Brows are Getting Stronger and Fuller and Darker

Have you grown out yours yet?

Pop quiz! What's the most important feature on your face?

If you said eyebrows, then we can be BFFs. Because as you know, I go on about them all the time—such as in my last post about ditching threading and waxing for tweezing-only. (Trust me, you should do the same!)

And now I feel even more validated about my quest to eradicate the crime of skinny tadpoles, because New York designers are making a SERIOUS point about the strong, thick, full brow. Like Marc Jacobs. Now, before you really examine these pics just remember that this is runway, and therefore lots more exaggerated than what we're meant to do in real life:

Whoa there. That's a lot of eyebrow, right? Models tend to have good, thick brows to begin with, but the makeup artist filled these in with NARS eyeshadows in Bali and Bengali to make them even darker.

And we can blame the whole thing on this model, Ruby Jean Wilson:

She's Marc's muse this season, and it's her Edie Sedgwick quality (another muse with thick, dark brows) that he found inspiring. So all the girls got made up with her "look."

Frankly, I could do without the pale, powdery texture on the skin, and I won't be styling my hair in these comb-over ponytails... but like I said, the brows are commanding my attention. Even if I wouldn't go that dark or harsh in real life.

But before we get to the more wearable runway brows, I've got to show you what's going on at Thakoon. Brows were exaggerated there too, but not in a way that I could ever recommend:

She looks kind of like a painting (which I think, if I correctly recall the makeup re-cap, was the point).

But please don't try this at home. (And beauty gods, please don't let this become an actual trend.)

Okay. Now that you've seen the boundary-pushing ones, let's take a look at some examples that you could actually wear without attracting the wrong kind of attention.

First up, Jason Wu's homage to Helmut Newton:

So, SO good.

I love that the hair hasn't been waxed or threaded off the top of her arches, so it looks waaay more natural (THIS is why I'm an advocate of tweezing now). Filled in, there's the strength of the Marc Jacobs look, but because it matches the model's hair colour, it don't look fake. Or crazy.

Here's the same look in blonde:

I'm glad they went darker, but not TOO dark. It totally balances out the red lip for a strong yet feminine look. (Although I like the first model's glossy lip and dewier skin better.)

Another thing that I want to point out is that besides the whole movement towards fullness and darkness in the brow area, there is a trend towards arches becoming STRAIGHTER. Not so angled. I got an inkling of this from a brow expert I interviewed the other day, and now I'm totally seeing it in these shots.

Besides Jason Wu, more evidence here at Timo Weiland:

Do you like? I totally support this, because overly arched brows are sort of aging and witchy-looking.

And they also tend to be common on women who've had too much Botox from wonky doctors who think they can "lift" the eye area by injecting it there. No no no. See what's happened to poor Kylie Minogue?

It's a beauty tragedy.

So yes, steer clear of the Botox there (just get it in between the eyebrows, 'kay?) and when you visit your brow lady, let her know that you're after full, natural AND straight.

If you're in Toronto, I totally recommend Mary Dang at Eye Love ( She's a makeup artist and she gets it! I just discovered her talents for this magazine article I was writing, and I'm definitely going back.

Now for the last pic, which I think is the most wearable of all. This is at Alexander Wang:

The brows ARE the makeup, see? This really is a testament that if your brows are good, they frame your entire face and you don't actually need that much more (unless you want to—I've never been a fan of these super-pale lips).

As for filling them in, you might be inclined to go darker, but when I asked Mary about this, she advised filling them in with a pencil or powder one to two shades LIGHTER than the hair colour. Then, comb them in the direction of hair growth so that they look groomed and more in place.

And this brings me to a new Make Up For Ever product that's coming out at the end of this month:

Apparently it does both of those things—give your brows colour while also setting them so they stay in place—in a waterproof formula that you apply with a brush. My sample is enroute, so stay tuned! It's going to be available in seven shades, which is amazing because brow prodz usually just come in two or three.

Are you feeling the strong brow trend?

Which one of these runway looks could you do in real life?

Do you fill in your brows? What do you use?

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