Eyebrows, along with hair on the head and eyelashes, are often lost during chemotherapy treatment or in those afflicted with alopecia areata. Eyebrows help frame the face and play a pivotal role in facial expression, so losing your eyebrows can be devastating and difficult to deal with. If you are currently undergoing chemotherapy for cancer or have just finished, there are options to help you feel less “eyebrow-less.” Luckily, eyebrows usually grow back after the completion of chemotherapy.
Before you choose to apply anything to your face – please consult with your oncology doctor or dermatologist to make sure it is safe.
Eyebrow Makeup Kits
One way to disguise eyebrow loss is by using an eyebrow kit, which can be purchased online or at many beauty supply stores.
- Eyebrow kits typically consist of eyebrow stencils in various shapes and sizes, a brush, an eyebrow shadow, and a wax to help the shadow stick.
- Before you lose your eyebrows completely, try out different eyebrow kits and eyeshadow shades to help you find the best color. Practice matching your natural eyeshadow color and contour.
- With anything you are applying to your eyes, first test out the product on your arm to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction.
Eyebrow pencils are a popular makeup item for everyone, not just chemotherapy patients.
- Eyebrow pencils come in dozens of different colors and thicknesses and can be used to fill in thin eyebrows or to draw on eyebrows.
- Many makeup artists will be happy to help you create fabulous eyebrows.
Human Hair Eyebrows
Fake eyebrows, or “eyebrow wigs,” can be purchased online, at wig shops, and at some beauty supply stores.
- Look for false eyebrows made from 100% sterilized human hair – there are many options designed specifically for chemo patients.
- False eyebrows come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors so you can find the best fit for your face.
- Although they may be more expensive than an eyebrow pencil, good quality false eyebrows can last for months.
Eyebrow Solutions for Permanent Hair Loss or Thin Eyebrows after Chemotherapy
A small number of women may never regrow eyebrows that were as thick as they were prior to starting chemotherapy. Fortunately, there are still options for people who desire a longer-lasting or permanent eyebrow solution.
- Eyebrow Tattoos – eyebrows can be recreated using tattoos, implanting permanent ink into the skin. There are tattoo artists specifically trained in eyebrows, and they can be made to appear 3D with very detailed shading. Of course, do not pursue this option without first speaking with your oncology doctor or dermatologist.
- Bimatoprost Ophthalmic Solution – this is an FDA approved medication that can be applied to lengthen eyelashes. It is used off-label when applied to the eyebrows for hair growth and should be discussed with your dermatologist.
- Eyebrow Transplant Surgery – in this surgery, the doctor can remove a carefully selected strip of scalp from the patient’s own head. An eyebrow shape can then be cut into the scalp strip using a stencil. Special surgical techniques are used to place this hair graft onto the face to create eyebrows.[1,2]