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What Causes Eyebrow Loss?

By Bethany Keene
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Eyebrow loss can be caused by a number of things, and is not necessarily reason for concern. In many cases, it is just temporary, and can be precipitated by things such as a nutrient deficiency, or even just over-plucking the eyebrows. Over-plucking is one of the most common causes of eyebrow hair loss, in fact, and can also be quite difficult to correct in the future.

Many people attempt to shape and pluck their eyebrows into a pleasing shape, which is perfectly fine. However, in some cases it is possible to damage the hair follicles when repeatedly plucking the eyebrows in the same place, or when plucking too frequently, which can cause the hair to never grow back. For this reason, it is recommended that one only pluck the eyebrows as often as necessary, and to attempt to keep them as close to their natural shape as possible.

Nutrient deficiencies can be a cause of hair loss, including eyebrow loss, so it is important to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and protein. Taking a multivitamin every day can help as well. If a balanced diet does not help with eyebrow loss, it may be necessary to visit a doctor for blood tests to rule out any other conditions; some autoimmune diseases, such as lupus or alopecia areata, can cause hair loss. Certain medications can cause it as well, so recent changes or additions in medication should be considered first.

Eczema or even just very dry skin can cause patchy eyebrow loss as well. Again, if simple daily moisturization doesn't help, a visit to a doctor may be in order to help identify the problem. A dermatologist will be able to treat conditions like eczema. In addition, a condition known as trichotillomania can cause one to pull out one's own hair compulsively, which can obviously lead to eyebrow hair loss as well; this type of condition will require psychological treatment.

In the meantime, it may be possible to cover up eyebrow loss with makeup. Powder, liner, and even a mascara-type product may all be applied to the eyebrows to fill in thin spots. For permanent eyebrow loss, some people get eyebrow tattoos instead; if done properly, these can look fairly natural. In other, more extreme cases, an eyebrow transplant procedure may be performed; these procedures are typically considered to be cosmetic procedures and will not be covered by insurance.

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Discussion Comments
By ddljohn — On Aug 21, 2011

I think there is a whole generation of women who have eyebrow loss because shaving them or overplucking them was actually in fashion when they were young.

I have several women in my family, particularly my aunts who only have a few strands of eyebrows. They spent years shaving and plucking their eyebrows so they could draw them in perfectly with an eyebrow pencil. I guess that was desirable then.

Now, they have stopped plucking but it's too late! Nothing grows back and they again have to pencil them in or it looks very awkward.

I'm so glad that full, natural and thick eyebrows are in right now. At least we won't have eyebrow loss when we are older like the previous generations.

By discographer — On Aug 20, 2011

One of my cousins brought her new boyfriend to the family reunion last year. We were sort of shocked at seeing him because he had no hair whatsoever, no hair on his head, arms, legs and also no eyebrows!

He explained to us that he has an illness called alopecia areata. We learned from him that this is an immune system disorder that attacks the hair follicles and kills them. So it leads to hair loss and it can be the cause for eyebrow loss as well.

I don't know how common this disorder is or if it can occur all of the sudden or is present from birth, but it might be something to consider if there is a sudden eyebrow loss. Because I read that alopecia areata doesn't necessarily cause all hair to fall out. It can happen in certain body parts, so it's possible for only eyebrows to be affected too.

By burcidi — On Aug 19, 2011

I used to have a lot of hair loss and some eyebrow loss as well before. Then I started taking some vitamin supplements, especially vitamin E and it has helped so much!

I always eat a healthy diet and try to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. Even then, we might have some vitamin deficiencies that we don't realize.

I would totally recommend taking some multivitamins with vitamin E for eyebrow loss. It doesn't mean that you have to wait until it happens to you either. I think it's good to take supplements as a preventative measure as well.

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