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How Should You Shape Your Eyebrows?

Eyebrow Mapping: How To Find Your Perfect Brow Shape

13 Jan 2023

If makeup is the foundation of your beauty look (no pun intended), then your eyebrows are the accessories. And just like a few pieces of jewelry or a cool pair of sunglasses can instantly upgrade a basic, everyday outfit, well-shaped brows can totally transform your face. The key is knowing how to shape eyebrows, so they complement your facial features. Here, we’ll teach you just that.

First, we’ll break down a few common face shapes and reveal the eyebrow shapes that flatter them best. Then, you’ll learn how to shape your brows and our best tips for styling them (with some of our favorite NYX Professional Makeup eyebrow products, of course). Whether you like them thin and defined or full and fluffy , we’ve got you covered. Find your perfect brow shape in our all-in-one guide ahead.

How Do I Find My Perfect Eyebrow Shape?

Before you shape your eyebrows, it’s important to figure out what, exactly, you want them to look like. That’s where we come in. Keep reading to discover which eyebrow shape will best suit your facial structure.

Eyebrow Shapes For Round Faces

Round faces are roughly as long as they are wide and generally have softer features. For this face type, angular, arched eyebrows are ideal: The definition provided by a high arch can help balance the natural softness of a rounder face.

Eyebrow Shapes For Square Faces

Square faces, like round faces, are typically as wide as they are long. However, they differ from round faces in that they’re angular—particularly along the jawline and forehead. To help flatter sharp features, we suggest opting for fluffier brows. Using a brow gel like our Thick It. Stick It! Brow Gel can help add volume for fuller-looking arches .

Eyebrow Shapes For Rectangular Faces

Full, fluffy eyebrows are also among the best eyebrow shapes for long faces—particularly if your bone structure is more defined, as is the case with rectangular faces. Aim to keep your brows relatively unstructured to help balance your more angular features.

Eyebrow Shapes For Oval Faces

Oval faces are similar to rectangular faces but slightly rounded along the forehead and jawline. Complement your face’s symmetry with softly angled brows that are on the fuller side.

Eyebrow Shapes For Heart-Shaped Faces

People with heart-shaped faces typically have high, prominent cheekbones, a somewhat rounded forehead, and a narrow, pointed chin. To help add balance, we suggest opting for arched, rounded brows, avoiding anything too defined or angular.

How Do I Map My Eyebrows?

In order to shape your eyebrows effectively, you’ll first want to map your eyebrows. Eyebrow mapping is a technique that—done correctly—can help you find the ideal starting and end point for your brows, as well as narrow down where your arch should be. When combined with your understanding of the best brows for your face shape, mapping can help you determine exactly how to shape your eyebrows to flatter your unique facial features.

As for how to map your brows, it's pretty simple. First, grab a white eyeliner pencil, such as our Slim Eye Pencil in White. Place the bottom end of the pencil at the outer edge of your nostril, holding it vertically. Draw a vertical line where the top half of the pencil intersects with your eyebrow—this is where you’ll want your brow to start.

Next, with the bottom end of the pencil anchored to your nostril, shift the top half of the pencil diagonally toward your temples. Looking straight ahead, stop and mark where the pencil crosses over your pupil. This should be about two-thirds of the length of your brow (give or take) and is where you’ll want your arch to begin. Then, continue rotating the pencil diagonally until it lines up with the outer corner of your eye. Mark where the pencil intersects with your eyebrow to determine the ideal endpoint for your brow. Finally, connect the three marked points to sketch out the basic outline of your eyebrow.

When you’re done with the first eye, repeat the process on the other side to complete your eyebrow mapping. Keep in mind that your brow outline may not be perfectly identical on both sides. That’s totally normal—as they say, brows are sisters, not twins. They should, however, be similar in shape and size.

Can I Shape My Eyebrows Myself?

Shaping your eyebrows by yourself at home is super easy—even for first-timers. All you need is a few minutes, tweezers, and a few brow products to help style your arches. Learn how to shape your eyebrows in four quick steps, ahead.

Step 1: Determine Your Ideal Brow Shape

First, map your eyebrows as described above, marking where the beginning, arch, and end of the tail should be. Then, keeping in mind which of the different eyebrow shapes will best suit your face, sketch out a rough outline of your ideal brows using your white eyeliner pencil. Take your time with this because you’ll be using this outline to help determine which areas to tweeze and which to leave as-is.

Step 2: Tweeze and Tidy

Use clean tweezers to pluck the hairs that fall outside of your eyebrow outline. Work slowly and carefully—you don’t want to over-tweeze your brows or leave them looking patchy. Generally, the regions you should focus most on are the space between your brows (in other words, the unibrow area) and beneath your arch. You can also thin out the tail of your brows a bit to give your eyebrows a slightly tapered appearance. Once finished, you can remove the white eyeliner marks you made in step one—you won’t need them anymore.

Step 3: Fill In Sparse Areas

After you’re satisfied with your brow shape, use an eyebrow pencil or pen to help add definition and fill in any sparse areas. Our Fill & Fluff Eyebrow Pencil is ideal for creating fuller, bushier brow looks, while a fine-tipped eyebrow pen , like Lift & Snatch! Brow Tint Pen, is great for those looking to draw individual hairs for a more defined effect. Or, use our classic Micro Brow Pencil—the micro mechanical brow pencil comes in 11 pigmented shades and can be used to create a versatile range of precise brow looks.

Pro Tip: If you’re having trouble determining which shade to use to fill in your brows, we suggest opting for something one to two shades lighter than your brow hairs. This can help add definition without making your brows look unnatural.

Step 4: Finish With Eyebrow Gel

Given that you spent time perfecting your brows, we’re guessing that you want them to stay put. So, after shaping, defining, and filling in your brows, set your finished look with a brow gel, such as The Brow Glue Instant Brow Styler. The waterproof formula provides up to 16 hours of extreme hold with a non-sticky, natural-looking finish.

Next:For more eye makeup tips, check out our article Eyeliner 101: How To Apply Eyeliner Like a Real Pro.


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