[By Fiona Ling]
If our eyes are the windows to our soul, our eyebrows must definitely be the frames. Just like how nicely placed drapes can be a focal point in your home décor; never underestimate the importance of your brows. Eyebrows have the immense ability to open up the eyes and cheekbones, giving those two strips of hair follicles the power to make or break a face. Although their main function is to prevent sweat, water and other debris from falling into the eye socket; we are perhaps more concerned with their secondary function of human communication and facial expression.
1. HAIR OR BARE
Let us begin by talking about the amount of hair in eyebrow grooming.
Much less baffling then the array of looks available for our crowning glory; brows are either shaped thick or thin. Apart from a brief moment in the early 90’s when fashion supermodel Linda Evangelista drove a whole generation of women “tweezers-happy” with her super-arched, pencil thin brows; most women considered to be beautiful throughout Hollywood history are known to have lush brows. To name a few, we have Audrey Hepburn, Brooke Shields, Angelina Jolie and Natalie Portman.
NEVER ever attempt the uni-brow look unless your name is Frida Kahlo and make hell lots of money painting self portrait of yourself. Also, no one ever look good without brows. Kelly Osbourne ended up looking more alien freak than fashionista chic when she chose to shave them off recently. Talk about fashion mistake on Fashion Police!
2. SHAPE IT UP
Now it’s time to shape things up. When eyebrows are shaped beautifully with a nice arch, they look polished and draw attention to the face. Likewise, badly shaped eyebrows like those over-plucked into thin, high rainbow arches give one a permanently surprised look that’s hard to ignore; but not in a good way! Treat your eyebrows in the same way as you see your hair. You are better off when you leave them in the hands of experts. Have you forgotten the horrible mullet that took ages to grow out when you last tried to trim your own fringe? However, if you really have a tight budget constrain, a simple trick will be using a pair of tweezers to tidy up strays well below the eyebrows. Never attempt to shape your own eyebrows as it is too easy to ruin them. You are better off with what God gave you if you can’t afford to have them professionally corrected.
3. BROW LIFT
Apart from the usual plucking, threading and waxing available at spas and salons; do you know that a well kept insider’s secret to gorgeous eyebrows lie in the hands of a doctor? I was recently let in on this when I finally persuaded my ex-model friend, Sophie (not her real name for obvious reason!) to give me the contact of the “spa therapist” who did her brows.
“Actually it’s my aesthetic doctor who help me achieve these picture perfect brows.”, a tipsy Sophie blurted out in hushed tone over the third glass of Moet that I had gladly offer her at Dior’s post show party last Thursday night. “It’s just a few tiny Botox jabs here and there and it’s virtually painless!” crooned Sophie, as she gesticulated absent-mindedly above her brows. “It’s not the same anymore when you are on the wrong side of 40, darling. My brows were starting to slip and my eyes looked kind of hooded and tired all the time.”, she continued with a distant look in her eyes. “And then I had Botox which completely corrected them and open up my droopy eyes!” Sophie exclaimed excitedly with the gleam creeping back into her saucer shaped orbs framed by those perfect brows.
Speaking to Dr. Kenneth Lee from The Sloane Clinic, I learned that there are two types of muscles in our brow area. The depressors that pull down the eyebrows and muscles that lift them up. Botox works by weakening the pull of the depressor muscles leaving the “lift up” muscles unopposed. The alteration in the balance between these two muscle groups help to achieve the lifting effect. “The doctor administering Botox injections must have an excellent knowledge of the facial muscle anatomy in order to achieve the desired results in the brow area.” says Dr. Lee. “In the hands of a skillful and experienced doctor, Botox can be use to restore or create beautiful eyebrows. Consequently, poorly placed Botox can result in alien looking, highly elevated brows and possible worsening of the droopy eyes that you sought to correct.”