Eyebrow Tips for Redheads: Best Products & More

Why Redheads Have a Hard Time Perfecting Their Brows

Clockwise from left: Jessica Chastain, Amy Adams and Julianne Moore. Taylor Hill, Jason LaVeris, Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

One of the biggest issues redheads -- both natural and not -- face is figuring out what exactly to do with their eyebrows. Natural redheads tend to have super light brows, while women who color their hair red may want to change up their brow color to better match their hair.

So, what to do?

I reached out to NYC makeup artist and redhead brow expert Ashley Rebecca (a redhead herself!) for tips on eyebrows and red hair. Here, she shares her favorite products, brow tips and more. I also share my favorite tips, picked up over my years writing about beauty. 

How to Pick the Right Product

Brow products come in various forms: powders, tints, gels, and pencils. The choices available can be overwhelming. I wondered if Ashley favored one type of product over another. Turns out, she likes to use all the products, but for different situations.

Powders: "Powders give a very natural finish to the brow and act as a filler for sparse spots"

Pencils: "Pencils give a more defined look and shape to the brow as they are more precise."

Gels: "A gel can be a shaping tool yet one that keeps unruly brows in place." According to Ashley, gels are great, "when you have a fuller brow and want to the hairs to behave. 

Tints: "DIY brow tinting is something that takes practice but you can achieve great tinting results at home, especially if you're looking to save money."

See my list of the Best Eyebrow Products for Redheads.

How to Fix Super Light Brows

"The most common issue redheads face is their brows being quite fair," says Ashley. "Since skin tone is also fair for most redheads, having fair brows can be difficult as they are hard to see on the face."

So what to do in this case?

According to Ashley, "One of the best ways to enhance very light brows is to get them tinted. Consulting a professional hair colorist or person who specializes in brow treatments can help get the perfect shade for those with very fair hair. This way the tint brings the brows out naturally and no one can tell."

But choose your person wisely. "I always advise to consult with someone you know and trust on the matter, because a poor tinting job can take a few weeks to fix," Ashley says.

That Perfect Shade

When it comes to the perfect eyebrow product shade, consider your hair color. You never want your brows and your hair to be matchy-matchy. A shade darker or even lighter is typically best.

For lighter redheads, Ashley recommends taupes and dark blondes. "They are not too ashy," she says. "Too ashy of a brow can cause the skin to look sallow, and draw attention in the wrong kind of way. There should be a slight warmth to the blonde to maintain a natural, elegant look."

Darker redheads might opt for auburn and dark brown shades for brows. When it comes to filling in and shaping brows, "the key is to do this naturally, not drastically," Ashley says.

When it comes to powders and pencils, you will likely have to blend a couple shades to get the right match.

How to Apply Brow Products

When it comes to powder, you need a great eyebrow brush. You can buy one with an angle on one end and a spoolie on the other.

To fill in brows, apply with small strokes, then take a spoolie and "brush" your brows to get rid of excess powder and to set your brows in perfect place.

There are times when you can use both a powder AND a pencil. "You can fill in sparse spots with the powder on the brow, and then use the pencil to help define the arch," says Ashley.

Professional Brow Tinting

Many redheads get their brows professionally tinted. If you're getting your color done, you can have your brows done at the same time.

This is super easy to do and takes just a few minutes, according to Mira, my colorist at Eva Scrivo Salon who does a lot of brows on redheads.

The colorist will pick the right shade for your hair (again, never matching your hair perfectly, but rather choosing a shade that's just a bit darker) and then brush it on with a brow brush or spoolie. This allows the color to tint the hair and not your skin. Any mistakes are soaked up with a Q-tip. After about 5 minutes of setting, the colorist will wash away the color and you'll be left with new brows.

"The key here is to make sure you have a trusted technician who knows the exact color you want and can deliver those results," says Ashley.

See Is it Safe to Color Eyebrows?

DIY Brow Tinting

There are many do-it-yourself brow tinting kits on the market.

"DIY brow tinting is something that takes practice but you can achieve great tinting results at home, especially if you're looking to save money," said Ashley. 

She recommends experimenting with the time. "The first time you try an at home tint, leave it on maybe one minute less than the product recommends, and then gradually add more time as you go."

How to Fix Sparse, Barely-there Brows?

"There are a few ways to jumpstart growth for eyebrows that are thin besides filling them in with pencils, powders, or pomades. Coconut oil massaged into the brows will help stimulate new growth, and serums like NeuBrow can help eyebrows grow thicker and fuller when used consistently.

Thick, Drawn-in Brows: Trendy or Tacky?

I asked Ashley what she thought of the super thick, drawn-in brow trend that women under 30 are wearing so often these days.

"We're going to see less of this year and I couldn't be more thrilled. Overdrawn brows can look cartoonish rather than chic, and unfortunately this trend has taken over social media far too long. While brows might look perfect in photographs, the overly drawn eyebrow looks frightening up close," she said.

How to Keep Your Brows in Place All Day

To keep your perfect brows in place after you fill them in with pencil or powder, apply clear eyebrow gel or clear mascara. Ashley recommends Maybelline New York Great Lash Clear Mascara for Lash and Brow. I also like Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel.

You can also "spray hairspray on your brow brush and quickly brush through the hair to set them," says Ashley. A clean toothbrush works here in a pinch, as does spraying hairspray on your finger and swiping over each brow.

Once your brows are perfect and set, "don't touch them!" Ashley says.

Favorite Products

Ashley shared her favorite brow products with me.

"Some of my favorite products to use on redheads for eyebrows are Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow pomade in auburn, MAC Brow Pencil in Lingering, and Gwen Stefani's collab with Urban Decay brow box in 'bathwater blonde.'"

Find Ashley on her Website, follow her on Instagram and give a shout-out on Twitter.