Beauty fix: How to control unruly brows, a facial cleanser that soothes and heals sunburns and more

Beauty Fix
Beauty Fix

Every week our Beauty Fix columnist takes on your questions about makeup, skincare, hair and more. Have a beauty question we haven’t answered? Email us at beautyfix@fashionmagazine.com.

My brows are well defined, but they are unruly and gel isn’t doing the trick. What else can I use?
If you’re blessed with full brows and have no use for brow powders or pencils at all, consider yourself lucky! If you’re blessed with brows so full that they verge into unruly territory, you probably consider yourself frustrated when hairs stray from your natural shape. If gel isn’t keeping brow hairs in order, try something more pliable that will really grip hairs and keep them together, like Sigma Beauty Brow Wax ($11, sigmabeauty.com). This pencil format means convenient application. Run it through brows, and your body heat will warm the wax up, allowing you to brush it through with a spoolie into your preferred shape.

How can I make my thin lips appear plumper without doing anything extreme?
Sounds like you’re not up for the cosmetic procedure route, but there are still non-surgical alternatives galore, so listen up! First of all, make sure you’re exfoliating lips plenty with a lip scrub or dampened towel to encourage circulation, which will plump up their appearance. Use the concept of contouring for your lips by lightly (and I do mean lightly – we’re not going for a ‘90s dark-liner look) applying a nude liner, such as Hourglass Panoramic Long Wear Lip Liner in “Eden” ($33, sephora.ca), around the very edge of your lip line, holding the liner vertically so the pencil is flat against your lips, not pointing towards your mouth. Blend out any hard lines with the brush end of the liner. This will result in an ever so slight exaggeration of the shape of your lips, creating a more dimensional appearance. If you’re a gloss fan, top the liner off with a layer of your favourite neutral light-reflective lacquer.

I got sunburned on my face and my usual cleanser is too harsh on my skin. What can I use instead?
Skin sensitivity is clearly heightened when inflamed from excess sun exposure, so it’s best to switch from your usual foaming or scrubbing cleanser to something that will still cleanse skin, but in a gentler manner. Holistic Vanity Rejuvenating Rosewater Cleanser ($30, pureandsimple.ca) is a sound option, since it contains rosewater and aloe, which are both known for their skin-soothing and healing properties, as well as tamanu oil, an anti-inflammatory that encourages tissue regeneration and repair. Skin will be gently hydrated and calmed after use, which is a huge leap forward from sunburn.

How do I make my skin glow without overloading my oily skin with makeup products?
Lightweight products are always preferred in summer weather, but that doesn’t mean you can’t address concerns such as lacklustre skin just because of the heat. It’s simply a matter of finding the right formulation to suit your skin type and goals. If increased radiance is the primary concern, introduce a lightweight fluid like Clinique Even Better Essence Lotion for Combination Oily To Oily ($37, sephora.ca) into your routine. This fluid contains apple, cucumber and lentil extracts to process enzymes into amino acids that skin loves, resulting in brighter skin. Simply pat onto skin after cleansing but prior to any serum, moisturizer or sunscreen.

I wash my hands frequently and I feel like they are constantly getting dehydrated. What can I do to retain my hand’s natural oils?
Many people have to wash their hands frequently due to their professions; others (myself included) could just be really committed to warding off germs after a jaunt outside the house. Whatever your reason, your hands will definitely be dehydrated as a result due to the frequent cleansing, which ultimately strips your hands of all natural oils. Remedy this by applying a dab or few of Hand Chemistry Intense Youth Complex ($20, at Shoppers Drug Mart), a hand cream that contains 19.5% active ingredients, including a hyper-hydrating mushroom derivative, algae ferment and several humectants to moisturize and more importantly, retain moisture in spite of repeated hand washing.