How To Find The Perfect Colour Eyebrow Pencil Depending On Your Hair Shade

·5-min read
Photo credit: Alessandro Zeno
Photo credit: Alessandro Zeno

Whether you’re a beauty junkie or make-up novice, when it comes to finding the right brow product, things can get tricky.

Do you go for a gel, pencil, pomade or powder formula? Do you brush up, brush out, fill in sparse areas or the whole lot? And the age-old question: what eyebrow shade is right for you?

Because lets face it, with a hundred thousand different skin tones and a plethora of hair shades out there, choosing your eyebrow shade isn’t as simple as ‘blonde or brunette.’

If, like us, you’ve ever struggled to find the perfect eyebrow shade for you, you’re in luck. We’ve gathered up all the brow-info you’ll ever need: the pro tips, what to look for and what not to do, in one handy guide.

A bachelor’s degree in eyebrows you say? Yeah, we’ll take that.

Photo credit: Matteo Scarpellini
Photo credit: Matteo Scarpellini

How to find the right eyebrow shade for you

1.Choose your desired finish

'For a more natural and subtle brow, try to match your product exactly to your brow hair colour,' says Jaimineey Patel, Head of Training at Blink Brow Bar. 'For those looking for a slightly heavier brow or with dyed hair, you may want to opt for a shade darker than your natural hair tone.'

2. Mix and match shades

Like your hair colour, your brows shouldn’t be one block shade – otherwise you’ll risk them looking a bit fake and drawn on.

For the most natural finish, mix and match your brow products to create a 3D effect. Start by filling in sparse areas with a brow powder kit or pencil, before adding a bit more depth with a brow gel like Glossier’s Boy Brow.

Photo credit: .
Photo credit: .

Glossier Boy Brow - £14 SHOP NOW

'I would always suggest using more than one product, whether it’s a pencil and a gel, or a powder and a pomade, whichever your preference or style,' says Laurretta Power, National Brow Artist at Benefit. 'This will add texture leaving brows looking fuller and more lifelike. Also for dimension and added depth use products in slightly different shades, for instance Benefit's Precisely My Brow Pencil in shade 6 alongside Gimme Brow+ in shade 4.5.'

This way, you’ll get different brow shades running through your hairs, like you would naturally.

3. Think about the undertones

Much like when you’re trying foundation, you want to think about the undertones. Is your hair warm, with golden or red highlights? Or is your hair cooler, with ashier undertones? Try and pick your brow shade with the same undertones as your skin and hair, for the most natural looking brow.

Which eyebrow product is right for you?

Still can’t decide which brow product is right for you? First of all, says Patel, think about the texture. 'Gels are best for offering a subtle amount of colour to brows, as they only coat the brow hairs,' she says. 'Pencils and pomades are great for a more defined look, filling in any gaps and adding colour AND shape to brows.'

What colour eyebrows are right for you?

The right eyebrow colour for blonde hair...

Photo credit: KEVIN TACHMAN
Photo credit: KEVIN TACHMAN

As long as you get the base right with blonde hair, you’ll be golden (apologies...). 'When colour matching brow products look at the shade of the brow hairs,' says Power. 'Then go a maximum of two shades darker. For people with blonde hair I do tend to opt for a cooler tone product.'

If you’ve got platinum, champagne or ashy blonde hair then you’ll want an equally ashy brow pencil like Dior Sourcils Poudre Powder Brow Pencil in Ash Blonde.

But if your hair is more golden, caramel or sunkissed blonde, try a light brown, taupey shade like Bobbi Brown’s Perfectly Defined Long-Wear Brow Pencil in Blonde.

The right eyebrow colour for brown hair...

Photo credit: Courtesy of Press Office
Photo credit: Courtesy of Press Office

You might think that brunettes get an easy time of it when picking an eyebrow shade. Because lets face it, most brow products are brown. But go too light and there’s no point filling them in at all, too dark and you’ll end up with a scouse brow circa 2012.

The general rule for brunettes is to stay one or two shade ranges from your hair colour. 'If in doubt you can always add either to your existing brow products, to add warm or cool tones to the brows,' advises Power. If you’ve got ashy, cooler or light brown hair we love Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Medium Brown.

For deep brunettes, or warmer, redder tones Benefit Goof Proof Eyebrow Pencil in 4 is perfect.

The right eyebrow colour for red hair...

Photo credit: . - Imaxtree
Photo credit: . - Imaxtree

You guessed it - red hair is notoriously the hardest to match. Very few people have truly red eyebrows, instead opting for an ashier blonde or darker brown shade.

'Personally I tend to opt for a light warm brown for red heads, usually the brows are extremely fair so using a red or auburn alone looks less natural,' says Power. 'Instead I use brown with redder undertones, for those with darker brows I match to the brow hairs.'

If you’ve got light, strawberry blonde red hair try a taupe, golden blonde like NYX Professional Makeup Eyebrow Powder Pencil in Taupe, or if you’re brows are slightly warmer the Auburn shade is great.

If you’ve got rich, deep red hair a BBB London's Cinnamon Brow Build Gel has a hit of red undertone, without going all Jessica Rabbit on you.

The right eyebrow colour for black hair...

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Having black hair doesn’t mean you necessarily want a black brow. If you go too dark, your brows can look a bit blocky and drawn on.

Instead, opt for a cooler medium toned brown instead. You can always build up the product if you like a darker finish. We like Nudestix Eyebrow Stylus in Brown.

The right eyebrow colour for grey hair...

Photo credit: Imaxtree
Photo credit: Imaxtree

If you’ve got grey hair, Power recommends staying on the lighter side, 'Definitely a cool toned blonde or brown, whether light or dark will depend on skin and eye colour. Never as dark as black as this will really look too cold and harsh alongside the grey hair which together can be really ageing.'

Try a cool-toned blonde like PIXI Natural Brow Duo in Natural Blonde, or if you were naturally very dark, go for a warmer toned medium brown like Charlotte Tilbury Brow Lift in Soft Brown.

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