Apr 24, 2014

Create and Shape Eyebrows in Photoshop

Never Underestimate the Power of the Eyebrow!

The shape and definition of eyebrows can make a huge difference in someone’s appearance. The beauty industry has known this for years and all over the world people pluck, tweeze, tint, shape, brush, and pencil eyebrows.

In today’s episode we show you how to get create and shape eyebrows in Photoshop. You will learn how to shape eyebrows and realize what a difference they can make in an image.

Creating a Custom Brush

Sometimes that right way to do something is also the hard way. That has never scared us here at Phlearn and that is why we bring you a method for creating eyebrows that involves a custom brush.

In this episode we show you how to use the Pen Tool to create a path that mimics a hair. From there we stroke that path with the Brush Tool, checking “Simulate Pressure”. This makes a brush stroke that gets smaller on each end, just like hair.

After that we use this shape to define a custom brush shape and enter the brush settings to make the brush hair follow the direction of the cursor. This is a bit involved if you have never used custom brushes but don’t fear, we are including the brushes used in this tutorial for download.

Download Custom Eyebrow and Eyelash Brushes

For those of you who would rather just download the brushes created in this tutorial we offer them free of charge.

After downloading the custom brushes simply unzip the package and double click on the brushes. They will automatically load into Photoshop and be available for immediate use.


user image You
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  • user image

    nice tutorial once again, thanks.
    Can you show us how to make jewelry sparkle in Photoshop?
    I was thinking about different types of sparkle (stars, but also rainbow refractions etc…)

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    Aaron Karnovski

    Great tutorial, Aaron!

    Just a couple of extra tips for everyone using this technique:

    I ended up making the brush myself as I found the downloaded ones too small for the D800 resolution and increasing the size made them way to soft. If you do the same, you have to enable shape dynamics in the regular brush prior to doing the stroke path step. Otherwise you just get a sold line even when you use “simulate pressure” .

    I couldn’t get to grips with the direction control option, either with the mouse or pen, so disabled that and add the hairs in, in short bursts and control the angle in the brush presets. If your looking for really defined brows, I found this a much more precise way – although obviously more long winded. I still added in a little angle jitter so that there is some natural looking variance.

    One thing you guys can do to make the lashes look even more authentic is go into the brush preset and enable colour dynamics. I added 5% hue jitter and 15% brightness jitter. This stops all the hairs you’re adding being all the same colour. When you look at natural eyebrows there is colour variation and this really adds that little bit extra authenticity. Whether you will want to do the same will depend on your subject’s eyebrow colour and make up. My model only wore foundation/concealer and nothing else for the shoot I did.

    Lastly, I made my brush sharper than I needed it. Once I applied all the hairs in the brow I wanted, I then added a gaussian blur of 0.7 pixels to match the definition of the existing hairs. This blur will vary according to the sharpness and depth of field of your image so adjust accordingly but it really made the lashes look so real I literally couldn’t tell which ones were fake, when pixel peeping.

    Hope that helps!


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    Shannon Shepard

    Are these brushes not compatible with CS5? The last two times I’ve tried to download brushes from your episodes I’m getting that error message in CS5. Am I doing something wrong? Thanks.

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      Kaye Hartnell

      Shannon, they don’t seem to be compatible with CS6 either, has anyone got an idea of how to make it compatible.

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    Mathias Storm

    When you use a regular brush instead of the clonestamp, how do you keep the texture?

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    Ran Avner

    Hi Aaron, can you do a toturial about how to edit long exposure waterful?

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    Sabrina Cayne

    I HAVE NEEDED THIS TECHNIQUE FOR SO LONG!!!! Being a makeup artist and a photo retoucher, I have such a hard time with many models/actors that need brow corrections. I have been struggling one hair at a time when i’ve retouched in the pass. This was an AMAZING, yet so simple addition to your tutorials! One that will become a go-to for all my edits in the future!! Thank you!!!!

