What is a Unibrow ?

A unibrow or monobrow or known as synophrys in medicine is characterized by a single eyebrow. This happens when the two eyebrows meet in the middle just above the bridge of the nose.

A person with a unibrow has one uninterrupted line of hair, especially that the hair above the bridge of the nose is similar to that of the eyebrows. In the medical field, it is described as the confluence of the eyebrows.

In severe case, the hair can be so thick that it acts as a sun shade causing harmful glare from the eyes of the people who have it. (1, 2)

a man with a unibrow.image

Picture 1 : An image of a man with a unibrow
Photo Source : wac.450f.edgecastcdn.net

A man trying to get rid of unibrow using the plucking method.picture

Figure 2 : A man trying to get rid of unibrow using the plucking method
Image Source : www.treatcurefast.com

Is Unibrow associated with medical conditions?

A unibrow is common to humans but it can also stem from development disorders. It is common in people with Cornelia De Lange syndrome, which is a genetic disorder. People with such disorder has moderate to severe learning difficulties and facial abnormalities.

Other medical conditions associated with unibrow include

  • Patau Syndrome
  • Waardenburg Syndrome
  • Sanfilippo Syndrome
  • Smith-Lemli-Opitz Syndrome
  • ATRX Syndrome
  • 3p Deletion Syndrome
  • Gorlin Syndrome (Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome)
  • Chromosome Deletion Dillan 4p Syndrome (Wolf–Hirschhorn Syndrome)
  • Chromosome 9q34 Microdeletion Syndrome or Kleefstra syndrome
  • Frontometaphyseal Dysplasia. (3, 4)

The genetic origin of Unibrow

Does genes have something to do with unibrow? To investigate further, a study was conducted by Kaustubh Adhikari at University College London. He and his colleagues sampled more than 6, 000 people in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Peru, and Mexico.

It is basically a mixture of African, European, and Native American descendants. They have gene variants including EDAR gene variant. It is associated with hair thickness in East Asians causing facial hair to grow more sparsely.

The variant that is associated with eyebrow thickness is the FOXL2 while the PAX3variant is associated with the growth of a monobrow. A rare mutation of PAX3 causes Waardenburg syndrome type 1. At least 85% of patients with PAX3 rare mutations have unibrow. (7)

How to get rid of Unibrow

Unibrow removal methods are vast. These include the following:

  • Plucking – Unibrow can be removed through plucking. Run hot water over the corner of the wash cloth and pluck the excess hair. You might want to pluck right after getting out of the shower while the pores of the skin are open. It facilitates easy pulling of the hair. This is a very good option for people whose unibrow is sparse. If you got plenty of hair, then tweezing them one by one can be painful. The good thing about plucking is that it takes weeks for the plucked unibrow hair to grow back. (2, 3)
  • Waxing – This is the popular way of removing unibrow because it is quick and involves very little pain. It keeps the eyebrow looking beautiful and well-groomed for several weeks. It is inexpensive too. Many salons are offering waxing. If you can’t go to the salon, then you can do it at home. There are home waxing kits readily available at the leading online and offline stores. The kit comes with a detailed instruction on how to remove hair. Read the instructions carefully to avoid error.
  • Threading – It is a facial hair removal method originated in India and Middle East. It uses an intertwined cotton threads and roll along the skin to lift a line of hair out from the follicles. It is quicker than plucking. It is also more precise than waxing. It is safe for everyone, even to people with sensitive skin. (4)
  • Sugaring – it is one of the best alternatives to waxing. You have to heat a mixture of granulated sugar, lemon juice, and water, although the recipes vary. After heating, let the mixture cool before spreading on the skin. Cover the skin with a strip of cotton cloth and one you pull the cloth, the hair will come with it. There are commercial sugaring preparations readily available at the leading online and offline stores. Buy one and follow the instructions to thoroughly get rid of unibrow hair.
  • Laser hair removal – This is one of the fastest and most effective ways of removing unibrow. It offers a permanent solution to unibrow problem. It does not only get rid of the unibrow but as well as other unwanted facial hair. You have to send a strong beam of light just beneath the skin and the laser’s heat will be absorbed by the hair follicles. It causes damage to the hair follicles and slows the growth of hair. To permanently get rid of the hair, you have to undergo about half a dozen sessions with several weeks interval. However, this procedure is most effective in removing dark hair on light skin people. If the hair is light colored, it won’t work that much. Furthermore, it is not recommended to people with tanned or dark skin as it might cause damage to the skin.
  • Electrolysis – This is by far the safest and most effective way of removing unwanted hair including unibrow. It gets rid of hair of any color and works on any skin complexion. The electrologist, the one trained to perform electrolysis inserts a needle-like electrode into the hair follicles of the visible hair. It is done one at a time. It inflicts damage to the hair follicles using a mild electrical current. This procedure prevents the regrowth of the treated hair. New hair growth should be treated too. To thoroughly get rid of the hair, you will need at least five sessions at a regular interval. (4 5, 6)

Famous celebrities who are proud of their Unibrow

There are well-known personalities who are proud of their unibrow. Some have unibrow but opt to get rid of the hair to significantly improve their look. They are the following:

  • Anthony Davis – He is an American professional basketball player for the New Orleans Pelicans. His trademark is his unibrow and among his trademarked phrases include “fear the brow” and “raise the brow.” (5, 6)
  • Shakira – She sported a dark unibrow that didn’t stick out too much because all her hair is dark. She was known as a belly dancer girl in school before her international stardom.
  • Brad Pitt – He was once the sexiest man alive. When he started in the industry, he was dealing with little furry unibrow. He looked handsome though, but finally decided to get rid of his unibrow. (6)


  1. https://en.wikipedia.org
  2. http://www.wikihow.com
  3. http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com
  4. http://www.getridofthings.com
  5. http://madamenoire.com
  6. mentalfloss.com
  7. www.livescience.com

Published by Dr. Jackie Te RN, MD under Anatomy and Body.
Article was last reviewed on January 12th, 2022.

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