Waxing is a quick, effective way to groom your eyebrows, and if you know what you're doing, it can turn a pair of average eyebrows into the "on fleek" brows we've always dreamed of. This is what I thought two years ago when I decided to have my eyebrows done professionally for the first time, and my mom and I set out for Ulta to have them waxed.
She applied the hot wax to my eyebrows, explaining that, since it was my first time, she was using a gentler wax that wouldn't be as painful. She put the strip over the wax and ripped it off, taking the brow hairs with it. So far, so good- it hadn't hurt nearly as much as I'd expected, and the lady said that it was going well.
She proceeded to wax the top of that eyebrow and my other one, but by the time she'd finished my other eyebrow, she started to notice some discoloration around that first strip she waxed. Additionally, they'd started to itch. The longer she waited, the worse they began to look and feel, and, too late, she realized that she hadn't just waxed my eyebrows- she'd taken the skin with it. Every part of me touched by the wax was bare. The skin was completely gone.
Naturally, seventh-grade me went into panic mode. I had a birthday party to go to that weekend! How could I possibly show my face when the skin above and below my eyebrows was scabbing over? Luckily, I had a dermatologist appointment already scheduled for later that day, and he told me that it was definitely a reaction between the retinol acne products I'd used and the wax that had caused this to happen. He told me that it would go away soon, and that in the meantime, I should put apply Neosporin to the areas on a regular basis.
Fortunately, my skin had mostly cleared up before the much-anticipated birthday party that weekend, and all was well- but ever since then, I've avoided eyebrow waxing like the plague, and since I still use the same products on my face, there isn't much chance I'll ever give it a try again.
If you're considering waxing your eyebrows for the first time, make sure to follow these guidelines to assure that your poor skin doesn't end up like mine did.
1. If you use retinol products, eyebrow waxing is always going to be off-limits. Topical retinol products make your skin much thinner; therefore, it's going to come right off during waxing.
2. Always, always, always have a patch test done before diving in head-first! If I'd been smart enough to ask for a patch test beforehand, I would have known how badly my skin would react before it was too late.
3. Lastly, do some research! Try a Google search on any product you use on your face that isn't makeup, and see if others that use it have had reactions when waxing. If they have, chances are, you will too!
If you've double-checked on all of these, you should be good to go! Waxing can be an amazing form of hair removal, and tons of people swear by it. Good luck!