With brow bars currently closed, now is the ideal time to let your eyebrows go rogue – especially if you want to grow out your existing shape or encourage regrowth of over-plucked areas.
“It is amazing how time can allow hair to grow where you didn’t know you had it,” Vanita Parti MBE, founder and CEO of Blink Brow Bar tells BAZAAR. It doesn’t mean neglecting brow care, however. Quite the opposite – while you forgo the tweezing, other techniques can accelerate the process and help grant you fuller, more even eyebrows looking ahead.
The brow growing process
Brow hair is just like the hair on your head, Laurretta Power–Benefit UK national brow artist–explains; it grows in a cycle. “Depending on how healthy your brow hair follicles are, it can take a full 12 to 16 weeks to see the fullest potential in your hair growth,” she says.
Accelerating brow growth
1/ Invest in a brow conditioner
“If you have over-plucked your eyebrows in the past or have naturally sparse brows, there are ways to encourage this hair to grow,” says Parti. “Patience is key here along with the right products that will stimulate natural hair growth.” She recommends a product containing rosemary oil, “which has been thought for centuries to aid hair growth”. BBB London’s Nourishing Brow Oil for example, is formulated with a blend of organic sweet almond and rosemary oil “to promote hair growth and strengthen and condition brow hairs from the root to the tip”. Applied every night, the formula encourages growth by nourishing and conditioning the hairs.
Another nourishing oil that will also keep the hairs soft and glossy is castor oil. A common ingredient found in brow and lash-growth serums, it’s thought to support hair growth by keeping both the skin and hair in good condition. Always use a 100 per cent pure formula, like that of the Briogeo B. Well Castor Oil, an organic and fair trade certified castor oil from India naturally cold-pressed to contain the highest amount of nutrients and trace minerals.
“If you want a more active approach try adding a topical product to your routine that includes ingredients known to promote healthy hair growth like keratin and soy proteins,” says Power, recommending Benefit‘s Browvo! Conditioning Eyebrow Primer, applied before bed. “The applicator tip is made up of small nodules that can be used to massage the brow area, encouraging blood flow to the derma vessel.”
2/ Try your hand at massage
Since every hair is connected to a tiny blood vessel, “stimulating blood flow to the brow area can help encourage healthy hair growth,” continues Power. For a homeopathic fix, try giving your brow bone a micro-massage with your fingertips when going through your skincare routine by gently tapping over each brow for about 30 seconds.
Or you could try an at-home version of Blink’s in-salon ‘brow pinching’ service.
“Brow pinching at-home is so easy,” explains Parti. “For the added bonus apply BBB’s Nourishing Brow Oil and gently massage it in and pinch your brows from the start of the brows to the tail, using your forefinger and thumb.” Next, “massage your temples with your forefingers and middle fingers, and finally, apply pressure on your third eye with the forefinger and middle finger of one hand.” Repeat as desired.
3/ Address nutrition
Good nutrition plays an important role in your hair health. Dr Megan Rossi (PhD, RD, APD), also known as @theguthealthdoctor, tells us that the perfect healthy hair diet is essentially the Mediterranean diet. “Aim for 30 plant-based foods a week, including fruits, veggies, wholegrains, legumes, nuts and seeds,” she says.
Meanwhile, Anabel Kingsley, a consultant trichologist at the Philip Kingsley Clinic notes that “hair loss can be caused by iron, vitamin D and vitamin B12, while zinc deficiency can also cause the growth of brittle hair” – so if you notice your brows falling out and your levels are low in these, do consider supplementation.
Currently, Public Health England recommend we all supplement with 10mg of vitamin D daily to ensure healthy bones and muscles, so hopefully your hair–and brows–should benefit as a result.
4/ Cut back on cosmetics
Finally, try giving your brows a break from heavy make-up. Regular application of waxy products (such as pomades, gels and highlighters) can clog your hair follicles, making it harder for them to grow hairs. In addition, vigorous application of brow pencils, or using a comb or spoolie too roughly to groom your brows can loosen hairs, causing them to shed.
Making them look presentable meanwhile
If your brows become unruly when you’re growing them out, Power’s advise is “trim, don’t tweeze”. She instructs: “Take a clear brow gel and brush the brow hairs upward toward the hairline and out toward the temple. Let the gel dry completely before you trim the ends that are sticking out too far past your desired shape.” Try the Tweezerman Brow Shaping Scissors (as nail scissors are curved and can be problematic), and–of course–take great care when doing this.
A brow gel, clear or otherwise, is also very helpful in transforming their appearance without having to remove any hairs. “My favourite is the BBB Clear Brow Gloss for a natural finish but for those that need a tint, The Brow Build Gel is amazing for covering grey hair or just filling out the brow shape,” says Parti.
And for emergency moments when you want to disguise regrowth before addressing the shape with a professional, a full-coverage concealer–like Benefit’s Boi-ing Cakeless–can hide them in a pinch. “Gently pat it over the brow hairs that are still growing in to conceal them for the time being,” says Power.
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR UK.