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Furrowed Brows: What They Mean and How to Prevent Them

Have you ever wondered why people furrow their brows when they are angry, sad, confused, or in pain? Or maybe you have noticed that you have some deep lines between your eyebrows that make you look older or more serious than you feel. In this blog post, we will explore the meaning and causes of furrowed brows, as well as some tips and treatments to prevent and reduce them.

What are furrowed brows?

Furrowed brows are a facial expression that occurs when someone pulls their eyebrows together, creating wrinkles in the space between them and sometimes on their forehead. The word “furrow” means a groove or a deep line, often used to describe a plowed trench between crop rows. Furrowed brows are also known as frown lines, worry lines, or 11 lines, because they can look like the number 11 when they are very pronounced.

Why do people furrow their brows?

Furrowed brows are a natural and instinctive reaction that can convey various emotions, such as concentration, confusion, concern, anger, sadness, disapproval, or pain. They can serve as a nonverbal form of communication, signaling active listening, a need for clarification, or a disagreement with someone. They can also indicate that someone is trying to shut out a painful or unpleasant sensation

Furrowed brows are influenced by both cultural and contextual factors, meaning that they can have different meanings depending on the situation and the person who is making them. For example, some people may furrow their brows more often than others, or some cultures may consider furrowed brows more acceptable or polite than others. Therefore, it is important to consider the whole facial expression, the tone of voice, the body language, and the verbal message of the person who is furrowing their brows, before jumping to conclusions about what they are feeling or thinking.

How to prevent and reduce furrowed brows?

Furrowed brows are not necessarily a bad thing, as they can express a range of emotions and thoughts that are part of being human. However, some people may not like having deep lines on their face, as they can make them look older, tired, or unhappy. Furrowed brows can also cause headaches, eye strain, or tension in the forehead muscles.

If you want to prevent or reduce furrowed brows, here are some tips and treatments that you can try:

  • Relax your face. One of the simplest ways to prevent furrowed brows is to relax your facial muscles, especially the ones around your eyes and forehead. You can do this by gently massaging your temples, eyebrows, and forehead, or by doing some facial exercises or yoga. You can also try to be more aware of your facial expressions, and consciously relax your brows when you catch yourself furrowing them.
  • Stay hydrated. Drinking enough water can help keep your skin hydrated and elastic, which can prevent or reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Water can also flush out toxins and impurities from your body, which can improve your skin health and complexion. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water a day, or more if you exercise or sweat a lot.
  • Wear sunscreen. Sun exposure can damage your skin and cause premature aging, including furrowed brows. To protect your skin from the harmful UV rays, wear sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every day, even when it is cloudy or cold. You can also wear a hat, sunglasses, or a scarf to cover your face when you go outside.
  • Use anti-wrinkle products. There are many over-the-counter or prescription products that can help reduce the appearance of furrowed brows, such as creams, serums, gels, or patches. These products usually contain ingredients that can moisturize, nourish, or stimulate your skin, such as hyaluronic acid, retinol, vitamin C, or peptides. You can apply these products to your forehead and between your eyebrows, following the instructions on the label.
  • Try cosmetic treatments. If you want a more effective or lasting solution for your furrowed brows, you can consider some cosmetic treatments that can smooth out the wrinkles and relax the muscles. Some of the most popular treatments are:
    • Botulinum toxin injections. This is a treatment that involves injecting a small amount of botulinum toxin (such as Botox, Dysport, or Xeomin) into the muscles that cause furrowed brows. This can temporarily paralyze the muscles, preventing them from contracting and creating wrinkles. The results can last for three to six months, depending on the dose and the individual.
    • Dermal fillers. This is a treatment that involves injecting a gel-like substance (such as hyaluronic acid, calcium hydroxylapatite, or poly-L-lactic acid) into the skin to fill in the furrows and plump up the area. This can make the skin look smoother and more youthful. The results can last for six to 18 months, depending on the type and amount of filler used.
    • Surgery. This is a treatment that involves removing excess skin and fat from the forehead and lifting the eyebrows to create a more open and refreshed look. This can also reduce the appearance of furrowed brows and other wrinkles on the forehead. The results can be permanent, but there may be some risks and complications, such as scarring, infection, or nerve damage.

Before you decide to try any of these cosmetic treatments, make sure to consult with a qualified and experienced dermatologist or plastic surgeon, who can assess your skin condition and recommend the best option for you. You should also be aware of the possible side effects, costs, and maintenance of these treatments, and weigh the pros and cons carefully.


Here are some frequently asked questions about furrowed brows:

  • Q: Can I get rid of furrowed brows naturally?
  • A: There is no definitive way to get rid of furrowed brows naturally, as they are partly caused by genetics, aging, and environmental factors that are beyond your control. However, you can try to prevent or reduce them by following a healthy lifestyle, such as eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, sleeping well, managing stress, and avoiding smoking and alcohol. You can also use some natural remedies, such as applying aloe vera gel, cucumber slices, or coconut oil to your forehead and between your eyebrows, to moisturize and soothe your skin.
  • Q: Are furrowed brows a sign of intelligence?
  • A: Furrowed brows are not a reliable sign of intelligence, as they can be influenced by many other factors, such as emotions, personality, culture, and context. However, some studies have suggested that furrowed brows may indicate a higher level of cognitive effort, attention, or curiosity, as they can reflect the activation of the brain regions involved in problem-solving, learning, or memory.
  • Q: How can I prevent furrowed brows when I wear glasses?
  • A: If you wear glasses, you may be more prone to furrowing your brows, as you may be straining your eyes or adjusting your glasses frequently. To prevent this, you can try to:
    • Get your eyes checked regularly and update your prescription if needed.
    • Choose glasses that fit well and are comfortable to wear.
    • Adjust the brightness and contrast of your screen and avoid glare when you use a computer or a smartphone.
    • Take frequent breaks and blink often when you read or work.
    • Use eye drops or artificial tears to lubricate your eyes if they feel dry or irritated.


Furrowed brows are a common facial expression that can have various meanings and causes. They can express emotions such as concentration, confusion, concern, anger, sadness, disapproval, or pain. They can also be influenced by factors such as genetics, aging, sun exposure, and facial movements. Furrowed brows are not necessarily a bad thing, but some people may want to prevent or reduce them for cosmetic or health reasons. There are some tips and treatments that can help with that, such as relaxing your face, staying hydrated, wearing sunscreen, using anti-wrinkle products, or trying cosmetic treatments. However, before you try any of these options, make sure to consult with a professional and do your research. Remember that furrowed brows are part of your unique facial expression, and they can also show your personality and character.

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