BROW-FILL FRACAS!

FACE OFF

So I’ve previously mentioned (in passing) that I use (and quite like!) ColourPop’s brow fill in “Jet Set Black.” I think I’ve also previously mentioned (in passing) that at some point I bought a pot of Lancôme’s Sourcils brow fill/gel stuff in “Noir” and [DO_NOT_WANT.gif]. Oh but why? LET’S LOOK :

WHAT THOSE ARE :

ColourPop Precision Brow Colour ($6/.11oz at ColourPop) is, like most potted brow-fill products, a very thick/stiff and heavily-pigmented cream in a small glass jar with a screw-on lid.

ColourPop brow fill, obviously much-used and well-loved.

Lancôme Sourcils Gel ($24/.17oz at Ulta) is also a thickish cream in a glass jar — but it’s got a thinner, more emollient consistency than ColourPop, and behaves very differently when applied.

HOW THEY COMPARE :

Both are best applied with a stiff angle brush. The ColourPop is EXTREMELY pigmented and quite a stiff/dry product — just lightly (and I do mean lightly) tapping your brush against the product surface one time will pick up plenty of product to work with. As a brow fill product, this is meant to color the skin in the brow area, not to cling to the actual brow hairs (or thicken them, or color them, etc.). It sheers out very nicely, looks smooth and even, and is also easy to build up for darker color.

The Lancôme is also meant to be a brow fill product, not a styling gel or something to tint/control the brow hairs themselves. However, it DOES want to adhere to the hairs — but rather than add control, it just makes them look crusty. That’s not even the biggest problem, though. My main issue with this garbage is that it’s practically impossible to get a smooth application. Where ColourPop looks diffused and smooth like a pastel crayon or chalk drawn on soft paper, the Lancôme looks specky and blotchy and streaky, like a lumpy half-mixed paint dragged over rough paper. :(

Trying to brush it on really thin? Watery streaky with specks, plus little dots of product that seem to build up in pores/the roots of hairs. Maybe if you put more on the brush tho? Now you get heavy streaks that’re impossible to blend out. Maybe if you do a thin layer and then go over it again instead? Nope, that’ll just wipe off the first layer, leaving you with bare areas. I even thought “maybe it’s doing that thing like some lipsticks, where the very upper portion of the surface is more waxy, and has a different pigmentation/performance than the rest of the product” — thus the deep pit gouged into the surface. Nope, it’s still the same.

WOW THAT IS NOT GOOD

No it legit is not. Did I wash my applicator brush first, and dry it thoroughly? Yes indeed I did, even though when I’m only using that brush with the ColourPop, I just wipe off much of the leftover product on a tissue and sling it back in Le Brush Receptacle AKA Old Candle Jar — I actually *wash* the thing maybe [embarrassingly long interval]. Did I try it with different brushes? Yes indeed I did, including a liner brush (too floppy, too small), a very small dense shader brush (this just made a sloppy mess), and an actual bristly brow brush (lol, disaster).

BUT HOW DO THEY WEAR?

Both of these will stay looking pretty much as they do when freshly applied for many hours … as long as you don’t touch your brows. (Though for the Lancôme, “looks like freshly applied” isn’t really a plus.) Even on my oily sweaty skin, both have quite good longevity. But the Lancôme, being inkier AND more prone to applying in thick chunks and streaks … well, just don’t wipe your face :

ColourPop on the left, Lancôme on the right. Please note that I did this ON PURPOSE — I didn’t accidentally wipe my eyebrows onto my forehead at a restaurant or anything. (Which is not outside the realm of possibility, alas.)

THE WINNER : ColourPop, by approximately infinity. Who knows, maybe the lighter shades perform just fine! But in black, the Lancôme Sourcils is the worst $24 I’ve spent since the last time I purchased and consumed multiple shots of tequila. Even that It Cosmetics powder I hated so much is nicer and more usable than this. Better ways to spend appx $24 include four pounds of Circus Peanuts (hurk), Battlefield Earth on Blu Ray and maybe a Slim Jim from the gas station, or forty-eight sparkly rubber balls from one of those machines in the lobby of the drugstore next to the coupon magazines nobody uses and the snowdrift of lazily discarded receipts.

HAVE YOU TRIED THIS? (I do not recommend it.) (Obviously.) Got a fave brow fill product?