BEAUTY DARE: Brightly Colored Ombré Brows
Living in laid-back San Francisco, my daytime beauty game is admittedly a little weak. I’m a powder and brow pencil kinda girl by day, leaning heavily on my go-to lip stain to convey the “I’m making an effort” look.
When I go out at night, though, I pull out all the stops. Feather lashes, glitter lids, pastel lips -- anything goes. We are, after all, the de facto capital of Burning Man and drag queens.
My first foray into wacky brow colors was inspired by this piece on xoVain. Lichtenstein-yellow hair and Spock brows aren’t quite my style, but the idea of blue brows did tickle my fancy. It seemed like exactly the right way to push the strange-lip-colors trend a little further. I Googled “rainbow eyebrows” and realized that not only did Shrinkle, founder of Sugarpill Cosmetics and Nyan Cat incarnate, probably invent it, she wears it ombréd with different colors. Over each damn eye.
Executing ombré brows is actually pretty easy. If you know how to fill in your brows, then you know how to fill them in with colors. I ordered a custom lip palette from Impulse Cosmetics a while back so I could get my blue and purple lips on, and the colors are so thick and highly pigmented that I use them on my eyes as well.
Using a brow brush, I first applied the lighter color to the inside of both brows. Then, using the same brush, I applied the darker color to the tails, blending the two colors at the arches. I used the very same brush and color to create matching eyeliner, and then set the whole thing with Impulse’s Mattifying Lip Powder. It’s stupid easy.
I also paired lilac and navy brows with a navy cat eye for a casual dinner with friends.
“My two year-old would love your makeup,” my friend said. “She just learned to say wainbow,” he giggled.
Undeterred (this guy has been wearing the same Camper sneakers and newsboy cap since 2004), we walked to my favorite neighborhood restaurant. The waitress, who’s always rocking a styley undercut and bright lipstick, didn’t say anything about my brows, but we did talk about "Broad City" and how much we love Ilana Glazer. I bet Ilana would dig the rainbow brows.
The next day I wore turquoise and blue brows to my office.
“Omigod I LOVE your brows!” pretty much every girl in the office said. One of my coworkers even stopped mid-story about some lady who was hoarding dead babies in her garage to tell me how great they looked -- they’re that awesome.
The dudes in my office didn’t notice so much, but I’m pretty sure alternative makeup trends are 99.9% the work of women trying to impress other women, so yeah. One guy did think I’d actually dyed my face hair blue, and was surprised the next morning when I showed up with regular brows again.
The ombré brow works pretty well on a mellow scale, too. For drinks with friends I opted for copper and black brows to match my long black wig (I developed a slight wig obsession after I went "Tank Girl" on my head last summer and shaved it for Burning Man). My friends pulled the classic, “I love them! On you, of course. I could never pull that off,” which really means, “God Melissa, you are such an attention whore,” to which I say yes, yes I am. Anyone can pull off ombré brows, though. Anyone who likes attention, I guess.
I probably won’t pull the ombré brows out on the regular, but they’re good for parties and impressing people with your high-brow fashion sense (and terrible penchant for puns). Plus, you can do them in pretty much any color combination with beauty products you probably already have at home.
Let me know if you try it, and of course, post photos in the comments!