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Answer Angel: Do your eyebrows enter the room before the rest of you? Look out for a gray brow pencil

By Ellen Warren, Chicago Tribune on

Published in Fashion Daily News

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: I have been looking for light gray eyeliner or brow pencil to no avail. I have had no luck finding it anywhere or anything near this color. The companies I have looked into are missing the boat not having this color since so many women are going natural and do not want their eyebrows entering a room before the rest of their bodies. Please help.

- Dolores S.

Dear Dolores: Lots more women are embracing their gray hair, that's for sure. And younger women are adopting gray as the color of choice when they are looking for a change from their natural shade. How convenient for those who are tired of the trouble and expense of monthly root touchups. Today, hair-pigment-challenged of every age can flaunt their grays, comfortable that we're the height of hair fashion. That said, I'm not ready to go there since I think that gray hair can add years to a woman's look and more years aren't on my shopping list. (I know. Many of you disagree and I'm quick to acknowledge that some women who've gone white or gray have never looked more beautiful. You've sent me selfies to nicely illustrate the point. Thank you.) Moving on to the eyeliner/pencil. I love your image of the eyebrows entering the room before the rest of you. It's not easy to find gray pencils in stores. NYX makes a gray for under $9 that I found on Amazon. has a light gray for under $10. While they're marketed as eyeliner, a light touch would make them a good option for brows too. Wander through Ulta or Sephora cosmetic super stores if there's one convenient to you and you'll find other options as well. But I need to plug my go-to choice for an eyebrow pencil that is subtle and works well for all shades. It is Maybelline Expert Wear Twin Brow & Eye Pencils (the classic red wooden pencils; $2.99 for two, The blond ones are getting harder to find in stores but you can still order them online on, and elsewhere.

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: Is there such a thing as a primer to apply before using a lip liner? I need a little "drag" along the lip lines to keep the lip liner pencil from sliding around as I try to apply it. Such a product would help to draw a more even line, as I don't have well-defined lips. Any suggestions?

- Christine K.

Dear Christine: There are many lip (though not specifically lip line) primers on the market that do exactly what you're looking for. Sephora's house brand primer ($12 on sale for $7 when I last checked, is one well-priced option. e.l.f. has one in a liquid with a wand applicator (for easier application to the lip line only) ($4, And the premium department store brands have plenty of options for $$$$.


Dear Answer Angel Ellen: My costly mascara Blinc Tubing Mascara ($26, is the only mascara I've ever used that does not promptly wind up smudged under my eyes. I don't know whether the problem is my eye-anatomy changing with age, the foundation I wear, etc. I've tried every makeup trick I've heard of with other mascaras, without luck; I look like a raccoon by noon. Am I the only woman with this problem? I'd love to crowd-source a solution.

- Sharon F.

Dear Sharon: You definitely aren't the only woman with this problem. Hey readers, let's help Sharon (and all the other raccoon-eyed women out there). Your solutions welcome!



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