tinting, waxing, shaping and grooming

Benefit Cosmetics Australia’s National Brow Artist Hannah Mutze shares her brow tweaking tips and tricks for DIY brow grooming.

By the end of isolation you’re either going to be so desperate for an appointment with your brow stylist, facialist and manicurist OR you’re going to be so well versed in doing your whole routine you won’t need to book in another appointment ever again, which isn’t the only upside.

But for now, while salons are still closed (you can keep up to date here) and your brows are in need of a wax, tint, shape, or the works, we’ve enlisted advice from Benefit Cosmetics Australia’s National Brow Artist Hannah Mutze on how to do it yourself.

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Curate your kit

DIY brows call for a DIY brow kit. You’ll need: a spoolie brush, a brow pencil, cosmetic scissors – opt for some with a safety tip – slant tip tweezers (they’re the easiest to use and most precise) and a mirror (ideally full face). You’ll also need access to bright, direct light (no down lights please) – try sitting right in front of a window.

Tweezerman Slant Tweezer ($37.95, at Adore Beauty)

Always ensure your skin, brows and tools are clean before grooming. Rubbing alcohol is an easy, cost effective way to sanitise your tools.

Turn to this template

Knowing which hairs to tweeze and which to leave is the hardest part of DIY brow grooming. Leave no room for error and use your regular brow pencil to trace a line around your brows before you start. Only remove the hairs that lie outside the lines. Take the line wider than your brow shape if you’re unsure.

Be sure to keep the lines of your outline straighter as opposed to overly curved to prevent removing too many hairs.

Time to trim

Long, curly or unruly brows call for a trim to keep them looking groomed. Brush your brows up with your spoolie, then use your cosmetic scissors to slowly snip away the excess length that extends above the pencilled outline. Trim hairs one by one for a more natural looking finish.

When trimming, if you have more sparse brows, trim the excess length of every other hair to avoid creating a gap or hole. You can also hold hairs up using your spoolie brush for more control when trimming.

Billion Dollar Brows Scissors ($32.94, at Catch)

Take to the tweezers

Use your non-tweezing hand to support the surrounding skin. Gently pull tight using your fingers. For precision, align the flat edge of your slant tip tweezers parallel with the pencilled outline.

Always grip hairs as close to the skin as possible and remove swiftly and one by one in the same direction of growth (pulling against the growth can snap the hairs, or even damage the follicle which can prevent that hair from ever growing back). The growth direction changes as your work around the brows, so have a look before you start.

At-home tinting is easier than you think

If in doubt, fake a brow tint with a tinted brow gel. Just brush through for fuller, more defined looking brows.

The easiest way to tint at home is with an at home tint kit like 1000Hour. They come complete with everything you need. The colours are limited, so results may vary to the customised colour you’re used to from a professional tint, but it will do the job! Choose the colour that best describes how you would like your brows to look eg. “Medium Brown”. Nervous tinters – opt for a lighter colour to be safe.

Watch our step-by-step guide to tinting your brows at home.

1000Hour Lash & Brow Dye Kit ($19.99, at 1000Hour)

But know this first…

All brows react to colour differently, some will tint in 30 seconds and others 15 minutes. If you’re nervous about a too dark tint, build colour slowly by applying and removing the tint several times instead of leaving for a longer block of time.

Do a test patch on a hidden area of skin (behind ears and wrists are good) to ensure no allergies or reactions to the product.

Prevent staining the surrounding skin by applying a layer of Vaseline around your brows. Any hairs coated with Vaseline will not tint, so avoid getting any in your brows. Apply tint neatly using the provided applicator, or I find a firm angle brush easier to control.

If you do stain your skin, cleansing or exfoliating the area gently a number of times can help to lift the colour from your skin. Tint and fake tan are not a good combo. The skin stains easily and the brows often turn orange.

A brow tint can last from a couple days up to several weeks, depending on your hairs and after care. Frequent cleansing, exfoliating and sun exposure can shorten the lifespan of your brow tint.