Eyebrow Expert / Threader

Job Description (What the job involves)

A brow expert is typically a therapist who specialises in treatments to shape and define the eyebrows through hair depilation and also enhance the appearance of the brows through makeup, tinting and on occasion tattooing. Ouch!!

Traditionally Western techniques for shaping the eyebrows has focused on waxing and tweezing but there is a  fast growing current demand  in the UK for brow experts to posses threading skills.

Threading is the latest trendy way within the UK to have your brows shaped and maintained but actually threading is an ancient art and has been practiced for years throughout South Asia and the Middle East. Essentially threading involves the brow threader using a double stranded piece of cotton thread that is twisted and used rather like a mini lasso to grip either a solitary hair or row of hairs and safely remove from the follicle.

There are different methods such as the horizontal method that simply uses the brow threader’s thumb and forefingers to work the thread but in some countries the Jaw clincher method is practiced where the mouth is also brought into play to create a different angle. Most brow threaders tend to establish post training their own unique and preferred method.

Simple sewing cotton thread can be used or more expensive options can be manja thread which is lined with a special glue that the hairs adhere to and make easier to remove or SMT thread that offers the brow threader an easier way of working different angles on their clients brow.

A lot of brow experts will typically be qualified beauty therapists and therefore it’s not unusual for brow experts to carry out other treatments such as manicures, pedicures, eyelash tinting and perming, facials and head and shoulder massages.

Hours and Working Environment

Recent years have seen the advent of specialist brow studios and brow bars like Shavatas, Blink and Browhaus who operate compact studios in department stores like Harrods, Debenhams and Harvey Nichols. As well as opportunities existing in these specialist brow concessions there are now some standalone brow stores opening up such as Blink Brow Bar in Canary Wharf.

Because of the increasing popularity of threading many salons are now adding threadng to their salon treatment menus and so salon owners are increasingly showing a preference to therapists that have threading down as part of their treatments portfolio.

Skills and Personal Qualities

  • Attention to detail. A good brow expert would never leave a client with the odd stray hair  after a brow shape and the brow arch should look neat and perfectly defined.
  • Accuracy. Uneven brows is not a good look!
  • Ability to imagine. What is a good brow shape for one person isn’t necessarily what will look good on another. The eyebrow therapist needs to be able to tell from the shape of a person’s face etc what brow shape will best frame their face
  • Dexterity in the hands. You need to be able to work quickly and accurate!
  • Eye for beauty and perfection.

Entry Requirements

It’s common for brow specialists to have a formal beauty qualification and this is because it opens up more opportunities to the therapist even if they do ultimately want to specialise in brow treatments. Many brow bars still require their brow specialists to offer wider beauty treatments and some advanced brow treatment courses do require formal beauty qualifications (i.e. NVQ level 2 in beauty therapy) so if you’re starting out from scratch it’s worth bearing this in mind.

It’s becoming an increasingly common requirement for brow specialists to have expertise in threading. Typically courses in threading are short and intensive lasting 1-2 days. Some entry requirements will require a beauty qualification to NVQ level 2 or equivalent but there are other courses that don’t require formal beauty qualifications

Habia (the government approved standards setting body for the beauty industry) brought out some operational standards for providing threading services in Sep 2012. It would be advisable therefore to ensure that whatever course you select has been Habia accredited and approved.

You should be aware that simply having a certificate in threading won’t be sufficient to make you a proficient threader. It takes a whole load of practice to become good.

Short courses in other brow treatments such as brow tinting can be easily sourced and a diploma or certificate gained.

Opportunities and Progression

There’s never been a better time really to specialise in brow treatments. It seems we all can’t get enough of having perfectly defined brow arches and declaring war on the mono brow. Brow bars are therefore all the rage and appearing anywhere from airport terminals, to luxury department stores and high street concessions.

Excel at your craft and you’ll never be short of work! And for beauty therapists who are looking to add a useful skill to their talent portfolio an ability to thread would be an excellent addition.

Industry Outlook

For years brow shaping has been a staple basic of many salon's treatment menus with good old fashioned tweezing being the chosen method. But it's only in recent years with the rising interest in the ancient art of threading that the popularity of eyebrow shaping has really taken off.

Such is it's rising popularity that an increasing number of salons are now putting threading on their salon treatment menus and are actively seeking to recruit therapists that are trained in this craft. Given this fact therapists could definitely increase their employability factor by learning this craft.

This increasing desire for the perfect brow arch as lead to a number of brow studios and bars opening up and down the country that specialise in eyebrows in much the same way as nail bars specialise in nail treatments. These brow bars can often be found in department stores but there are also standalone stores cropping up. As well as offering threading, waxing and tweezing to shape the brows these specialist brow bars also offer services that include brow and lash tinting, facial threading and lash extensions.


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Potential Salary and Benefits

Because someone’s earning are dependent on so may factors; location, business type, experience, qualifications, type of establishment etc we can only give a rough guide to salary expectations. Typically though a brow expert will earn an average of between £6-50 to £7.50 per hour on a part time basis and full time salaries range on average between £13,440 and £15,000 per annum. Commission is often also available,

Of course if you decide to become a celebrity brow expert or open up your own chain of brow bars then there is no limit to what you can earn as a Brow Supremo!

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