Although Piret Aava isn’t an MD, most clients know her as the Eyebrow Doctor®. In New York, Miami, Los Angeles, and Westchester, New York, the 39-year-old microblades, shapes, and tints eyebrows — in addition to tinting eyelashes and applying eyelash enhancement tattoos for her range of clients. Most find her via her popular Instagram® account, and her client roster is so dense that Aava has a lengthy waiting list — with many people willing to stick it out over a year to secure an appointment with the Eyebrow Doctor.
Though she’s been focused on brows for nearly 15 years, Aava didn’t start out as an eyebrow specialist. In fact, she began modeling at age 14 in her hometown of Tallinn, Estonia, and her strong desire to travel propelled her to participate in pageants in order to see the world. After living in Istanbul and Italy, her move to New York was serendipitous.
“I went to a pageant in the Bahamas, and when I was coming back, I stopped in New York to visit my childhood girlfriend,” recalls Aava. “I ended up staying. I got a modeling agency in New York, and was modeling and waitressing.” She booked fit model and lingerie jobs, as well as gigs for fittings and tradeshows. Ultimately, though, Aava wanted to pursue makeup artistry — but her parents didn’t approve. They told her, “‘Makeup artist’ is not a job,” and, “You need to go to college,” she says. “I would always get so stressed out when people asked me what I wanted to do with my life.” Spoiler alert: she didn’t take her parents’ advice. “I took a course in makeup,” she admits. “I called up every single photographer that I've ever worked with and started doing free test shoots.” This would cause her to inevitably get the gig that transformed her career from makeup artist into Eyebrow Doctor (more on this later!).
Today, Aava has another business to add to her growing entrepreneurship resume: Body Roll Studio℠. The company was inspired by Aava’s frequent travels, and the venue offers machines equipped with infrared rollers that have adjustable speeds and heat. (Patrons say the experience is super relaxing.)
Aava’s path is far from average — and her love for trying new things is certainly inspiring. Read on to learn more about the medical aesthetics treatments she loves, the one person she credits most for her success, and an uplifting mantra that will inspire you to shake off anything that doesn’t serve you in life.
Spotlyte: How did you get into microblading?
Piret Aava: I used to get my hair done at Warren-Tricomi® Salon. In 2004, I asked them if they needed a makeup artist. They said that they also need someone who can do eyebrows, which I could not, so they trained me. Then, I discovered microblading and I learned how to do that. I started working for myself five years ago — and here I am, still doing eyebrows.
Spotlyte: Do you microblade your own eyebrows, or do you have somebody do them for you?
PA: I have somebody do that for me. I do tint and laminate my eyebrows, because my hair is naturally blonde. I love brow tint, because it makes them dark and pop, so I don't need to use any brow pencil. If I do have to use a brow pencil, I love using the Kevyn Aucoin® Precision Brow Pencil.
Spotlyte: You get your eyelashes done, too, instead of applying mascara.
PA: I use eyelash extensions, and then I use Revitalash® to keep my lashes strong, so I don't ruin my lashes.
Spotlyte: What about other treatments do you get?
PA: I like to try everything so I know what's good and what's not. I did Ulthera® a few times. I love microneedling with radio high frequency, like Vivace®. I like Fraxel®. I spend a lot of time in the sun, so I try to schedule it when I am not going to be in the sun for a little while.
Editor’s note As always, talk to your doctor before starting any new treatment.
I got a facelift. I feel like it's easier just to go under a knife and do a little bit early, and then you do it again in 10 years.
Editor’s note Everyone’s experience with plastic surgery is different — talk to your provider about what’s best for you.
Spotlyte: Do you get injectables?
PA: Yes. Injectable wrinkle reducer — I get it on my forehead, my elevens, and my crow’s feet. I go to [nurse practitioner] Danielle Smith in Miami Beach. I love the results of filler. I get my lip filler done by Dulce Mascarinas, MD, in Miami. I would never let anybody else touch my lips.
Editor’s note Injectable wrinkle reducers temporarily smooth the look of moderate to severe wrinkles in certain areas of the face, including the forehead, frown lines, and crow’s feet; they should not be used more frequently than every three months. Injectable filler is a temporary treatment that adds volume to areas of the face such as the lips, cheeks, and laugh lines. Like any medical treatment, both injectable wrinkle reducers and injectable fillers have potential risks and side effects.]
Spotlyte: Besides the occasional eyebrow pencil, what's in your makeup bag?
PA: When I go out, I use Charlotte Tilbury® Unisex Healthy GlowTM Tinted Moisturizer, and a lot of Tom Ford® makeup products. I love their bronzer. I like Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Highlighter Wands, and just a pale pink lip gloss.
Spotlyte: What is your best beauty advice?
