Evening Out 'Tadpole Brows' Is No Longer A Hassle With These Tips

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The bold, colorful, and nostalgia-inducing pieces of Y2K fashion might be popping back into our closets. But if you took beauty inspiration from the celebs of the early noughts, you might be suffering the consequences when it comes to thinning brows down the line. Over-plucking can lead to the infamous thick front and thin tail look you once rocked to grow your hair back in, affectionately referred to as "tadpole brows" because they resemble the little amphibious creatures.


Depending on your past adherence to a strict plucking and waxing schedule, this look has different levels of severity. For some, it's possible to grow the hair back with a little TLC, but for others, you might have to go for a more cosmetic approach to get the natural, bushy brows of your dreams. Luckily, however, this is a common struggle many people face, especially after the massive thin brow trend, so there are many ways to bring your eyebrows back into the 2020s.

Put down the tweezers

The first step in regrowing your brows requires you to stop doing what thinned them out in the first place. This might seem obvious, but for many, it's tempting just to continue plucking the stray hairs that pop up around your brows to clean them up, accidentally reinforcing the tadpole shape. Instead, lay down the tweezers and give it some time, even through the awkward phase where your brows look messy. You want to know exactly how much hair you're working with and what spots will grow back.


Unfortunately, the main reason for this look is the hair's tendency not to grow back after aggressive plucking. Each strand is connected to a small blood vessel below the skin, but once that vessel is ruptured, the hair won't grow back. If you've been more gentle with your tweezing over time — pulling in the direction of the hair, not straight out towards the mirror — there's a chance a few could grow back to fill in sparse areas.

Focus on a healthy diet and take supplements

After you've committed to growing out your brow hairs, it's crucial to ensure that your body has the necessary nutrients to do so. Hair will grow unless you're incredibly nutrient-deficient, but you can speed up the process by getting a few essential vitamins and minerals into your system. The hair on your head and your nails will also likely grow faster and stronger as a result — win-win!


When it comes to your diet, you will want to focus on vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, and iron. These nutrients can be found in a healthy, well-balanced diet of fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, and dairy products. Still, you might want to add a few supplements if you're vegan or vegetarian to help with any deficiencies, especially vitamin B12 and iron. Adding biotin and keratin, commonly found in hair, skin, and nail vitamins can also help.

Use a brow growth serum

Hair growth serums and oils are popular for the lashes and head, but did you know you can use them for your eyebrows, too? There are specifically-catered serums on the market, like the Vegamour GRO Brow Serum, but most lash serums and DIY solutions work, too. Olive oil, castor oil, and petroleum jelly are common choices — just coat your brows overnight after you've washed your face and done the rest of your skincare routine, then wipe away in the morning.


Of course, before applying any of these products, it's important to do a patch test. Avoiding skin irritation is important everywhere, especially when it comes to your eyebrows. Flaky, damaged skin from an allergic reaction can further stunt your hair growth and leave you with unsightly and uncomfortable irritation. Before applying your serum or oil, test it on a similarly-sensitive patch of your skin, like the inside of your arm, overnight. If you don't notice any irritation in the morning, you should be good to go.

Brush up your brow hairs

While you're growing out your eyebrow hairs and focusing on their health, an easy way to style them to make them look more fluffy and full without an excess of product is by brushing them upwards. This look has been taking the world by storm the past few years thanks to brow lamination treatments and the coveted clean girl aesthetic, but it's straightforward to achieve without paying for a salon trip.


All you need to do is grab a clear gel with a solid amount of hold and a clean spoolie. Dip your brush in the product, then brush up your eyebrows fully, ensuring they're completely coated with the clear gel. You might look a bit crazy for a second, but do not worry. Use the tip of the spoolie to comb the ends of your brows into a cleaner point if you find yourself approaching cartoon character territory.

Map out your perfect shape

After you've done the work to bring back as much of your natural brow as possible, it's time to see how much you want to enhance it with makeup. Depending on your face shape, there will be a shape and arch placement that's the most flattering for you, so it's best to work that out before you go straight into copying a celebrity's naturally bushy brows if you want to see the best results.


To do this, grab something thin and straight, like the back of a makeup brush. Place it at the bottom of your nostril until it touches your browbone. This spot is where your brow should begin. Next, align your object from the bottom of your nose to the center point of your eye. This is where your arch should be to create the most lift. Finally, keep the object at the corner of your nose and bring it to the outer corner of your eye. This should be the spot where your eyebrow ends.

Opt for a fine-tip brow pencil

Once you've mapped out the layout of your perfect brow, it's time to start filling in the sparse areas with hairlike strokes. Interestingly, 2016 saw the rise of bold brows and Anastasia Beverly Hills' famous DIPBROW Pomade, but if you're going for a natural look, a fine-tip brow pencil is a bit easier to maneuver. Pick up a pencil with a relatively hard formula, small tip, and natural-looking color, then imitate the look of hairs with quick strokes following the direction of your natural growth.


If you feel like a smaller-tipped brow pencil still isn't giving you the precision you're looking for, liquid formulas are also available with a superfine brush tip. These are more similar to liquid liners and are great for spots where you want to add more detail, but they can look a bit drawn on due to their sheen and level of precision. Top these products with a bit of translucent powder or mix and match with a pencil for a more natural look.

Go for the ombre effect

If you're drawing in a large portion of your brow, it can sometimes be difficult to make everything look natural, and you could find yourself accidentally creating something that looks blocky and out of balance with the rest of your face. To help avoid this, go for the ombre look. Naturally, full brows are usually bushier and more sparse towards the front, then darker and more concentrated at the tail. Mimic this by using a light hand with products towards the middle of your face, then increase the saturation when you get to the tip. 


If your natural brows are full enough at the front, you can even skip colored products entirely in that area, opting for just a brow gel to blend everything instead. Don't stress if your final look isn't perfect — pulling off flawless brows, especially when working with sparse areas, is one of the most difficult parts of a full face.

Try out a tinted gel

For an easy, one-step brow look, consider using a tinted gel. Eyebrow gel has a similar, though less harsh, effect to mascara so that it can add volume and the appearance of fullness to your existing brow hairs. Going for something tinted can also darken naturally light brows and fill in some of the space between hairs if you're working with gaps, giving you a quick option if you're rushing out the door and don't have time for more precise application.


You can always couple this product with your favorite brow pencil if you're still looking for a more precise shape and want to bring more volume to the tail. Drawn-on brows tend to look flat and one-dimensional, especially in areas with little hair, but adding brow gel on top to bulk up your existing hair can help bring the texture back and give you an all-around more natural look.

Consider microblading

If you're sure your brow hairs won't grow back and you're tired of spending so much time each morning filling them in, you might want to look into microblading as a more permanent solution. Microblading is a form of cosmetic tattooing lasting 18 to 30 months. During the appointment, your esthetician will map out your perfect brow shape, mix up a pigment color that will look natural on your skin and the rest of your brow hairs, and use a small blade-shaped tool with tiny needles to create hair-like strokes.


Cosmetic tattooing has received a bit of a bad rap for looking unnatural and too harsh on the face. Still, most estheticians nowadays are committed to creating something more natural-looking than ultra-precise or saturated. Look on local estheticians' websites or Instagrams for photos of their past microblading procedures to get an idea of your potential final look. It might be intimidating, but nothing beats the convenience of a low-maintenance beauty routine once you're healed.