For years I have seen signs advertising eyebrow threading and never knew what it was. The other day at the mall, I was coming down the escalator next to a kiosk for eyebrow threading. As I peered down, I saw a young woman with thread stretched between both hands with one end in her mouth poised over another young woman’s face. My first thought was, OMG, she has that thread in her mouth and she is planning to do something with this contaminated thread on that young girl’s eyebrows!
As I approached, she began moving the twisted thread between her outstretched hands, gently smoothing it over the young girl’s eyebrow following the shape and contour of the brow. The thread in her mouth stayed in her mouth. The rhythmic twisting of the eyebrow threading was pulling out hairs that were becoming entwined in the thread. Interesting, I thought as I watched the girl’s brow became cleaner and more polished looking. The whole process took under 10 minutes. A final trim of a few hairs and brush of the eyebrow with an eyebrow brush finished the look.
Apparently, eyebrow threading began in Asia centuries ago. I asked the eyebrow-threading young woman how she had learned the technique. She told me she had learned to do it in India a year ago. First, they practice on velvet cut in the shape of eyebrows, then move on to remove hair on their own feet, practice on willing relatives and finally are supervised by an experienced eyebrow threader on real clients.
Eyebrow threading has gained popularity over eyebrow waxing for a number of reasons:
1. Gentler on those with sensitive skin, such as people with Roseola.
2. No risk of allergy to string. Wax can contain additives or preservatives that cause skin reactions.
3. Less skin contact. Wax pulls at the top layer of skin and can leave it red and irritated.
4. No risk of burns. Wax is heated to apply to skin, and if allowed to get too warm can cause burns or skin inflammation.
5. Hair is thought to grow back thinner like wax, without the risk.
I took the eyebrow threader’s card and told her I would consider coming back another day to try eyebrow threading. I have been using the tweezer method for years, which works fine and doesn’t cost anything, but my results are often erratic and uneven. Eyebrow threading at this kiosk was $10 and supposed to last for two to three weeks.
The only concern I had is that neither the scissors she used to trim the extra hairs or the eyebrow brush she used afterwards were soaked in any type of cleaner. I might consider bringing my own little scissors and eyebrow brush or seeing if she has cleaner to spray on hers so they soak for 10 minutes while she works on my eyebrows. I don’t know how high the risk of hair and skin contamination is, but I would feel better knowing the tools used on me were clean.
Michele is an R.N. freelance writer with a special interest in women’s health care and quality of care issues. Other articles by Michele can be read at http://www.helium.com/users/487540/show_articles.