Saturday, September 17, 2011

Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel in Granite

Brow color is a difficult challenge if you are very fair and very cool toned. Beauty pundits have always recommended warm caramel/camel or blonde brow colors for me, which are all yellow based. Clearly, these professionals do not understand my coloring. I am fair (NW15-20), but I am not warm. My natural hair color is dark ash blonde and my brows are light ash brown.

Due to an extreme pack of options, I have used Clinique Brow Shaper in Shaping Charcoaled for a very long time. This product is one of the few lines that carried a mid-toned cool ashy brown without any red or gold. The white lab coats always agree that Charcoaled is more flattering than Taupe (warm and red) or Soft Brown (warm and orangish) or Wheat (yellow).

Last winter I stumbled upon Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel ($21), and I immediately went for Granite, a very cool taupe that didn't scream brown at me. I tested it and Granite matched the hairs perfectly.

The gel coats the hairs subtly and naturally, almost imperceptibly thickening each hair such that my brows appear more full. The finish is not crunchy; when I run my fingers over the hairs, they are soft and pliant, but they do have some body and stiffness (it is gel, after all). Hairs stay put all day. No flaking, smearing, or fading.

The only downside is when using a fresh tube, I find the product to be quite wet, and a bit too much comes out on the brush, so I have to work slowly and carefully or I can get clumps. I like this product best when I've used it for a while and the innards are just starting to dry out ever so slightly. Of course, it's like your favorite pair of jeans. By the time you get it where you want it, it's past its prime.

Another thing to note is this gel does not fill in brows. If your brows are not sparse and all you want to do is tame unruly hairs or give your brows shape, it's likely you'll find a good match in this line. My brows have lost a little volume, so I need both pencil or powder and the gel.

Bottom line: So far, Anastasia is the best gel out there to match my brow hairs and overall coloring. YMMV.


  1. Despite being Asian with dark hair, I have had similar problems matching brow products. Brown is too light/warm and black is too harsh. The wrong kind of grey may show up on the skin with too much blue. Reading this made me so happy for you, Zuzu! lol

  2. Oh, I agree about grey showing up as blue! For a short while I used BB Grey eyeshadow on my brows, which has a lot of brown in it. Thanks for the cheers, hee. Brows are such a necessary evil.

  3. Good entry! I've been wanting a brow gel myself lately. I've neglected my brows too much, which is silly because they're so important! I've been using powder to fill them in, but I'm on the hunt for a pencil. I'm hoping that might be faster? I think my first brow gel purchase will be Bobbi Brown's clear brow gel.

  4. Dovey, pencil and powder are about the same amount of effort for me. You might want to check out Shu Uemura hard formula eyebrow pencils. The 02 Seal Brown is hugely popular and a great universal color. Doesn't look fake. Check out the reviews on MUA. Color 03 is a bit warmer.

    Clear gel is an excellent entry in the gelled brows, thing, but you don't have to spend much. I was using a clear mascara, Max Factor if it's still around.


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