Box, after I'd heard enough talk about it on the internet. I watched numerous YouTube videos, studying the application and still the results were scary to say the least. As much as I loved the idea of falling in love with the Brow Box, and being talented enough to be able to say I used it, I decided to leave brow artistry to the professionals. I needed something simple and effective. And after five years of experimentation, my open arms policy regarding products was becoming less appealing.
Brow Box, $9, urbandecay.com.
Not every search for love in New York City ends like a fairy tale, but luckily in the case of my journey, it did. I was recently introduced to the brand Trèstique by a friend. I ordered a few products off the brand's website and on the advice of another makeup-artist friend, I was reminded that my brows needed attention (OK I get it!) so I threw the Define, Sculpt, and Set brow pencil into my e-cart. Would this prompt another failed attempt at the perfect arch? Probably, but at least I thought I could give it a try.
Define, Sculpt, and Set Brow Pencil, $25, trestique.com.
Then, I proved myself wrong. For the first time, I didn't do any googling or YouTube watching. I just tore into the package and went to work. I added a few swipes of the angled pencil to define the shape and then applied the tinted gel to hold the brow in place. I was astounded at how they turned out: strong, tame, and surprisingly natural-looking, which is what I'd been wanting all these years!
I'm now approaching my six month-anniversary with the Trèstique wonder and I've been able to create the same natural sculpt with every use. So, if you too are looking for an easy and fun way to keep your brows on point, may I just say that this multipurpose pencil might just be the best brow product. Ever.