Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Makeup Micro-Haul: Brow Gels

Last week, my micro-haul involved makeup for the brows, which I took time to review. It's hard to look for quality brow products out there and which ones to haul.

First up is the Shu Uemura counter at Rockwell where I visited EJ again. I've always made it a point to give him a visit each time I go to Rockwell to say hi and give a makeup update. At the display section, I saw three new jars similar to the painting liner jars but the jars were translucent. This happened to be a new product - eyebrow gels, which were eyebrow makeup similar to eyebrow pencils and eyebrow powders but in a gel-to-powder form.
On the jar, the product looks creamy but when I swatched it on my hand, it dried to a powder-like finish. I tried it on my brows (I was recommended the shade Seal Brown, which was a universal color) and I liked how natural and defined it looked. I purchased a jar but not before doing a final test: I went to the sink and ran my swatched hand under the water: NO BUDGE. I owned the jar. SoldThe swatch is an ashy brown, which looks good for male makeup (I used it for my Men of Leq shoot on Mauricio) or for subtle definition without looking pencilled in. We all know how we hate how fake the pencilled-in brow looks so this wins the deal for me. It's good to use on its own too, just as I did here:
What I like about it is that it also wasn't tricky to use, so you can layer little amounts first, since one application really isn't that strong. This is good for brow makeup beginners. It really makes a huge difference. I also was told that Seal Brown is the bestseller eyebrow pencil shade. Makeup like this is best applied with an angled eyebrow brush with stiff synthetic bristles. Makeup like this is best applied either after pencil or on its own. I actually used like 3 layers on the swatch above, so you could see how light it is, that's why I recommend this for brow beginners. It's less messy too than powder.

Last Monday, I passed by the MAC counter. By pure instinct and intuition, I looked for the Girl Boy brow set, since a lot of my clients have been asking about it. There was just one left. It was mine, fate implies it. and it's mine.

About MAC Brow Sets, I was at first hesitant to use it before, especially then when I was scared of brows. However, after trying them on, I was like, "How come I didn't use it sooner?" As of today, I have two shades: Sophisticated and Girl Boy, both purchased at MAC Makati. I'm about to purchase a third shade, Beguile soon.

My MAC Brow Sets: Girl Boy and Sophisticated

As MAC states, Brow Set is:

"A brush-on gel that grooms and slicks brows into shape without flaking or stiffening the brows. Available in several tinted shades or clear, it can be used on its own, or for a nice natural look stroke over Eye Brows. May also be used on lashes, sideburns, and chops - any facial hair."

[text credits]

Remember the old-school way of using clear mascara or hairspray and a mascara spoolie to set brows? This works the same way. There is the classic Clear brow set, for those who want no color. The tinted brow sets really are something, which can soften an expression with a lighter shade. This can be used to also match the eyebrow hair color with the head hair color, particularly if you have dyed your hair but forgot to color in the eyebrows.

My first brow set is Sophisticated, which is a blond shade. However, this shade is no longer available at the MAC website (waaaah!). I like how it softens my brows in a pretty blond hue, which looks good especially at summer.
I really hope MAC brings back Sophisticated, because it really is a pretty shade and I really love it. However, for those who want the same ashy blonde effect, a good alternative could be Beguile, which is a full-bodied taupe.

Girl Boy is another bestseller, when I was at the store last week, it was sold out and a lot of clients were looking for it. When the stocks came, it was sold in a few days' time and I bought the last stock. It's actually a fawn-blonde shade, sort of reddish so it warms up the expression and it's got more definition than sophisticated. Girl Boy is good for girls too who dyed their hair red or warm honey shades. Despite that this shade is reddish, it didn't turn into that ugly and fake reddish brow.

Here are my two brow sets in comparison:

Sophisticated is lighter and Girl Boy is actually warmer but they still give a slight tint. Notice how the difference in color can alter the shape and expression of the eye. In order to apply Brow Sets, I usually recommend to my clients to bend the wand a bit at an approximately 45-degree angle. Just be gentle with it though and bend it slowly. I use light pressure in applying the color in feathery strokes, just slightly tinting the brow hairs. In case I got too much color, I can always brush it off with a clean mascara wand/brush/spoolie. I think the angle helps me control the application better. If there's too much product on the wand, you could wipe off the excess with a clean tissue. Brow Sets are applied after eyebrow makeup, as it tames the brows while giving it a tint. Just as how we set our makeup with loose translucent powder, this serves the same purpose.

My two hauls actually blend well with one another. On testing the MAC Brow Sets, I actually used my Shu Uemura eyebrow gel first to define my eyebrows and then set them with the Brow Sets in their corresponding colors. The effect is very natural without sacrificing the brow definition I want. Very ideal for beauty makeup.

MAC Brow Sets are available at all MAC Counters (Tower, Glorietta, and Marionnaud) for Php870. Other shades aside from the ones shown are Clear, Beguile, and Show-Off.

Shu Uemura Eyebrow Gels retail for Php1,375. As of now, I know it's only available at the Rockwell store. Again, a slanted eyebrow brush is recommended for this.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info.Great blog! What do you prefer the MUFE corrector or the Shu uemura?=)

Steph said...

oh wow im surprised that the shu brow gel is relatively cheap compared to their usual price range? well i dunno really. i have a handful of shu products but most of them were presents. lol

i loooooooove the mac brow set! i have one in girlboy. im targeting to buy beguile too next time :)

Bambi said...

@Anonymous: I like both, I have both. :) For beginners I recommend the Shu Uemura. The MUFE can be used better to cover eyebrow tattoo jobs gone wrong or for more definition. I guess it just depends on my mood. if I want subtle definition, I go for shu. If I want really stronger brows, I'd go for MUFE

@ Steph: Beguile's good. I still miss Sophisticated though (MAC Please bring it back), So Beguile is a good alternative too.