  • user image

    Why did you change the natural direction of the hair? You created a crosshatch…

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    Mauricio Velasco

    Great tutorial Aaron, tx a lot!
    How would you create rain bouncing off the sidewalk?

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    Jeff Azoudis

    Interesting stuff guys. How about a tutorial on how to apply multiple gradient strokes to a mask layer? is it possible? If not, what workarounds do you suggest?

    • user image

      just use gradient that ends in transparency and you can apply multiple gradients to a mask.

  • user image

    Hi fella,tnx 4 ur perfect educations and tutorials,I really really enjoy it.
    I just have a little question.actually not too little :).I wanna mix 2photos of 2different guys together, like the result have 50% features of each photo.could you please tell me how to do that?!I really appreciate.

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    Andrew Gordon

    Really love this tutorial, watching it, it makes soooo much sense, and so simple!

    I know it sounds gross, but what ive been trying to do is take an image of a snake ive got, and cut its head off and show a steak in its a place as if the snakes inside is actually like a join of beef or something! the bit i find difficult is getting the edges to look like its actually part of the snake and not just an image of a steak dropped on the snakes head.

    Does that sound like a tutorial you guys would be willing to do? 😀

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    Marcus Koch

    Hey Aaron,
    if I would like to take a picture of anything in what kind of format works the best? A teacher once told me that the most productive format is .raw because with that you can adjust all the color, saturation etc. later in photoshop. I’ve always thought .jpg or .png is the best!? So now I am a little confused… What is your suggestion/recommendation?
    With the best wishes from germany,


    • user image

      raw is the most productive, jpg is one of the least productive format and i’m not sure anyone is using png, anyway i don’t. So you should start with raw, then after the hardcore development (raw stores the most amount of data) you can turn it into a tif or a jpg for further retouching and evolving (tif still holds a fair amount of data).

  • user image

    Loved the tutorial. I was just working on portraits and searched for eyebrow fixes. Perfect timing. Most often I can fill in with darken, but most obvious spots need the hairs filled in. When I use the clone around the eyebrows or under-eye wrinkles, I use the clone stamp tool on “lighten” mode on a normal new layer. That way only those pesky dark pixels are altered, leaving a bit more of the original texture of the skin! Subscribing to the channel – love watching!

  • user image

    Hey! I wanted to ask where this brush and all the brushes you’ve done are available, thanks!

  • user image

    Although I’m not even a novice as of yet, I wanted to say that this was amazing. I did buy 101 & 102 so I can start learning this massive program. Thank you for sharing this lesson and the brushes. Sometime later I will give this a trial run. ( much later ).

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    Jun Liu

    Thanks for your brush.
    Learning how to use PS, your episode is very helpful.

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    Tamal raj Sinha

    Thanks Aaron, this tutorial is really an excellent one.
    loved this tutorial!!!!!

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    Djayna Photo

    Thank you so much! Phlearn saves the day again 😉
    I could never do eyebrows and now i’m even willing to show my first attempt at it. Not perfect yet but i’ll get there. (Keep in mind that on this shot there basically was no brow at all.)

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    Glenda Madaris

    Hi, Your Lash & Brow tutorial is fantastic, thank you. I just downloaded your brushes for this. My problem is that I have PS4 and I don’t understand how to control your brush strokes because my PS version does not have the same brush control page. I tried changing the shape dynamics and such but just not working for me. Each time I click to add a stroke, it goes in a different direction…Ugh! Can you give me any advise?

  • user image

    Thank You so much this eyebrow and lash tutorial is great .. I’m having an issue downloading the brush .

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    ellie graham

    Thank you! My client showed up for a session with bushy eyebrows and you saved her! Love your tutorials!

  • Shannon

    Thanks Aaron, love your work! Would be totally stupid without you.

  • user image

    Awesome, feel i will have to make the brush just to teach myself,love your work keep it coming

  • user image

    Thank you so much for this tutorial and brushes! I am working on photos of a young lady who pulls out her eyebrow hairs, and this will help her feel good about her pictures!