Beauty School: How To Master The Perfect Bold Brow

“I love bold, well-shaped eyebrows, but I’m not sure how to get them at home without overdoing it. Any advice on how to find the right shape and shade to suit my face?”

Well-shaped eyebrows can make a real difference to your look and take years off. They frame the face, open it up, and give the eyes definition. Some of the most famous signature looks of film stars have been a lot to do with their eyebrows –- think of Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor.

Finding the brow shape that suits you is not difficult –- your brow probably already arches in the right place and just needs tidying. The most common shape is slightly squared off at the nose with an arch two thirds of the way along and a tapered end.

Here are a few quick guidelines:

  • Brows should begin in line with the inner corner of the eye and be a full eye-width apart.
  • The highest point of the arch should fall above the outer edge of your iris.
  • Hold a pencil or brush in front of your nose and tilt it diagonally to the outer corner of your eye. Follow the same line up until it meets the brow to find the outer point. Depending on your brows, you may want to extend them up to this point with a brow pencil or pluck any stray hairs.

Plucking is the best technique for at-home eyebrow shaping. You will need: angled tweezers, white pencil, eyebrow brush and comb, nail scissors, angled stiff brush and powder or eyebrow pencil.

Here’s how to do it yourself:

  1. Start with trimming. Brush the eyebrow hairs upwards with a brow comb and trim any hairs over the top line of the brow with nail scissors. Brush the hairs down and trim again if necessary.
  2. Brush the brow back into shape. You can now see the hairs that need to be plucked.
  3. The best time to pluck is after showering when the pores are open and the hair is softer, or you can open the pores with a hot towel. Make sure your face is free of makeup and moisturizer so that the tweezers don’t slip.
  4. Dip a small flat angled brush into some brow powder, then with upward strokes sketch your ideal brow. Use a white pencil to color under the lower line of the shape you want, making sure both sides are even – the hairs you’ve drawn over are the ones to pluck. I prefer to draw my ideal shape in this way instead of using a mass produced stencil.
  5. Only pluck in good light. Always pull in the direction in which the hair is growing, it is less painful and the hair is less likely to break.
  6. Pluck hairs one by one, a line at a time, making sure each root is in the area you want to pluck. Start at the side of your brow nearest your nose and work outward. Pluck below the brown line removing all the hairs in the lid/socket area. Any obvious stray hairs above the brow can be plucked, but generally it’s better to trim or bleach hairs above the brow line rather than pluck whole lines as this thins the brows.
  7. Brush the eyebrow hairs so they lie flat or slightly upward to reveal any others that need neatening, and trim any stray long hairs with nail scissors.


Jemma Kidd is a world-renowned makeup artist who has painted the faces of Naomi Campbell and Jerry Hall, and now she’s here to solve all of your beauty dilemmas. Not only does she have two makeup lines of her own — Jemma Kidd Make Up School and JK Jemma Kidd — she’s also worked with Max Factor, Rimmel, and Stila. Yes, she’s a total beauty guru. Have a question for Jemma? Email it to!

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