Beauty Treatments Abroad Part 2: Eyebrow Threading in Vietnam

by | Feb 15, 2013 | Health & Beauty, Vietnam | 4 comments


Eyebrow threading

It’s not the scariest beauty treatment to try out by any means. Especially in Asia, I could have ventured out and done something seriously strange. But I didn’t. It’s not an unusual term for most women but it was new to me. I had heard horror stories before by friends who said that threading hurt or that by the end their eyebrows were pencil thin. I swore that I would never stray from waxing my eyebrows. It was a tried and true method and I had been doing it forever. A quick trip to my esthetician, a nice fifteen minute chat to catch up on both of our lives, some warm wax, rip, rip, and it was over. Eyebrow threading was not in the cards for me or so I thought until I walked down a tiny space of a very crowded Vietnamese market in Hoi An.

Lined up against a wall were plastic chairs and a woman clinging to my arm

Thread? Thread? She asked, pointing to my eyebrows. I tried to say no at first, honestly I did. But if you’ve ever been to an Asian market, particularly in Vietnam, it is sometimes difficult to say no. It was a dirt cheap price. My eyebrows did need to be done. I was traveling. My fears were gone, I had no inhibitions. I probably didn’t pick the cleanest place. The ground was wet and I was sitting against a wall with chipping paint. I can’t even remember where she kept her tools but I’m pretty sure none of them were separate from the rest and they were likely all kept in a bundle in a tin can type of object. At the moment, it wasn’t something I was worried about.

Eyebrow threading, I thought, why not.
Would it hurt? I asked.
No, no, no, the lady giggled.

I asked her to just do a little bit before I made up my mind (I have an embarrassingly low pain tolerance). She chose the middle section between my two eyebrows where there is virtually little to no hair. Of course it wouldn’t hurt there! Obviously that was why she chose that spot! Instead I thought, wow! I can hardly feel a thing! Go for it!

Seconds in and I was already regretting it.

Ladies and gentlemen, if you haven’t done it already, eyebrow threading hurts. In my opinions, it hurts a lot more than waxing. My skin is pretty sensitive but soon enough my eyes were watering uncontrollably and this horrible woman just kept laughing at me and saying gibberish in Vietnamese. I felt every single hair being ripped out of my skin by the root. I felt every tug and every shift of the thread. By the end of it the skin around my eyebrows and into my forehead was bright pink (no different than when I get them waxed, actually). It was not worth it and I will never thread my eyebrows ever again. Ever! I mean it this time.

My initial instincts had clearly always been right. Waxing is where it’s at.

People say that threading is better for people with sensitive skin due to less actual skin contact. I guess it depends on the person because I didn’t notice much difference except that the redness went down faster than with waxing.

So, my final thoughts on threading vs. waxing?

Threading hurts more. It’s tolerable, but it definitely hurts more. Threading, however, does last longer than waxing. Waxing is faster and less painful, but it doesn’t last as long as threading. I know a lot of people that do prefer threading over waxing but personally, I’m sticking to waxing. Everybody is different though. Have you ever tried eyebrow threading?

Did it hurt or am I just a baby?

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