Friday, January 18, 2013

Different types of Eyebrow Shapes and Which suits Whom

There are 5 basic eyebrow shapes

Different types of eyebrow shapes

Rounded Eyebrows: They have no angle, just one curve
Soft Angled Eyebrows: They have an angle with soft curves. So the angle is not sharp.
Hard Angled Eyebrows: You can see a clear sharp angle in them
S-Shaped or Curved Eyebrows: This is a hybrid of curve and a sharp angle. It roughly looks like an 'S'.
Flat Eyebrows: Straight line with no curve and no angle.

These shapes can further have variations depending on eyebrow thickness and eyebrow height from the eyes. The height of the eyebrow is called the 'arch.'

When shaping your eyebrows, remember contrast:

Angled face / Sharp features: Go for Round or soft curved eyebrows
Round or curved face: Go for Angled eyebrows
Long face: Go for Flat eyebrows.
Short face: Go for high arched eyebrows
Small eyes: Keep eyebrows near eye (low arch)
Big eyes: Keep eyebrows away (high arch)

Keeping these basic guidelines in mind will be really helpful even if you are unable to determine your face shape.

To know your face shape, refer to THIS article.

Preity Zinta flat eyebrows (L) Angled Eyebrows (Right)
Eyebrow shape Left: 5.3 (from the eyebrow chart above)
Eyebrow Shape Right: 2.2a

See how Flat eyebrows are making Preity Zinta's round face look shorter and more fuller in the left pic. In the right pic, angled eyebrows and slightly puffed hair style are making her round face appear slimmer and longer. So you see eyebrows can change your look?

Rounded eyebrows suit faces with sharp angles, like heart or square face shape people. Rounded eyebrows soften the angles/sharp features in the face. That said, I have hardly seen people in real life keeping round eyebrows these days, except for some celebrities. Rounded eyebrows are not a very flattering eyebrow shape. The hottest trend these days is thick soft angled eyebrows, which compliment almost every face shape.

Shilpa Shetty Rounded eyebrows
Shilpa Shetty Rounded eyebrows
One celebrity I have almost always seen in rounded eyebrows is Shilpa Shetty. She has a round face and rounded eyebrows are not an ideal brow shape for her. Still she is an exception and carries them well because she keeps them so high arched, which helps in making her face look longer. Though I have seen her sometimes in soft angled eyebrows too.

Soft angled eyebrows add femininity and softness to the face. These look good on Oval, Diamond, Triangular and even square face shaped people. This shape helps maintain the harmony/proportion of an Oval face and helps tone down the sharp angles in diamond and square faces. It takes attention away from the heavier lower face in a triangle face.

Shannyn Sossamon: Square face with soft angled thick eyebrows
Shannyn Sossamon: Square face with soft angled thick eyebrows
Eyebrow shape: 2.3a from the above chart
Bipasha Basu: Diamond Face with Soft angled eyebrows
Bipasha Basu: Diamond Face with Soft angled eyebrows
Eyebrow shape: 2.2b from the eyebrow chart
Hard angled eyebrows add youthfulness to the face. These make a short face appear long and also make a fat/heavy face appear slim. These look good on round faces.
Christine Ricci : Round Face Hard angled eyebrows
Christina Ricci: Round Face with Hard angled eyebrows
Eyebrow shape: 3.1 from the chart above
Flat eyebrows make a long face appear short. So these suit Oblong or Rectangular face shaped people (basically anyone with a longer than normal face).
Sarah Jessica Parker: Oblong Face - Flat Eyebrows
Sarah Jessica Parker: Oblong Face with Flat Eyebrows
Demi Moore: Rectangle Face with flat eyebrows
Demi Moore: Rectangle Face with flat eyebrows
Classifying by the 7 basic Face Shapes, Demi-Moore has a hybrid face. She has a square face, but a long one, so that becomes a rectangular face. Here, and in most of her pictures, you will see her in flat eyebrows, though she can also go with sharp or soft angled eyebrows to even out her square jaw.

An exception is Kourtney Kardashian. She has an oblong face but has never kept flat eyebrows, even though her angled brows make her face look even more long. She is comfortable with that.

If you see Kareena Kapoor's old pics, she used to keep flat brows. Now she keeps sharp high arched brows. Notice the immense transformation in her looks, simply by changing her eyebrow shape.

S - Shaped / Curved Eyebrows
look good mainly on diamond face shaped people but in fact, it suits almost all face shapes due to it's unique shape: a blend of curve and angle. This shape adds glamour to your face.

