Eyebrow waxing is probably the most popular way to tame unruly eyebrows. Yes, tweezing and plucking eyebrows at home is definitely a more cost-effective option. But an eyebrow waxing treatment at the salon is relatively inexpensive, and wax strips you can buy for home use are cheap.
It’s no secret that eyebrow waxing doesn’t exactly tickle, but it’s probably the idea of getting it all over with, in one fell swoop, rather than prolonging the agony hair by hair, that has waxing coming out as the favored eyebrow hair removal method for many.
Though it is quick, easy, and gives you great results, eyebrow waxing is only a quick fix. Eyebrows are hair, after all. So they do grow back.
Many wonder: How often should I wax my eyebrows?
Now, despite a lot of blog articles out there suggesting that you wax eyebrows as often as every 2 weeks, we are going to explain in detail why you need to be waiting at least 4-6 weeks before getting your eyebrows waxed again.
- 1 How Eyebrows Grow
- 2 How Often Should I Wax My Eyebrows?
- 3 Does Waxing Eyebrows Make Them Thinner?
- 4 Should I Pluck Regrowth In Between Waxing?
How Eyebrows Grow
All hair grows in cycles. And while all hair grows in 4 distinct phases, the length of those phases will vary, depending on the type of hair.
Eyebrow hair has shorter cycles, but grows more slowly than the hair on your head, for example.
1. The Growth Phase (aka Anagen Phase):
This is the first phase of brow growth where the brow hair grows to its predetermined limit. This phase can last from 30 to 45 days.
2. The Transition Phase (aka Catagen Phase):
During this phase, the follicle moves closer to the surface of the skin and begins to shrink before reaching the next stage. This phase can last from 2 to 3 weeks.
3. The Resting Phase (aka Telogen Phase):
Hairs don’t grow during the telogen phase, but they don’t usually fall out either. The telogen phase is also when a new hair starts to form in the follicle that has just released the hair during the catagen phase.
4. The Shedding Phase (Exogen Phase):
It’s at this point that the old hair finally sheds, helped along by the new hair growing in its place.
In total, the entire eyebrow hair growth cycle works out to about roughly four months. We will get to why these growth stages are important and how they will affect waxing results a little bit further down.
How Long Does Eyebrow Wax Last
The results of an eyebrow wax can last up to five weeks. While some people may be able to go 5 weeks before seeing any regrowth, others may start to see regrowth at the 3-4 week mark. Hair thickness and growth rate vary among individuals, depending on ethnicity and genetics.
So, does this mean you should be getting waxed every 3-4 weeks if you are among the latter?
No, despite a lot of the salon blogs trying to convince you otherwise.
How Often Should I Wax My Eyebrows?
Going back to the growth stages we were talking about earlier, you’ll see how they play an important role in all of this and how hair removal during the different stages affects how the hair will grow back.
Waxing salons will promote getting legs and bikini lines waxed every 3 – 4 weeks. That’s about the time it takes for leg hairs to become just long enough to wax. If they are too short, the wax cannot properly grab onto the hair. 3-4 weeks after having been waxed puts those new hairs in their growing phase.
Waxing during the growing phase of the hair cycle will cause hair to grow back thinner due to the wax ripping the hair out of the follicle and causing damage.
The more waxing done, the more damage done. And eventually the hair will become thinner, weaker or in some cases, not grow back at all.
Getting waxed or plucking hair out once or twice is not going to cause any permanent damage to the hair follicle or change in hair growth or thickness.
But repeated waxing (or plucking) over a long period of time during the growth phase will eventually cause irreparable damage to the hair follicle.
Once you go for your first eyebrow wax, it takes about 4-6 weeks for your hair to go through the growth phase. Once it’s in the transition (catagen) phase, it has stopped growing. The follicle begins to shrink and moves closer to the surface of the skin. It releases the hair much more easily and with far less stress on the follicle when waxed.
For eyebrows, to prevent damage and potential hair loss, you don’t want to be waxing during the growth stage.
This means you should be waiting at least 4-6 weeks in between waxing your brows.
Does Waxing Eyebrows Make Them Thinner?
We’ve just discussed that waxing will cause our hair to grow back finer and thinner.
The reason waxing can cause hair to grow back thinner (though often touted as a fantastic benefit of waxing), is actually because of damage to the hair follicle due to the growing stage at which they are being taken out.
Getting eyebrows waxed too often can cause permanent damage to those hair follicles. It can cause them to grow back weaker and thinner. Or in some cases, not at all.
While for your legs or bikini line, might be a big win. But we are talking about your eyebrows here!
Regardless of the brow shapes that come in and out of fashion, bald spots will most likely never make it on the list of trending brow styles.
Even if you have particularly thick eyebrows, only the part you’re waxing would thin out (if you are over waxing), not the rest of your eyebrows.
You don’t want to end up with completely uneven eyebrows.
Not to mention that brow shape trends change. You don’t want to pigeonhole yourself into a look that will go out of style.
It’s for all of these reasons, it is crucial to wait at least 4-6 weeks to re-wax your eyebrows.
Should I Pluck Regrowth In Between Waxing?
As tempting as it may be, you must avoid plucking regrowth between waxing sessions.
After your first waxing, you will have pulled out hairs during different growth phases. So for the first few waxing sessions, you might have some hairs growing back faster than others. This is normal.
Your aim is to get all your hairs you are waxing on the same cycle so they all grow back at the same rate.
By plucking, you are disrupting the hair phases and your hairs will continue to be on different cycles, which means they will continue to grow back at different rates. This, in turn, means you will be plucking them too soon (plucking and waxing are the same in this respect) and causing damage to those hair follicles, which is what you want to avoid.
Is It Better To Shave Or Wax Your Eyebrows?
So waxing can cause your eyebrows to grow back thinner or not at all, plus the fact that you will have regrowth that you will have to just put up with until your next wax, you may be reconsidering shaving as an option!
Shaving is actually a good alternative. However, the results from shaving last only days, rather than weeks for waxing. You will have much faster regrowth with shaving, so you will have to shave a lot more often than you would have to wax.
The upside is that shaving just cuts the hair off at the surface of the skin, leaving the hair follicle intact.
So no matter how often you shave, there is no risk of damage to the hair follicles.
At the end of the day, they both waxing and shaving have their benefits and drawbacks, so when it comes down to waxing vs. shaving, it’s just a matter of personal preference.
Should you decide to try shaving, it’s best to use a blade specifically designed for using on your face and brows, rather than a disposable razor you might use on your legs.
A dermaplaning razor has only one blade. It’s more like shaving with a scalpel because it’s a much smaller blade than a straight razor. It offers a lot more control over the contoured areas of the face and allows for a lot more precision when shaping eyebrows.