Facial Hair Removal - Threading Made Simple

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What is threading?Eyebrow Threading

Threading is an ancient art of hair removal originating in Asia. In more recent times it has gained popularity in Western countries.
Most people believe threading originated in India over 6000 years ago, and spread throughout Asia, the Middle East and more recently Europe. The Arabic word for threading is ‘Khite’; in Egypt it is also called ‘Fatlah’.
Threading is widely practised amongst Iranians, but it was originally only done when a woman was getting married, or for special occasions. In ancient Persia, threading was a sign that a girl had reached adulthood and became a woman.

The Threading Technique

In threading, a thin cotton thread is doubled, then twisted several times. It is then rolled over areas of unwanted hair, plucking the hair at the follicle level. Unlike tweezing, where single hairs are pulled out one at a time, threading can remove short lines of hair.
Advantages cited for eyebrow threading, as opposed to eyebrow waxing, are that it provides more precise control in shaping eyebrows and is more gentle on the skin. It can be painful as several hairs are removed at once: however this can be minimised if it is done professionally
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Advantages of threading

  1. It’s extremely hygienic. Only cotton thread is used, which is then discarded after use.

  2. The eyebrows can be shaped evenly and precisely, unlike with waxing.

  3. It’s safe and natural; no chemicals are used.

  4. It’s fast and easy; can be done by a salon professional in a few minutes.

  5. Will slow down hair re-growth. Frequent threading can damage the follicle.

  6. Free to do at home and affordable at a salon.

Disadvantages of threading

  1. It takes time to acquire the skill of threading, especially on the eyebrows.

  2. The hairs can break if done incorrectly.

  3. Some hair growth is necessary for the thread to wrap around the hairs.

  4. A level of discomfort will occur depending on the skill of the technician.

How to do threading

Here is how to do threading to shape your eyebrows in 7 steps:

  1. Eyebrow shapingShape your eyebrows. Rather than jumping right in and haphazardly removing hair, decide upon the shape of your eyebrows first. Use an eyebrow pencil to outline and fill in your eyebrows exactly how you want them. This will help you to ‘stay in the lines’ when you’re threading and prevent you from removing too much hair
    If you’re threading another part of your face or body, you don’t need to outline or fill in anything unless you’re not removing all of the hair and need a guideline.


    Hair trimming

  2. Trim off excess hair. If you’re shaping your eyebrows, trim off long hair prior to threading to prevent pulling them out completely. Use a spoolie brush to brush the hairs upwards, and then trim the tops off with a small set of scissors. Use a makeup brush to brush off the trimmed pieces from your face.

     

  3. Prepare threadPrepare your thread. Cut a piece of cotton thread to be the length of about your forearm; the less string you use, the more control you will have. Tie the ends together to create a loop

  4. Stretch the loop between your hands. Hold the thread so that it is stretched between your thumb and index fingers. Roll your right hand in a clockwise direction to twist the thread six or seven times times, or until you have about 1 inch (2.5 cm) of intertwined thread between your hands.

    Test thread

  5. Test the thread. Hold the string with your thumbs and index fingers inside the loops on each side, then pull your right thumb and index finger apart. The twists of thread should move toward your left hand. Now, close the space between your right thumb and index finger and open the space between the left thumb and index finger. This is the threading motion that traps hairs in the twisted thread and pulls them out.


     

  6. Start threadingBegin threading. Starting at the highest hairs you want removed, align the twists of thread to that hair. Open your right fingers in a smooth motion, moving the coil down, and then, open your left fingers to move the coil back. Continue these motions, working from the top to the bottom, aligning the coil of thread carefully before moving it up and down the removal area until all unwanted hair has been removed.


     

  7. Soothe skinSoothe any irritated skin. When you’re finished threading, your skin may be a bit red or inflamed. If so, pat the threaded area with a gentle astringent, like witch-hazel, to calm and clear the pores.
     

 

Tips for eyebrow shaping

Use a pencil to take the following 3 measurements in order to thread brows into a natural shape: to find the inside limit of the brow, measure a straight line from the corner of the nose to the inside corner of your eye, to find the outside limit of the brow, measure the edge of the nose to the outside edge of the eye, and to find the highest arch of the brow, measure the outside edge of the nose through the pupil. Thread outside those lines.

Video demonstration

 

Threading tools

The following are a couple of threading devices that can help you with facial hair removal if you cannot get to grip with the manual threading described above. They are both easy to use; one of them is manual and the other automatic.

Goho spring epilatorGoho spring epilator

This device is also based on the ancient art of threading, even though it doesn’t use a thread. It uses a unique precision spring that allows the removal of facial hair from the root. Goho spring epilator is made of a spring and 2 plastic handles. It is used by flexing the spring into an inverted ‘U’ and placing it on the face. By rolling the handles, the spring coils open and close, thus trapping the hairs and pulling them out from the root.

Goho spring epilator removes both fine and coarse hair. It's a beauty tool designed for individual use and can last up to 6 months - saving you money. Some people will experience at first a prickling sensation due to the hair being pulled out from the root. However, with regular use of the Goho spring it will become practically painless over time.

Video demonstration

Advantages of Goho spring

  1. Inexpensive and very easy to use.

  2. Can be used without a mirror.

  3. Hair regrowth may be finer with regular use

  4. Small enough to fit in a purse.

  5. No need for plug or batteries.

Disadvantages of Goho spring

  1. Initial sensitivity may be experienced.

  2. Cannot be used on the eyebrows.

Keda electric cotton threading kit

Keda KD-192

This is similar to the manual threading using a cotton thread but it’s done automatically with a machine. Shaped like the body of a butterfly with 2 antennae, It is an ingenious device that will allow you to perform threading quickly and effortlessly even the first time. There is no need to acquire the skills of manual threading which takes time. Normally it takes a salon professional to do it efficiently, but thanks to this device you can do it yourself in the comfort of your own home, saving you money in the long run.

Before you start using the Keda Electric Cotton Threading Kit, wash the area to be treated with warm water and mild soap to remove any excess oil in the skin. Then lightly dust fixing powder over the area to help the cotton grip the hairs. When you have finished you may want to wash the treated area with cold water to soothe the skin. It is recommended to practice on your forearm or leg until you are confident with the process before you use it on your face and eyebrows.

Video demonstration

Advantages of Keda KD-192

  1. Very simple and easy to use.

  2. No prior experience of threading needed.

  3. Faster than manual threading.

  4. Can be used on the body as well.

Disadvantages of Keda KD-192

  1. Works with power adapter (not manual).

  2. Use on the eyebrows with caution (powerful device).

Make sure you get a product branded Keda KD-192 as there are unbranded copies sold on eBay and Amazon that are of dubious quality.

Threading is primarily done on the face. Prices vary according to where the salon is located. In a posh beauty salon or spa in Central London it can be expensive. However, in Romford – a suburb of London where I live – I can get it for as little as £3, for eyebrows only. For the entire face, it can be about £10.

References
Wikipedia, Yelp and Wikihow websites.

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