When I was a senior in high school (nearly 20 years ago), I walked into a hair salon and asked for an eyebrow tint. The stylist looked at me like I was crazy! She added some color to my eyebrows and I left the salon looking like I had two caterpillars above my eyes. I had never waxed my eyebrows before and they were out of control….so tinting actually led me to my first eyebrow wax!
Shortly after that experience, I began doing my own tinting. It’s obviously more cost effective but I also find that it is more convenient than adding another appointment to my day. I can apply late at night and multi task while the color processes. Over the years, I’ve developed a routine that works well for me and I’m happy to be sharing it below.
why would you want to tint?
- If you’d like to darken the natural color of your brows and create a fuller look. (That’s me!)
- If you have lightened your natural hair color and would like for your brows to match, and similarly, if you have changed the tone of your hair color and would like for your brows to match.
- Even if you’re happy with the natural color of your brows, tinting will give them a fuller look since the color will also tint your skin. Tinting gives you a look similar to microneedling but without the pain or price.
what you will need
Besides your color and developer, you will need an applicator brush like this one or this one, and a beaker like this one to measure your developer. You will also need a bowl. You can use any bowl from home or one like this. Boxed color may come with these items. You can also buy a set like this one on Amazon.
selecting your color and developer
COLOR: As a licensed hair dresser, I use professional grade Schwartzkopf color, but any brand that you like should be fine. Target sells an over the counter version of Schwarzkopf color. If you have light hair, I recommend going at least a few shades darker on your eyebrows. If you have darkened your hair to a medium brown or darker, I recommend matching your hair color or going a couple of shades darker.
DEVELOPER: If you’re making your brows darker, you will want to use 10 volume to deposit color. If you’d like to make your brows a little lighter, you will need 20, 30, or 40 volume. If you’re changing the tone, I recommend 20 volume. higher volume = more lift
Boxed color instructions may make this all a little easier to understand.
what i use
I use Schwarzkopf Igora 5-1. The first number is the lightness or darkness on a scale of 1-12; one being black and twelve being light blonde. In Schwartzkopf, the second number is the tone of the color. The number 1 means that I’m using an ash base, which I use to compensate for a any reddish undertones. The mixing ratio is 1:1 for Schwarzkopf – equal parts color and developer. Some brands use letters instead of numbers.
HOW MUCH I USE: My tube of color is 2 oz. I mix 1/8 of the the tube (so 1/4 oz.) each time I tint. I don’t actually use all of the color each time when I apply, but that amount makes it easy to mix.
step by step
- First, mix your color and developer.
- Next, use your brush to paint the color onto your brows. Make sure to press the color in a bit so that it gets to the base of your eyebrows. This will also tint your skin, giving your brows a fuller look. The effect is similar to microneedling.
- Use a Q-tip to remove any excessive color around the outline of your eyebrow. Remember, the color will tint your skin too, so be precise, but generous enough to cover all of your brow.
- If you’d like, apply the color to your lashes. Wiggle color at the base, obviously being careful to avoid getting color in your eye.
- Wait for the recommended amount of time. To figure your processing time, add 10 minutes to the value of the developer you selected. For example, when using 10 volume developer, let the color sit for 20 minutes. (Boxed color will likely explain all of this.)
- As the color processes, it will start to look scary dark. Don’t worry. It always looks intense while the color is on.
- Once your processing time is up, wipe the color off with a washcloth or tissue, then wash your face like usual.
- I like to get my eyebrows waxed shortly after tinting since the darker color makes it easier for my asethetician to see where to wax.
- After tinting and waxing, I use this Watermelon Glow sleeping mask. It’s so soothing and smells incredible!
- My color typically lasts 6 weeks.