A good Indian friend of mine introduced me to eyebrow threading recently. I was game enough to try and she brought me to an Indian beauty salon in Little India.
As I walked up the stairs to the second floor of the salon, an overpowering incense greeted me and inside Indian music, somewhat like eerie chants, wafted through the air.
No appointment was made and with an established law-abiding mentality typical of Singaporeans, we queued in line. Before us were a group of Eurasian teenage schoolgirls led by an Indian classmate and her mum. Fear gripped me when one of the girls teared after she got hers done. At that point I wanted to quit. My friend was supportive and encouraging and I thought to myself: What worse pain can be compared to childbirth without epidural, and of which I am proud to say I underwent three times.
When my turn came I was quick to tell the lady who was attending to me that I did not want my brows too thin. I also pointed out that this was my maiden foray and she smiled. Without a word more, she proceeded to pull the thread on my eyebrow. I could hear the "swish swish" sound as she deftly pulled the thread. Her actions were quick and precise. I felt as if my skin was being pinched but the pain was bearable. On hindsight, the pain is less than the use of tweezers. Barely five minutes later I was done. For S$5.00 (approximately US$2.90) my eyebrows now have the arch of a typical Indian lady and they look nicer and shapelier than the unshaped ones of old. The area below the eyebrows also look much cleaner and I imagined I could now have sensational eye make-up like those of cosmetic models, that is, if I perfect the technique.
Threading is a skill of old. As I searched the internet for the history of threading I found that its origin is ambiguous, with some claiming that it began in the Middle East, India, or China. Traditionally, threading is used on the entire face, including upper lip, chin, eyebrows, sideburns and cheeks. I have seen old paper clips of Chinese amahs threading brows and faces in old Chinatown. However, in modern Singapore it appears that the Indians are practising this craft widely.
Threading is a hair removal technique that uses a cotton thread. The 100% cotton thread is twisted and rolled along the surface of the skin entwining the hairs in the thread, which are then lifted out from the follicle. It is said to be more precise than waxing.
Three weeks after I had my eyebrows threaded I began to see fine new growths. To get by the days before I return to the salon, I used a pair of tweezers to pull the strays out. I will continue to thread my eyebrows because I think it is shapelier and neater. Besides, it is cheap and quick.
- The End -
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An Update from Diana (August 29, 2004):
The salon can be found at:
Rupini's Beauty Consultant Pte Ltd
24/26 First Floor Buffalo Road
(Opposite Tekka Taxi Stand)
Tel: (65) 2916789 Fax: (65) 2943994.
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Published on 9/23/03