ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

by Paris B on · 70 comments

in Brow pencil,Cheap and Good?,Makeup,Product Reviews


Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On March 5, 2014
Last modified:March 5, 2014

Summary:

I have great love for Shu Uemura Hard 9 Brow pencils especially the way they are beautifully shaped into that sword shape that makes it a breeze to pencil in brows. It was so good, I reviewed it twice, right on this blog right here.

I never got the hang of sharpening and shaping it myself so I always send mine in to a Shu Uemura store/counter, which is a complimentary service, and this is where I ran into problems. I get wildly differing service and shapes of my brow pencils at different counters/stores. Generally, the Mid Valley Megamall store is efficient and friendly and my pencils come back looking good and well shaped. The counter at Pavilion KL is horrible. My pencils always come back looking 2 inches shorter than when I left them there and the service is surly. I wonder what they do to them – eat them? But recently, even the Mid Valley store failed me with quite ugly looking pencils so I got a wee bit fed up. I needed some brow pencils that didn’t need sharpening!

A chance visit to a Watson’s store saw me contemplating the ZA Cosmetics counter and a friendly sales assistant asked if I might be interested in some of their products.

za ever brow ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

One thing led to another and I walked away with the ZA Ever Brows – a slim retractable brow pencil that costs a fraction of what Shu Uemura costs.

And you know what? I like it! I’ve been using mine for a while, used interchangably with the ones from Shu Uemura and I’m quite happy with this one icon smile ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

One side of the pencil is a twist up brow pencil as you see above. On the other end, covered with a cap is a spiral brush which allows you to soften the effect and make it look more natural.

za ever brow brush ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

I must warn you however, that the pencil comes in a round, non-angled shape and when new, is quite a bother to use as the sides are flat. So what I did was run the pencil gently on the back of my hand (or you can use a piece of tissue paper) to round off the edges.

You may notice that mine in the first picture above looks like it has a slanted tip. That’s through use, and isn’t its natural shape. After using it for a while, it’ll slowly conform to your usual style and shape itself accordingly.

There are 4 shades available, and I picked 03 Natural Gray, which as the name implies, is a natural grey-brown that is close to my hair colour without being too stark. I take Seal Brown in the Shu Uemura pencil so I have here a quick side by side comparison.

za brow swatch ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

Being brow pencils, both aren’t easy to swatch on skin although they work well on the hairs of the brow. I ran them a few times on my hand to get the colour to show up.

The Shu Uemura pencil feels harder and on brows, has a sheerer colour so I find it easy to control. I’ve been using it for years so I’ve had a lot of practice. The ZA Ever Brows has a slightly softer texture and the colour comes off more easily so it is quite easy to overdo, which is where the brush at the other end comes in. I like to run the brush over my brow after I’m done, to soften the lines, make it look more natural and sheer out the colour. It all happens in a few seconds so it’s not like I’m spending 2 hours on my brows icon razz ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

Here’s an example of how my brows look when I use the ZA Ever Brows pencil.

za brow before after ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

The pencil helps me fill out sparse bits of brow, and shape it. Effect wise, I get about the same effect as I would with my Shu Uemura pencil with the added bonus of it being much more affordable, and not having to trudge down to a store every time I need it sharpened. Sure, I could use the Shu pencil in its natural round shape but I don’t like that, finding regular round brow pencils hard to manage. I need that sword edge icon razz ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

za ever brow size ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

Oh and is it longlasting? Well, it lasts me a whole work day till I get home and remove my makeup so I’d say it does a pretty good job. I really have no complaints about this one. It’s affordable, portable and does a pretty good job and at the end of the day, that’s all we really want with our makeup icon smile ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

In a nutshell

If you want a quick, easy to use brow pencil, take a look at the ZA Ever Brows which is a retractable slim pencil that comes with a spiral brush at the opposite end. I do find that when new, it is a little hard to use as the pencil comes flat at the top with an edge. While new, run it over your skin a few time to soften and round off the edge and it becomes a lot easier to use then. I find the slim shape useful in drawing short strokes on the brow and the spiral brush assists to sheer out colour and make it look more natural. It won’t turn you into an expert at drawing brows but it makes it easier for you to practise.

