Unless you’ve been stuck in the beauty aisles for a year or two, you’re probably aware that we’re living in the golden age of arches. The Kardashian sisters and Cara Delevingne have turned their Instagram feeds into virtual streaming advertisements for bold brows, and eyebrow wizards such as Anastasia Soare, Damone Roberts and Kristie Streicher are at the tops of their games. Our insatiable appetite for brow products and expertise is letting others squeeze into the brow scene, too, even those who upend the established eyebrow orthodoxy. Consider Marco Ochoa, a Beverly Hills-based brow artist with an impressive cadre of celebrity fans (Camila Alves McConaughey, Malin Akerman and Eva Longoria, just to name a few), a natural bent, and a unique point of view on brow pencils and powders.
Tending to brows since he was a teenager, Ochoa hasn’t been particularly enthusiastic about the pencils and powders wielded as brow tools. Pencils, he lamented in a recent interview with BBTA, can yank eyebrow hairs. “Powders look ashier, and they don’t stay on long,” he added. Ochoa resorted to brown eye shadow to fill in brows. “I was never happy. I just used it because I had to use it,” he said. In creating his own brand, EcoBrow, Ochoa sought to get happy by developing a better alternative to pencils and powders. “I saw a product that was a duo of clear wax and powder. I noticed that a lot of girls I was working with were mixing both and applying it to the brows. I liked the finish, and I thought why not make something like that that’s all in one,” he said.
EcoBrow released Defining Wax in 2013 and, earlier this year, it landed at around 200 Sephora stores and on Sephora.com. With a creamy finish and six shades, Defining Wax is totally natural, and contains oil-absorbing silica and vitamin E to keep your brow hairs healthy. “It’s long lasting and, if you want a really natural look, you can use it to give a little color to certain areas, but you can also create a real nice, defined brow,” said Ochoa. In case you’re application challenged like me, he’s devised three basic steps – dab, fill and blend – to guide you to the perfect brow. The first step requires dabbing the angled side of a brush (EcoBrow has its own Defining Brush) into the pot of Defining Wax, the second involves short strokes of the brush on the brow, and the third entails brushing the brows upward and gently rubbing in the wax with the spool side of the brush. “I try to make it simple for people to understand with the three-step process. This type of product is a little new to the market, but it really isn’t that difficult,” he explained.
Although it’s simple, Ochoa realizes Defining Brow may not be for everyone. He’s working hard at reinterpreting the eyebrow pencil to launch one that doesn’t have the downsides he’s disdained. “My older clientele is used to the pencil, so I want to have that option for them,” said Ochoa. “I know some people like a really thin, retractable pencil, but they break easily. Mine won’t be like that. It will work like a thin pencil, but it is not going to be that thin.” Regardless of how you feel about pencils, powers or waxes, what’s clear is that the brow category will expand with more brow products to suit all preferences. Ochoa said, “It used to be like a secret that only Hollywood and well-connected women knew, but now the secret is out, and it is going to continue. Brows make a big difference.”