Eyebrow Blindness Is Nothing New It’s A Beauty Rite Of Passage

With 160 million views and counting, meet the trend intent on questioning some of our own historical brow choices


by Jo Hoare |
Updated on

TikTok loves nothing more than giving us new names for things that were probably fine just as they were, ‘hot girl walk’ I’m looking at you (it’s no different from a regular walk?) but every so often it gifts us an absolute treasure that has everyone saying THAT’S ME: step forward ‘eyebrow blindness’. A term describing the phenomenon of looking back at our past-me brows and thinking what the hell was I doing? With 160 million views and counting and comments like ‘Eyebrow blindness is a real thing’ and ‘who let me walk around like this’ #eyebrowblindness has almost surely made its way to your For You Page and probably has you questioning some of your own historical brow choices.

Most users are sharing throwback pictures focusing on the super heavy block brows of the 2010’s with 2016 being the year most of us fell prey to the condition. In 2016 we were all about the brows, tutorials reigned supreme and brow products were launched weekly, Benefit alone launched a whopping 13 in the year. Think Kylie Jenner’s exaggerated powdery arches, Lady Gaga’s villain-esque definition, Lauren Conrad’s grey tinted crescents or every second person you saw in the street looking like they’d been asked to Sharpie an upside-down Nike tick on their foreheads. Youtuber, MUA and chronic victim of eyebrow blindness James Charles has even apologised for his part in it, showing some of his own worst offenders, he said; '“Girls are making videos about their "eyebrow blindness" … y’all had 20/20 perfect vision in comparison to me. Worst part is my tutorials definitely caused this… I’m sorry.'

Anastasia Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade, £19, is the product that many users are blaming for their eyebrow blindness ‘the chokehold ABH DipBrow had on me’ said one, with another calling it ‘the DipBrow apocalypse’. This full pigment cream was iconic in the mid 10’s for it’s no budge coverage and bold finish. The ABHDP era was however at least temporary (although as anyone who ever tried to wash it off will know it didn’t give itself up easily) but there were more permanent and semi-permanent routes to eyebrow blindness. Post 90’s and early 00’s brow decimation (more of that later) there was seemingly an innovation in brows every week from nanoblading, and laminating to microblading and HD brows, bigger, bolder, black and blockier was the aim and a pair of tweezers and a slick of clear mascara simply wouldn’t cut it.


Of course eyebrow regret is nothing new, second only to the hair on our heads it’s where most of us make the most dramatic and longest lasting beauty decisions and as trends come and go we will always squirm at past versions of ourselves and our cool-at-the-time look. As a veteran of the 90’s/00’s overplucking (and even that was stolen from the 30’s and 70’s, hey our great, great grandma’s had eyebrow blindness too) my own eyebrow blindness era is still obvious over two decades later although it did mean I was medically exempt from the mega brows most of TikTok are talking about it, as trying to fill what I have left would have been the equivalent of attempting to paint my little fingernail with a paint roller.

As trends move faster than ever, it’s undoubtedly fun to laugh a little at our past beauty extremes but it’s important to remember that all looks come and go and a little bit of cringe from future you shouldn’t stop any of us enjoying and experimenting with beauty. TikTok will be laughing at something else next week anyway, fingers crossed it’s those false eyelashes you could sweep a chimney with….

Main image: TikTok/ @jamescharles, @jonetwmakeup and @nicoleleeanne6


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