My whole life I have been plagued with a steadfast loyalty to the beauty industry. Watching beauty gurus on YouTube and experimenting with new trends provide both a sense of comfort and excitement for me. On weekends, I can be found gracing the floors of Ulta and Sephora looking for the newest setting spray, liquid lip or dewy skin mist.
I am always waiting for the newest trends to experiment with.
Enter the new favorite feature of the past decade: Eyebrows.
These strips of hair above our eye sockets have shown increasing popularity, specifically within the past five years. From the Instagram brow, to the straight brow, to the high arched “Nike” stripe brow. Constantly growing, constantly changing.
And I was here for it.
I was on board with every trend, patiently waiting with a spoolie brush and some slanted tweezers.
Growing up, my brows were bold and at least two shades darker than my naturally blonde hair. I was ashamed of them during my childhood, often envisioning them as caterpillars that would come to life on my face if I stared at them for too long. Appealing image, am I right?
By 2010 I was rocking the thin, high arched brow. In contrast, 2018 featured straight bold brows, accompanied by a statement attitude and a barely there expression.
I followed the trends and kept evolving in despite of the one minor annoyance — my opinionated right eyebrow.
I have, and still, spend hours attempting to tame my right brow and make it perfectly symmetrical.
The left brow wants to be straight with a point at the highest arch, while the right wants to be rounded and rise with the inflection of my face. When I am surprised or smile, I become a human emoticon!
But all the reshaping, tweezing and waxing lended me to feeling exhausted. I started to emulate a dog chasing its tail.
I was never satisfied.
The right eyebrow was always going to be less tamable than the left.
It was ruthless, stubborn and always going to perk back up and grow back to its natural form. So why fight it? That opinionated right eyebrow was always going to win.
After years of fuss, I started to leave my right eyebrow alone — allowing it to grow and flourish in all its attitude. After the first initial withdraw and fear of not touching up the brow to match its cousin on the left side of my face, I started to, dare I say, become fond of my right brow?
It was cute how it perked up when I was excited or questioned something. And it made me….. me. My battle with the right eyebrow taught me two important lessons:
1. I cannot control every aspect of life.
My annoyance with the infamous right brow was a projection of my struggle for wanting to control every aspect of my life.
Since I was a teenager, I have had reoccurring dreams of drowning in the ocean or running from giant waves that were bound and determined to swallow me whole. Even in my sleep, I felt overwhelmed by life and feared a lack of control.
This year, I dug deeper into my subconscious and realized that my need for control was stemming from a fear of making mistakes and uncertainty.
By becoming aware of this fear, I allowed myself to monitor my mind and stop it from wandering into the unknown. Letting go of this overbearing control allowed me to finally seek inner peace and stop looking for perfection, both in the mirror and in my soul.
In short, it was time to allow the right eyebrow to do its thing, either that or the giant wave might swallow me whole in my sleep. **Only a tad dramatic.**
2. I am SO over suppressing my individuality to “fit in.”
I have always been a good girl who never wanted to rock the boat. I often allowed others opinions to color my own, without even realizing that I was adopting other people’s thoughts or ideas.
This year I felt incredibly tired of this narrative.
I set an intention to stop filtering my opinion and to allow my actual voice to be heard. I started speaking how I truly felt to those around me; not in a hurtful way, but in a way that was authentic and genuine.
Knowing these aspects of my personality and setting an intention to change makes me one step closer to inner peace.
My advice? The next time you find yourself overthinking your appearance, put the tweezers down and look beyond the mirror. There is something deeper that needs to be divulged.
You may be surprised with what you find lingers below the surface.