Friday, 10 January 2014

Some things should be done in private - the dreaded threading

Recently a friend on Facebook commented on what nicely groomed eyebrows I had. After I'd wiped the spat coffee from my screen, I replied that she must have only ever met me in person the day after a mammoth threading session.

In the same way you'd refer to a howling newborn's lung function, it's fair to say I have a healthy pair of eyebrows.  If your eyes are indeed the windows to your soul, then my eyebrows must certainly be a pair of thick, well insulated, full length velour curtains. They've languished on my forehead, pretty much untouched for most of my life, and I've taken only the occasional stab at them with a pair of tweezers.  I spent my early adulthood in fear I might end up one of those women who over pluck and end up with a nude face, only to have to draw them back on with a pencil - what the hell is the point in that?

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My first experience with threading was only a couple of years ago.  I was at an event, and it was being offered free of charge. God I'm such a sucker for a freebie.

First up, there's the assumption from the beautician that you'll know what to do.  You'll somehow instinctively know how to lie back in the chair, contort your body into a ridiculous pose, somehow both stretching your forehead and pulling down your eyelid at the same time, whilst your deodorant works overdrive trying to conceal your nervous perspiration in your exposed armpit. One look at my bad boys and she must have surely realised that this wasn't my natural habitat.

So she surveys the enormity of the task.  "Hmmm," she muses "your eyebrows don't match".

"Umm yeah" I shuffle uncomfortably on the chair "I was kinda hoping you could, you know - even them out a bit?" as I cringe with embarrassment, every inch of me silently screaming "I KNOW - WHY THE HELL DO YOU THINK I'M SITTING HERE?"

"Just relax" she coaxes as I'm laid out for all the world to see.  Now where have I heard that before?  Oh yeah, it's a favourite line of smear test nurses.

Ultimately, the whole affair wasn't too bad, and didn't hurt anyway near as bad as I'd been expecting.  I thought I was kind of converted to this threading lark.

Since then, the trend of threading bars has been popping up all over.  It's even reached my provincial little neck of the woods with one-woman bands setting up shop with their converted dentist chairs in department stores and shopping centres all over the place.

I'm really not sure how I feel about this. Since when did it become ok to carry out your beauty regimes so overtly?  Being pulled and plucked in broad daylight, whilst throngs of shoppers mill around you looking for new bathroom towels is a tad humiliating isn't it?  I mean, you might as well walk through the mall with a big "I'm hairy and I know it" sandwich board on.

And somehow, these threaders seem to have abandoned all sense of social decorum and boundaries.  On one occasion, while she was taming my brows, one said to me "would you like me to carry on up and do your forehead?"  I mean what??!  What the hell's wrong with my forehead?  As if I don't have enough body hang ups already. Then she offers "what about your upper lip?".  Seriously, do one!  When did it become socially acceptable to tell a complete stranger she has a tash?

The withering looks the immaculately made up white-coated Clarins ladies throw you.  The walk of shame past the orange-faced army of cosmetic counter staff, while your eyes are still streaming; you look like a freshly plucked chicken; and you try to discretely brush away the caterpillar hairs that are now sat upon your cheeks.

And now they are setting up in shopping malls and public spaces - I've even seen them outdoors.  What's next - a quick pluck at the post office? And where will this trend for public grooming end?  Spray tans at the car wash? Bikini waxes in Debenhams? Imagine the walk of shame after that.

21 comments:

  1. Bahahaha. I am with you. I am not brave enough for threading and, probably only about once a year, have mine discreetly waxed at a beauticians in a private room where I wail and wriggle like a baby and swear I will never do it again. *Strokes monobrow*

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  2. Hilarious, Liz. Guess I am just jealous. My brows went from blond to white. Just glad my eyeglass frames hide them. Yeah, it is that pitiful. Be happy you have something to pluck. Linda@Wetcreek Blog

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    1. Haha, yeah always a bright side I guess thanks Linda! x

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  3. If I had a blog, this is what I would have written! My one and only experience has been in the front window of Beales in Bedford - oh the shame. I went away still not quite knowing how I was supposed to moved my face in the position they wanted and wondering exactly how bad the hair on my chin that I didn't think existed was.

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    1. Oh that *may* be exactly where one of these stories came from! LOL Why do they put you in the window like a monkey at the zoo?!

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  4. my husband watched once when they did threading and he was then making jokes about how they put it in their mouth or ask to hold or hold themselves, weirdly enough when i went to taste HD brows the lady did everything herself, didnt ask me once to hold something.at the same time its similar to fake nails, everyone stare at you, at your nails and you just wish to be isolated from everyone

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    1. I know what you mean Victoria, I hate being under the spotlight like that!

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  5. I am right Hairy Maclary - I don't actually know what threading entails *worries*

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  6. I was conned into threading at an event. I was told that it was a "relaxing treatment!" It did f'ing hurt and I think we had different ideas on relaxing. LOL at bikini line waxes in Debenhams.

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  7. Haha, nice to see that I inspired you to such a hilarious blog post ;) My eye brows are in a ridiculous state. I only have them done when I see my hair dresser and ehm that's not very often. I just can't bring myself to pluck them myself, I'm scared to death that they'll look different and I have to run around like a complete idiot...

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  8. Ha ha a quick wax at Debenhams sounds like a plan ;-)

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  9. I hate threading! I always go somewhere to have them done and i never do it myself. Well i tried once and i only managed to finish one :)

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  10. Oh my yes there is a lady in Superdrug window who does threading.I for one don't want the whole of the high street passing by seeing me having my monobrow threaded in full few view.

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  11. I have only ever had my eyebrows 'done' once, that was in a private room with a pair of tweezers and some whale music and that was bad enough but in PUBLIC?! *shudders*

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  12. Don't fancy the thought of that threading especially in public eeeek think i'll stick to my once in a while visit to a private salon to have mine waxed :)

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  13. Oh I hear ya! I saw a 'pop up' threading station in the middle of a busy shopping mall the other day. I hurried past trying not to look at the poor girl who was being 'tortured' (or so it looked from where I was standing!) I'd rather pluck my own, even if it does make my eyes water, and take 327 hours! ;) Braver than I! (But then I am a wimp!)

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  14. My dad once had one too many glasses of wine and decided to tidy up his own unruly eyebrows... with a razor. We never let him live down the time he inadvertantly shaved off both eyebrows entirely. Took ages to grow back. I may recommend he tries threading (even if it is in public) next time! x

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  15. Hahaha, you crack me up Liz. I'll be aware of my imaginary 'I'm hairy and I know it' sandwich board every time I wake through a shopping mall now.
    Oh, and I love your eyebrows :) xx

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  16. Hehehe absolutely love this!
    Mostly because I'm old-fashioned and just like too much snogging in public believe these things should be kept behind closed doors. As much as I don't want it done in public, I don't want to see it either ;) xx

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