Pros: Affordable, Retractable pencil does not need sharpening, Easy to use, Pigmented, Brush it comes with is useful, Longlasting, Portable

Cons: The flat tip when new takes some getting used to, Construction feels light and flimsy

Who will like this: Anyone who is in the market for an affordable, easy to use brow pencil

I’ve been quite pleased with this ever since I got it. It is very useful to travel with as I never have to worry about its tip breaking off the way I do with Shu and the brush included helps minimize mistakes. I do still like my Shu Uemura pencil but this way, I get to prolong my trips to the Shu Uemura store/counter and minimize my interaction with the increasingly poor service I’ve been getting on my recent visits.

Have you tried this affordable brow pencil from ZA? What brow pencil do you use that you will recommend?

I am always quite pleasantly surprised by products from ZA every time I try them. If you didn’t know, they are a subsidiary brand of Shiseido that was only sold outside of Japan (I know, strange!) But recently, they started selling them in Japan I believe. I like one of their bases too – can’t recall the name but I’ll review it some day. For their asking prices, ZA is a good brand to take a look at for affordable, effective makeup icon smile ZA Ever Brows : The affordable, effective brow pencil that just works!

Paris B

ZA Ever Brows retractable brow pencil come sin 4 shades Price: RM21+ (Often available at a discount) Availability: ZA counters at most major pharmacies

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[ 70 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

Angelina March 5, 2014 at 9:24 am

Your review comes just in time. I’m looking for a new brow pencil since mine has finished. Will check it out later.

Reply

Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:12 pm

Hopefully it’ll work for you too!

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Fathin March 5, 2014 at 9:39 am

I’m not sure about eyebrow products. I don’t pluck/wax my eyebrows as I like them natural and some people commented mine already look good as if I did shape it LOL And most of pictures I’ve seen that people pencil/color/shape their eyebrows, they just look something not right.

Maybe I just get brow brush :D

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:13 pm

Oh lucky you Fathin! :D I’ve got pretty sparse brows so since I learned how to pencil them in, I have been doing it. Lifts and balances the face better and yes, if you already have good brows that only need a bit of shaping, some brow gel may work too.

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shasha March 5, 2014 at 10:29 am

I own this brow pencil, and it has been my go to for quite a while! The one that was kind of HG for me was the Stage Brow Defining Pencil in Nutmeg, but too bad I cant find it anymore in any of the Stage counters… :(

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:14 pm

Oh good, another fan! :) Stage seems to have disappeared somewhat haven’t they?

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rinnah
Twitter:
March 5, 2014 at 10:31 am

Haven’t used ZA myself personally but my mom has used it before and it seems quite ok for the price.

PB, if you’re looking for options for the sword blade style brow pencils that don’t require sharpening, I’ve used Empro (a bit pricey) and Missha (current use).

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:16 pm

Ooh yes I remember you telling me to try Empro. Will take a look next time. I think the reason I passed on it once was because I couldn’t find a shade I liked but you’re right, it’s quite pricey. Surprised me too!

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Am March 5, 2014 at 11:12 am

With shu umera being an up market brand you would think they would hire sales people with better attitude and training. But ZA does have good stuff.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:17 pm

You’d think so right? Pity it’s not always the case. ZA is quite underrated but their colour stuff tend to be a bit of a miss for me.

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Ailyn March 11, 2014 at 6:40 pm

i liked their foundation when i was younger.. now i am partial to mousse

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 13, 2014 at 4:54 pm

Ooh any particular mousse formula? I like their Whitening foundation. So affordable and works well!

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Ailyn March 13, 2014 at 6:05 pm

maybelline dream mousse is very nice =)
ZA’s whitening foundation is probably new, I used to have their 2 way foundation, that’s telling you how long ago I had that one =P
Plus ZA not available in Australia at least not in Adelaide =(

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 14, 2014 at 10:47 am

Oh yeah I didn’t realise you were in Australia! The ZA whitening foundation isn’t new, been a few years. Very affordable!

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Victoria March 5, 2014 at 11:17 am

I just got my Shu Uemura Hard 9 Brow pencil sharpened last month at the Pavilion counter and I think you are right about it looking a bit shorter. The next time I get it sharpened, I need to pay careful attention to it. Although my eyebrows are not sparse, I find that I used up the pencil quite quickly and I think I would need to get it sharpened less than 2 months of usage. Wonder if I am using it correctly? LOL.

