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How to Grow Your Eyebrows from Barely There to Bold

Photo by PeopleImages/Getty Images

Sometimes, more is more—particularly when it comes to eyebrows. And while thin brows had their moment in the ’90s and early ’00s, the unofficial motto for brows ever since has been “the bigger, the better.” But brows don’t follow trends. If you took a pair of tweezers to them back in the day, or just went a little overboard grooming your natural brows, it might take time and patience to get brows back to bold and bushy.

While you can fill in gaps with an eyebrow pencil for a quick fix, growing out your eyebrow hair can require more of a time investment—as with any hair growth process, of course. But it’s essential to set your expectations accordingly: Genetics and the repeated use of tweezing, plucking, threading, and waxing can all impact your results. Ready for a brow makeover? You’re in the right spot. From DIY home remedies to products and even lifestyle changes, all it takes is a little adjustment of your daily routine and a lot of patience to see the eyebrow hair growth you’ve been hoping for.

About the Experts:

Stephanie Perez is the owner of Lush Beauty Ave in the Bronx, New York.
Eva Gonzalez is the owner of Sorella Waxing and Beauty Bar in Woodland Hills, California.

1. Be patient.

Patience is a virtue you absolutely need during this process. Even though the eyebrow growth cycle is 30 days, you likely won't notice a difference that quickly. "Excessive over-plucking or tweezing may cause hair growth to slow down, taking longer for it to grow back,” says Eva Gonzalez of Sorella Waxing and Beauty Bar. She also notes, "It typically takes four to six months for the hair to fully grow back." So if it doesn't seem as if your brows are growing fast enough, remind yourself that patience is key. Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither are big brows.

2. See a professional eyebrow artist.

Yes, you can absolutely rehabilitate your eyebrows on your own with home remedies and by avoiding plucking, tweezing, or packing on product. All that being said, you'll greatly benefit from having a brow expert in your corner. You need a support system on this journey, and turning to an eyebrow artist is the best way to go. Stephanie Perez of Lush Beauty Ave points out how critical it is to "find a brow artist who understands your goals and is willing to help you achieve those goals." They'll be able to "shape your brows into the shape and fullness you desire" to help you start your regrowth journey. Chances are they'll also help you remain as patient as possible during the process.

Once you find the perfect eyebrow artist for you, keeping up with these appointments is also of the utmost importance. You'll want to visit them every four to six weeks so that they can keep you on track during your brow rehab journey. Gonzalez notes it's also important to heed any advice they offer. "After visiting your eyebrow artist, it is important that you follow their aftercare instructions. That could be anything from not waxing or tweezing in between appointments to using an eyebrow serum or oil to help with regrowth," she says.

3. Stop tweezing, plucking, trimming, and threading.

Though you will have the unwavering urge to tweeze that one out-of-place strand or trim parts of your brows that are growing faster than the rest, don't. Step away from the tools. Don't use tweezers, scissors, or anything of the sort. Let your brows grow. If anything, leave this to your trusted brow expert. "It’s important to find a brow artist that protects the integrity of your brow growth,” Perez says. "Tweezing and trimming at home can lead to over-plucking," which means it will take that much longer to grow out your brows.

4. Embrace your brows as they are in every step of the process.

Your brows won't look at all how you want them to look until the end of your journey. They might not even look good to you, but it's all a part of the process. Perez notes, "Growing out your eyebrows can be a scary thing; most times they grow in patches." In the meantime, you can fill them in. Here’s what she suggests: 

  1. Start by “filling in your brows with an eyebrow pencil or brow powder," she says.

  2. Then, "Pop a little brow highlighter on your brow bone and some brow gel to keep your hairs in place," she shares.

  3. Be gentle, adds Gonzalez. "Being too rough with your eyebrow pencils can cause brow hairs to fall out and break prematurely. It's important to be gentle when filling in your brows," she notes.

 5. Incorporate oils into your eyebrow grooming routine.

Applying an oil daily to your sparse or thin eyebrows can really help boost eyebrow growth. And, chances are, you already have some of the oils that Perez and Gonzalez recommend sitting in your pantry. They often work as a conditioner, offering nourishment and hydration. This strengthens the hair, leading to less breakage and a stronger foundation for your eyebrows to continue their growth. Here’s what they recommend: 

Castor oil: Perez's number one staple for eyebrow regrowth, castor oil is rich in fatty acids and vitamin E, which are known to encourage hair growth and repair damaged hair follicles. It also contains ricinoleic acid, a chemical compound that improves blood circulation. More circulation increases the blood flow and nutrients that make it to your hair follicles, which results in stronger strands of hair and promotes regrowth. If you’re ready to try this home remedy for your brows, apply castor oil on a daily basis as a part of your nightly skincare routine.

Rosemary oil: "One of my favorite at-home remedies for brow regrowth is rosemary oil. Use it once a day or two to three times a day for quicker results," says Gonzalez. She does point out that "this may not work for everyone. In some cases there may be an underlying condition causing hair loss that will require a professional."

Before you use either of these oils, it is important to perform a patch test to ensure you're not allergic to them. Here’s how: 

  • Apply the oil to a specific spot (an easy-to-use area for patch tests is the inside of your arm).

  • Wait 24 hours.

  • Once you’ve ruled out any reactions, you’re ready to go.

 The best and most gentle way to apply these oils to your brows is by using an eyelash spoolie. Simply dip the spoolie (even a cotton swab will work) into the oil and apply on the brow line, working your way through the entire length of your eyebrow. Both Perez and Gonzalez recommend doing this daily, especially during your nighttime skincare routine. 

