Let’s face it: nobody likes a monobrow. They’re distracting, they’re unsightly, and they don’t help you make a positive impression on the people around you. Style experts refer to your eyebrows as the most important part of your face – the anchor, if you will. It’s often what draws the most attention, and whether you realize it or not, people’s eyes are drawn to your eyebrow when you’re face to face. If you are a guy and you care in the least about your appearance, then it’s important to make sure those eyebrows are under control!
When it comes to eyebrow grooming, guys have it far easier than women. While women have to decide what “shape” to choose – round, angled, arched, straight, natural etc. – guys simply need to define the shape they already have. Women’s eyebrow grooming may involve removing a portion of the eyebrow, while guys simply need to “clean up” the areas around their eyebrows’ natural curve, without removing too much. Maintaining your eyebrows’ natural shape is simple, easy and – believe it or not – relatively painless.
Waxing vs. Shaving vs. Plucking
The first rule of eyebrow grooming is to never, ever, under any circumstances shave your eyebrows. How long does it take for stubble to grow on your chin after you’ve shaved? One day? Two? Now imagine that stubble appearing between your eyebrows just as often. Eyebrow stubble will draw far more attention than a natural monobrow, and not in a good way. The shape of your eyebrows is very delicate, and shaving them accurately would simply be too risky – and also unnecessary. Shaving is out.
Waxing and plucking are both simple, effective methods for eyebrow grooming, but they have very different purposes. Before going out and buying a tub of microwaveable hair removal wax, consider exactly how much hair removal your eyebrows will need. If they’re simply a tad messy, with no monobrow or excessive bushiness, chances are that some well-placed plucking will do the trick. If your eyebrows look like a big bushy caterpillar, it’s probably best to pull out the big guns and go for the wax.
Even if you do choose to wax, it’s still a good idea to get a good pair of tweezers. Even the best eyebrow waxing requires a little post-wax cleanup.
Shaping Your Eyebrows
If you’re a guy, shaping your eyebrows is quite simple: just follow the natural shape of your eyebrows. Look at the thickest part of your eyebrow, and examine the angle and line it follows. If you’re having trouble visualizing your eyebrow’s true shape, you might even want to try penciling over your eyebrow’s natural curve with an eyeliner pencil. Note where the bulk of the eyebrow starts (should be directly in line with the edge of your nose’s bridge). Note where the bulk of it tapers off – not where the last hair is, but where the eyebrow’s curve and bulk stops. Lastly, note how thick your “true” eyebrow is, and identify spare hairs growing either above or below your eyebrow’s main thickness. Hair growing outside of where the bulk of your “true” eyebrow lies is the hair that needs to be removed.
Choosing a Wax Product
Because thicker eyebrows tend to look more natural on guys, it’s rarely necessary to wax above or below the actual eyebrow. Unless your eyebrows are an inch thick, for some reason, the areas above and below your eyebrow can simply be plucked.
The hair growing between your eyebrows is where it’s best to bring in the wax. Because you’re dealing with such a small space, we recommend forgoing the elaborate microwaveable or heated wax, applicator and strip process in favor of pre-made wax or gel strips. Found at most drug stores, these are thin plastic sheets coated with a fine layer of wax or gel, warmed by simply rubbing them between your hands. Using these strips allows much more control than waxing with melted wax and an applicator stick, since you can cut strips to the precise width you need to be waxed.
The Dirty Work: How to Pluck & Wax
Once you’ve combed your eyebrow straight, primed your skin with antiseptic witch hazel (the go-to product for happy skin) and identified the natural shape and bulk of your eyebrow you want to define, you’re ready to do the actual hair removal.
Begin by plucking with sharp tweezers, close to the mirror so you can see what you’re doing. Begin with the unruly hairs above and below your eyebrow’s shape, moving closer to the bulk of your eyebrow until it has a clean, defined shape. If you have a monobrow problem, leave the space between your eyebrows to wax once you’re done plucking. To remove the hairs, grip them one at a time and tug gently but quickly in the direction opposite of the way the hair is growing. Pulling your skin taut will help make this easier and less painful.
Once the space above and below your eyebrows is cleaned up, measure the space between your eyebrows which needs to be waxed by holding the clear wax strip to your face and tracing the width with an eyeliner pencil. Cut the wax strips to the width you need, then follow the product directions to remove the hair. Remember to press the wax strips firmly down on clean, dry skin, and pull it off in a direction which is opposite to your hair’s growth – down, in other words.
Post Eyebrow Grooming Hygiene
Plucking and waxing your eyebrows is traumatic for your skin, so be sure to treat it nicely after each grooming session by swabbing it with antiseptic witch hazel. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly and not to touch the plucked skin, to avoid the risk of infection. Your skin will likely be a bit red afterwards, so don’t groom your eyebrows right before going out to the club!
Take a look at the video below to see what great male eyebrow grooming can do – and to see exactly how it’s done.