Posts Tagged ‘threading’
Wherein I, very uncharacteristically, talk about beauty, as in beauty therapy treatments. But really, I’m talking about self-esteem and about marketing.
For those of you who don’t know what threading involves, it’s a method of facial hair removal. It’s all the rage these days, but 5 years ago there were hardly any places that did it in Cardiff. Normally my awareness of beauty techniques is pretty low (so something may have been around for 20 years and I probably wouldn’t have noticed) but I did look into it at the time for a friend who wanted her eyebrows threaded, not waxed, and had only found one place.
At that time, when I walked into that beauty salon to enquire about prices and whether they would do home visits (my friend was housebound), the first thing the owner (a very glamorous woman in her forties) said was: “You’ve come to have your eyebrows done, yes?” as if they were some kind of furry caterpillars rampaging across my face and had to be controlled immediately. I refrained from covering my eyebrows with my index fingers as I answered that no, I like my eyebrows as they are (dubious pout from her) and that I was enquiring for a friend.
Now beauty booths that do threading (and nails and other stuff) have sprung up in the middle of the shopping centres – ArchAngels in Saint David’s, something else, even maybe another ArchAngels? in Saint David’s 2. And I had a similar experience to the one 5 years ago, in Saint David’s 2. A plump lady armed with [insert name of beauty booth here] leaflets stopped me as I was on my way to Lakeland to buy edible glitter for my blissings. She told me I should have my eyebrows done, it only takes 5 minutes, it’s pretty cheap (quoted price at me), blah blah blah, and it would lift my face and I would look prettier.
Now I have to say, CHEERS very much. (“Yeah you look ok love, but you could do better.”)
I’m being told repeatedly (well ok… twice) that my eyebrows need doing. I DON’T CARE!
The truth is, I totally do care. It sucks, as a marketing ploy. But it works. You start by denting your potential client’s self image just so you can announce that you can fix it for them. And somewhere, even though I am loathe to admit it, a small part of me wonders whether they are actually right.
Maybe my eyebrows don’t need doing. It’s just sales. People’s eyebrows are easier to spot and comment on than nails for example. (If that random woman had accosted me and grabbed my hands to examine my nails, I would have either hit her or run away.) Then once I’m in the booth having my eyebrows done, she can check my nails and upsell me a manicure or somesuch. I get it.
Maybe my eyebrows do need doing. But hold on… what intangible benefit am I supposed to get out of it? What does “lift my face” mean anyway? I have a mental image of attaching a bunch of helium balloons to my face, perhaps with pegs.
No, seriously, are we talking facelift kind of lift? As in looking younger? People think I’m in my early twenties as it is – I’m 31 – and I don’t need to look any younger, thank you very much. Clients are just not going to take me seriously.
Are we talking happy kind of lift? If you’re frowning and grumpy no amount of eyebrow threading will make you look joyful. I’ll choose smiling over having my facial hair tampered with. Even though I once overheard an old lady on the bus say that she never smiles because it creates wrinkles.
[An aside: that being said, I did have a part of my face de-haired once. In my younger days, when I believed what other (random, ill-informed) people told me about my appearance. A boy asked me to have my upper lip waxed and I complied. Looking back, that was one of the silliest mistakes I have ever made, and I would like to reach back and give myself a good shake and a stern talking to. I’m brunette. I have a ‘tache. Live with it, or piss off.]
Moral one: thanks, beauty industry, but I don’t think so. There’s got to be a better way to do marketing than to knock someone down just to be able to pick them up and make them feel better again. If that were a relationship, that would be abusive.
Moral two: when I’m 40 and I need to look younger, I’ll have my eyebrows threaded. Until then, I’m not even going to bother thinking about it (which I confess I have been up to now, just once I a while… “should I? should I not?”). And this has just freed up a surprisingly consequent amount of mental space, which I can now use to… erm… dodge raindrops, coo over my newborn godchild, blog post about marketing a bit more, and about how much you need to drink water (these last two are actually coming soon).
All in all a resounding success, methinks.