Photo: Photo: Chaunte Vaughn, Makeup: Anne Kohlhagen, Hair: Johnny Rackleff, Model: Brittney Shurley

If there’s one person you can trust to get you the naturally, full and sculpted eyebrows of your dreams, it’s Joey Healy. With a long list of celebrity clients and a brow salon in New York City — not to mention his own set of perfectly groomed eyebrows — it’s safe to say he knows what he’s talking about in this arena. When Healy’s not doing touch-ups himself, he’s empowering people to learn to style their brows at home through his complete collection of eyebrow grooming products. Hence why we thought he was the perfect person to tap with our most pressing eyebrow question to date: How do you trim your own eyebrows? 


Sure, you’ve probably seen some beauty guru or makeup artist trim eyebrows before — or maybe you’ve even taken a stab at trimming your own brows — but do you really know the best technique to get the job done? Ahead, Healy walks us through the best way to cut your eyebrows, plus mistakes to avoid and the tools you’ll need. 


Why should people trim their eyebrows?


Trimming allows you to have a “maybe” moment. Sometimes, when you’re doing your own hair removal, it’s yes or no — yes, you keep the hair, no, you tweeze it away — but you can have a “maybe” moment when you trim. I think that trimming allows you to retain the hair in the follicle, undamaged. If your eyebrows are curly, it helps you make them look more groomed and it helps you go longer between professional shapings. Trimming just tidies them up.


Also, if you layer the hairs when you trim them, you can end up with hair that lies down a lot better, and you’re utilizing the length in a more appropriate way to cover gaps.


Can you walk us through step by step how to trim your eyebrows?


First, brush your eyebrows up with a spoolie like the Duo Brow Brush. Use a very precise, sharp scissor that doesn’t have a curve — no cuticle scissors, no manicure scissors — something like the Precision Brow Scissor. Comb the brows up and trim one hair at a time, downward at an angle. Never trim more than one hair at a time and don’t trim straight across. You don’t want to make them blunt. 


Only trim the longest hairs and know you can always trim more, but you can’t put the hair back. Maybe trim each hair 20 percent and then you can go back and do more, nice and slow. I advise trimming more in the first half of the brow and less on the tails because you need that length at the end to not have gaps.

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What mistakes do people often make when they trim their own eyebrows?


They trim in a straight line, they comb the hairs up, they comb the hairs down and then they just trim, tirm, trim — they don’t consider the individual hairs. Never trim down to the nub, you should just be trimming the tip. If your brow curls, trim it at the elbow where it curves, don’t trim it much lower. People often think  when they trim their brows, it’s not a commitment and the hair will grow back right away. This is not the case. Your brows grow, rest and then shed. Without even knowing it, you could be trimming rested brows that are done growing. Instead of them growing back longer you have to wait for that hair to shed and for a new hair to come in. 


What are some of your insider tips and tricks for making eyebrows look flawless?


Embrace your products — everybody should have clear brow gel (Our editors love the Urban Decay Brow Finish Waterproof Brow Gel). It helps you manipulate your length, and you want to befriend your length. Only tweeze –– no wax, no thread — it’s more artistic and it addresses one hair at a time. If you’re a brow novice, use a powder to fill in your brows, if you’re more of a pro, use a pomade, and if you’re on-the-go, use a tinted gel because we know it can do multiple things. Don’t go crazy, don’t overwork your shape. Embrace the flaws to look flawless!


Read More:

MCM: Meet Celebrity Eyebrow Expert Joey Healy

Red Hair? Here’s How to Match Your Eyebrows

What the NYX Professional Makeup Fill + Fluff Eyebrow Pomade Pencils Look Like on 5 Very Different Skin Tones

 

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