When it comes to brows, there's nothing that I won't try at least once. Tinting them at home using men's beard dye. Testing out the best ways to pluck and trim. Brow pencils and gels of all persuasions. I've tried it all to varying degrees of success. When soap brows were trending, I skipped it, assuming it was more of a gimmick than anything. But after hearing that using soap to set and style brows has been a long-time, little-known secret of makeup artists, I decided to see for myself.
As someone who swears by NYX Brow Glue as the only brow gel that can actually keep my brows lifted, I didn't expect much. Upon first use, however, I stood corrected. The brow soap worked better than any other product I'd tried. I was able to style, lift, and set my brows in less time, and they stayed perfectly the same for the entire day. Longer than even my precious NYX Brow Glue. I was out and moving around for at least 12 hours and returned home to brows that had not slumped in the meantime.
So, how does soap on brows work? Start with a gentle bar soap, or in my case, one of the clear brow soaps with thousands of reviews on Amazon. Grab a spoolie brush. Dampen the spoolie, rub it into the soap until it's coated thinly in a gel-like substance, brush the spoolie onto your brows to shape and set, and let them dry down. The result is a hold that won't budge, almost like they're invisibly glued down. It produces the same look as laminated brows, but only costs about $5 and less than a minute. From there, you can fill in with a pencil to conceal any unevenness or bare patches.
I've now started using soap on my brows more than brow gel, simply because it holds better and longer for me. I'm a firm believer that blush, concealer, and styled brows create the ultimate lazy-girl makeup routine on days when you want to put a little effort in, but not go full-out. When I'm going for a nighttime look, I follow up with a brow pencil to define and fill in my brows more.
Before trying out soap on your brows for the first time, heed my best tips. First, don't overdo it on the soap. You can always add more to the spoolie, but you can't take it back. If you use too much soap, your brows can come out with a subtle ghost tint. It helps if you don't get the spoolie too wet. Second, always brush the brow hairs up and away from your eyes for a lifted look. Third, I usually will backstroke the soaped spoolie back and forth over the brow hairs before styling to ensure they're thoroughly coated in product. That makes for maximum hold. Lastly, for special occasions, I'll dampen the spoolie using my holy-grail Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Setting Spray instead of water. Those brows won't be going anywhere. (If you're a visual learner, see soap brows in action here.)
An important note: Some soaps are more irritating than others, therefore it is preferable to choose a gentle option. Luckily, there are beauty bars out there now that look like your trusty body bar, but are gentler on the face skin.
Shop the best brow-friendly soaps below.
Beauty Glazed Brow Styling Soap
With nearly 5,000 Amazon reviews and an under-$10 price tag, this viral brow soap was the first to catch my eye. As a bonus, it comes with spoolies. It's pretty clear in color, and I have not noticed any white cast after using it. While I haven't experienced any irritation, I'd opt for the beauty bar below for anyone worried about sensitivity.
BUY IT: $7.88 for two-pack; amazon.com
Neutrogena The Transparent Facial Bar
Similar to the Amazon brow soap in texture, also promising transparent results, and including face-friendly glycerin on the ingredient list, this Neutrogena beauty bar ensures that you won't have to worry about breakouts or skin irritation.
BUY IT: $2.79; amazon.com