eyebrows

Photo: Poppy & Ivy Face Bar

The strong brow trend shows no signs of slowing down. After the over-plucked days of the early 2000s, today’s brows are thick, natural, and provide a strong frame to the face. But achieving and maintaining the strong brow look can be difficult, and there are a myriad of treatments out there to choose from. Adore consulted some local experts to determine what treatment is right for you.

Waxing

Who: Almost everyone is a good candidate for waxing, according to Jamie Plaia, the owner of Esthetique Facial Spa, a local salon specializing in facials and hair removal. The only people who should not wax are those using topical medications such as retinoids or acne medicine, or those who are sunburned or have dermatitis. People who have recently had certain facial treatments or cosmetic procedures may also not be good candidates for brow waxing. Be sure to consult with an esthetician if you’re unsure.

Benefits: Waxing is a faster way to remove hair than threading or other removal methods, therefore reducing pain. For those with coarser facial hair, waxing may be more comfortable, Plaia told Adore.

Care: After waxing, your esthetician will apply a post-wax solution in order to reduce redness and irritation. If either persists, you can apply a cold compress to the area to calm the skin.

Threading

Who: Threading is a gentler method of hair removal than waxing. Since only a cotton thread is used to remove hair, those who may not be a good candidate for waxing will likely have better luck with threading. People with sensitive skin may also prefer threading, as wax can irritate the skin. Those who are sunburned or have dermatitis should still exercise caution.

Benefits: A threading treatment may last longer than waxing, according to Plaia. It is a more precise method of hair removal, says Colleen Hammer, owner of Poppy & Ivy Face Bar, as estheticians can remove individual hairs by the root without removing skin cells or extra hair.

Care: After threading, the esthetician may apply a salve that will calm skin redness. At Poppy & Ivy, the treatment includes a brow and third-eye area massage to alleviate any irritation.

Tinting

Tinting is the process of applying dye to enhance or define your brows. The dye can last anywhere from 3-6 weeks and can be touched up regularly.

Who: Anyone who wants to create the appearance of thicker brows is a good candidate for tinting. The dye works on all skin types and hair colors, though it may be more difficult to use on gray or white hair, according to Harper’s Bazaar. Candidates should also be aware of possible allergic reactions to the dye.

Benefits: For those looking for an easy option to create fuller brows, this is it. Tinting can be done at a salon, in a doctor’s office, or even at home with a kit. The results are instantaneous and last longer than makeup and other temporary measures.

Care: In order to ensure the dye lasts for as long as possible, avoid getting your brows wet for 12 hours after receiving the treatment. Harper’s Bazaar also states that clients will want to avoid exfoliating or using oil-based products in the eyebrow area, as that will cause the dye to fade faster.

***A warning about tinting: no eyebrow tinting dyes are FDA-approved, so there is a risk of infection from ingredients that aren’t regulated. To lower your risk of infection, avoid using retinoids or retinols in the brow area, as that may irritate the thin eyebrow skin. You can also apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly or Aquaphor to protect the skin from the dye.

Microblading

Microblading is a semi-permanent filling option for those who want fuller, thicker brows. A small amount of pigment is tattooed onto the top layer of the skin. The microblader mimics individual brow hairs by using a stroking technique while applying the pigment.

Who: For those who have uneven, patchy, or thinning brows, microblading is a good option, according to Hammer. Microblading is not performed on those who are pregnant or have used Accutane in the last six months.

Benefits: Microblading treatments last for a long time. Though they are not totally permanent, the dye can last for years, depending on the person’s skin type. For those looking for fuller brows, this is the longest-lasting option.

Care: Microblading treatments require considerable maintenance. In addition to a pre-procedure consultation, candidates must also provide a medical history in order to rule out any possible conditions that would preclude getting the treatment. After receiving microblading, clients are sent home with specific care instructions, Hammer says. Daily sunscreen use is also critical to maintaining the results of the treatment for as long as possible. 6-8 weeks after the microblading treatment, clients should have a touch-up procedure done, and after that, they should have a color boost yearly.