Big, bushy eyebrows walk a fine line between a blessing and a curse. They’ve got a naturally strong shape, can make the face look years younger and are currently trending thanks to the likes of Cara Delevingne, Lily Collins and Camilla Belle. On the other hand, keeping them in check is about as simple as giving the Amazon a quick tidy up.
Despite this, brows are the most important feature of the face, and if you want your client to walk away ecstatic with the results, you need to perfect the technique for waxing big brows.
But only an elite handful know the secret formula to brow wow – the act of transforming even the most unruly of arches into a beautifully groomed work of art. Thankfully though, with a few expert hacks, it is possible to cheat your way to brow prowess. Here’s how…
Step 1. Visualise
“Start by analysing the brows and their shape, to work out what the best for the person would be, considering the client’s preferences as well,” says brow expert and founder of Lycon Cosmetics, Lydia Jordane.
“I find the best way to work out the brow shape and where to remove hair from is to align a pencil from the inner corner of the eye to the side of the nose. Any hair growth between the eyebrows from this point inward should be removed.”
Step 2. Map it out
Arch placement can mean the difference between looking like Kiera Knightley or Courtney Cox – post facelifts. Thankfully though, there’s an easy trick to ensure you cinch it, every time.
“Place a pencil diagonally from the corner of the nose, through the centre of the iris. Where the pencil crosses the brow is where the brow arch or highest point of the brow should be,” says Jordane.
“You can also place the pencil from the corner of the nose on a line that passes the outer corner of the eye to determine the minimum length of the outward brow point.”
Step 3. Trim
Often thick eyebrows haven’t been shaped in a long time, with excess hair growing above and outside of the region where it should be. This will likely require some extra shaping.
Comb the hair upwards and trim the excess, which makes the eyebrow more manageable and easy to wax. If you’re more experienced, this step can be moved to after the waxing process. Use a spoolie wand to brush strands upwards.
Step 4. Prep it
For the perfect eyebrow waxing sesh, prepping the skin before applying wax is key to a neat, clean finish.
“Use a suitable cleanser to remove oils, makeup and any surface bacteria. Then always apply a very small amount of pre-waxing oil on the area to be waxed, before hot wax application,” advises Jordane.
“Only a small amount of pre-waxing oil is required. I like to put a couple of drops on the back of my hand and apply the oil from there, which controls the quantity of oil being applied and it is easily and quickly accessible for reapplication during the service. If there is too much oil on the skin, the wax will not grab the hair effectively, but not enough oil and the client’s skin could be affected.”
Step 5. Just go with it
The direction of the hair growth, that is.
“When waxing brows, I recommend that the first hot wax application should always be applied in the direction of the hair growth. This helps to reduce the possibility of catching any longer hairs that shouldn’t be removed with the wax,” recommends Jordane.
“Remember to always support the skin before removing the wax and to remove hot wax against the hair growth, as this is the best way to protect the skin and remove more hair each time.”
Step 6. Reapply
If you want to really step up your brow shaping game, always apply a second wax to get rid of any fluffy hairs that can ruin an otherwise clean finish.
“After two initial applications of hot wax in the direction of the hair growth, you can then apply more hot wax against the hair growth, so you can lift and pick up any stubborn or fluffy hairs left behind. Once waxing is complete, check the end result. You may need to trim some hairs, even tweeze some odd hairs to create a perfect brow shape and balance,” says Jordane.
Step 7. Double check
Now that you’ve finished your handiwork, don’t let the client leave before checking the results are perfect, says Jordane.
“I find at the very end, the best way to check the shape and look of the eyebrows is to have the client sit straight up and for me to face them to check the eyebrows. This is really important as the eyebrows look very different when the client sits up, compared to when the client is lying down.”
Step 8. Perfect it
“Once you are satisfied that you have created the perfect brow, apply your favourite after-waxing care product and show your client the end result.
“And remember that practice makes perfect,” emphasises Jordane.
“I like to have everyone draw eyebrows on the back of their hand and use this as a way to practice their hot wax application a few times, before working directly on a client.”