• Paz

My two dollar facial in China

One of the reasons we moved to China was to experience life differently. I have gone from regular $5.00 coffees to no lattes and now my favorite $2.00 facial.

This is coming from a coffee junky, so you will understand that coffee carries some pretty heavyweight with me. When you move to a new country, the best way to adapt is really to throw yourself in, feet first! You let go of coffee drive thru's jump on board with whatever is the local norm.

Hop in line and hope for the best, is how I got my first $2.00 facial. It helps if you increase your comfort level to "hell, I will just go with it."

Every weekend we walk past two women who sit on the corner threading women and men's faces, arms, underarms, legs, and you get the idea.

I had been telling Zeek for weeks that I wanted to go and have my face threaded by these ladies. If you aren't familiar with what threading, it is a way to remove hair using a thread. I have had it done in the states many times. I couldn't leave China without jumping in at least once. On Saturday, we walked over to "hell; just go with it."

Remember, we moved here not speaking a word of Mandarin and it is still very rusty. Every conversation of ours starts with a lot of body language, which helps my lacking vocabulary.

Here is another woman getting her face threaded while we wait.

Notice we are literally on the side of a narrow passageway next to some dirty steps. For $2.00, you don't get a beautiful waiting area and wine. You do get a smiley older woman with fanny packs full of equipment and traditional wooden benches. Who knew butts were that small.

As we wait for my turn to sit on the small bench, we are greeted by people as they walk by and are entertained by Lupita's latest performance. Typical her, she draws a crowd and a few photo opportunities. Her Mandarin is so much better than ours. She can communicate with the older women, and they only get friendlier and friendlier by the moment, just another reason to travel with kids.

As I jump in the hot seat, I am quickly reminded that even though these smiley older Chinese ladies look harmless, they are quite sturdy, and the Chinese are not known for their gentle bedside manner.

First, stripped pieces of fabric are tied around your head to keep your hair out of your face. Next, they rub a type of white chalk all over your face.

If you get your face threaded on the side of the street, you should expect some people will stop to watch. Check out the guy standing right behind me!!

As you can see, she goes to town on my face! It has been a while since I had a waxing!

But right away, I can tell that this is different than any threading I had done in the States. The thread is much thicker, and she works her magic all over my face. She is quite strong, I might add.

She uses three different thicknesses of thread. I determine this to be the exfoliation as well as removing all of my unwanted hair!

Each time she finishes a section of my face, she rubs the mysterious chalk all over my face. The chalk felt very dry and bit coarse. I don't know what it was for, and my poor Mandarin didn't help.

Then the most unexpected thing happened. She got out a clear liquid and started rubbing it all over my face. It could have been an exfoliating cream, or butt jelly, again who knows. She put tons on all over.

She rubbed it all over my face and neck. When I say rub, I mean rubbed and rubbed. I received my first exfoliating massage on the side of the street. Even though she was pulling and pushing and scrubbing, it felt terrific!!! She must have done that twice and then went back to threading.

Here is Lupita waiting patiently, and not so excited.

I sat there for 30 minutes on the small wooden bench for $2.00 on the side of the road in Guangzhou, China.

As I thought she would be wrapping up, she starts popping all my blackheads. She uses the same tools used in the States, where I would pay over $100 to have used on my face.

The ambiance was quite different, but the experience was thousand times more memorable. Don't forget to jump in!

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