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Huda Kattan Eyebrows
Huda Kattan Source: Instagram.com

During the nineties and well into the early 2000s, thin, barely-there eyebrows were all the rage. If you googled photos of celebrities or even found old Facebook photos of your friends, you will notice that everyone from your high school friend Melissa to Christina Aguilera and Gwen Stefani took pride in their thin eyebrows. Then, several years ago, people’s perspective on beauty started to shift. Celebrities, regular people and even beauticians began to notice just how much the frame and proper fullness of the eyebrows can affect not only the shape of a person’s face, but actually enhance their beauty. Prominent eyebrows took center stage, and then the frenzy was taken to an entirely new level.

Rumor has it that thanks to Cara Delevingne, sales of tweezers have dropped drastically as everyone, all of a sudden, wanted their brows, thick, voluminous, feathery, wild and powerful. People went to extreme lengths and the overworked brows became an object of ridicule that the beauty community begged for to stop. 

Since then, people have been doing their best to let their natural eyebrows grow back, and those who couldn’t, resorted to trusty brow gels, pomades, and pencils that would help them fill in the blanks and cover up both the insane and unflattering thinness and at times hairless spots and scarceness in their brows. Now, while there is nothing wrong with wanting to have nice and symmetrical-looking brows that frame your face and add to your beautiful features, there is apparently a dark secret lurking behind overly prominent brows.

The study of narcissism

There have been numerous studies conducted on narcissism and how to spot a narcissistic person. The ‘red flags’ ranged from asserting authority and emphasizing their superiority over others, excessive flattering and/or harshness towards other people, incredible manipulative skills, blame shifting, the works. They also exhibit excessive amounts of confidence, foster a strong belief that they are more special than anyone else, and constantly crave and demand external validation. However, the worst traits of narcissists are that they are incredibly exploitative and will use anything and anyone to get what they want, which is inextricably linked with their utter and complete lack of empathy. It is hard to be sympathetic and considerate when you’re your own number one, and for that matter, only priority.

However, these are all internal traits, so in order to uncover a narcissist you often get burned by them first and come to this realization once the damage has already been done. Now, however, there are new studies that suggest that there is a single prominent physical trait that can help you recognize a narcissist right off the bat.

The tell-tale sign

Eyebrow Psychology

A number of studies, those published in Psychology Today, Business Insider and Independent, just to cite a few, have come to the conclusion that aside from the fact that these people are usually highly attractive, wear luxurious clothes and are impeccably neat, there is one more thing that will help you spot them, one that is perhaps more obvious and quicker to spot than all others – full and highly prominent eyebrows. As stated in Psychology Today, “Eyebrows may be particularly important to people high on the personality trait of grandiose narcissism’ as they foster a yearning to be admired and recognized – which granted, brows have the power to do. As a result, they might “seek to maintain distinct eyebrows to facilitate others’ ability to notice, recognize, and remember them; thereby increasing their likability and reinforcing their overly positive self-views.” This comes as no surprise as not only do narcissist yearn to be liked, but they have an innate initial likability that draws people in in the first place, that is, before the mask is removed and they see what kind of person they’re actually dealing with.

Another study conducted by  Miranda Giacomin and Nicholas Rule involved recruiting a number of people who were shown photographs of people’s eyebrows alone and the verdict of the target group happen to coincide with the level of estimated narcissism in those who were subjected to the test. This research, according to the conductors will prove highly beneficial in the future as it will provide people with the “ability to identify dark personality traits at zero-acquaintance” and thus prevent any chance of attraction, infatuation and even potential exploitation.

It appears that the eyebrows can be a true life saver, a red flag if you will that can tell a person to steer clear of a narcissist. However, although we don’t disagree with the result of the study, we have to take into account that thick and well-groomed eyebrows are a global trend that millions of people have embraced simply because they realized they made their faces look more shapely and attractive. And while yes, a narcissist’s desire is to be more attractive and alluring, we shouldn’t jump to conclusions based on the brows alone.

There is a long list of narcissist-typical behavior that can be easily spotted, and if a person doesn’t exhibit any of the aforementioned traits, perhaps it would be unfair to write them off solely on the fact that they have trendy full brows. There are probably people out there who simply followed a beauty trend, just like millions of people follow fashion trends, and they couldn’t all be narcissists. The final verdict is – be wary, take the brows as sign number one, but look for other clues as well and give people the benefit of the doubt.  

