Raise Some Eyebrows

The ancient art of threading can give you the perfect arch.



Roberto Gonzalez

When it comes to beauty, there’s little that women won’t do. Take the eyebrows for instance. In the quest for perfect brows, women everywhere have plucked and waxed them, colored them with pencils, bleached and dyed them—even tattooed them.

Now a technique called threading is gaining popularity for shaping and grooming brows and removing unwanted facial hair. Threading isn’t really new; it originated centuries ago in parts of India, and the Middle and Far East. Among the local boutiques and salons that offer the service, many are operated by Indian or Middle Eastern women who learned the skill at a very young age.Rashmi, a certified esthetician and owner of Rashmi’s Beauty & Boutique in Orlando, perfected her threading skills in India more than 15 years ago.

“Threading is a hair removal technique that uses 100 percent cotton thread,” she says. “The thread is twisted and rolled along the surface of the skin entwining the hairs in the thread, which are then lifted quickly from the follicle.”

One of its benefits is precision. Says Rashmi: “Threading removes one clean line of hair all at once, making it quicker and easier to shape the brows.” Orlando resident and threading devotee Gabrielle Cash started getting her brows done three years ago. “A threading technician can really shape your brows beautifully,” she says. Although the technique is most commonly used on eyebrows, it also can be used to remove hair from the upper lip, chin, sideburns and other areas of the face.

Threading is an ideal alternative to waxing and tweezing—especially for women who have increased skin sensitivity. “It’s gentler on the skin,” says Rashmi. “As opposed to waxing, the top layers of skin are not traumatized in the process.” Cash, who has sensitive skin, started getting her eyebrows threaded because waxing made her break out.

The process usually takes less than 10 minutes and most local salons charge an average of $10 for eyebrows. Maintenance requires a salon visit once every three to five weeks.

Although threading is becoming more commonplace, it can still be a challenge to find someone who is properly skilled in the technique. As with waxing, it’s important to find a trained esthetician. “Inexperience can result in uneven brows, hair breakage, ingrown hairs and unnecessary pain,” says Rashmi. “People have very little discomfort or problems,” she adds, “but that has a lot to do with the skill of the technician.” 

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