Does an Eyebrow Pencil Cause Hair Loss?

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Are your eyebrows looking a bit sparse? Say no more, the eyebrow pencil is here to the rescue. Most of us run to our favorite eyebrow pencil for more defined, Instagram-worthy brows.

Today’s trend is for thicker and fuller eyebrows. 

If you have been using your pencil for a little while, do you notice your brows are thinner? Is your eyebrow pencil the culprit? Does an eyebrow pencil cause hair loss?

Your years of using eyebrow pencils didn’t directly cause any hair loss. Indirectly, it could but that would be a very rare instance such as getting an infection or being allergic to the product. 

Today we will discuss further how an eyebrow pencil could indirectly cause hair loss. Plus, we’ll also tell you about what could be causing your eyebrow hair loss. 


Does an Eyebrow Pencil Cause Hair Loss?

Eyebrow Pencil Use

Eyebrow pencils are meant to fill in your eyebrows. They help provide more defined and thicker eyebrows. Different brands are formulated in different ways, but they are safe and shouldn’t directly cause your eyebrow hair to fall out. 

Most makeup products don’t have an expiration date. But manufacturers will suggest disposing of your eyebrow pencil after a year from the date when it was opened. 

Do you follow that advice? Well, you should. 

But let’s admit that the majority of us have used eyebrow pencils that are more than a year old. 

However, the use of an old eyebrow pencil could lead to hair loss. It may seem harmless to use a very old eyebrow pencil but sometimes it isn’t.

The longer you use it, the greater the risks. One of the risks involved is infection.

Bacteria or fungal microorganisms can contaminate your eyebrow pencil. The skin is a very good protective barrier. However, if there are tiny cuts on the skin, that could lead to the infection. 

Those tiny cuts on the eyebrows can be due to shaving your eyebrows. You may also have tiny cuts when you use an eyebrow pencil  that has not been properly sharpened.

The pointed and hard wooden body can be sharp enough to cause cuts that lead to infection and ruin your eyebrows.

Eyebrow Pencil

Also, if the hair follicle is infected, the hair will fall off. This is called folliculitis and it can be due to an irritated, damaged, or blocked follicle. 

Another way an eyebrow pencil can cause hair loss is if you develop a contact allergic reaction to the ingredients. It usually starts with itchiness, redness, and burns when in contact with the product. 

Although an eyebrow pencil can indirectly cause hair loss, using it properly should lessen that risk. Make sure you buy quality products that don’t have ingredients that could cause your allergies.

Additionally, make sure you sharpen your eyebrow pencil properly or get an auto liner  to avoid sharpening entirely.

Also, take note of the date you opened the product and dispose of it as advised.

Other Causes Of Eyebrow Hair Loss

Instead of blaming your eyebrow pencil for hair loss, let’s investigate the other possible causes of hair loss.

Any of these could be the reason why your eyebrows are sparse:


To shape our eyebrows we groom them. Whether it is plucking, tweezing, waxing, or threading, repetitive procedures can damage the hair follicle and cause it not to grow the hair back. 

If your eyebrow doesn’t grow back immediately, it may be in the resting phase so you just have to be patient and wait.

Your Diet

A poor diet can lead to hair loss. And it isn’t just your eyebrows that could be affected but also the hair on your scalp. You should focus on healthy eating because excessive amounts of certain nutrients can also cause hair loss. 


You don’t just grow gray hairs due to aging, you could also be thinning out the hair. Sometimes due to the loss of pigment, you might think that your eyebrows are sparse.

They may be just not as noticeable as before. 

See our article on eyebrow pencils for grey hair for ways to combat this.


Hormones could also affect your hair loss in the eyebrows. This could be due to less estrogen due to aging. Similarly, thyroid disorder could also lead to hair loss.

This is because the production of hormones is disrupted and it also affects the growth of hair. 


Don’t be afraid to use an eyebrow pencil. They do not cause hair loss for your eyebrows directly. It is rare for them to indirectly do so. 

An old improperly handled pencil could be the source of infection or cause allergic dermatitis. That is likely to happen when you use poor-quality products or expired pencils that you should have tossed a year ago. 

There are other reasons why your eyebrows could be thinning, including overgrooming, your diet, aging, and your hormones. 

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).