My eyebrow tattoo disaster story
I LOOKED in the mirror ... "Are they meant to look like this?" I looked like a blood spattered Angry Bird.
We've all seen the memes surrounding the perfect brow. It's become a quest.
As a mother, I project positive messages about looks. "Everyone is beautiful!" I tell my children.
Yet, I envy Duchess Catherine's brows. I think Cara Delevingne's eyebrows are deserving of being on gargantuan billboards.
My eyebrows have always been sparse. I have the odd combination of Celtic skin, dark hair and wispy brows. I usually filled them in with a kit. But the tricky part was consistency.
It became a Jekyll/Hyde brow situation. I didn't want people placing bets on whether I would turn up with eyebrows each day. So, it had to be every day.
I read about eyebrow tattooing and I realised I could save myself ten minutes each morning if I did it.
My downfall began when I bought an online discount voucher, instead of footing a full cost at a vetted salon.
The technician and I talked about 'feather touch' versus 'block colour'. I wanted the non-block version. I was slathered in numbing cream and away she went.
Feather touch involved a scalpel attached to a long tool, and being repeatedly slashed within a briskly applied stencil. Ink was liberally smudged over the top. And the numbing cream didn't do a damn thing.
I have had two children naturally, pain-relief free and have three tattoos. But this was up there in the pain stakes.
The worst part was the sensory factor - I could hear my skin being cut.
It dawned on me: I was letting someone cut my FACE and fill it with ink.
She also waxed them before AND after, which I have since read is a no-no.
Blood ran into my ears, and down my neck. She showed me my new Angry Bird face. My eye sockets were swollen, caked with blood and thick, seemingly black dye, which was "not be touched or to get wet" for four days.
This was not looking like the 'before and after' photos I imagined.
When I went out in public, I had to have an 'eyebrow disclaimer': "It's okay, I've just had my eyebrows done" I would tell people.
I had a Skype chat with an acquaintance in London and I deliberately tilted my screen down. Then he brought up that he couldn't see my face and I tilted it up. The embarrassment!
Another mistake was falling into the 'google eyebrow forum' rabbit hole.
There were women all around the world, despairing their inky brows. This led to home remedies for lessening the permanent effect of the tattoo. "Act quickly!" advised one fellow brow casualty.
Cue a trip to the supermarket. And a concoction of baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and pink Himalayan salt. Which I caked on my eyebrows like a fool.
I had flashbacks of me as thirteen-year-old, sitting in the bathroom with lemons on my head. I apparently hadn't learnt my lesson.
My remedy lightened the ink. But burnt my skin on my left eyebrow. I concluded that I would have to channel Jessica Rabbit and flop my hair over one eyebrow.
I googled pictures of Jason Mamoa, a.k.a. Khal Drogo from Game of Thrones. He has a scar on his eyebrow and is very beautiful. This made me feel better for ten minutes.
They aren't 'sharpie marker bad', but my brows aren't great. My meddling caused additional issues, I accept that. I also know there are much worse crises than scabby eyebrows.
Many have benefited from the method and look fabulous. Me? I bombed out.
This article originally appeared on Kidspot.