31 December 2015

Drugstore vs Designer: Benefit Gimme Brow vs. Maybelline Brow Drama

If you've been around for awhile, you've probably heard me whine talk about my faulty eyelashes. They're short and blonde (like me) and despite my best efforts, mascara usually refuses to adhere to them. Well, my eyebrows aren't much better...so I decided to try eyebrow mascara/gel to see if it would help. Then I decided to compare the ones I tried, and now we're here at this post!

Drugstore vs. Designer: Benefit Gimme Brow Fiber Gel vs. Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara - is the Benefit product worth the $17 price difference? Can you always get the same results with a drugstore product or do you sometimes need to pay a little more to get what you want?
This is not a sponsored post, but it may contain affiliate links.

When I was a baby - and up until I was several years old - my grandmother thought I didn't have any eyebrows. Fast forward to 50+ years later, and the situation hasn't changed much. I do have them, but they are very light and very sparse.

I've gone the route of trying to feather them in with a pencil or a brush and powder - and I can do it - but if anyone looked very closely, it wouldn't look great. It looks okay in a photo or at a distance, but not up close. There just isn't enough eyebrow hair to camouflage the fill-in. Also, another one of the lovely "joys" of aging is that your eyebrows start to lose their definition. This is especially concerning to me since I never had much definition anyway! Luckily, I wear bangs, so my eyebrows are mostly covered.

About a year ago, on a whim, I purchased Benefit's Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel in light/medium (it's also available in medium/deep). I think I saw it demonstrated on QVC or HSN (Gus likes to watch these channels for some reason?) and I was impressed (as I was supposed to be) with how well it worked. Well, of course, the models all had way better brows than I could ever hope to have, but I decided to give it a shot anyway. So I bought it at Sephora.

Benefit Gimme Brow Fiber Gel contains tiny fibers to help build brows. I love the tiny brush - it makes it super easy to apply!

If you've never seen this product, it's a fairly small tube. As a matter of fact, I was a little distressed when I first saw it because I had just paid $24 for it and it was pretty tiny. The tinted gel contains fibers that adhere to your skin and hair, essentially helping to "create" brows. The brush is tiny, which makes it easy to work with, IMO.

Benefit Gimme Brow Fiber Gel in light/medium is a perfect match for my highlighted light/dark blonde hair. It's also available in medium/dark!

When I first started using it, I didn't think that I liked it. But I really think that there was a learning curve - and much like mascara, the brush had a lot of product on it when the product was new. I put it away for awhile, and when I got it back out a couple of months later, I actually liked it! To be honest, I really never noticed "fibers" - and I never noticed it making brows where there weren't any. But it did pick up brow hairs that I was unable to see, and it gave them color so that they were noticeable.

A few weeks ago, since it was time to replace the Benefit product, I decided I would pick up a drugstore product to see if it worked as well, or if it was even similar. I tried to find the NYX Cosmetics Tinted Brow Mascara , but couldn't find it anywhere, so I ended up purchasing Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara in Blonde. I bought it at Walmart, and I think it was around $7. I looked at so many products that day, I guess that's how I missed the picture of the brush on the outside of the package. But when I got it home, I couldn't believe this thing!

Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara is just $7 at many local stores - that's $19 less than Benefit Gimme Brow! But does it work as well?

How in the world could anyone use this brush on their eyebrows? Maybe if you have thick, full brows - but then, why would you need to tint them?? I guess maybe just to groom them? This brush is HUGE, and the shape is so odd. I tried to use it and all I ended up doing was getting the tinted gel all over my forehead. I hate it!

Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara is a very similar color to Benefit Gimme Brow, but it's a thinner consistency, and the brush is difficult to use.

That said, the color of these two products is very similar. Although I think the Benefit product is more opaque (maybe due to the fibers?), while the Maybelline product is more translucent. I actually tried applying the Maybelline product with the Benefit brush, which makes it 100 times better, but I still don't think I like it quite as well as the Gimme Brow product.

I really can't believe that I'm sharing these, but below you will find photos of me, without any eyemakeup, hair pushed out of the way, and zoomed in close, so you can see all of my 54 years up-close and personal. The first photo below is my eyebrow with nothing on it. As you can see, it's pretty light in color, and there's not much there - especially the outer half! The second photo shows the same eyebrow with one coat of Benefit Gimme Brow - you can see that it adds a little color and definition. You can add more than one coat, I just have to be careful that it doesn't start to look too harsh:

My eyebrows are very light and sparse - this is how they look without anything on them. This is what 54 looks like up-close and personal! LOL!

My eyebrows are very light and sparse - this is how they look just one coat of Benefit Gimme Brow on them. It definitely adds a little color and definition. This is what 54 looks like up-close and personal! LOL!

I've pretty much given up on trying to get a more defined shape for my brows. As I mentioned, aging does a number on definition, and since I didn't have any to begin with, I decided to just keep them neat and natural!

As far as comparing the prices...the Benefit Cosmetics Gimme Brow had a $24 price tag, but I will say that the tube has lasted quite a while. Some of you may think that I should've pitched it after 3 months. I look at it this way...I'm not using it directly on my eyes like I would regular mascara. It's going on my eyebrows, and it dries and stays there. I wipe the brush clean frequently, and no one else uses it. So I feel pretty safe using the product until the tube is empty. You, of course, should do whatever makes you feel most comfortable.

The $7 Maybelline Brow Drama has a terrible brush, and I really don't like the formula as well. So basically, I wasted $7. I doubt that I'll even use the rest of the product. But I do think that if you have thicker brows, and just want to add a little color and hold them in place, this would probably work well for you. You don't need to spend $24 - just spend $7.

To me, purchasing a $24 product that lasts 6-9 months and actually works makes much more sense than purchasing 3 or 4 different $7 products trying to find one that I hope will work, and then still having to purchase the $24 product because I couldn't get the same results. Sometimes it pays to buy the more expensive product, depending upon your needs. If you're like me, and really need to build your brows, I recommend the Benefit Gimme Brow product.

That said - stay tuned - because I have recently found a couple of products that I love, and they are both drugstore products under $10 each! One is a lash and brow growth serum, and the other is a brow mascara gel/tint. I just want to let my brows grow in a little more for the "after" photos before I share them!

Do you use a brow mascara?
If so, what brand? Are you happy with it?

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