Sold by TikTokers as an instant face lift, straight brows are back to haunt us once again. Achieved by shaving, plucking, or waxing the tail of your eyebrow, you’re left with a straight line of brow that rides your brow bone up towards your temples in a smooth arch.
Straight Eyebrows: The Brow Shape From the Past
With over 11 billion views in the #straightbrows hashtag on Tiktok, it’s clear this trend is about to be everywhere. According to converts, the look is everything they needed and more: a facelift without the surgery; filler without the injection. This brow trend is all about lift, pulling the features upwards with the use of well-placed straight lines. Our eyebrows are one of the only hard lines on our faces, so the idea of chopping off the arch and using that straight line to create the look of lift makes sense.
And undeniably, it can look good on some people.
Bella Hadid, the primary celebrity example of the trend, wears her lack of eyebrow arch well, as it pulls her sculpted features sky high. Even as far back as the iconic Audrey Hepburn, a straight brow has been used to flattering effect, balancing out rounded features and providing the illusion of lift in the arch. The straight line and lack of arch creates an upwards optical illusion not seen in arched brows, which can tend to drag down your face. The brow is one of our most prominent features, and making small changes to it can drastically change your entire appearance.
The idea of drawing your features upward is the same kind of logic that we use when applying contour and blush: You want to avoid pulling your face down at all costs, and these straight lines provide the illusion of lift. So, it makes sense that the tail end of your eyebrow would be on the chopping block eventually.
The Problem With The Straight Brow Trend
The only problem? Eyebrow hairs are notoriously delicate and hard to regrow. When this trend eventually goes back to the late 90s-inspired scrapbook it belongs in, you might be left having to pencil in your brows forever. With your eyebrows being one of the most prominent, noticeable parts of your face, you’ll want them at full health.
Take it from someone who started tweezing at twelve, you will miss those hairs when they are gone.
Don’t Sabotage Your Brow Look
According to Washington D.C. dermatologist Tina Alster, MD, the reason your brows may never come back has to do with a combination of slow hair growth and skin fibrosis. “Brow hair grows slowly, so be careful to avoid plucking hairs in areas where hair regrowth is desired,” Dr. Alster says. “Repetitive hair plucking in a single area can cause skin fibrosis to occur which can lead to unwanted (long-standing) hair loss.”
Skin fibrosis is caused by the repeated trauma of plucking or waxing, and can result in patches of thicker, darker skin. In an area as fragile as the eye, the increase of texture in these skin patches can be especially noticeable. So much so that it negates the lift a straight brow can offer.
If you’re eager to jump on this incredibly popular trend, just be warned: Your brows will need time and help to recover. And when all is said and done, you may not be able to revive them.