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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Product Review: Almay Brow Defining Pencil & Comparison to MAC Eyebrow Pencil

Hello everyone! So my first review (of many) will be on the Almay Brow Defining Pencil in the shade Brunette.

Almay Brow Defining Pencil in #802-Brunette



For years I had been using the MAC Eyebrow pencil in Spiked. Until I discovered the Maybelline Define-A-Brow Pencil in Dark Brown. I loved the Maybelline Define-A-Brow because it performed well, was very similar to the MAC pencil and it was a fraction of the cost. So you could imagine my devastation when I recently found out from a friend that my shade, dark brown, was being discontinued. :( So after hearing about that and mourning its loss, I was on a mission to find another cheaper alternative to the MAC pencil. I didn't want to go back to the MAC one because of the cost and eyebrow pencils are something that I use daily and requires constant replenishment. So with that said, I was perusing the aisles in CVS (aka Long's in Hawaii) and I came across the Almay brow pencil. 

First impression: 
I was immediately drawn to this pencil due to the similarity between the MAC and Maybelline pencils, it was a thin twist-up pencil. I really liked that there was a detachable spoolie which would be far more useful than the little brow comb that was on the other end of the Mabyelline pencil. I never used that brow comb. Another bonus was that the spoolie had a clear cover to prevent any dust or  stray hairs that might get tangled into it from putting it in your makeup bag. I also liked the simple packaging.

My experience:
I do use this in conjuction with brow powder (due to overplucking in high school). I fill in my brows using this pencil using featherlight strokes. Then I brush it all out with the spoolie. Then I apply a light layer of brow powder over the areas that may have gotten overblended by the spoolie. Each time that I use this pencil, it stays on the whole time which is a big plus. This shade, brunette, is very similar to MAC's Spiked brow pencil, but with the Spiked being a smidgen of a shade darker. Also, the Almay has a very slight hint of golden shimmer in it, which you can see in the swatch photo below, while the MAC is a flat matte dark brown. However, the slight golden shimmer doesn't bother me much as it is not very noticeable upon application and I actually find that it blends in nicely with my brows giving them a more natural look. 

Comparison: MAC Spiked Brow Pencil on the left, Almay Brunette Brow Pencil on the right

Pros: 
+ A great alternative to MAC Spiked Eyebrow Pencil
+ Affordable price
+ Comes with detachable spoolie and clear cover
+ Long-wearing

Cons:
- Not much of a shade range. Only comes in Brunette & Dark Blonde. 
- Twist-up pencil that doesn't retract back down so you don't know how much product you have left. You would need to get a backup before you actually run out.

Overall:
I am very happy with this eyebrow pencil. Eyebrows are everything to me and a good brow pencil is absolutely necessary in my routine as well as my makeup bag. This performs very well as far as longevity. I did not experience any fading throughout or at the end of the day. I love the spoolie, as I find it is more useful than a brow comb and I appreciate the clear cover. Good job, Almay!

Would I repurchase?
Without a doubt. 

Have any of you seen/tried this brow pencil from Almay? What do you think? I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)


FTC: This product was purchased by me. All opinions are none other than my own. 

8 Comments:

Rina said...

hiiii lani! I hopped over from beautylish to your blog and... why am i just discovering your blog now?? It's AHHHMAZING! you have got awesome posts girl! love it :)

and thanks so much for sharing this. Perfect timing cause im actually on a hunt for a new brow pencil! will def add this on to my list and give it a go.

Talk soon beautiful
Rina xx

TheLipJunkie said...

OoO, thanks for sharing! Maybelline's Define-A-Brow pencil is my hands down favorite, but for some reason I've been having THEEEE hardest time finding my shade (medium brown) & I've noticed Dark Brown's always unavailable :/ I've been looking for an alternative just incase, so this helps a lot :)

PLANET JENESSA said...

thank you for following my blog :)

Lisa said...

No wonder I can't find Maybelline's dark brown pencil anywhere. I just recently switch over too because I was using MAC and it was getting a bit expensive. I hope I remember to pick this Almay pencil up next time I hit the drugstore up :) Thanks for an awesome review!

Anonymous said...

I too was devastated! Maybelline was only worth it though if using a buy 1 get 1 free. Cuz, its only .1 and MAC is .3
In other words.... if buying the Maybelline at full price, which is $6.00 to $7.00 (around Indianapolis, Indiana)
and then times it by 3 = $18.00 to $21.00!
So in reality.......Maybelline a bit more expensive than MAC at $15.00!!!! ;)
Though, Dark Brown WAS a perfect dupe...MAC actually lasts longer on my skin.
Hope this Helps someone.

Anonymous said...

I was just searching the Internet with the question "what's comparable to the Mac eyebrow pencil?" and stumbled across your blog, so thanks so much for putting this up! I think I'll probably try it out.

mmlregis said...

Thanks for the information! I was looking for the Dark Brown Maybelline Define a brow and then saw it was discontinued and started my search for a new dupe for the MAC Spiked pencil. I'm hitting the drug store tomorrow! Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

THEY HAVE BEEN SPOTTED AT VARIOUS DOLLAR TREES DDEPENDING ON UR LOCATION...I ORDERED ONE THROUGH PAYPAL FROM SOMEONE WHO PICKED UP A BUNCH AT THEIR DOLLAR TREE :) HAPPY HUNTING GUYS! (TWITTER.COM/DaNextMUA)

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