Everything You Need To Know Before Bleaching Your Brows

Photos by JP Yim/Getty Images

Things to consider before you make the leap

So, you've been thinking about bleaching your brows.

There's no doubt that taking your brows from your natural color to platinum, barely there shade is a look—and one that only the daring tend to take. But after we gushed over the brows at Alexander Wang's Fall 2019 Collection showing, where all of his girls—including Kaia Gerber—had theirs bleached on site, we're suddenly all itching to try this look out for ourselves.

But much like with making the decision to change the hair on your head, there are a lot of things to know and consider before you go ahead and bleach your brows. Like how often they will need to be touched up, and the risks that come along with DIYing it—but also, just how easy it is to fix if you ultimately decide it's just not a look for you.

We chatted with colorists and bleach experts Hannah Edelman (otherwise known as Hannah The Painter) of Brush In Hand Hair Studio and Julia Elena of Hairstory to get the lowdown on all you need to know before taking the leap. Get the full scoop, below.

Anyone can pull off bleached brows if done right (and worn with confidence)
Edelman splits brow bleaching into three major categories based on intensity. The first (and least intense) category is a shift, which is a subtle lightening—usually one shade lighter—ideal for someone who colors their hair a shade or two lighter than their natural. Next is the medium category, which she describes as a "bleach and tone," which is a two-step process that involves a lightener and a demi-permanent color. The third, the most intense and extreme, is the full bleach out—which is the edgy look we saw at Alexander Wang.

With that said, all levels of intensity can work on all skin tones and hair colors, as brows can be toned to flatter your skin's undertones. "As a general rule of thumb, your brows should match your hair's base color, aka the darkest shade of your hair," says Edelman. "If your natural color is much darker than your base color, bumping your brows lighter will create a more cohesive and convincing overall look."

However, if a full bleach is what you're going for, you can throw all rules out the window, according to Edelman. "[The wearer] doesn't care about the rules. It's a bold, in-your-face, on-your-face look carried by the wearer's badass confidence."

Be aware that you will get attention with this look
While we can all agree that bleached brows are a fun look to try out, Elena wants you to keep in mind that they also come with a bit of vulnerability. "You're exposing your face to something non-conforming after all, so you do need to be ready for that when you decide to bleach your brows."

You can achieve your desired look in just one session
Unlike trying to bleach your head from chocolate brown to platinum blonde—which can sometimes require multiple, spaced-out sessions—you can achieve the alien brow look of your dreams in just one session, according to Elena. "Usually, I bleach the brows in one session, and sometimes I may need to reapply for a bit depending on the original brow color." Easy, peasy.

Keep in mind, brows grow fast
After you bleach your brows, Elena points out that you'll begin to see your roots in just one week, and you'll see your natural color coming back in about two. Your brows will likely need to be touched up more often than you touch up your regular hair color if you dye or bleach it, too.

Go to a professional
While some bleach aficionados might want to DIY a bleached brow at home, Edelman suggests going to a professional—especially if you're going for the full bleach out. "A carefully applied brow shift can be done at home, but I would defer to a professional in any other case," she says. "I am going to give you a Jewish mother spiel: the risks are real! Your skin could have adverse reactions such as blistering, bleeding, and/or bruising. You could accidentally get the product in your eye. With any at-home lightening sesh, there is a possibility of severely damaging your hair."

Elena agrees—warning that, gulp, far scarier results can occur: "In an extreme case, you can lose your brows altogether if the bleach is left on too long." Nobody wants singed brows or a blistery forehead, so take their advice and seek the skills of a professional.

However, if you really trust yourself enough to DIY it (and aren't trying to go more than a shade or two lighter), make sure you protect your skin. "Apply a petroleum jelly base around your brows to protect your forehead and sensitive eyelid," says Edelman. "Place small pieces of foil over your eyebrows while they're processing. Also, try using a lightener that contains coconut oil, such as Pravana, to help soothe and protect your skin."

Don't worry if you end up hating them
So, you decided to go for it and decide it's just not for you—no need to panic, they are easily fixable according to Edelman. "You have options," she says. "After a shameful Insta story, a few minutes of demi-permanent color will put your brows back to where you want 'em. Be nice and put a little conditioner on them, too."

Elena kids that if you hate them, you can just shave them—but, no, really, she points out that you can tone them back to your original color or even try a different color should you feel adventurous. "Just remember, you can always have your brows back if you don't like the bleached look."

So, if you happen to find yourself bleached brow-curious, you might as well give it a whirl.

Photo courtesy of Helen Sloan/HBO

"And now our watch has ended"

In a thoughtful tribute on Instagram, actress Emilia Clarke said goodbye to Game of Thrones, and her character, Daenerys Targaryen.

Clarke posted a gallery of photos including some group shots with the rest of the cast, as well as a closeup of Dany's intricately braided hair, and a still from the show. "Finding the words to write this post has left me overwhelmed with how much I want to say but how small words feel in comparison to what this show and Dany have meant to me," she wrote, continuing to say that "Game of Thrones has shaped me as a woman, as an actor, and as a human being."