Nicole Kidman: Diamond face shape with Curved/ S-Shape Eyebrows
Nicole Kidman: Diamond face shape with Curved/ S-Shape Eyebrows
Eyebrow shape: 4.3 from the above chart
Oval face with Curved / S- Shape Eyebrows
An Oval face with Curved / S- Shape Eyebrows
High arched: See how high they are from the eyes
Kareena Kapoor: Square face with Curved / S-Shape Eyebrows
Kareena Kapoor: Square face with Curved / S-Shape Eyebrows
Thick medium arched brows
Oval face shaped people can sport any eyebrow shape without worrying much.


See this picture and tell which circle is bigger?

Eyebrows for small eyes, Eyebrows for big eyes

Most people will think that the left circle is bigger. But the truth is both the circles are of the same size. This is an optical illusion. When the line is closer, the circle looks bigger and vice versa. Same as the Sun appears smaller in the sky but much bigger during sunset at the horizon. You can use the same science to enhance your small eyes or to make your BIG eyes look smaller.

For small eyes, keeping your eyebrow arch low (near the eyes) will make your eyes look bigger. But understand this will draw attention to your eyes, however, will make your face appear shorter. But if you define and outline your eyes very bold with eyeliner, you need not keep low eyebrows. Bold makeup will make your eyes look bigger and you can still keep high arch eyebrows for a glamorous look.

For really big bulging eyes, keeping your eyebrow arch high (far from eyes) will create an illusion of smaller/normal sized eyes.
These are examples and guidelines to help you understand your options. Mostly, you will see celebrities sporting different eyebrow shapes depending upon their stylist, which is not possible for common people. If you have a great beautician near your place, you are lucky. So far I have come across only one such beautician in Gurgaon.

Most people stick to their natural eyebrow shape and get it polished and groomed. I know a few people who do their own eyebrows. For an eyebrow makeover, you will need a stylist/esthetician/ intelligent beautician. Else, you need a lot of practice to do this yourself. But many people have achieved this with patience and practice.

Also check out:

Eyebrow Grooming Methods Guide


  1. Nice post Gagan :)
    Thank you for mentioning dear.
    I agree Eyebrows can be shaped so as to get the desired illusion or to drive attention towards a particular feature or face altogether.
    I have tried the circle trick, in fact it does work.

    1. I so want to do my own brows but I am uncomfortable cutting them myself as we don't cut hair otherwise. Got my arch altered to the correct point yesterday and it does make a huge difference. It feels good to hear you have hands on experience with this Niesha :)

    2. ohh thats great.:) I think the natural your brow shape is the better we look. rather than going extremely dramatic. Celebrities are most of the times in heavy makeup with everything in place, else the super arched brows can look weird, when you take off the makeup and the brow powders. or eg. pamela anderson her brows look as if she is frowing.

    3. You are right dear. Thanks for this valuable input.

  2. this article is so informative.and very well written!!

    1. Thanks Jasmine dear :) Glad you liked it. Ever since I have started noticing these basic things about people's face, their brows etc, it has opened my eyes to so much more I had been missing earlier.

  3. wow really great thanks sharing a great and informative post.

    1. Thanks Anuradha, glad you liked it. I have started doing my own brows from last two months and just get the extra hair cleaned up. It takes time and patience to gradually work on the shape but ultimately you love your efforts.

  4. Thank you for this! Now I know why I look witchy with my brows filled in... My face is small and should've had an arch! :)

    1. Glad you found this article helpful. Just hold a straight ruler or a slim pen from the side of your nose, positioned through the center of your eye when looking straight. The point it touches the eyebrows should be the natural arch/ highest point of your brows. To add more definition to your face, you can shape the arch a little higher than than point.

  5. very nice article..:) I have very small eyes , from now on wards i will keep it lil down and check if it looks huge ..thanks for your post!

    1. Thanks Bharathi :) Yes, keeping the brows low will draw the attention towards the eyes creating the illusion of bigger eyes.

  6. Thnks for the article dear it will really help me to look good

  7. That's lovely Shagun :) I am glad you found it helpful and hope it surely helps you groom your brows better. All the best!

  8. This is a very helpful article! Thanks for sharing :)

  9. I am fond of medium arch eyebrows but unfortunately the parlors girls change my eyebrow shape each time i visit them!

  10. I liked the details face-cuts and related eyebrow shapes u explained Gagan. Infact even after being quite aware of these and requesting the beauticians what shape u want, they are almost taking the extra hair out leaving the brow shape same as i have :(
    mine looks like a FLAT one, and i want it to be curvy..dont know who can do it the apt way. Never got desired shape ...

  11. Very informative ! Keep up the good work !!

  12. The different eye brow shapes look awesome. The contrast chart of eye brow shapes with facial structures is really helpful and will help me to style myself.

    Thanks for the great post.


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