What Is Eyebrow Feathering?

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Feathering may be a solution for unruly brows.
Feathering may be a solution for unruly brows. (Image: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Eyebrow feathering is a beauty technique for taming those unruly hairs above the eyes. Unlike traditional tweezing and waxing procedures, feathering focuses on removing the least amount of hair possible in order to achieve a more natural look. The procedure can be done professionally or in your own home, depending on your preference and skills. Some women also opt for permanent makeup to enhance feathering, but it’s not required for this type of grooming.

Process of Feathering

Feathering is based on a process that is designed to leave as much hair on each end of the eyebrow as possible. Slightly more hair is removed around the arch of the brows to emphasize your eyes. However, most of the hair is left at the front of the eyebrows, with the exception of a few stray hairs. The backs are thinned out to resemble a tail-like effect. After eyebrow feathering, your brows should look like thin feathers.

Traditional Tweezing

It is easier to achieve feathered eyebrows through tweezing. Some professionals prefer to remove every other hair during this procedure for a softer look -- something that can’t be achieved with waxing. If you’re skilled with tweezers, you may be able to pull off this look in the comfort of your own home. However, due to the intricate nature of the technique, consider leaving the work up to a professional.

Permanent Makeup

Permanent makeup involves implanting color into the skin in lieu of putting on cosmetics every day. This procedure is sometimes combined with eyebrow feathering. Permanent makeup can help distribute color to the eyebrows without having to use a brow liner. You may find that the overall result looks more natural than using pencils. The downside is you will need regular brow maintenance to complement the permanent makeup.

Safety Concerns

Eyebrow feathering poses few safety concerns. Disinfect your tweezers with alcohol prior to use. The largest risks are associated with permanent makeup used in conjunction with feathering. Check that the spa professional is licensed before the procedure. Many permanent makeup techniques mimic those of tattooing, so it is important you properly follow the after-care instructions. These include ample moisturizing with lotion and avoiding excess sun exposure. If a rash develops, call a doctor.

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