I am not the ideal Into the Gloss girl. I don't live in a city, I'm not an effortlessly chic beauty insider, and I was not wowed by most of the Byredo fragrance line. My Instagram has near zero photos of cool beach vacations or stylish outfits and is instead populated with awkward selfies, cat pictures, sloppy piles of makeup, and food glorious food. I own more than three lipsticks and will never be a size 2 again. I've accepted this. Different strokes for different folks and whatnot.
And for a while, I accepted that Glossier's products would not be My Thing, either, especially Boy Brow--because if you watch the commercial they created, every freaking model has decently full brows. I do not. I have some wisps above my eyes that pretend to be brow hairs, and that's about it. Stick me under a bright light and the outer half of my brows will outright disappear, almost like they're frightened little vampire brows who can't suffer the sun.
But somehow, some way, I got sucked in to it. Maybe it was the cute packaging. Maybe it was the YouTube raves. Maybe it was my desperate desire for a brow product that I could slap on in less than 3 minutes. Honestly, though? I think I just wanted to prove myself wrong. I wanted to prove that something designed for cool, full-browed, no-makeup-makeup beauties could work for me, too!
I proved nothing, my friends, except that my wimpy brows need pencil.
Let's start with the price and packaging. For $16, you get 3.12 grams of product in a cute, tiny, matte white tube. I actually like simple packaging like this, and because the tube is so small, it's great for tossing in your purse or traveling. The brush on this is also one of the tiniest I've ever seen on a brow gel, and I appreciate that--I have no idea why some brow gels insist on giving you the biggest, derpiest wands when our brows are kind of a small part of our face.
Despite the incredibly small size of the wand, I found it a smidge difficult to control the gel. The wand picks up a ton of product, so I have to wipe it off on the rim of the tube multiple times before applying. When applying Boy Brow, I often get small smudges of product on the skin above and below my brows, no matter how careful I am. It's easily removed with a fingertip, but it still annoys the shit out of me.
My biggest problem with this product is that it just doesn't work well on sparse brows. Now, if you see the photos above, you'll notice that the front half of my brows look okay: it looks fuller and well-groomed without looking overdone. This is partially because that part of my brow is slightly fuller to begin with, with coarser and more numerous hairs. But as soon as I get to my arches, where my brow hairs are finer and fewer, things get a bit rocky. The gel doesn't coat these thin hairs quite as well, and if it hits bare skin, it leaves flakes all over the place. Even after careful application, I'm left with brows that are slightly patchy.
I also tried sweeping a tiny amount of Boy Brow over brow pencil to see if I liked that look. This is slightly better--it adds a bit of texture to the look--but I have to use a very, very tiny amount. Otherwise, Boy Brow will pull off much of the pencil; even in the above photo, where I was as gentle with the gel as I could be, you'll see a few spots with less color on them.
I'll also note that I'm kind of "eh" about the shade range. I got the shade Brown, and while it isn't the warmest brow product I've ever tested, it's not as ashy as I'd like. I also think three shades (Blonde, Brown, Black) leaves a chunk of the population unrepresented, namely folks with white or gray hair who need a gray or taupe product.
Lastly, I had a real problem with this product yanking out my brow hairs. I'd apply it to my brows, pull the wand back, and notice several of my delicate hairs stuck in the product. This isn't the end-all, be-all, because my brow hairs are quite wimpy and are more easily yoinked than most people's. But it's still worth mentioning.
I do think Boy Brow will work well for people with moderately thick to very thick brows who like an effortless look and hate faffing about with pencil. The fact that it has a clear customer and some efficacy prompts me to rate it a 3 instead of a 2. But overall, I don't think it's worth the mad hype it's getting on YouTube and the blogosphere. It often flakes, sometimes applies patchy, is easily smeared despite the small wand, has a limited shade range, and doesn't have the hold of, say, the Anastasia brow gel. It will suit a certain market, but fine-browed folks like myself should give this a pass.
With all of this said, if you're interested in purchasing this product (or any others) from Glossier, feel free to use my affiliate links in this post--everybody with an account gets one, so this isn't a paid post, I swear. You'll get 20% off your order, I'll get $10 in credit, and who knows? Maybe they'll produce something I can actually use. If that's not your thang, just go to Glossier.com to get your products, no affiliation required.
RATING: 3 out of 5
Affiliate Link: Glossier