Hi friends! The last few weeks I’ve been testing some Benefit brow products and thought I would share my thoughts on them. In the UK, the Benefit team were the only people I trusted to wax my eyebrows, so I was really excited to try their products! The brand seems to cater for a variety of hair colours, eyebrow shapes and preferences in term of thickness. I am in-between brow shapes, I think – I like to have a sharp, pointed arch and tip but don’t like to have the top and bottom lines too straight, otherwise I look like a really poorly manufactured Barbie doll! My brows are pretty thick – I’ve kept them that way for a few years now. In my late teens I thought super thin eyebrows were the way forward but they most definitely were not. Here are some bonus photos of my awful brows back then:
Cue “WHAT ARE THOSE!!” meme.
Like wine and cheese, I got better with age! So, let’s take a look at some of the Benefit brow products I tried. I picked up a three-product tin set in Debenhams for £32 and at the time of writing, the set is on sale! You can get the same kit here and it comes in 6 different shades. The reason I picked up this set over others is that it included a range of products that I knew I would ordinarily use as part of my daily brow routine – I didn’t want to pick anything up that I knew I wouldn’t use or that I’d have to really practice with to get it to work. There are ‘Full and Feathered’, ‘Bigger and Bolder’ and ‘Defined and Refined’ brow kits, but this one is the ‘Great Brow Basics’ and so I think it’s probably a good starting place for anyone!
The set includes:
- ‘Goof Proof’ Brow Pencil – this is intended to be a quick and easy way to fill in any gaps in your eyebrows. Benefit advertise this as being waterproof and it also includes an eyebrow spoolie for tidying up your hairs.
- ‘Precisely, My’ Mini Brow Pencil – this pencil is intended for more precise application to achieve natural, thin, hair-like strokes rather than filling in big gaps. It is a twist up pencil that requires no sharpening and it particularly useful for making the tip of your brow razor sharp.
- ‘Gimme Brow’ Volumizing Brow Gel – the aim of this product is to add volume to your brows, but also to keep them in place, and it is also marketed as water-resistent. This is another way of achieving a more ‘natural’ look – many people may opt to use this product without anything else.
So over the last few weeks, the only makeup I’ve been applying most days are these products. This is because it’s been far too hot and humid for anything else – Tokyo has been steadily 30 degrees Celcius and over 70% humidity most days. This is annoying because I can’t wear any makeup as it sweats off immediately, but it does provide an opportunity to put water and/or sweat resistant products to the test! I very rarely see products explicitly advertised as ‘sweat resistant’ so if I use something that claims to be waterproof, I generally expect it to work through any sweating too. I’ve been applying these products every day I’ve gone outside, rain or shine, so I like to think I’ve got a pretty good idea of how they perform now.
Firstly, I think the set itself is great. For any brow novice like me who struggles to navigate around the hundreds of brow products out there, having a set of products and explicit instructions on how to use them is really helpful. It makes knowing what to use and how to use it much easier, which will undoubtedly save money too. The fact Benefit offer a few sets targeting different brow shapes, styles and preferences is really good. The set comes in 6 shades which is a decent range, but many of these individual products come in a dozen or so shades, so it would be nice if you could get a similar variation in the sets.
The price for this was £32 when I bought it which is a little more expensive than I’m used to. I have been using Makeup Revolution brow products for years that are literally a fraction of the price and they’re wonderful, so unless you have any particular desire for luxury products like this (or just some extra spending money), I would stick to drugstore brands if you know and like them. The ‘precise’ pencil is a mini and the other two products are full size. Therefore, the total cost of the three products bought separately is over £50, so there is a substantial saving to be made buying the set. While the two pencils do similar things, I think they achieve vastly different results and so it’s worth having both (the precise pencil can’t fill in quickly and I struggled to get defined lines with the Goof Proof pencil). So, if you’re in the market for a high end brow product set, I recommend this one. But what of the products themselves?
I think the Goof Proof pencil is really good – it seems to last well throughout the day and (despite being a little dark on me), it does a great job filling in my brows and making them look fuller. The tip of the pencil has a chunky side and a slightly thinner side, so getting fine lines/a sharp point is possible with this, albeit not easy (and I find the product is quite thick and waxy so the tip tends to melt off after a few hours). I’m not sure whether it’s worth the £20+ price tag (and I’ve certainly got drugstore products that work as well, if not better) but I think it’s decent.
The Precisely My Brow pencil is a great way of getting tiny, hair-like strokes on for a more natural look, and so this product would probably suit most people. It can give a very sharp point and (with a bit of practice and patience) can make your eyebrows look really nice, but it’s pretty unnoticeable if you try filling with it and so it’s probably a waste of the product to use it for that purpose. I absolutely love this for a more natural look. My only gripe is that after a few hours, the product disappears. It’s probably because it’s so light and fine, but I’d prefer for it to last a bit longer because it looks fantastic. Therefore, I would therefore pair this with another product (particularly anything designed for setting – I use a NYX setting spray but perhaps the UD All Nighter would do the trick…).
The brow gel was, for me, a complete flop, and I’m so disappointed about it! I had high expectations for the gel because I had seen rave reviews and Benefit tends to market it a lot, but other than adding even more thick, brown product on top my carefully drawn on brows (and actually in most cases ruining any fine lines and sharp points I had managed to draw), this does nothing to hold hairs in place. I can apply this and within an hour my hairs are all over the place. If you aren’t interested in drawing on your brows and just want thicker, more tinted brows, then this will work for you. If you want a brow gel you can couple with other brow products and that will lock your brows in place, dodge this and go for something else!
So this set was a mixed bag for sure – I generally liked the pencils and found they were easy to use and did what they promised, but the brow gel fell short of my expectations (particularly given it’s over £20 for a tube!). If you have money to splurge then I would certainly recommend Benefit as a brand for brows (especially the waxing they offer – it’s worth the £15-odd price tag), but if you’re a little more frugal when it comes to makeup (like me), save your cash and buy something more purse-friendly! These aren’t miracle products and in my opinion, are your money could be better spent on cheaper products.
If you have tried any awesome brow products, please let me know! I love having good brows and I think they can change a person’s entire face, so I’m always keen to try all things eyebrows.