Review: Tarte EmphasEYES For Brows High Definition Eyebrow Pencil

By Voxy  

BEHOLD! — the pencil that made me change my mind about brow pencils.

Wait. That’s probably going a bit too far.

BEHOLD! — the pencil that made me change my mind about this brow pencil. Yes. That, I can stand behind.

Seriously, I’m ready to throw out my brow powders. (The fact that my Smashbox palette, which contained my brow powders, recently did a swan dive onto my bathroom floor and half of them cracked and broke is, of course, totally unrelated to the previous statement.) This little guy positively annihilates all of my previous long-cherished grudges against brow pencils, which were as follows:

1. They smudge and smear. Nope, this pencil does not. The color doesn’t migrate and it stays in place for the whole day.

2. OK, if it doesn’t smudge and smear, then it must be so hard that it feels like you’re clawing your own face when you apply it. Strike two, chump. The texture/firmness of this pencil is perfect for sketching in brows using very small, thin lines. It goes on easy like Sunday morning.

3. All right, smartypants, but I bet there’s no way you could find the perfect color. They’re always too red, or too dark, or something. Strike three and you’re out. This was perhaps the biggest surprise, since Tarte EmphasEYES brow pencils come in exactly two shades: Taupe and Medium Brown. (You know how I love Tarte, but once again I have to poke at their marketing people: if you don’t have a “light” or a “dark” brown, you can’t have a “medium” brown. Just call the damn thing “brown” and be done with it.) Anyway, I tried the [medium] brown one and was seriously astonished when it blended right in and was the perfect shade. I’m never “medium” anything.

There are two other really nice features to this product. The first is that the tip of the pencil is very skinny, which helps keep the liner sharp and finely pointed. The second is that it comes with a spoolie attached to the other end, which makes it convenient and easy to brush out brows before and afterward to make sure everything is blended. The Tarte product design people get a huge thumbs-up from me; the Marketing Department gets a raspberry.


Tarte EmphasEYES For Brows High Definition Eyebrow Pencil: $19.50

Provenance: Purchased.

Price/Value Ratio (high-end: poor/fair/good/excellent): Excellent.

Purchase again? You betcha.

(Have you used this product? Love it? Hate it? Want it? Give a holler in the comments!)

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  1. avatar a biologist
    Posted July 7, 2010 at 9:03 pm | Permalink | Reply

    My pencil arrived today. So far I really like it. It matches surprisingly well. I used a really light touch and it didn’t leave any visible lines within my brows. They just look subtly darker and better defined. Win!


    • avatar Voxy
      Posted July 7, 2010 at 9:53 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Yay! I’m glad it’s a success. I was also really pleased with how well it blended. Definitely a win for me too.

      Now I don’t know what to do with the Smashbox brow tech powder and wax I bought around the same time, though… they’ve become obsolete before I even got to open them!


      • avatar a biologist
        Posted July 8, 2010 at 12:31 am | Permalink | Reply

        I looked at the brow tech product, but I knew I’d never use the wax. Perhaps my brows are–unlike the rest of me– well-behaved and sedate, but they don’t seem to need to be held in place.


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