In order to discover more about the psychological impact of makeup, The Psychology of Fashion Blogsat down with three up-and-coming make-up enthusiasts Youtuber/Model Yana Carr, MUA/Youtuber Jordyn Reina and Influencer Chelesia Anderson to discuss their personal relationship with makeup and how it affects their everyday lives.

Fashion Psychology
Yana (IG @goldynaps)

What does makeup say about you?

Yana: I don’t think my makeup says anything particular about me. I don’t really view it as a part of my identity. I just use it to highlight my features.

Makeup is an art and is meant to enhance the features we already have. How does that make you feel?

Yana: I’d disagree with the idea that makeup is meant to do anything in particular. As an art form it doesn’t have a specified purpose that can be nailed down with a few words. While I certainly use it to enhance the features I already have, not everyone views makeup in that way; it can be used to mask and transform and probably has an abundance of other purposes.

Studies have shown that, men perceive women who wear makeup to be more prestigious, whereas women see other women as being more dominant. Agree or disagree? 

Yana: I feel like most women wear makeup, and that doesn’t really change my perception of them. I think it depends on the extent to which the makeup is being used. Someone who constantly wears a full face of makeup on a constant basis would make me view in a certain light, but I don’t think dominant would necessarily be the word I’d use to describe them. I’d more so be curious as to whether they feel like they need to wear makeup, or if it’s just something they’re passionate about. In terms of the perception of men, I feel like most women of importance have an image to uphold, and generally people want to portray themselves as flawless. Makeup aids that perception, so I feel like it makes sense that men view women who wear makeup as more prestigious.

What’s your favourite makeup product and why? 

Yana: Mascara. I have blonde eyelashes, so, despite being long and full, they’re basically invisible without mascara.

Jordyn (IG @jojobeauts)

How does makeup make you feel?

Jordyn: Makeup makes me feel transformed. I can become anyone or anything I want to be. I was always obsessed with magical girl animes and transforming feminine superheroes as a child and perhaps that translated into my adult life. My favorite aspect of makeup is the before and after transformation. Because it has an effect on how we act and perceive ourselves as well. 

Are men in makeup changing the world?

Jordyn: Men in makeup are certainly changing the world. It is helping dismantle the modern day stereotype that makeup is purely a feminine feature of life. Anybody should be able to enjoy the beauty and transformative properties of makeup, REGARDLESS of gender. As a gender non-conforming artist. This is obviously incredibly important to me. 

What’s the best advice to give for a non-binary makeup slay

Jordyn: Find your style, who you want to become, and just go for it. Makeup has no rules, only strong suggestions.

 

If you had to choose only one makeup product to wear, which would it be and why? 

Jordyn: WHY must you do this to me. The makeup forever flash palette because I can get basically a full face of makeup if I tried. It just wouldn’t last very long because I’d have no powders to set the creams.

Chelesia (IG @chelsandyy)

How does a good beat (whether it’s a natural beat or a glam beat), how does your preferred choice make you feel?

Chelesia: It makes me feel more confident and presentable depending on the occasion. I feel more put together. I rarely wear makeup but when I do I prefer a more natural beat. I am comfortable with my bare face, but it makes me feel good that I can use makeup to help enhance my features.  

Studies have shown that there is power in wearing red lipstick. A red lip is linked to authority, prowess and assertiveness. Do you agree that men are drawn to that and why? 

Chelesia: Yes, I believe that some men are drawn to that because a red lip is bold and typically men like a confident woman. A red lip gives off that impression. It’s expressive and makes you feel empowered. Red is bright and I agree that men are attracted to women who wear that color. It’s captivating, it gets their attention. Men are visual and are drawn to a women’s lips more than other facial features. A red lip can signal arousal and is very sensual for a man.    

In one study, foundation has been concluded as the one product that makes a difference in female attractiveness. How about seeing a man or a non-binary individual with foundation on, how would you perceive it? 

Chelesia: I would perceive it as normal. Nowadays it’s common for men or non-binary individuals to wear foundation. Men can wear it if they want, anyone can use it. Makeup is a form of art, it’s how people express themselves. It’s fun to create a new look and it can be a great self confidence booster to some people.   

What makeup product can’t you live without and why? 

Chelesia: I can’t live without liquid foundation. On days when I need a light or full coverage foundation has always been a staple product for me. It helps to even out my skin tone, hides all my acne scars and blemishes leaving my skin looking extra smooth.   

Do you feel the same? What impact does make-up have on your mental well-being? Let us know in the comments below!

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