"The mother of dragons chapter has taken up the whole of my adult life. This woman has taken up the whole of my heart," she wrote. "I've sweated in the blaze of dragon fire, shed many tears at those who left our family early, and wrung my brain dry trying to do Khaleesi and the masterful words, actions (and names) I was given, justice." She also gave a nod to her father, who died in 2016, saying that she wishes he was still alive "to see how far we've flown."

Clarke finished by thanking her fans, telling them that "without you there is no us... I owe you so much thanks, for your steady gaze at what we've made and what I've done with a character that was already in the hearts of many before I slipped on the platinum wig of dreams," she said. "And now our watch has ended."

Photo courtesy of HBO

Don't reusable cups exist in Westeros?

Apparently, no one could keep their drinks off-set during the final season of Game of Thrones. The show, which has been known for its meticulous editing, has featured a Starbucks coffee cup in an episode, and now, a plastic water bottle. Someone get these characters a reusable cup!

Yes, in the final episode of the series, there's a disposable water bottle hidden in plain sight in one of the scenes. If you look closely enough, you'll see the bottle peeking out from behind Samwell Tarly's leg in a scene where many characters were arguing about the fate of Westeros.

Another water bottle was spotted by someone else, hiding behind Ser Davos Seaworth's foot.

It seems that everyone was too parched on the set of the final episode to worry about a misplaced water bottle making it into the final shots. Some are speculating that the team left them in on purpose as payback to the writers for the series' ending.

We just really hope that everyone in the series recycles. If there are disposable cups and plastic bottles available in the fictional world, we hope that there's an ethical way of disposing of them. Otherwise, well, it might be more disappointing than the series finale itself.

Screenshot via YouTube

It's so good

Lana Del Rey released a cover of Sublime's 1997 song "Doin' Time," and she made it completely her own. That means it's the perfect combination of trippy melancholia and full-out lust.

According to Rolling Stone, the cover will appear in an upcoming documentary which will "[outline] the history of the iconic California band." In a statement, Del Rey said, "Not a day goes by that I don't listen to at least one Sublime song. They epitomized the SoCal vibe and made a genre and sound totally their own."

Bud Gaugh, a member of the band, "We are so excited to be collaborating with Lana on this. The smoky, sexy, and iconic sound of her voice breathes new life into one of our favorite singles." It certainly does.

My personal favorite part of the cover is the fact that Del Rey doesn't change the gender of the person the song is about, like so many musicians often do. Instead, Del Rey's intonation of "me and my girl, we got this relationship/ I love her so bad but she treats me like shit" is gay rights.

Listen to Del Rey's cover of "Doin' Time," below.

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Photo by JP Yim/Getty Images

Sounds fake, but okay

In a new interview for Australian Vogue, Kendall Jenner makes the claim that being associated with the Kardashian name was a setback in her modeling career. Hmmm, that's funny, because power and influence usually works in their holder's favor.

In the interview, Jenner addresses skeptics who doubted that she would make it as a professional model. "A lot of people assumed that because I came from a 'name' that it was a lot easier for me to get to where I got, but actually it's the completely opposite," she says.

"I've always been the person to prove [critics] wrong, even when I was younger," she says. "I've always been a hard worker: that's in my blood. My parents raised me and my little sister to be that way and the rest of my sisters, too." In the profile, it's revealed that Jenner used to attend castings "simply as 'K' or 'Kendall' to distinguish herself from her famous family."

But keeping her name off her portfolio wasn't going to fool anyone, really. Her face has been on television for years, and it seems unlikely that a casting agent wouldn't know who she was even if Kendall didn't come out and say it. Perhaps Jenner was more closely examined and more readily criticized by people who doubted her, but I'm not sure I believe that she had a harder time gaining a modeling platform or booking big jobs, even if she didn't use her last name.

After all, Jenner was likely able to get into those big casting rooms right away because of her family's connections, and she was able to devote her time to pursuing that career because of the wealth they have. She would've had a much harder time making a name for herself if she didn't come from an influential family. She probably wouldn't get to be so selective about which shows she walks, and she definitely wouldn't be the highest paid model in the world.


She shares her experience with 'The Sun Will Come Up, The Seasons Will Change'

Nina Nesbitt has "experienced every possibility" when it comes to putting music out into the world, and she's better for it. With her recent album The Sun Will Come Up, The Seasons Will Change, she put out her most personal work yet, digging into some of the best and messiest moments of life. Previously, she'd lent these stories to other voices as she wrote for a variety of artists, but this time she wanted to have a project just for her—and clearly, the fans did as well, as it's gotten over 150 million streams and counting.

Watch the video above to get a taste of Nesbitt's journey and sound.

Produced by: Alexandra Hsie
Camera: Dani Okon and Charlotte Prager
Edited by: Madeline Stedman