How to Look After Your Eyebrows
May 14, 2021
Hello to all you Absoluters! I have received lots of questions about how to help your eyebrows grow, so thought it would be a good time to share some information about eyebrows and how to keep them looking fantastic.
Why do we have eyebrows?
Eyebrows help to protect our eyes from moisture and light. They are also, of course, key to our expressions and framing of our eyes. Getting our eyebrows ‘right’ is a big topic in beauty, with changing trends around the fashionable look at any given time.
Scientific studies have shown that the shape, size and colour of our eyebrows are genetically inherited - so it’s important to remember that there’s no right or wrong way to have them, all eyebrows are great!
What causes eyebrow thinning or loss?
If one or both of your eyebrows are thinning it could be due to a number of factors such as infections, a skin condition, hormonal changes, an immune system disorder, dietary deficiencies, physical trauma and emotional stress. These are all factors that affect the eyebrows - let’s take a look at them in more detail.
Infections that commonly affect the eyebrows are folliculitis and fungal infections. They cause redness, itching and soreness - but can be treated once diagnosed.
Skin conditions such as seborrhoeic dermatitis and psoriasis can commonly affect the eyebrows causing thinning and loss. Viruses such as shingles can also affect the eyebrows, causing tenderness and hair loss.
Hormonal changes during puberty and menopause can cause eyebrow thinning and loss - alternatively, these hormone changes can sometimes cause excessive hair growth which may be similarly unwanted.
Immune system disorders can impact the eyebrows. There are a number of autoimmune conditions that can cause eyebrow thinning and loss. Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia (FFA) typically sees the outer third of the eyebrow thin and disappear. Alopecia Areata can affect eyebrow loss as can Lichen Planopilaris (LPP). If you are worried, always seek professional advice and diagnosis so that you are sure what the cause is and what options you have in terms of treating or cosmetically disguising the issue.
Dietary deficiencies - now, you all know how passionate I am about the diet and its role in healthy hair growth! Well, it is no different for the eyebrows - they are hairs, after all. To nourish your eyebrows, you need a well-balanced diet with a good source of protein, vitamins and minerals. If your diet is restricted, lacking, or you don’t absorb nutrients well from your dietary intake, your hair and eyebrows will reflect this.
Physical stress can result from repeated plucking, waxing or threading. If the hair is pulled out repeatedly then eventually the trauma will cause a permanent hair loss to occur - so think about the size and shape of your eyebrows before you get too carried away with removing them.
Emotional stress should never be underestimated when it comes to the effect it has on the body in general. Stress causes our hormone responses to react differently, sending out hormones such as cortisol and testosterone more freely, and these can affect hair shedding and thinning. Finding ways to manage or limit stress is a very good strategy to employ; any activity that helps you clear your mind is a good stress buster. From mindfulness to gardening, reading to painting, whatever your release is, it is so important to make time for it.
There are lots of serums on the market that claim to help to improve your eyebrows. When selecting a product, you are always looking for active ingredients that have been proven to work. For example, ingredients such as serenoa or saw palmetto are DHT blockers, ginseng is a stimulant, and amino acids support protein synthesis. Beware of miracle claims that don’t show any ingredients; as with all hair treatments, the main treatments should stimulate and feed the hair follicle.