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I’ve got something here that (spoiler!) I don’t think gets the attention it deserves.
I first heard about the Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo in a short-lived Youtube advert. The product then popped up on a couple of people’s channels for an instant, but then it disappeared, never to be heard from again.
I know many of us, (meaning me,) are infatuated with the Anastasia Brow Wiz, but it’s just so expensive to use those consistently. I go through one Brow Wiz pencils every month. If I were to continuously repurchase, that would cost roughly $250 per year just on brow pencils! That’s too much for me.
Therefore, I am on a relentless journey to find the best affordable alternatives so that those who don’t want to spend so much on brow products have other options.
If you haven’t already, check out my review on the Sephora Retractable Brow Pencil. See how it compares head to head with the Anastasia Brow Wiz.
For today, let’s just jump right into my thoughts on the Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo. I’ll let you know now that it isn’t a Brow Wiz dupe, but don’t dismiss it just yet!
The Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo found easily at most drugstores
I purchased my Soft Brown pencil at Walmart, and my Deep Brown pencil at Bed Bath & Beyond. I hunted mine down early, so I had to stalk several stores to get what I needed. Now though, they’re everywhere, though I prefer shopping for drugstore makeup on Amazon thanks to the easiness that is Amazon Prime.
Though prices vary, Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo costs $5.64 on Amazon, as of today.
Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo Duo >> Purchase on Amazon
It’s basically two products in one
What drew me in about this product is the fact that it provides a pencil on one end, and a powder on the other end.
I have oily skin, plus the fact that the weather where I live is rather unpredictable. You just never know when you’ll get caught in a rainstorm, and so I legitimately worry about my eyebrows running down my face.
I like setting just about everything with a powder, but that’s just one more product I have to pack when I travel, and try to not lose in my sea of makeup products. Having the powder built in makes my life so much easier.
The main event = the pencil
Pictured above is the pencil tip, shown in Soft Brown. As you can see, mine is well-used.
The tip is definitely much finer than your typical retractable eyeliner, but it’s not as fine as the Anastasia Brow Wiz. The consistency is also slightly softer and waxier than the Brow Wiz.
I prefer a finer tip when dealing with brow pencils because I like my lines to look clean and not smudgy. (Yes, this is totally achievable with concealer and an eyeliner brush, but I’m generally to lazy for that.)
While this tip is somewhat thicker than what I prefer, it is definitely workable. I am able to get a pretty sharp line, and if it does get fuzzy, the product pick up cleanly since it’s not overly soft.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz >> Purchase at Sephora
Playing second fiddle = the brow powder
Pictured below is the other end of the duo. This end features a type of sponge applicator, and the actual powder product is located inside the screw-off cap.
This little sponge is not like a regular sponge-tip applicator that you would receive in drugstore eyeshadow palettes. There is no hard piece in the middle that makes it inflexible and borderline painful to use. It feels much like the very tip of a Beauty Blender, where the sponge is very soft and bendy. (You do not need to wet it like a Beauty Blender.) This end is spring loaded so that you can easily bounce the sponge into the product, and so you can still reach powder as it wears down.
Two months of wear and still going strong
I’ve been going between my two Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duos for about 2 months now. I have been loving it for the most part.
Personally, I like to fill in most of my brow with the pencil, save for the innermost part, and then set over the entire brow with the powder. The powder is also great for shading the innermost part of your brow that you don’t want to look too harsh.
Like I said, the convenience of having the pencil and powder in one is unbeatable. However, most of us are used to brow pencils coming with a spoolie for convenient combing and blending. This one, sadly, does not.
This is not a huge deal for me because I just buy the $1 E.l.f. spoolies when they are 50% off ($0.50 per spoolie!) Additionally, I also save my empty Anastasia Brow Wiz pencils and add them to my brush holder so I can keep using the spoolie. So yes, when I am traveling I do have to make sure to bring a spoolie, but I find that much easier than packing a whole separate brow powder.
The fun part = colors & swatches
As mentioned, the Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo comes in 4 shades: Auburn, Blonde, Soft Brown, and Deep Brown. It doesn’t come close to the color selection of certain high-end brow pencils. However, unless you need a very specific color, it is likely that one of these shades will work for you. I have the two darker shades, (Soft Brown and Deep Brown,) because I like having eyebrow color options, thankyouverymuch.
The thinner swatches below show 2 swipes of the pencil, and the thicker swatches show 2 swipes of the powder.
The relative colors of the pencil and the powder are similar within each duo, which is good since it makes for a consistent look even when you use different formulas in different areas. You don’t need to worry about it being obvious where the pencil ends and the powder begins.
Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Brow Powder is a surprising win
The powder provides good pigmentation and does not feel powdery. You’ll (probably) never see it floating out of the cap, or leaving fallout on your brow bone. In fact, it feels very creamy to the touch, and spreads well as per the swatches. The sponge applicator also makes it easy to get exactly the amount of product that you want.
The sides are great for a lighter application in the inner corners and overall soft setting. You can use the pointed tip to cleanly set right down to the end of the tail, or to get a sharper line on the edges.
I typically dislike brow powders because I find them to not be pigmented enough, too dusty, and overall ineffective at defining my brows the way I like them. But surprisingly, this powder is actually one of my favorites. And it’s found on the neglected end of a pencil! Who knew?
Even if the pencil isn’t your favorite, this may be worth a try just for the powder. (If you’re into that.)
Lives up to it’s “long wear” claims and then some
Maybelline claims that the Define + Fill Duo lasts 12 hours. For me, I find that to be true.
I put the product to the ultimate test recently. True story.
I applied my Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo at about 5:00 PM on Wednesday evening. I set it with the powder and forgot all about it as I hopped aboard a 5.5 red-eye flight to LAX. Upon arrival in Los Angeles at 5:30 AM Thursday morning, I basically hit the ground running at Disneyland. Not even sure if I brushed my teeth. Gross, I know. But the point is my brows still looked perfect. In fact, they still looked perfect when we checked into our hotel at 3:00 PM. That’s a whole 20 hours on my face! (Accounting for time changes.) Definitely impressed!
As I mentioned, I do have oily skin, so products have a tendency to run on me, but this one does not. (When the pencil and powder are used together, I haven’t tried the pencil on it’s own.) I do avoid touching my face and brows throughout the day, so that could be part of it, because if I do rub it, sometimes it will smear.
A great drugstore brow product I’ll repurchase over and over
If you have seen any of my recent makeup tutorials, you’ll know that I have been using this pretty religiously over the past few weeks, and I still have a decent amount left in each pencil. I will be adding this to my “Items to Repurchase Later” list, which means I like it enough to invest in another one to keep using in the future, but it isn’t so amazing that I will be running out to get a new one as soon as mine run out. I’ll probably try out some new pencils in the meantime, and repurchase this one when I see it on sale.
Overall, this is a very strong effort from the drugstore in terms of eyebrow products. Before this, I hadn’t found a single brow product from the drugstore that I was at all happy with. (No, I haven’t tried the NYX Micro Brow Pencil- it’s not available in my area and I can’t justify ordering it right now, but it is on my list.)
Maybelline Brow Define + Fill Duo Duo >> Purchase on Amazon
*UPDATE 10/18/16: I have tried the NYX Micro Brow Pencil since I originally wrote this review. Look out for a full run down on that one coming soon!
That’s all for today!
Find this post helpful? You’re sure to love this one too >> Maybelline Brow Precise Micro Pencil Review + Thoughts
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Till next time. ♥︎
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FTC- Not sponsored. I purchase product myself. All opinions are my own. Some links may be affiliated.