Best of NYC

By Andrea Toochin


Threading is no new skin care revelation – at least not to the inhabitants of Southern Asia; threading has been around for ages in India and Pakistan. I heard about it about after my college roommate had it done on her first trip to Pakistan. I’d always wanted to try it and hoped these women would somehow find a way to deal with a hereditary trait – unruly eyebrows – where waxers had failed.

Initially, I was disappointed to discover that it lasts no longer than waxing. It doesn’t irritate the skin afterwards, boasted the manager of Shobha, a New York threading and sugaring studio with two Manhattan locations, the midtown, a zen upstairs salon decorated in curry colors, emanating the soothing scents of herbal tea. I went in with low expectations, but nothing can prepare a grooming addict for the skill these women possess; spool in hand, focused yet nonchalant, Smita stared at my eyes and weaved her way through my dark brows, maneuvering the saffron-red spool like a Cats Cradle game.

The result was a clean, natural look, at first too uniform in shape for me. But after a few hours, I was pleasantly surprised. I realized – with a little education from this skilled, family-trained expert – that threading trumps waxing because it is precise. Her speech reminded me of my mother’s tale of her skinny brows, a byproduct of the 60s that left her with virtually nothing to wax or pluck. Smita pointed out that as in any other hair removal process, the hair grows back slower and more sparse over time. Why then, spend $20 to have a women pull your hair out with an item from your sewing kit? Imagine that in the one blob of wax, you see an entire clump of hair removed, month after month. So, you are potentially committing to that shape forever. With threading, the accuracy enabled by the ability to capture individual hairs ensures an even shaping of both brows and more precise shaping to begin with.

Shobha also produces a line of products, including a cactus fabric body scrubber and a sugar hair removal kit paired with denim strips, said to cause less pain than cloth due to the thickness of the fabric.

Shobha salons are located 595 Madison Avenue (@ 57th Street) 212.223.2872 & 594 Broadway Suite 403 (Between Prince and Houston) 212.931.8363


Eyebrows $20, Face $50. Sugaring/Body Waxing: Back $60, Brazilian Bikini $50

Originally published July 2005



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