Does this ZA brown pencil comes in a similar colour to Stone Grey? That seems to be the perfect colour for my brows and it would be great if I could find a cheaper dupe. I bought an eye brow cum eye liner in deep brown from Guerlain late last year. It is a soft crayon which does not require sharpening but I need to apply it with a light hand as it is quite easy to overdo it.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:19 pm

I swear the SAs at Pavilion eat these pencils or something >.< I’m always unpleasantly surprised whenever I get them handed back to me. I actually use mine quite quickly too, which is why I have 2 so I don’t have to get them sharpened as often. I know, it’s a decadence but I just don’t go out enough to the malls! :P Natural Grey 03 is the closest to Stone Grey I believe. The 2 lighter shades are a bit too brown so it’s not natural.

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Ginny March 5, 2014 at 11:48 am

Thanks for the heads up on ZA and the warning on Shu Uemura’s sub-standard service, PB! The ZA Everbrow will be my next purchase when my current brow pencil runs out. Your recommendations always work for me!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:19 pm

Good to know that Ginny! :D And I bet you’re heaving a sigh of relief that this one won’t hurt the wallet ;)

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Cynthia March 5, 2014 at 12:01 pm

I’ve been using this eyebrow pencil since 2 years back! I found this when the SA in ZA recommended me and surprisingly I liked it! The price is so affordable compared to Shu or Empro. So I don’t mind if it drops or lose. :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Woohoo! Yay for good ZA SAs! :D I don’t feel bad about it too although the initial use does take some getting used to as the edge is so flat, but once I get the hang of it, it’s been smooth sailing all the way :D

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lyn
Twitter:
March 5, 2014 at 12:07 pm

I switch between the Silky Girl and MAC if using a brow pencil. I don’t usually bother with my brows but am making an effort these days. The other one I use is a Shu eyeshadow in a brown-grey shade.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:21 pm

The beauty of having a fringe is not having to care for brows! ;)

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wan March 5, 2014 at 3:24 pm

i’ve use this previously and been purchasing them 3 times same color natural grey, now am using avon brow pencils for the sake of finishing it…lol
but i still keep the Za one to use the brush to sheer out the color like u did.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:22 pm

Yay for liking this one too Wan :) I was very pleasantly surprised to find such an affordable and effective product!

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Biianca March 5, 2014 at 4:00 pm

Ooo speaking of sword edge, there’s an eyebrow pencil from Daiso that has the sword edge like Empro and Shu Uemura’s. It looks like Empro’s, so you don’t need to sharpen it. It has a spoolie at the end and it cost 5 bucks only!! Hehe I’m not sure about the availability in Daisos near you because the nearest one to me, Pyramid doesn’t stock it anymore but my cousin says that Paradigm has it and she stocked up a couple cause she’s from Australia and says that Daiso Australia is more exp after conversion. I have the same problem with you on Shus eyebrow pencil and now I’m glad to report that I found a sub in Daisos eyebrow pencil talk about win !! Lol

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:23 pm

Thanks for the rec Biianca! :D I think I actually know which one you’re talking about because I’ve used it before. A friend used to rave about it and got me one to try and you’re right, it’s pretty good but I can’t remember why I stopped using it. I think the colour didn’t suit me or something but it’s great for the price! Thanks for reminding me of it :)

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Jess March 5, 2014 at 4:48 pm

Ah my friend Cynthia has just been raving about them to me.. and i was telling myself yesterday okay will buy this after I ran out my Empro one… and your review comes timely! Got to agree that sending the Shu Uemura one to sharpen is a hassle and they always come back differently… and now I misplaced it….

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 7:24 pm

Hahaha yes Cynthia loves this one doesn’t she? Did you get one yet? The Shu pencil is great and I love it but getting it sharpened is always quite an adventure :P

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Sunny
Twitter:
March 5, 2014 at 8:20 pm

Eeeee thanks for putting this on my radar! I have a real soft spot for twist-up brow pencils with a spoolie, so I will definitely try to lay my hands on one ASAP! The shade looks very natural on you as well. Looks like a winner!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:04 pm

Yes! Next time you head back to Taiwan, try it. Cheap & good!

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Applegal March 6, 2014 at 8:08 am

You’re right about the service at Pavillion! I’m fine with the service at One U, Midvalley, but Pavillion. . . Except for the male SA, he’s alright. The female SAs. . . Let’s just say I can get better service from the local coffeeshops :P So far I’ve not sent my eyebrow pencil in for sharpening, but 2 inches off the original pencil?? That’s a lot!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:09 pm

So I’m not alone in my grouse of the Pavilion store! Really bugs me to the point I now no longer even want to go near them. Half the time no one wants to even bother serving you.

