How to … tint your eyebrows at home

Over recent years we have seen the fashion industry turn its attention to bold and beautiful eyebrows, moving away from the pencil-thin brows of the ’90s. In fact, The Guardian describes eyebrows as the “beauty obsession of the decade”.

“Don’t Let Anyone With Bad Brows Tell You Sh*t About Your Life,” reads the email signature of Jared Bailey, global brow expert for Benefit Cosmetics, who travels the world consulting women about their brows.

But keeping our brows lush and pronounced isn’t all that easy. As we age, our eyebrows lose volume, and the hairs can lighten or turn grey. For this reason, many people choose to have their eyebrows tinted.

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Eyebrow tinting involves dying your eyebrows with a semi-permanent dye in order to enhance your natural brows, giving them a stronger colour and form. The effects usually last between four and six weeks.

Purchase an eyebrow tint
There is a range of products available at chemists and cosmetic stores including gels, dye kits and tints that all essentially do the same thing. It’s important to read and follow the instructions specific to each one, as they differ between brands and products.

Find your colour
Before attempting to tint your brows, think about the outcome you’re aiming for. Do you want those dark, bold brows you’ve always dreamed about? Or are you going for a more subtle look, to help fill in some lighter patches and add depth? If it’s the latter, go for a shade similar to your current brows. This will gently darken some soft areas and add some colour. If you’re after the bold and the beautiful, look for a shade darker than your current eyebrows. However, even if you have black hair, it’s best to avoid black dye altogether, instead opting for a darker brown. If you can’t find a colour that seems right for your brows, you can purchase the same product in two shades and mix them together.

Remember that the pigment can seem particularly dark in the days following application. This will lighten slightly over the next month.

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Prepare the area
Some people will choose to shape their brows before they begin the tinting process, while others will do so after. Either way is fine.

Gently wash your face and brows, making sure that any cleanser has been washed fully off of your skin. Then, line the skin around your eyebrows with Vaseline. This will help to prevent staining your skin.

To make the tint last as long as possible, avoid wearing make-up, using oil-based skincare products or wetting your eyebrows for at least 12 hours after the procedure.

The application method and tools are different for every product. However, it can be helpful to treat the process as though you are applying make-up. If you smudge dye onto your skin, use a cotton tip to remove it to prevent staining.

Removing the brow tint
Because all tints work and react with different hair colours differently, it’s best to leave the tint on for just one minute before removing to assess the results. If you prefer your brows darker, reapply and repeat the process. It’s better to reapply the tint a few times than to have your brows too light or dark for your liking.

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If tinting your eyebrows at home just isn’t an option for you, you can have them done professionally. This typically costs around $15 to $30 and takes around 15 minutes. Your technician should also custom mix the dye to make the perfect colour for you. If you have never had your eyebrows tinted before, Cosmopolitan recommends seeing a professional first, to give you an idea of how the process works and what you should be aiming for at home.

Do you get your eyebrows tinted? Would you ever try to dye them at home yourself? Are there any other beauty procedures you do at home to save money?

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Written by Liv Gardiner