My parents sent me and my siblings to a Catholic school, where we were the only Afro-Latinos. If that didn’t set us apart enough, my sister and I were by far the hairiest kids in all the land. Including the boys. And ― as my first grade crush pointed out ― I was even harrier than my male music teacher, Mr. Stormare. Our starched white shirts and plaids skirts were meant to be conservative, but they never managed to conceal the thick, dark, black hair that trailed across nearly every exposed surface of my body including my forehead, where hair sprawled all over it like moss on a rock.
By second grade, the girls in my class were only just beginning to learn about “self-grooming.” While they were getting down with the lotions at Bath & Body Works, I had already mastered the art of taking a waxing without the tears. Pretty quickly I learned that my brows were bushy and that they weren’t your average brows.
Having thick eyebrows is something I’ve only started appreciated recently. And it was a long road, forged by tweezers, waxes and threads, that has gotten me here.
Even though those babies needed some serious professional help, I initially resisted.
CREDIT: RHOA / Bravo
At a young age I knew beauty should not equal pain. Soon enough though, I realized that to boys it didn’t matter if wax hurt girls. My brows still reminded boys and girls of “caterpillars” and “Groucho Marx” and I was expected to fix it. So, being young and not having a clue about feminism, I told myself had to do something.
But TBH, I was seriously worried my bushes would swallow me whole and I’d become a real-life Teen Wolf girl.
CREDIT: Teen Wolf / Atlantic Releasing Corporation
So I caved.
Soon I decided to start plucking.
CREDIT: Hey Arnold / Nickelodeon
I began clocking in hours upon hours with my face pressed to bathroom mirrors, tweezers in hand.
Which meant that I often had anything from a darted unibrow to lopsided ~tadpole-sperm brows~.
CREDIT: Friends / NBC
But this provided a temporary relief from the constant teasing I was used to because of my bushy brows.
Not a huge issue considering I’m hairy.
That shit just sprouts back up the morning after.
By high school I decided to up the stakes and start threading.
CREDIT: Ugly Betty / ABC
Things were going well…
Until someone noticed my hair isn’t just contained to my brows.
CREDIT: The X Factor / FOX
“Eww. Like OMG, Alex. WHY is there so much hair growing on your body??”
Nope. The hair sprouts in abundance on my arms, upper lip, sideburns, legs, back, stomach, you name it. When the threader sees it, they immediately want to get their hands on it and rip it out.
Because things get can get tricky for a gal when hairs start sprouting and it blocks your peripheral vision, I let the hair masters work their magic.
CREDIT: Netflix/ Giphy.com
Yes, get rid of it all.
Until my inner feminist found her voice and said…
CREDIT: Princess Diaries / Disney
F*ck it, these are the brows I was born with, so enough with the painful tweezing, threading, waxing, pulling, and ripping of my thick hairs.
Plus, thick brows finally became the cool thing again.
And I was ready for the trend without the help of brow pencils and powders.
I’m still rocking a slight chip on my shoulder over the fact that mine went under appreciated for so long.
CREDIT: WeTV / Giphy.com
But it’s cool, yo. I’m not that mad about it.
CREDIT: AMC / Giphy.com
I’m so happy these people who teased me now embrace full brows on social 👍👍👍👍 😒😒😒😒.