PA: Makeup-wise, don't overdo it. Sometimes, people are like, "I keep breaking out." [Usually], when I ask them what they’re using on their skin, they say, "I use this, this, this, this, and I keep washing my face, and it's just getting worse." I'm a licensed esthetician. It's because you're overdoing things.
Spotlyte: What is your morning skincare routine?
PA: I really love Biologique Recherche® Lotion P50®. It exfoliates the skin and it really makes me glowy. I like using that morning and night. In the morning, I use SkinCeuticals® Phloretin CF®, the vitamin C serum, or SkinMedica® TNS Essential Serum®, and facial moisturizer. And that's about it.
Spotlyte: What’s your evening skincare routine?
PA: At night, I use Biologique Recherche Lait VIP O₂TM Milk Cleanser and Biologique Recherche Lotion P50. I use retinols twice a week, or I use the Biologique Recherche Masque VivantTM before sleep to give me extra, extra moisture.
Editor's note Retinol shouldn't be used by women who are pregnant, considering getting pregnant, or nursing. Please consult with your doctor before use.
Spotlyte: What about other skin treatments?
PA: I try to get monthly facials at places that carry Biologique products, like Daphne Studio℠ in New York. If I'm in Miami, I love Triana℠ for facials.
Spotlyte: What workouts do you enjoy?
PA: I love working out everyday. Mind you, I like eating. I try to do new things. Once a week, I try a new exercise. I do SLT® and SoulCycle® when I'm in New York. When I'm in Miami, I do Barry's [Bootcamp]® and JetSet Pilates®. I just picked up running. I'm obsessed with Angela from AARMY℠. She's like church.
Spotlyte: What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? You mentioned that you love food.
PA: One of my favorite restaurants in New York is Shuko℠. I love sushi.
I try to keep things in balance between work and things that make me happy, which is traveling, so I just try to do it often. I really made it my mission last year and I really went for it. I went to Tulum, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Spain, Portugal, Amsterdam, Estonia, and Italy.
I enjoy traveling by myself, because it forces you to meet new people and talk to different people, learn new things, and get you out of your comfort zone. Trying new foods, learning different cultures, seeing everything — it expands your mind and mentality. Little things that seemed so big that bothered you before, they don't really seem that big anymore, because your vision of the world has changed.
Spotlyte: Travel also inspired you to start Body Roll Studio, right?
PA: I was home in Estonia visiting my family last summer, and my mom asked me if I wanted to go and try roll massage with her, which I thought was stupid at first. But it was something that we could do together, so I agreed. I was pleasantly surprised by how amazing it was! I work out a lot and I don't roll myself out a lot — it gave me that good workout soreness without working out.
I knew that this would be so amazing in New York. The new going out is actually working out, and [so many people are] super fit and healthy, but there’s not really that much out there for recovery. I really liked the fact that I could just sit there and watch TV, and the machine is rolling you out without you having to do anything.
Spotlyte: How much time do you split between each business?
PA: Brows take more time, because I physically have to be there and do it. But, I have an amazing studio manager, Maddie, who is my right hand and basically a second me. She runs the business in Body Roll Studio.
You can't do everything yourself. It was really hard for me to delegate tasks to people, because by the time I tell somebody to do something, I can do it already. I never really hired anyone for that reason for my brow business. When I found Maddie, I really learned how much I needed her.
Spotlyte: Why is it so important to surround yourself with people who support your vision?
PA: It's hard to find people like that, and I'm so thankful and grateful that I found Maddie, because I couldn't do it on my own. It's important to find people that will help you to achieve your goal. I also have a business advisor. I don't know everything about running a business, and I learn things a day at a time.
Spotlyte: Who's been your biggest cheerleader throughout your career?
PA: Myself. I'm very goal-oriented. If I put my mind to something, I can do anything. Of course, I have days when I'm like, "I don't think I can do it," or, "What am I doing?" But then I realize I'll be okay. I try to think big, and just do one thing at a time.
If you don't try anything and you don't do anything, then nothing's going to happen. The worst thing you can do is fail. And then you can do something else.
Spotlyte: Do you have a mantra?
PA: “What's meant for me will never miss me, and what misses me was never meant for me.” I find comfort when things don't work out the way I want them to. I try not to dwell on things that don't work out. I wasn't meant to be in something that will not complement me. Something's got to fall into place.
Discover more inspiring interviews:
- This Is How Often FaceGym Founder Inge Theron Gets a Facial
- How THE ROUTE Was Born Out of 1 Beauty Industry Vet’s Injectables Appointment
- How This 33-Year-Old On-Air Expert Finally Managed Her “Wild” Skin
SkinMedica® is an Allergan®-owned skincare line.
Allergan® may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this article.