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Uber surges aside, running out of brow gel is one of the biggest catastrophes that can happen when you’re getting ready for a Tinder meet-up or dinner with friends. Since it’s impossible to achieve full, thick brows of Cara Delevingne proportions in a single step, setting them in place and creating the illusion of a thicker set is essential before going in with a pencil. Luckily, there’s a solution to your empty tube of brow gel that doesn’t require leaving your bathroom: Use your bar of soap.

The technique isn’t new: it’s always been a handy hack for covering up and grooming brows along with facial hair, but thanks to Instagram beauty bloggers using soap is becoming a popular method for grooming brows. “Soap can be an effective, low-cost alternative to clear brow gel as it gives a similar result once combed through the brows and left to dry,” Alyssa Anderson, Resident Makeup Artist, Anastasia Beverly Hills tells InStyle. “Much like clear brow gel, the soap will harden keeping brows firmly in the direction they are brushed.”

If you opt to get thrifty and make due with what’s in your bathroom, Anderson recommends using a mild facial bar soap and practicing a gentle touch. “Avoid brushing through brows too vigorously, or brushing through once soap has already dried as brow hairs could get pulled out,” she says. Once the soap settles, you can go in with a pencil like Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz ($21; to fill in any sparse spots with a finish that will mimic your actual brow hairs.

Although filling your spoolie up with soap spares you a drugstore run (and canceling your plans), unlike your favorite brow gel, you can’t predict how long-wearing a bar of soap will be. If your plans entail a steamy bar or restaurant or where you live is in the middle of a heatwave, Anderson says that there’s the chance the soap can potentially melt or get sticky when it makes contact with heat or moisture.

Before reaching for whatever bar of soap you have stocked in your bathroom, watch one blogger’s demo video below to see exactly how the staple can be used on your brows.

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