Royal appreciation society // Kate Middleton’s eyebrows

A British Royal Wedding took place last Friday. I know, right? If you blinked, you may well have missed it. Memo to the monarchy: a bit of PR certainly wouldn’t have gone amiss, yeah? Next time, let the world know, for Chrissakes!

Anyway, for those of you that accidentally stumbled across the royal nuptials on telly, you may well have been mostly enamored by Kate Middleton‘s beautiful wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen. Or maybe the cartwheeling Verger. Or His Royal Hotness, David Beckham. But for me, the most impressive arrangement of the day goes to… Kate Middleton’s eyebrows. I only had eyes for her brows, as it were.


That probably has quite a lot to do with the fact that I’m slightly obsessed with fabulously thick retro brows, of Audrey Hepburn or Elizabeth Taylor proportions. Behold:

Audrey Hepburn
Elizabeth Taylor

Which in turn could be to do with my love of all things ’60s, or maybe I’m just scarred from the time I accidentally grabbed a blackish-purple eyeliner while filling in my eyebrows. The results were quite cartoonish, in a Groucho Marx kind of way.
I’ve also witnessed friends over enthusiastically pluck their own brows clean away into fine (malnourished) arcs – giving them a permanent quizzical expression – and not the ethereal look they’d hoped for (think: ’30s film starlet Marlene Dietric or ’70s Biba model Sarah Moon).

Marlene Dietrich
Sarah Moon Biba model

And don’t get me wrong: no lady should ever cultivate a monobrow to rival Liam Gallagher‘s (I’m looking at you, Frida Kahlo). Having two mating caterpillars nestling above your lashes is never a good look. Unless you’re Brooke Shields in the early ’80s. She, alongside Cindy Crawford, sported commendably bushy brows, like two crazy misplaced moustaches plonked on their foreheads, back in the day. But here’s the thing: they’re hot. They could wear soiled bin-liners and still look ravishing.

Frida Kahlo
Brooke Shields 80s
Cindy Crawford

Anyway, back to K-Mid’s face furniture. I thought her fuller brows looked fantastic. A highbrow look, if you will.

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge (snappy little nickname, no?) is said to have done her own make-up for the big day, following a series of tutorials from Arabella Preston (and we’re also told that she had a make-up artist friend on hand for back-up). A pretty brave move, considering around two squillion people were watching. [Not when she applied her make-up, I mean. How off-putting would that be? Trying not to do the ol’ ‘mascara-shark-mouth’ manoeuvre with trillions of on-lookers gawping at you. Yeesh.]

In fact, she told royal aides that she ‘knows her own face’ (true, dat) and didn’t think a professional could do a better job than her. Fair play, I say – she looked lovely, all bright-eyed and bushy-browed. I reckon she opted for a professional eyebrow shape a few days before the wedding – her brows looked darker than usual, more defined, and she probably used a fine pencil to fill in a little more shape.

Some people (naysayers) have commented that her make-up was too harsh, too heavy-handed: pinky-orange ‘go-faster’ blusher stripes and thick-rimmed eye-liner. But for what it’s worth, I think it looked perfect on camera and in the billions of photographs. Plus, her fresh-faced look, just like Liz and Audrey at the start of this post, will never, ever date.

Now that’s what I call an arc de triomphe.

Natalie Wall

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