Whether you get waxed, tweezed, or threaded, the effect of perfect arches is better than getting a fresh haircut! These furry features give your face geometric balance and help your eyes pop. But having polished brows requires more than getting rid of stray hairs every two weeks. Traditionally, not matching your eyebrows to your hair color was something of a beauty faux pas. Nowadays, fashion shows around the world are stocked with flaxen-haired models parading down the runway with bold, brown, or colored arches. But taking a few minutes to darken your eyebrows adds time to your often already-rushed beauty routine. The answer? Semipermanent tinting! Understandably, this solution also translates to another cluster of very important hairs on your face: your eyelashes.
Having long, thick lashes can make a world of difference to your look. But who wants to put on mascara every day if you don't have to? And although these similar treatments have hit the mainstream, many Beauties have yet to try them. So we sat down with Benefit's New York City-based eyebrow and eyelash tinting expert Kelly Kosisko to better understand these treatments.
"We use a vegetable-based dye on both the eyelashes and the eyebrows for added definition," explains Kelly. "Think of it as a glaze for these hairs." During a brow tinting, an aesthetician first applies Vaseline to the skin surrounding the hair. This protects the skin and prevents the dye from bleeding onto it. Then the tint is painted directly onto the brow. The dye “cooks” for 10 minutes, and any residue is gently removed with a wet cloth. Keep in mind, the tint doesn't work like a tattoo. "The dye only colors the existing hairs," says Kelly. Another important tip? "If you use self-tanner, it's best to skip it the week before you come in for your service, as the tanner can react badly with the dye.”
Although a similar process, lash tinting takes around 20 minutes. "In addition to applying Vaseline around the eye, a protective pad is placed under the bottom lashes to cover the skin below," explains Kelly. "After the vegetable tint is applied to the lashes on closed eyes, the dye will set for seven minutes before the aesthetician applies a second coat," says Kelly. After an additional seven minutes, the lash pad is removed and the eye area (including the lashes) is wiped clean with wet cotton pads. To ensure no residue seeped inside the eye, the eyes are rinsed with a saline solution.
"A brow tint works for everyone!" says Kelly. “With defined, well-groomed brows, it gives you a thicker style and a more youthful appearance.” Plus, the brow dye can be customized to any color you want. Lash tints, on the other hand, work best on people with lighter-colored lashes (especially blondes!). "Many people have lashes that fade at the ends," explains Kelly. "So when they are tinted, they can seem a lot longer.” The treatment is also helpful for on-the-go gals. “You can run out the door with no mascara, hit the gym or the beach, and not worry about your mascara running."
Both the eyebrow and eyelash tinting treatment will last about four to six weeks. However, you can build upon your tints to keep the look from fading over time. Another way to keep up the color? "Avoid oil-based moisturizers, cleansers, or wipes," says Kelly. "They will dissolve your tints faster." As for makeup, "wearing mascara or brow pencil over your tint is absolutely fine!"
There are no FDA-approved permanent dyes or tints of eyelashes and eyebrows, so it is important to know what each salon uses before you go in for a treatment. "Benefit only uses the best and safest products out there," explains Kelly. "Because the semipermanent tint is vegetable-based, there is no danger of blindness. Tinting is safe for all customers—men, women, and even expecting moms!”
Beauties, have you tried tinting? Share your thoughts below!