By: Melissa Federico, LE and Beauty and Fashion Writer
Growing up in the 90s, my eyebrows were victim of the pencil-thin brow-trend, fast-forward into the 21st century, and now it’s all about youthful, thick brows. Would I be stuck mourning the loss of my former shape and have over-plucked lines framing my face forever? As if! Brows are an important feature and if there was hope for Angelina Jolie and J.Lo, I knew there was something out there that could help me. After throwing out my tweezers, I did some research on the best ways to grow back brow hair, and it led me to the three options.
From priming the brows with nutrients, to increasing the amount of hair that actually grows, there are several ways to achieve fuller bushier brows. Discover the difference between these approaches, and find the right product to bring back your pre-90s brows.
Extend Growth Phase
Latisse was not originally designed for hair growth, My great-grandmother used it for glaucoma and we noticed how long her eye lashes grew. Others must have noticed as well, and it didn’t take long for this medication to be rebranded for lash inadequacy, and stamped with approval by the FDA in 2001. In clinical trials, 78% of people who used Latisse experience new growth within 8-10 weeks. Bimatoprost is the main ingredient and it helps to extend the growth phase and increase the amount of hairs that sprout up in the follicle. Other than that, no one really knows how Latisse actually causes hair to grow, so If you don’t mind adding a little mystery in your life, it’s great for thickening, lengthening and darkening the hair. Everything brows need after years of trauma-induced tweezing and waxing. However, you have to be willing to make an appointment with a dermatologist and pay a hefty price tag to get it; as an added bonus, you can use it on both brows and lashes.
Latisse is a hormone-based solution, so preteens, menopausal and pregnant women should avoid it, but it is a good option for almost everyone else. If you have light eyes and sensitive skin there can be some side effects associated with continued use like irritation, discoloration of eyes, and eyelids.
How to use:
Unlike other serums and treatments, Latisse is only applied to brows and lashes once a day. It comes with black plastic applicators that are rather stiff and will work well for lashes, but can be a wasteful for the brows. Conserve product by pouring one drop into the lid of the bottle or on the back of your hand, and use a mascara wand to apply and brush product through the brows.
Stimulate Dormant Follicles
You may be familiar with peptide-driven brow serums because they are typically affordable and marketed as “safe” because they are hormone-free. However, these serums do not contain any active ingredients that are clinically proven to work. I’ve tried several myself, including BrowFood and Neulash only to be disappointed by the results. However, that is not the case with VegaBrow by Vegamour. The patent-pending combination of bio-active phytomolecules is a hormone free formulation, completely vegan and clinically proven to work. This is particularly great news if you’re unable to use a hormone-based solution and want something that is effective (and without side effects) to boost growth.
Like the hair on your head, eyebrows have growth cycles and this serum relies on strengthening and conditioning ingredients like biotin and zinc to stimulate dormant hair follicles so they are always growing. You can start to see results in as little as 4-6 weeks with continued use.
This product is safe for all ages, especially for those with thinning brows from aging. However, you will get the best results if you still have active follicles so that the serum can communicate growth signals and keep hair growing.
How to use:
The soft doe-foot applicator is effortless and mess-free, so applying this serum twice a day is easy enough. However, if you stop using this serum regularly your brows may return to their original growth cycle.
Improve Hair Quality
For the longest time, I believed the benefits of castor oil were just another old wives’ tale. Much to my surprise, it actually helps brows, just not in the way I thought it would. Derived from castor beans, this colorless and pale oil absorbs quickly, and can help brow hairs to look darker and thicker. Unlike the other products mentioned above, castor oil’s primary benefit is that it is a completely naturally-derived option that is rich in antioxidants and ricinoleic acid, a fatty acid. This helps to prime brows and improve the quality of hair by supporting the keratin within the hair shaft. Patience is key with this option because most noticeable improvement with the vitality of eyebrows will happen between 3-6 months. It can also be used to tame unruly brows, or as a way to condition and prep brows before you start growth treatment or serum.
Those who were able to grow back most of their original shape but need extra support and nutrients for patchy and weak areas. This vegetable-based oil is anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory, so it won’t cause irritation or break out skin, making it particularly beneficial for sensitive and acne-prone skin types.
How to use:
Castor Oil is inexpensive and easy to find at natural food stores or refill shops. Take a small amount on the back of your hand and twirl a clean mascara wand or brow brush through the oil. Apply to brows morning and night, really taking time to massage and brush it into the hair, stimulating blood flow.
Apart from over-tweezing, there are other factors that can result in hair loss and slow-growth rates including aging and illness. These different options should offer a way for everyone to grow back their eyebrows. They are an important and defining feature of your face (check the image below), but if you are over trying to coax your brows back into existence, I highly recommend going to a brow expert that can work with what you have.
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