The Easiest Way To Trim Your Eyebrows For A Clean Look

Makeup can help your lips look redder, your cheekbones appear more defined, and your eyelashes look longer, but as the New York Institute of Beauty says, "As one of the first things people notice when they look at you, no amount of makeup can atone for bad brows." Dark or light, full or thin, "Eyebrows have the power to completely change the look of the face," declares the Institute.

While eyebrow trends have changed throughout the years (who doesn't remember the super-thin, painfully plucked '90s?), one thing has not, and that's the need for a little careful grooming. Even if you religiously head to the brow bar to keep your arch sharp, you may find a bit of at-home maintenance is a must, in the form of a brow trim.

"If you frequently get your eyebrows done professionally, trimming your eyebrows in between appointments can help you extend the polished look that trimmed eyebrows give," explains L'Oréal Paris. "The occasional trim can also help prevent stray eyebrow hairs from sticking up in random directions throughout the day," they add. Before you grab the kitchen scissors and make a brow mistake you'll regret for a long growing-out time, you'll want some professional trimming advice.

The tools you'll need to trim your eyebrows

Those kitchen scissors mentioned above? Leave them in the kitchen. You'll make the entire trimming process easier and the finished results look better if you start with the right tools. First up is something to brush your brows with. A spoolie (like a mascara wand) will work, as will any small comb (GQ recommends using a mustache comb to their gentlemen groomers).

Scissors are the most important, and you have a few different options. "You need high-quality, sharp scissors because even a millimeter can mean the difference between a perfect trim and a gap," explains brow expert Anastasia Soare, CEO and founder of Anastasia Beverly Hills, to InStyle. Her brand offers brow scissors with thin blades and a tapered edge. Giselle Soto, celebrity brow artist and brow expert, told IPSY, "I personally use and recommend using cuticle scissors because they have a curve to them, which will allow you to achieve a soft and not-so blunt hairline."

One thing you won't need? A magnifying mirror. Joey Healy, celebrity brow artist, shared with InStyle, "Sometimes you overwork it and [the brows] get really short. If you do it in a normal mirror with normal lighting, you'll have a better sense of where you're going as you style them with the scissors."

The step-by-step trimming process

Once your arch is shaped and the stray hairs are plucked, the trimming begins. The first step is to use the brow brush or comb. "Brush the front area of your eyebrows upward toward your hairline. This will allow you to see which hairs have become longer than others," instructs L'Oréal Paris. For more guidance, Anastasia Beverly Hills suggests, "place your index finger on top of the brow to reveal the hairs that need to be trimmed."

The next step is the actual cutting. "Using the scissors in the direction of the brow hairs, carefully trim the tips of any hairs that appear longer than others or that look out of place," explains Eyebrow Queen. "Don't give your brows a crew cut, which means don't trim them across in a straight line," brow pro Joey Healy warns in InStyle. "Instead, cut one hair at a time in a downward angle. This keeps the edges of them looking fringy and feathery, which is more of the natural line of the eyebrow."

The last step is to brush the brow hairs back into place. "This will give you a better idea of how your newly trimmed brow hairs will fall normally," says L'Oréal Paris. The original shape of your eyebrow should still be in place, just looking a little neater. To maintain the clean look, brow artist Giselle Soto says,  "Trimming your brows at least once a month will have them healthy and growing" (via IPSY).