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Firn March 6, 2014 at 11:03 am

I prefer the brow marker by K-Palette. I find pencils make lines that are too chunky and the brow ALWAYS looks drawn on/you can tell that there has been so man-made enhancement! I prefer a very discreetly enhanced brow and the 02 shade by K-Palette is great for shading in individual hairs. Then I darken my own brow hairs with Benefit’s Gimme Brow gel (perfect grey brown shade without any hint of rust/redness which I absolutely abhor with my black hair).

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:18 pm

I’ve heard of the K palette brow pen. Its like a felt tip pen right? Will have to look for it here. A makeup artist used it on my brows once and I liked the effect but it looks a little worrying cos I’m always making mistakes and pencils allow me to rub them off lol! Ooh I’ve also heard good things bout the Benefit brow gel! I might want to try using powder again soon. It was how I was doing my brows before I got into the Shu pencil

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Firn March 11, 2014 at 9:12 am

You can rub it off if it hasn’t fully-dried. I sometimes also use a cotton bud to sheer it out. It’s waterproof but it doesn’t stand up to friction. :) Also I find the “ink” that comes out very sheer so it’s easy to go really light and build up from there. Other brands do have similar pens but the colour goes on heavier.

I find powder only looks good if you already have a lot of brow hair. If not, it just looks like you drew on your brows, which is NOT a good look (like how Sophia of Retail Therapy does her brows, it clearly looks very artificial). I think everyone is trying to get on the Cara Delevigne/Korean bold brows (including me haha!) but I think we have to accept that we may not have such bushy brows and just work accordingly, for work/day looks anyway.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Ok I’m going to have to hunt down that K Palette brow pen thingy! Tsk, and people say I’m an enabler? ;) Oh I have noticed the Korean trend of thick straight brows. I don’t quite get the straight brow look. I think mine look better with a bit of arch to them – also fiercer which helps in work HAHA! :P

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Firn March 11, 2014 at 2:06 pm

Teehee. I like the straight brow look because it makes me look younger. But straight-er brows can make you look quite intellectual (like Natalie Portman). My brows tend to grow quite straight, so again just work with what you have?

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm

Absolutely! :D I tried the straight brow look once (my brows naturally arch) and it looked weird, like I wasn’t me. Which tells you that brows can change your look and face more than we realise! :)

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Firn March 11, 2014 at 9:15 am

Benefit is better for a more understated brow. But if you build it up, you can get seriously bold brows. :D It does bleed out a little, but maybe it’s because I usually apply it over a thick base of sunscreen…

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Ting March 6, 2014 at 11:26 am

ooooo I love your filled in brow! :D About your Shu Uemura pencil coming back 2 inches shorter… maybe ants ate some of it?? HAHAHA! It’s true you know! My friend’s brow pencil was eaten by ants (I don’t know which kind)!! Her ants must be cosmetic conscious huh? :p

About lasting power… I don’t usually pay attention to it as brows are “high up on the face” and are usually left alone. Unless one has a tendency to vigorously rub one’s eyebrows under stress… hehehe

I like the L’Oreal one, called Super Brow Architect or something. It comes in 3 parts: brow pencil, sponge tip with brownish powder (can double up as eyeshadow!) and spooli.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:21 pm

Lol!! Ants with expensive taste! But no, I think the SAs got hungry :P like you, I don’t notice fading on brows either. I used to use shadow on the brows before I used pencils and with that I did notice some fading, so I think the waxier texture of pencils help colour stay in place better. I don’t remember the Loreal one but will take a look next time I’m out.

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Sharlynn Ng March 6, 2014 at 1:43 pm

Sounds and looks like a product that does what it says! Im planning to pick up an eyebrow pencil from lioele! I really don’t find a need for an expensive eyebrow product as I don’t suffer from sparse hair or color matching issues!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:30 pm

In a way I agree with you. If colour isn’t an issue then for the most part, I find that brow pencils don’t have to be very pricey. I do still like the Shu Uemura ones, primarily because of their shape and because I find them less error prone. But I’m quite happy with this ZA one for now too

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Nikki March 6, 2014 at 2:15 pm

This looks good. I’ll check this out the next time I’m near a ZA counter. The one I’m currently loving for a quick and easy brow makeup is Holika Holika’s Wonder Drawing 24hr Auto Eyebrow. It looks quite similar to ZA. It has a twist up brow pencil, its tip already slanted, with a spoolie brush on the other end. :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:31 pm

Mmm a slanted tip sounds perfect! I’ll bear it in mind if I see a Holika Holika counter around. I think there’s one but I have no idea where it is!

