Not long after I found my holy grail (HG) brow pencil, my brow-pencil-seeking radar picked up a similar looking product from Bobbi Brown. Life’s funny that way. When it rains, it pours! You wait for a bus for an hour and suddenly 3 show up. Or you search and search for your HG brow pencil and just as you find it, another pops up for consideration!
As luck would have it, one of the Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Long-Wear Brow Pencil found its way into my hands, and I took it for a long long spin. Almost 2 months. I just had to figure out if I might replace my HG brow pencil with something available locally.
The Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Long-Wear Brow Pencil comes in 8 shades, and mine was Mahogany, which is described as a “mid-tone ash brown”. This implies that it has a slight grey tone, which is something I favour as I feel it’s more natural and flattering.
This is also a retractable, slanted brow pencil, as you will see below, and comes in a very handy packaging and size with the pencil at one end, and a spoolie brush at the other. But did it replace my HG?
Unfortunately the short answer is no. I will still go back to the Hourglass Arch brow pencil in a heartbeat, but not because this isn’t a good product. I think it is pretty good, and if you aren’t the sort who wants to take your chances with online shopping (we do not get Hourglass Cosmetics in Malaysia yet) then this is a very welcome substitute.
The pencil end is fairly broad and slanted at a nice angle that allows you to stroke it on your brows quite easily. On the other end is a spoolie brush that you can use to brush through your brows after you’re done, to soften the colour and make it look more natural.
I did however, find the brow pencil a little soft. Not in terms of touch, but in terms of application. Unlike the Hourglass brow pencil, it is easier to get the colour in this pencil to show up on your skin, and on your hairs.
The slanted tip, while broad, is fairly flat. Like a sword. While this offers for a more precise definition of your brows (they don’t call it a Perfectly Defined brow pencil for nothing!), it can also mean that you may end up with brows that are too defined. I often find myself combing through with the spoolie to soften the effect. No Instagram brows for this girl! 😛
Left: Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Long-Wear Brow Pencil – Mahogany Right: Hourglass Arch Brow Pencil – Soft Brunette
By contrast, you may notice how the Hourglass tip is triangular. This somehow offers a softer appearance, and actually makes it easier to use to get a natural looking brow.
Comparisons aside, is this as long wearing as they claim it to be? Yes it is. My brows stay put all day from morning till late in the evening without fading or smudging. It is pretty impressive really, which Bobbi Brown says is due to the mixture of waxes and emollients. I like it for this reason. The rest of my face might have faded away (and so have my spirits) but my brows are, as the young will say, on fleek! Whatever that means! LOL 😀
Mahogany is a fairly deep brown which matches my dark hair, but I do note it to be a touch warm. Although they say it is a mid-tone ash brown, I find that there is some red in there, so the colour is a tad warm. I personally prefer a slightly cooler, more grey tone. If you see the comparison between Mahogany and Soft Brunette in the swatch above, you may know what I mean. Soft Brunette has a slightly cooler tone, while Mahogany is a touch warmer.
On my brows, it isn’t that noticeable. I notice it because I’m supposed to notice these things 😛 But if this does suit you, there are another 7 shades you can pick from. Remember, if you colour your hair, you should try to match your brows because it can otherwise look unnatural. When I had red hair, I used to use a redder/browner brow pencil just so my face looked more balanced. So bear little things like this in mind 😉
So my reason for picking the Hourglass over this Bobbi Brown brow pencil is due to the shape and shade. However, do note that Hourglass has a more limited shade selection so you might want to check out Bobbi Brown anyway.
At a more favourable exchange rate, I’d also have said price. As pricey as the Hourglass one is, this is notably more pricey. However, with our currency being what it is, that is no longer a consideration, unless the RM strengthens again.
But if you don’t have the Hourglass Arch Brow Pencil within contemplation, and are in the market for a good, long wearing brow pencil, take a look at this one from Bobbi Brown. It’s pricey initially, but it will last a long time, and is easy to use. I like my budget option for brow pencils, but when push comes to shove, I go for a slanted, broad pencil every time. It just makes things easier and quicker for me 🙂
IN A NUTSHELL
The Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined Long-Wear Brow Pencil is a retractable brow pencil with a broad, slanted tip that makes it very easy to pencil in defined brows. The broad, flat tip allows for a precise brow to be drawn, and quickly without harsh lines. The spoolie brush at the other end helps soften any harsh effects for a more natural look. There are 8 shades so it is quite possible to find one that suits you, and it’s also fairly easy to use. I find that a slanted, broad brow pencil is an easier tool to start with than a regular thin small tip because you are less liable to make mistakes this way. It lasts all day and is a good option to consider if you have the budget for it.
PROS: Easy to use, Compact and portable design, Slanted flat tip makes it easy to draw a defined brow, Attached spoolie helps soften brows for a more natural look, Good selection of shades to pick from
WHO WILL LIKE THIS: Anyone who wants a retractable brow pencil with a broad slanted design
A quick note about price. The Hourglass Arch Brow pencil retails at US$40 (Net-a-Porter Asia but US$32 for USA – don’t ask me why 😛 ) while this Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined brow pencil retails at US$42 (RM165 in Malaysia). I can’t give you the local (Malaysian) prices because we don’t get Hourglass here. So, if you were to buy the Hourglass online, then at today’s exchange rate (RM4.23!!!) it works out more expensive. However, if you are in the USA then do note that it’s $8 cheaper. In the UK, Hourglass is £26 (Spacenk) and Bobbi Brown is £29.50 So you do the math, but consider also shade selection 🙂
Have you tried the Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined brow pencil? Do you favour the flat slanted brow pencils or the regular round pencil design for brows?
I favour slanted pencils. They’re much easier for me to manage, and I always get my brows done more quickly. It might be because the slant is more natural for me? I’m not sure. But round pencils usually take more time for me and I tend to end up with overly defined brows, which is not what I want at all! What about you? 🙂