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London - Achieving perfectly arched eyebrows at home with a pair of tweezers is a painful chore with the added risk that you might end up looking a bit skewiff.
Which is perhaps why a booming industry appears to be growing up from the demand for a more professional job.
Every major beauty retailer now has an instore brow bar where customers can get their eyebrows waxed, plucked or threaded according to market analysts Mintel.
The Duchess of Cambridge and celebrities, including actress Keira Knightley and presenter Alexa Chung, have helped create a trend for heavier, carefully shaped brows.
It is not only the desire to emulate celebrities that is driving the market. Experts say it is also fuelled by women realising how much the eybrows can do for their overall appearance.
Vivienne Rudd of Mintel said: “Good brows are like good underwear – the right shape and size puts the rest of the face into proportion and makes everything look right.”
She said a trip to a brow bar, which costs from £5 (about R60) and takes as little as four minutes, is popular because it combines necessary maintenance with a self-indulgent treat.
Liverpool, home of the Scouse brow – a look sported by the likes of Coleen Rooney – is one of the most popular areas for brow bars, according to Superdrug.
Its outlets in the city, as well as those in Manchester and Newcastle, outsell other areas of the UK by at least five percent.
The beauty store has seen a near 40 percent increase in brow bar custom nationwide in the last year.
At Debenhams 96 of 170 stores have threading brow bars, while 43 have Benefit waxing brow bars. Blink brow bars, which have concessions in some John Lewis stores and Beauty Retreats, have seen a 68 percent jump in custom year-on-year.
A John Lewis spokesman said: “In this hectic world we live in it is less time-consuming compared to other premium treatments.” - Daily Mail