Usma, a leafy green herb, is sold in all Tajik markets. You can get a small bunch for about $0.06. The process is simple but effective, several market women assured me. Take a bunch of usma and let it dry in the sun for a couple hours. Then grind up the leaves until a dark green goo seeps out. Dip a branch of usma — or a matchstick, if you want to be more precise — into the goo and smear it on your eyebrows, making sure, of course, to color the space in between. Leave on for 15 minutes, and repeat the smearing process one or two more times. The result is a deep black unibrow, rich and expressive.
Asking Tajik women why they like the unibrow is a bit like asking Western women why they like to paint their nails or pluck their eyebrows into oblivion.
"I just think it's beautiful," was, without exception, the answer I got after asking more than a dozen Tajik women about their unibrows.
Tajikistan is not the only central Asian country where the unibrow reigns supreme — a symbol of feminine beauty and purity. And it’s not as if every Tajik woman has it. The unibrow is the exception, and still found more commonly in places outside the capital.
You can view a slideshow of Tajik women with unibrows at the link.
Link via Ace of Spades HQ | Photo: Miriam Elder/Global Post