Joey Healy is a prominent eyebrow stylist, professional make-up artist, and licensed esthetician, who has become a favorite among celebrities such as Kyra Sedgwick, Aviva Drescher, Andy Cohen, and more. In 2009, he launched a mobile eyebrow styling division and in 2011, he launched The Joey Healy Eyebrow Collection. He is a master of the brows and was happy to share some of his best tips on how to create the perfect fame for those windows to the soul.
What are some tips you can tell our readers on how to shape their eyebrows?
There are three major components when it comes to eyebrows: positioning of the head (beginning), arch, and tail (end) of the brow. These positions are different on everyone since it’s all based on a woman’s unique bone structure, but the basic rules are: 1. The head should begin at the bridge of the nose. This point can be easily found by vertically holding a pencil up to either side of your nose bone. At this point, the brows should begin in a clean, squared off manner (ideally at a 90 degree angle). Never rounded! 2. The arch should be placed approximately 2/3 of the way out toward the temple. One of the biggest mistakes I see day to day is a centered arch. This gives the dreaded “rainbow” shape! 3. The tail should, at the very least, end on an imaginary line from the corner of the nose to the corner of the eye. You can allow it to extend slightly further as long as that tail doesn’t end lower than where the head begins (this can make the eyes look droopy). Make sure your tails always taper to a crisp point to best lift the eye.
There are so many hair removal options these days- tweezing, waxing, threading, etc. What do you recommend for eyebrows?
My biggest DON'T is by far waxing. Waxing can cause burns, involves chemicals and will ultimately break down your collagen, giving you wrinkles. Threading, while less harsh, creates brow shapes that are harsh, thin and asymmetrical. Threading has become "trendy" in the past few years and draws women in as more of a novelty. Stick with your trusty tweezers and small trimming scissors for optimal results. Not only is it a chemical-free approach that can be used on all skin types (sensitive, retinol users, etc.); the results are simply more precise and thus more flattering. Artistically speaking, you are given complete control to sculpt the brow in a manner best suited to your bone structure. Additionally, chances of ingrown hairs are highly diminished and it is a method that you can uphold at home!
I always have trouble finding a pencil that doesn't make my eyebrows look drawn in - how do you find the perfect eyebrow pencil?
Whether choosing an eyebrow powder or pencil, always make sure you always use waterproof brow products to ensure everything stays in place throughout the day (both my pencils and powders are waterproof). The key to selecting the right pencil is to find one that has the finish of a powder with the precision of a pencil. This means that the product shouldn't contain a lot of wax or have a waxy finish in general. It is vital for pencils to have brow spoolies on the opposite end to blend through the finished product for a soft, natural appearance. Overall, pencils should be easy to apply and build up - many are greasy and go on too quickly (like a cheap eyeliner), while others are so hard they are difficult to build color from. Additionally, retractable pencils are ideal because not only do they never need sharpening, but you will always have a consistent tip to work from. Non-retractable pencils vary from dull nubs to sharp breakable points depending on how often you sharpen them. For powders use a stiff, angled brush for control (like Joey Healy’s Duo Brow Brush). Brushing through the brow several times at the end of a fill creates a more effortless looking result.
Your services include eyebrow tinting - what is the importance of eyebrow color?
Harmony in eyebrow design lies not only in the correct shape, but also in the ideal color. If the enhancement of a color eyebrow cosmetic just isn’t cutting it for you, consider having your eyebrows tinted by a professional. For women with light blonde brows or for those with greys moving in, tinting your eyebrows is an excellent way to bring the most out of your existing shape. A richer brow tone will also immediately enhance your iris color and make the whites of your eyes look brighter. With that said, can you picture blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe without her signature chocolate brown eyebrows? I didn’t think so! Eyebrow color doesn’t adhere to not a one-size fits all rule. For example, most Asian women fair best with a soft charcoal toned brow – not one that matches their jet black, raven hair. Redheads need a kiss of auburn, but a fiery copper brow isn’t always what the doctor ordered. The key here is to assess your hair color’s undertone – warm, neutral or cool and match your brows with an unobtrusive tone in that harmonious range. Blondes are the wildcard here – either a soft ash or chocolate brown can work! The idea is to assess your entire complexion and make sure your brows seem appropriately impactful.
What are some make-up tips that can help accentuate the eyes and eyebrows?
Brows are an essential component of beauty at any age. Not only do they frame your eyes, but they flatter your bone structure and can take years off a face. When a brow is properly shaped, less eye makeup is needed for a finished, yet effortless look. The right brow will help open up the entire eye area and work to improve the face's overall symmetry. Accenting the brows with color will allow you to highlight key points in your shape and give the brow a polished look. With shaping you can only remove hair, but when one embraces “the fill” you can really start to redesign your shape. Choose a pencil (like Joey Healy Brow Architect Stylo) if you need to sharpen up an arch, extend out a tail or cover an obvious gap/scar. Go with a powder (like Joey Healy Luxe Brow Powder) to give more uniform density to an already well-shaped brow that feels sparse. Pencils can be considered more corrective while powders "turn up the volume" on your shape. With that said, women sometimes have a strong preference toward one or the other based on what they personally find easiest to use. In my opinion, working with a powder is easier for a novice because, with a light hand, you can gradually build up the color.
To apply, always start with a small amount of product, then build intensity. Never overdraw your shape, just emphasize key points in the brow by making the most of what you have. To finish always set with a non-crunchy clear gel for hold (like Joey Healy’s Brow Structure Clear Set). This will help to groom unruly brows into submission if they attempt to make a run for it in different directions! Avoid using dense wax-based setting products which are difficult to apply, melt easily and give eyebrow hair a stuck together look. A good trick to help accentuate the eyes and eyebrows is to sweep a matte nude eyeshadow under the brow bone to accentuate your bone structure. Avoid colors with shimmer as this will look inauthentic and make the brow bone look overly pronounced. Using this technique primarily benefits you in two ways. Firstly, your eye makeup will look more polished as it will help you blend out your lid color. Secondly, it will make your brow look cleaner in between shaping by giving a crisper finish to the brow bone area.
Thanks for the tips, Joey!