15 November 2011

A Tale Of Two Brows (and my Mum)

Growing up there were (and to be honest, still are, even though I do believe myself to be fully grown) so many things my Mum told me not to do.  Too many to list here, but these are the ones that stand out most clearly.

1.      Don’t smoke
2.      Don’t get horribly drunk – it’s very unbecoming
3.      Don’t bite my nails
4.      Don’t leave sweet wrappers stuffed down the side of the sofas
5.     Don’t marry a footballer (or anyone who’s surname wasn’t Rothschild, Windsor or Getty)
6.      Don’t pluck your eyebrows

Most of the time, I did my very best eye roll and sigh and sloped out of the room to be ultra cool and moody elsewhere, but some of the advice has stuck (apart from number 2, but sometimes it’s fun to get so steamingly inebriated you go to bed hugging the remote control thinking it’s your phone and then wake up to find a shoe, an eyelash and your dignity in the bathtub the next morning).   

The one that I really wish I’d listened to, though, was number 6.  My Mum plucked her own eyebrows well into submission in her teens and they just never grew back* so she pleaded with me, her bushy-browed, perma-frowned elder daughter, to not make the same mistake.  Alas, as is a teenage girl’s want, I tweezed them to within an inch of their life for years, because I knew better, and now I am paying the price with, although a good basic shape, sparse brows that require a little attention before I leave the house in order to give my face some life and definition.

Normally I like to use a powder and an angled brush, but having run out of whatever it was I used to use, the name actually completely escapes me (should really cut down on number 2), I purchased the Mac Impeccable Brow Pencil in Taupe a few months ago and have been using it daily ever since.  The colour, I like very much.  I seek out cool-toned browns, as despite having a lot of red in my hair, I don’t like red-browns on my eyebrows.  I use a clear brow gel (No 7 at the moment) to shape and set my brows and then, once that’s dry, I use the pencil to fill in the gaps.
 The Mac pencil is decent in terms of pigmentation but I find I have to use it quite heavily to get the colour to show up to the level I want it to.  Admittedly I like my brows dark and defined, so if you don’t want that, this pencil would be ideal, but I just find it’s not quite pigmented enough for my liking.  As you can see from the swatch (which was several passes over the back of my hand) it’s light and also the pencil itself is quite hard and a little waxy; because I use it a lot and quite heavily, it always pulls away a few hairs, which isn’t exactly helping the sparse-ness of the situation.
At £11.50 I think it’s a good pencil, and it does last a long time (I’ve sharpened mine several times since I got it and I still have well over half of it left) but I think I’ll be returning to a powder/brush combo when I’m done.  After all, my Mum told me to look after my eyebrows and we all know Mum’s do know best.

*Is my Mum a Barbie doll?


  1. I never do anything with my eyebrow apart from tweeze the strays. I have a fairly good shape but this pencil makes a huge difference! I'll try it out! x

  2. I've got thyroid disease and it means the outer thirds of my eyebrows don't grow, so I use a Body Shop eyebrow powder. It's damn good, lasts ages and comes in different shades.

  3. Don't get me started on brows - having a mother and a sister with near perfect brows the gene has passed me by and I have every brow product known to man (slight exaggeration there). I think that your brows have a great arch to them, and they look very similar in shape - you know that old adage about eyebrows are like sisters not twins, well mine are like second cousins once removed. Have not had much success with MAC brow pencils but this one looks a good cool colour. Thanks for this.