Hollywood’s Eyebrow Queen on how to achieve the best brows for your face
We had a chat with Anastasia Beverly Hills’ Anastasia Soare, who’s worked with celebrities such as Victoria Beckham, the Kardashians and Jennifer Lopez.
What do Jennifer Lopez, Penelope Cruz, Victoria Beckham, Eva Longoria and the Kardashians have in common? They’ve all been clients of Hollywood’s so-called Eyebrow Queen.
That would be Anastasia Soare, the celebrity brow expert behind Anastasia Beverly Hills, a US$1.2 billion (S$1.6 billion) beauty empire that found its niche in the fickle world of beauty thanks to a technique called the Golden Ratio Eyebrow Shaping Method.
Simply put, it’s a patented approach that was developed in 1997, which shapes eyebrows according to one’s bone structure and natural eyebrow shape – and supposedly derived from Leonardo da Vinci's Golden Ratio.
And according to Soare, proportion is at the heart of the whole concept of beauty – it’s what the human eye recognises as such.
“The perfect brow is one tailored to your face and unique bone structure,” the 64-year-old Soare explained, in an email interview. “Everyone can benefit from unlocking their perfect brow shape.”
Which means, it’s not so much about scoring the perfect brows that look exactly like J-Lo’s as much as it is to own a set of brows that works uniquely for your face.
So how do non-celebrity folks who don’t have her on speed dial go about figuring out what’s good for us or not? Soare answered some of our burning questions and offered expert tips.
THE MOST COMMON EYEBROW MISTAKES
Do the beauty-obsessed Koreans really know best?
“Not necessarily,” said Soare. “If you’ve been trying the Korean-inspired straight brow trend for a while and are feeling underwhelmed, try the Golden Ratio Shaping Method. It might be the ah-ha moment your brows have been waiting for.”
Too much, too little, how much product is enough?
“The biggest problem I see is when product application is too heavy-handed,” observed Soare. “Because of the way eyebrows naturally grow, you should always start filling the brow from the highest arch point to the outer brow tip, and then with less pressure and product, lightly fill in the inner part of the brow.”
Should you colour-match your brows to the exact shade of your hair?
That’s incorrect. Instead, “if you have dark hair, choose a product one shade lighter than your natural brow colour and if you have light hair, choose a product one shade darker”.
How far apart should your brows be?
“Brows should begin directly above the middle of your nostrils otherwise the eyes may appear wider or close-set.” Neither is a good look. To find the starting point, try holding the eyebrow pencil alongside the nose and let the length of the pencil help you find the starting point of your brows.
Where should your brows end?
“Brows should end where the corner of the nostril connects with the outer corner of the eye,” said Soare. “Tails that don’t hit this end point can look nonexistent and even highlight wide-set eyes. An open-ended tail can add more space to the parameter of the face, making it look wider.”
HOW TO FIND THE MOST SUITABLE BROW SHAPE FOR YOUR FACE
Now on to the good stuff. Soare explained her Golden Ratio technique, which relies on three measurements: Brows should begin directly above the middle of your nostrils, brows should end where the corner of the nostril connects with the outer corner of the eye, and the highest point of the arch should connect the middle of the tip of the nose with the middle of the iris.
According to her, less is always more if your end goal is natural looking brows. “Eyebrows should always be filled in ombre. The hair on natural, beautiful eyebrows is much thinner in the first quarter of the brows as they grow sparsely upward. Towards the edges, it becomes thicker and grows in a layered, outward direction.”
She added: “Because of the way eyebrows naturally grow, you should always start filling the brow from the highest arch point to the outer brow tip, and then with less pressure and product, lightly fill in the inner part of the brow.”
ESSENTIAL TOOLS YOU’LL NEED
The type of brow you’re after will determine the kind of products you should use. Soare recommended five.
- Brow Wiz. “It has been a longtime favourite. I keep it in my purse because it can handle both shading and fine detail while on the go,” she said.
- Inky eyebrow pens. These can create thin strokes of hair with “incredibly realistic detail and dimension”.
- Tinted brow gel. This works best for those looking to boost the colour of their brow hair.
- Clear brow gel. This will set your brows in place for the entire day.
- Brow promade. If you’re aiming for melt-proof brows and need to disguise sparse areas.
Depending on the kind of brows you already have, one or several of the above mentioned products will help inch you closer to those dreamy eyebrows. Soare suggested trying a few products before deciding what works best for the kind of eyebrows you desire.
“Experimenting with different products is a major part of the fun. If you have the time, develop a multi-step routine to discover whether you like bold, bushy, naturally detailed, or a microbladed effect.”
Whatever you do, Soare says never to skip your brows in your makeup routine because filled brows give the impression of a more "youthful" appearance. “The right brows have an eye-opening, lifting effect that comes in handy, especially as we get older.”