Plucking perfect eyebrows to achieve that flawless, face-framing arch can be a tedious (and painful!) process. But since fuller, thicker brows are in style, you can (and should) spend much less time with the tweezers. Try these 10 pro beauty tips to score perfect eyebrow arches at home. (And check out the S Beauty Awards to find the best beauty products to look gorgeous from head to toe.
1. Choose the Right Tweezers
"Opt for a sharp, slanted style," says Kristie Streicher, a celebrity brow expert at the Warren Tricomi Salon in NYC and L.A. "Unlike pointy versions, they grab tiny strays quickly and won't pinch your skin along with the hairs." One to try: Revlon Slant Tip Ultimate Tweezer ($10; walgreens.com).
2. Tweeze After Your Shower
Warm water opens the follicles and softens hairs, helping them slip out more easily.
3. Ease the Plucking Pain
If plucking is too painful or it's right before your period (when skin is most sensitive), dab on a numbing gel like Orajel-Baby Teething Pain Medicine before you tweeze ($5; drugstore.com).
4. Ditch Your Magnifying Mirror
This tool can make it look like there's more hair to remove than there really is, says Streicher, which can lead to overplucking. Instead, use a regular mirror in a well-lit room—if you can't see stray hairs under these conditions, neither can anyone else. "After every few tweezes, take a couple of steps back to see the bigger picture," she says.
5. Know Your Arch Limits Hold a pencil for guidance, advises Streicher. "Your brows should begin directly above your tear duct, peak in line with the outer side of your iris, and end at a point that falls 45 degrees from the outer corner of your eye." Be sure not to arch your brows too high or they'll look unnatural.
6. Create Your Shape
Once you've determined how your brows should curve, outline your ideal arch using a soft, creamy brow pencil, such as Darac Brow Trio ($24; qvc.com). Then remove only the hairs that fall above or below your self-made stencil.
7. Reduce Redness
Immediately after tweezing, gently pat on an over-the-counter cortisone cream like Cortizone-10 Hydratensive Healing Lotion ($20 for 2; amazon.com) to minimize any resulting inflammation.
8. Brush Up
Style your arches with a brow brush or a clear, brow-gel wand, coaxing hairs upward at the start of your arch and brushing the rest toward the end of your eye. Try Sonia Kashuk Deluxe Lash and Brow Groomer ($8; target.com).
9. Fill in the Blanks
Color in sparse spots with a pencil like L'Oréal Paris Brow Stylist Professional ($10; shop.wiki.com) or a powder. Brunettes should opt for a shade or two lighter than their hair color. Lighter blondes can go for golden shades, while darker blondes call for a taupe-y tone. Redhead? Reach for a warm, brown hue.
10. Grow Them In
Overplucked? Refrain from tweezing for at least three weeks so you can see the natural growth pattern and shape. If your brows need a little extra encouragement, brush on a growth serum like RevitaBrow Eyebrow Conditioner ($110 for a 3-month supply; revitalash.com) every night.
Bonus Eyebrow Shaping Tip: Get the Tint
While pencils and powders are great for enhancing your arches day to day, consider brow tinting for a more permanent solution. "It saves time in the morning, since you don't have to worry about adding definition with the right pencil or powder daily," says Streicher. "You can just wake up and go." But don't try this at home! The safe way to color your arches, says Streicher, is with the help of a pro brow guru or colorist, who will likely use a semi permanent vegetable dye. Results last about three weeks; expect to pay $15 to $50.