President Barack Obama spent his first term practically going gray as he worked to revive the U.S. economy, however, one area that proved to grow steadily was the salon and spa industry. It brought in almost $40 billion dollars in annual sales, according to the Professional Beauty Association's June 2012 economic snapshot. Not surprisingly, women's cuts, styling and blowouts topped the list of most common salon services.
Job loss, pay cuts and price hikes have forced many of us to shift dollars between bank accounts. Yet, this impressive number proves that keeping up our good looks is still a priority -- especially when do-it-yourself just won't do. To prove this point, check out the seven beauty treatments we rather leave up to the pros ... no matter the costs:
- Below-the-belt body waxing. When you need to prop up your legs at the perfect angle, make sure the temperature of the wax isn't scalding hot and maintain your cool when peeling it off, the chances of you getting a flawless bikini or leg wax is pretty darn slim. Not to mention, you can increase your risks of getting an unsightly or painful skin infection.
- Eyebrow waxing, threading or tinting. Ladies, when it comes to the area that perfectly frames your face, I beg of you to groom it with care. Eyebrow hair removal and darkening are acquired skills which can go awry with an unsteady hand or a wonky eye.
- Brazilian hair straightening. This hair care treatment has made thousands of curly and frizzy-haired women's lives so much easier. However, the chemical warnings that plagued the Brazilian Keratin in salons still applies when you break open the seal on that DIY kit. Don't make a mess of your mane with a seemingly fool-proof product.
- Facial peels and extractions. No one knows your skin better than you do. But how many of us actually own the right facial care tools, including a super magnifying and illuminated mirror, that will allow us to get down and dirty with our epidermis? I sure don't.
- Luxe pedicures. I'm probably the only editor on the HuffPost Style team that can clip, buff and polish her nails almost good as they would at the salon. However, I rather sit back in the pedicure chair and read a juicy tabloid while my manicurist goes to work on my cuticles and chaffed soles.
- Dramatic hair coloring. We still can't believe that this fashion buyer was able to dye her natural blonde locks. Yet, even she can admit that regular appointments with a colorist is key to maintaining healthy hair. I'd like to add this disclaimer: The likelihood of getting at-home hair color that perfect is minimal. If you're considering a major hair color makeover, save up and see a professional.
- Hair braiding ... with extensions. One of the very first hairstyles that many little girls learn to do is a braid. But whenever I switch up my look for Solange-inspired box braids, I forgo the friend-of-a friend route and visit a salon for styling that I know will last.
Which beauty treatments do you absolutely refuse to do yourself? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section.
Meanwhile, find out the 11 beauty treatments you should totally do yourself at home.
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