By Bahar Takhtehchian
Cheaper, less painful and more precise than waxing, threading provides the perfect solution for removing unwanted hair.
With roots dating back to life in the Middle East and South Asia centuries ago, the practice of threading–which consists of twisting a long piece of thread around individual hairs to lift those pesky little suckers from the follicle– has made its mark in the Western world. And judging from the number of threading salons popping up around the city, threading seems to have made quite an impression on New Yorkers as well.
Why thread? If you’re a newbie, the thought of getting threaded may seem strange, even scary. But threading can be considered more precise than waxing and the process helps get your brows into their ideal shape. You’ve seen enough pictures of 80’s starlets to know just how important shaped eyebrows are to your overall look…considering how quick, and generally pain-free the process is, we’re pretty confident that you’ll never go near wax again once you’ve gotten a taste of the thread. How does it feel? Even though I’ve been getting my upper lip and eyebrows threaded on a monthly basis for years now (gotta love those Middle Eastern genes!), I still tend to get teary-eyed every time I get threaded. I suspect it’s a normal reaction to the tugging (or maybe it comes from staring into the ceiling lights) because I hardly feel any pain when my threader’s actually removing the hair. Sure, I’m aware of slight pinching in the beginning of the session (caution: the longer the hair, the more painful the process), but after a few pulls, I grow accustomed to the feeling. And some die-hard threaders (I’m guilty!) have even claimed to enjoy the pinching sensation. No joke.
What if I have sensitive or acne-prone skin?
Threading is 100 percent all-natural which makes it very safe. Unlike wax, which contains chemicals that can irritate, burn, or even remove top layers of skin, threading requires two things: soft thread and a seasoned threader. And if you happen to be battling adult acne with prescription drugs or topical treatments, threading is safe and gentle enough to not harm your hypersensitive skin.
How long do I have to wait before showing my face in public?
Depending on how sensitive your skin is, you may experience a little redness, but that’s a consequence that comes with waxing as well. Even so, I find that my highly sensitive skin stays red for 30-45 minutes, tops.
So, enough with the talk and on with the threading. Stop obsessing over your ‘stache and make a mad dash to one of the six salons we’ve listed below.
Perfect Shape Threading Salon
30 Rockefeller Plaza
Upper Lip: $5
Quick, friendly service; purchase nine threading sessions and the tenth is free; walk-ins welcome
594 Broadway St.
41 E. 57th St.
Upper Lip: $10
Trendy ambience; great customer service; advance appointments recommended.
1794 Third Ave.
Upper Lip: $6
Great customer service; located in East Harlem; additional services include reasonably priced facials and henna work.
Unique Threading Salon
727 Avenue of the Americas
Upper Lip: $4Fast service; no appointments necessary.
1662 1st Ave. @ 86th Street
Upper Lip: $4
Convenient UES location, quick, friendly service. Walk-ins welcome. Purchase seven eyebrow threading sessions, and the 8th is free.
Pinky’s Shapes Threading Salon
1032 6th Ave.
Upper Lip: $5
Efficient, friendly staff; walk-ins welcome.