How have your eyebrows changed over the last 100 years? The trend is also affecting beauty, and eyebrow araches have gone from the very thin lines of the twenties to the thick, bushy eyebrows of the eighties to the present day with the boom in eyebrow tattooing. This is how eyebrow trends have evolved over the years.
When we think about changing trends we focus on fashion, clothing and accessories: in fact, trends also affect beauty, and over the decades we have also seen makeup, hairstyles and…eyebrows change. The eyebrow arch is one of the fundamental points of our face: it frames the look by highlighting the eyes, but if we talk about eyebrow trends their shape has not always been the one we know now. Just think that today we are all in search of the thick and natural eyebrows at Cara Delevingne and those who can not get it resort to eyebrow tattooing or microblading are only about ten years since we wanted all the thin and invisible eyebrows of Gwen Stefani and Christina Aguilera. But how has the eyebrow trends changed and how did we go from the thin eyebrows of the 20s to the thick, bushy eyebrows of the last decade to microblading? Here is the evolution of the eyebrow arch from the first decades of the 20th century to today.
Twenties: thin and angular eyebrows
These are the years in which makeup is no longer only related to prostitutes but becomes an accessory of silent cinema. In these years actresses like Clara Bow and Josephine Baker wear very thin eyebrows, often designed with the first make-up products dedicated to eyebrows. The line of the eyebrow arch is angular and often facing downwards, giving the eye a sad and melancholic connotation. A shape that we have seen come back over the following decades, and that Rihanna even showed off some time ago on the cover of British Vogue.
Thirties: thin and round eyebrows
Even in the following decade the eyebrows remain fine and thin, with the difference that the arch becomes wider and rounded. The beauty icon of the time was Greta Garbo: the eyebrow arch of the Swedish actress was completely shaved by Max Factor, Hollywood star make-up artist, who then designed the famous pencil arch. From that moment on Greta and her eyebrows became iconic and copied by the women of the thirties.
Forties: natural eyebrows and soft lines
In the 1940s, thin lines were abandoned in favor of a softer and more natural eyebrow arch, just like the one worn by Grace Kelly. We are not yet talking about thick and defined eyebrows like those that will arrive in the following decade, but a more rebellious and less artifact, more sinuous and harmonious arch. Some celebrities like Rita Hayworth, on the other hand, keep a thinner open line, with a hint of seagull wing that will be the protagonist form of the fifties.
Fifties: gull wing eyebrows
In the middle of the last century, eyebrows experienced a real boom and became thick, defined and gull-winged, just as Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor wore them. It’s the pin-up era, where even the makeup becomes bolder, with eye liners and red lips in the foreground. Audrey Hepburn follows the trend, but instead of choosing an arched shape she prefers a straight and thick eyebrow arch: very difficult to wear, but extremely beautiful on her face, so much so that she becomes an icon of beauty.
Sixties: eyebrows arched and defined with makeup
In the Sixties there was a double change: on the one hand there was a return to thin, arched eyebrows, as Twiggy, the icon of the decade, wore them. On the other hand, there are eyebrows designed with make-up, perfect, defined and rounded like those worn by Sophia Loren, but also darker and more intense, in contrast with the color of the hair: this is the case, for example, of the eyebrows shown by Anita Ekberg in one of the films that marked the sixties, “La dolce vita”.
Seventies: bushy eyebrows
In the years of the protest, even the eyebrows became bushy, feeling the libertine spirit of the time. The eyebrow arch is thick and often left uncultivated, sometimes even too much. There is no longer a maniacal attention to the out-of-place hair, but on the contrary an exaltation of extreme naturalness, like the nature eyebrows worn by Meryl Streep, Farrah Fawcett or Ali MacGraw. There are, however, those who go against the tapering trend and thin the eyebrows, or even eliminate them completely: this is the case for example of Mina, who in the 70s appeared totally devoid of her eyebrows, apparently shaved the first time for fun and pleasure. The singer then maintained this look, focusing on eye makeup.
Eighties: messy eyebrows
The most daring and imaginative decade. Makeup becomes important, metallic and fluorescent, hair is backcombed or very short, and eyebrows are messy and often left uncultivated: the eyebrows are thick and dark, like Madonna’s one. This is the period in which the eyebrow arch often loses its shape, whether it was a seagull wing like Marilyn or arched like Twiggy. An extremity of naturalness that, however, enhanced very few faces.
Nineties: the return to thin eyebrows
In the Nineties super models are depopulated and the female world begins to give more importance to eyebrows, but in the wrong way. Beauty begins again to reverse the trends of the sixties: after thirty years you have thin and fine eyebrows with minimal arches. These are the years that have where the excessive pushing to copy the looks of Kate Moss, Drew Barrymore and Pamela Anderson causes more “disasters” giving rise to an army of repentant women who today resort to microblading.
Years Two thousand: invisible eyebrows
The worst decade: not content to have seen eyebrows become thinner and thinner in the 1990s, in the 2000s we see a real disaster. The eyebrow arch becomes a very thin thread, often without a precise shape, or with straight lines or a hint of arch. The icons of the period ranged from Christina Aguilera to Gwen Stefani and Britney Spears. Here too, there are many who regret the unscrupulous use of tweezers.
Years Two thousand and ten: natural and thick eyebrows
The decade of the turning point. Finally it is realized that the eyebrow arch cannot be standard for all faces, because each face requires different shapes, thicknesses and proportions. Since 2010, eyebrows are thick, defined and cared for again: the champion of the eyebrow revolution was Cara Delevingne, who promoted an eyebrow arch that is both natural and fictitiously uncultured. Eyebrow makeup also returns: at first with more pronounced and intense products, while towards the end of the decade (fortunately) softer and less “artificial” techniques were chosen.
The period of tattooing
In recent years the eyebrow tattoo has become more and more a protagonist in the world of beauty: not only for the repentant women of the nineties and two thousand who exaggerated with tweezers and waxes and found themselves hairless, but also for those who, by nature, have few eyebrows or an eyebrow arch with a few holes or asymmetrical. The techniques to define eyebrows are different and range from classic dermopigmentation to microbalding, up to the latest microshading. The only rule is to rely on a professional to avoid unpleasant incidents that instead of enhancing the face, penalize him.
Eyebrows: how fashion has changed in 100 years