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Dee March 14, 2014 at 9:43 am

if im not mistaken, its in sunway pyramid :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 14, 2014 at 10:53 am

Alamak! So far :(

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Katherine March 6, 2014 at 8:04 pm

Hey, this is my first time commenting. I luuuuuve your reviews and find it very helpful because I had a hard time finding the “right” cosmetics in Indonesia.

Just want to add that this eyebrow pencil is a great find. Not only it’s cheap, but perfect for travelling.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:44 pm

Hi Katherine, thank you so much for commenting and I’m glad you’ve found the reviews helpful :) You’re right about the ease of travel. I don’t have to worry that it’ll break! :)

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Holly March 6, 2014 at 8:26 pm

this is my favourite one!!! I have been using it for many years! I dont wear makeup a lot, on daily basis I only draw my brows to make myself looking more “wake-up”, this pencil is doing magic! soft and natural, the brush at the end is just brilliant! my favourite colour was out of stock but recently I found a replacement of it in Daiso costing me only HKD12 (the ZA costs me HKD80ish)!!!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:46 pm

Yay! Glad you too like this one Holly :) Its interesting that you said you only do your brows even though you don’t wear a lot of makeup because that’s one of the quickest ways to make you look polished even without a lot of makeup on! :) I’ve used one from Daiso too but I wasn’t too happy with it after a while and I found the colour too inconsistent from batch to batch so I gave up. But its a good alternative ! P/s I can’t believe the ZA costs you more than it does us here!

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kel March 6, 2014 at 8:57 pm

I so agree with you about the shu uemura fellas..I hate having to visit them to sharpen my brow pencil..but I’ve had mine for 5 years and counting since I only use is for my brow ends so I cant really complain…I went to the klcc shop once and they refused to sharpen the pencil saying that they dont do it on weekends as they are busy…gah

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 10, 2014 at 10:47 pm

Gosh I really am not alone in noticing the powering of standards at Shu. I can’t believe the KLCC people wouldn’t sharpen yours on a weekend! Not everyone has the luxury to go to the mall on a working day! Jeez

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Jennifer March 7, 2014 at 10:23 pm

I gave up on eyebrow because whenever I attempt it, I see two fat worms staring back at me. The first one I had was Revlon, soft, dark brown and erm, wormy effect. This ZA one looks good on you :) Maybe I will go get one and try! Thanks for sharing drugstore goodies, easy on the pocket, some work wonders too!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 12:33 pm

Haha the trick is to use a light hand and just define the brow, not draw it on. To be honest, I find the Shu Uemura pencil a good one to practice with because it’s not too soft and therefore less prone to drawing on worms but the beauty of the ZA pencil other than the price, is the built in spoolie which allows you to soften the effect, thereby killing off the worms and giving you back your brows ;)

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Shija Rahim March 7, 2014 at 11:29 pm

My next target.. I really hate it when the colour fades at theend of the day.. I have no brows in the end, good review Paris!

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 12:36 pm

Hope this will work for you Shija! If it doesn’t, at least it wasn’t expensive eh? ;)

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sharon March 8, 2014 at 3:20 pm

I just bought the Shiseido eyebrow pencil the other day and its smudge proof.. think its formula is somewhat like the shu one..but less pricey i believe.. I used to use the ZA everbrows in their old packaging in white colour.. havent tried the new packaging one.. the old version is good but makes my brows look greasy when I perspire alot or near the end of the day so I think a harder .drier n smudge proof formula will work better for me but will probably try the new Za version for sure one day! ;)

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 12:52 pm

Ooh thanks for letting me know about Shiseido’s brown pencil too Sharon! :) I didn’t even know the ZA pencil had old packaging LOL! That’s how little attention I paid but this one is pretty good and I don’t see greasiness but it’s hard to say coz I don’t get very oily anymore these days. I’ll bear the Shiseido in mind for next time! ;)

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Shay March 9, 2014 at 6:55 pm

I don’t use brow pencil. But I do love the Za Wide Eye mascara. Cheap and good. Holds my curl all day long, > 12HRS.

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Paris B
Twitter:
March 11, 2014 at 1:09 pm

Ooh I’ve tried it! I can’t remember if I liked it (oops!) but I think I did? haha

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