6. Brush daily with a spoolie. 

Building on the above point, brushing your eyebrows with a spoolie (with or without oil) can encourage new growth. Brushing your brows brings circulation to the hair follicle, which can be very helpful in your hair growth journey. Again, you'll want to be careful not to brush too hard, as the harder you brush, the more damage you can cause. This can lead to breakage of your eyebrow hair, which can undo all the hard work you've done up until that point. Brushing in the direction of hair growth is your best bet—and be sure not to press too roughly on your brow. Go in with a very light hand, gently grazing the hair with the spoolie. 

7. Exfoliate your eyebrows. 

We know we mentioned being rough around the area with an eyebrow pencil could make things worse, so you may be hesitant to exfoliate in that area. But, it's incredibly beneficial for your growth process. "This area tends to be neglected when we exfoliate our face," Perez says. "We collect dead skin cells behind our brow hairs. Exfoliating should be gently done once a week. Doing so will slough away dead skin and allow those rich oils to really penetrate the skin and hair shaft." The deeper the oils can penetrate your skin and hair shaft, the better environment you'll create for healthy hair growth. 

8. Apply an eyebrow growth serum. 

Home remedies aren't for everyone. Sometimes you want a skincare product you know will work, no questions asked. In that case, the experts recommend an eyebrow growth serum. They're plentiful and easy-to-use for those who don't trust themselves with anything else. If you follow the instructions of your chosen growth serum, you might be pleasantly surprised with the regrowth you experience—but once you stop using the brow serum or start slacking on your daily routine, your new growth will also subside, so it’s important to be aware of that ahead of time. Try our picks: 

  • DERMADELI Lash & Brow Serum nourishes the hair and supports collagen formation to produce results in as little as two to four weeks.

  • LASHEM All Eyes On You Eyelash & Brow Enhancing Serum is packed with amino acids (aka peptides, which are proteins that serve as the building blocks for hair follicles) to help give you fuller, thicker brows. Those who participated in a six-week clinical trial using this serum noted they saw improved brow growth in just two weeks.

  • Perez is a fan of BORBOLETA Lash Serum because "it’s packed with so many nourishing ingredients" like biotin, keratin, and peptides that work hard to generate eyebrow regrowth.

  • Gonzalez is a big fan of the tried-and-true REVITALASH Revitabrow Advanced Eyebrow Conditioner & Serum. This serum comes highly recommended by dermatologists and beauty professionals worldwide for its scientifically-advanced technology. No brows are too far gone for this serum. 

9. Don't apply just any hair regrowth product. 

Your eyebrow hair and the hair on your head are not the same. This means you shouldn't be using any ol' hair regrowth product on your eyebrows. It may help grow your strands into Rapunzel-like hair, but it could be very damaging for your eyebrows. Gonzalez notes, "Most hair growth products can not be used around your brow area. The skin around our eyes is delicate, making it more prone to skin sensitivity and reactions. Your best bet would be to use hair growth vitamins, biotin, or brow serums." 

10. Make sure you're eating well. 

Maintaining a balanced diet goes a long way on the journey to achieving thicker eyebrows. Eating foods that are rich in biotin, omega 3 fatty acids, and vitamins A, B, C, D, and E can speed up the eyebrow growth process more than you know. Putting the right foods into your body is also a lot easier (and generally, less expensive) than purchasing top-of-the-line eyebrow serums and supplements and sticking to routine eyebrow appointments. Here’s what to put on your plate: 

  • Almonds, avocados, olives, tomatoes, and broccoli will all serve up a heaping dose of vitamin E.

  • Carrots, sweet potatoes, kale, and spinach will deliver vitamin A.

  • To increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, incorporate salmon, walnuts, brussels sprouts, spinach, and kale. 

11. Stay calm.

Fun fact: Thick brows can be a mind game. Recent research has found that stress can impact hair growth (in addition to hair loss), with a 2021 study in Nature finding that low levels of stress over the course of many weeks can keep hair in its “resting” phase—and if it’s resting, it’s definitely not growing. So, if you’re trying to regrow thick eyebrows and feel stressed to the nines, try some calming techniques like deep breathing and mindful meditation. 

12. See your doctor. 

If you’re not having much luck regrowing your eyebrows, consider a visit to your doctor for a prescription. There’s evidence that a topical medication called bimatoprost, aka Latisse, can help with brow-hair loss or a lack of growth—not a huge surprise there, as it’s approved by the FDA for lash regrowth. You do need a prescription for it, though, which is why approval from an M.D. is a must. 

13. Try microblading. 

Did everything on this list and still not seeing any improvements? You might want to consider microblading, which is a semi-permanent ink that’s similar to a tattoo, but much more natural and realistic-looking. That said, it’s definitely the priciest option on this list and not exactly comfortable, since you’re getting ink in your skin—but the cluster of super-fine needles can create incredible results.

If you’re in need of the best products to grow out your eyebrows, your IPSY Glam Bag can deliver them right to your door! Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started. Already an Ipster? Refer your friends to earn points, which you can use toward products. Either way, don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and Twitter @IPSY.

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About the author
Deanna Pai
Deanna Pai
Deanna Pai is a freelance beauty and wellness writer and editor based in New York; her work has appeared in Vogue, Vanity Fair, New York Magazine, and many others.
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Article Last Updated May 26, 2022 12:00 AM