By Erin Lukas
Updated May 16, 2018 @ 9:00 am
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Elf Eyebrow Pencil
Credit: Ashley Batz

There should be an emotional support group for recovering from early 2000s over-plucked eyebrows. After a decade of getting my brows waxed and tweezed every three weeks throughout high school and college, they just don't grow in quite the same.

My brows might not be great, but that's why eyebrow pencils exist—especially when you're as obsessed with strong, thick brows as everyone else. (Thank you, Cara Delevingne.)

Much like a bad salon eyebrow wax, using a just okay pencil isn't going to help you get the shape or fullness you want. After wasting a lot of time (and money) on meh pencils, I've finally found "the one," and it's so mind-blowingly cheap that you can pay for it with the spare change that you've been saving to do laundry.

At just $2, E.L.F. Cosmetics long-wearing, smudge-proof Instant Lift Brow Pencil defines, fills in sparse spots, and shapes brows with a finish that looks like my own brows, only better. Its fine tip makes it easy to target exactly where your brows need more volume. This shape is especially handy if the tails of your brows are extremely thin like mine. I'm able to make this part appear thicker by drawing on feather-like strokes without overshooting it past my actual brow hairs. Once I'm done filling in my brows, I finish by using the spoolie end of the pencil to brush them up so that the pigment is completely blended in and looks natural.

Aside from solving my thin eyebrow struggles at an unbelievably affordable price point, what makes E.L.F.'s pencil a standout is that its darkest shade, "Deep Brown," is actually, well, dark. When you have dark brown hair with cool undertones like me, finding a pencil shade that isn't too warm is incredibly tough. A lot of options out there are still too reddish and always look off once I have them on. E.L.F.'s has a gray undertone that cancels out any ruddiness so that when I'm wearing the pencil, my brows actually match the hair on my head.

VIDEO: How to Properly Use an Eyebrow Pencil

You could continue spending around $20 every month getting your brows done, or you can pick up this $2 brow pencil at the drugstore and not have to choose between great brows or wash-and-fold laundry service.