7 Ways You’re Ruining Your Eyebrows

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We all know that carefully shaped, well-groomed arches are crucial for a polished look. Missteps are common, however (read: overplucking and choosing the wrong shade for your skin tone). We tapped expert Matt Shakik, brow specialist at New York City’s hair removal studio Spruce & Bond, for tips on how to reverse the most common eyebrow mistakes women make. Read ahead to see if you’re guilty of these blunders.

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You're Matching The Color Of Your Brows To Your Hair

"You want the color to match well enough to look natural, yet you want it to be distinct enough to contrast a little. People normally try to match their hair color, but our brows naturally look darker because they're surrounded by paler skin."

You're Only Using A Magnifying Mirror

"We can't see both brows side by side when using a magnifying mirror. We tend to focus on one at a time, which usually results in two different shapes."

Tip: Choose a double-sided mirror that allows you both a close-up view and perspective.

You're Filling Them In Too Dark

"A color should be more of a shadow than bold shading. Use something a little more dense, like a pencil, if you're trying to substitute for hair growth. Otherwise just shadow the brow so it looks like there's a base to the hair overlapping it."

You're Waxing Instead Of Tweezing

"Tweezing is always the way to go—it allows you to remove single hairs in order to create the perfect shape."

You're Using Brow Stencils

"Wrong! Every face is different, and your face isn't symmetrical, so a stencil that was made for a cookie-cutter structure won't suit. Each brow should be customized to each individual."

Tip: A wax and powder brow kit can help you personalize a natural-looking shape.

You're Overplucking

“Plucking at home can be done to maintain a good structure, but avoid getting too close to a shape that's been created by your brow artist. Stay in your comfort zone. And when you start to question whether you should take out that one extra hair, it's time to come back and see a professional."

You're Applying Products That May Be Harmful To Your Brows

"Think about the look of your brows but also your brow health. Make sure the ingredients in the products you use won't cause issues down the road. Stay away from silicone-based components as they can cause hair loss."