In the era of full, fluffy brows and eyebrow icons like the Kardashians and Cara Delevigne, the idea of bleaching your eyebrows might feel slightly out of place anywhere but a catwalk. And really, it’s been a thing for years for high fashion models to get their brows bleached before they step out onto the stage.
It gives the models a unique, otherworldly quality that lends itself really well to the heightened world of couture. But to the average girl, the idea of bleaching your brows may seem a little out of reach.
Lucky for those of us who love to experiment with our looks, this isn’t the case! Bleached brows are a growing trend and an increasingly approachable way to make a big change to your face and aesthetic with a relatively small amount of effort. If you’re bored of your full brow routine, or just don’t love the look of a dark, structured brow, brow bleaching might be for you!
Especially if you’re looking for a change that might soften and tame otherwise thick and unruly brows, it’s really worth considering. A bleached brow with a swipe of TatBrow Ultra-Defining Brow Gel in the morning? Simple, painless, and enviably chic. Even if you’re just running out to grab some milk from your local shop in sweats and sneakers, everyone will be wondering what runway show you’re on next.
Why Would You Bleach Your Eyebrows?
The obvious reason is that it looks incredibly cool and edgy. But there are other benefits to bleaching your brows, too. For one, if you have the sort of thick, dark brows that require regular maintenance to keep them in your preferred shape and you’re starting to resent your tweezers and/or your biweekly waxing appointments, bleaching your brows might be a welcome, low-maintenance solution.
Buying some hair bleach from a drugstore can cost as little as a fiver, although you should be sure to buy bleach specifically designed for facial hair—and in general, we’d advise starting by going to a professional, until you know how your hair color and type reacts to bleach.
By bleaching your brows, you’ll spare yourself a lot of maintenance if your skin tone is on the paler end because they won’t be as noticeable. And if your skin is on the darker end of the spectrum, bleaching your brows will make them stand out more—so new, dark hairs growing in won’t draw the eye away from the intended shape of your brow.
And, as we all know, the look and shape of your eyebrows go a long way for changing the look of your face—possibly more than any other cosmetic adjustment. Bleaching your brows is a great way to go if you just want to try something new, or make a big change that isn’t permanent.
Plus, we have to admit, there’s something satisfying about making a beauty decision that goes against conventional wisdom. It feels freeing and edgy in a way that’s hard to pass up!
How Versatile Are Bleached Brows?
You may worry that by bleaching your brows, you’re committing to a whole look, and you won’t be able to change it up whenever you want. But that actually isn’t true at all! In addition to the fact that bleach, as it does on your head, will eventually grow out and your original color will return, bleaching your eyebrows actually gives you a broader color palette to work with when it comes to your brows.
If your hair is already very fair, this might not be a huge benefit or change for you. But to those of us who have really dark brows that don’t hold color very well, all those trendy social media posts of people with pink or blue or purple or glittery brows may have been a major source of jealousy.
After all, if you have black brows, a swipe of pink brow gel isn’t going to make much of a difference! But once you’ve bleached your brows, the options are endless. Any colored brow gel or even an application of powder with the proper base and tools can turn your otherworldly pale brows into a rainbow of vibrant hues, depending on your mood.
Have a festival on your calendar? Bleaching your brows might be the easiest, most fun way to take your look from drab to festival-ready with very little effort.
Even if you’re not looking to go bolder with your bleached brows, you can always use the same brow makeup you would use with your natural color—a slightly thicker application of pencil, powder, or gel in your natural brow color, and you can easily make your brows look how they looked before you bleached them.
So if you’re worried about your bleached brows being an issue if you’re interviewing for a job, or attending a formal event where you’re worried your look will stand out a little too much, there’s a quick and easy fix.
Is Brow Bleaching the Same as Brow Lightening?
You may have heard brow bleaching and brow lightening used interchangeably before, but we’re here to tell you, they’re two different things! If your goal is a really strong, magical, sort of ethereal look, bleached brows are what you want.
Bleaching your brows lifts the color out of the hair altogether. Brow lightening is a much softer, gentler process that just brings up the shade of your brows a couple of steps, adding a bit of light and brightness to your face rather than a total change in style.
Bleaching your brows breaks down the pigment in your brows. Lightening your brows is a similar process, just gentler. It requires a bleaching tint, which will be left on for different amounts of time, depending on how many shades lighter you’re looking to go. Your specialist may then tweak the color, depending on how it comes out, adding slightly warmer or cooler or darker hues until you have the desired effect.
Both of these looks can be a great change to make if you’re over thick, dark brows and want to try something new.
Does Bleaching Your Brows Hurt?
The short answer is: not when done properly! You should be careful to ensure that your eyebrows and the area surrounding are free from any sort of cut, sore, or abrasion. Any very minor break in your skin might cause the bleach to burn you, and this also goes for any inflammation or sensitive skin condition. In general, just be sure your skin is at its healthy, glowing best before you apply bleach to it.
Bleaching your brows also works best if they haven’t been otherwise treated. We assume you won’t be bleaching your brows shortly after having them tinted, as these two processes will be at odds—but in case the mood strikes you, it’s best to wait until your tint has faded to prevent your brows from becoming too dry and over-processed, much like you’d do with the hair on your head. It’s also best not to try to bleach your brows if you’ve had them laminated recently.
Only leave the bleach on for the time noted on the package, if you’re doing it at home, and when you wash it off, be sure to do so thoroughly (and we’re sure this goes without saying, but be careful of your eyes when you wash your bleach off).
It’s also important to patch test your bleach before you apply it to your face. Use a little bit of the product you intend to use on a small, subtle area, like the inside of your arm. Let it sit for about 10 minutes before washing it off, and wait a full seventy-two hours before bleaching your brows to make sure your skin doesn’t have a negative reaction.
If you follow all of these steps, bleaching your brows shouldn’t be a painful experience at all! And if you’re getting your brows bleached by a professional, you can rest assured, you’ll be in good, pain-free hands.
How Do You Care for Bleached Brows?
Like we said before, one of the benefits of bleaching your brows is how incredibly low maintenance they are. In addition to making you look like you’ve stepped off the pages of a high fashion magazine every single day with almost zero effort, there’s not much you need to do after having your brows bleached.
Unlike brow tinting, you don’t have to avoid getting them wet afterward. You can immediately wash the bleach off of your face, and go about your routine as usual. The only potential aftercare you may need to consider is if your bleached brows start to get a bit brassy as time goes on, using a purple shampoo (blondes will know what we’re talking about) will help to offset that. Unless you’re into it, in which case, go on with your bad self.
Bleaching your brows is a growing trend that we’re pretty into! It’s cheap, low maintenance, and lasts long enough that it doesn’t feel like you’re constantly doing the upkeep. Bleached brows definitely make a statement, too, and that statement tends to be something like, “I am an extremely cool high fashion model who spends all of my time drinking champagne in Paris while wearing couture.” And that is something we can get behind!