Oh, the joys of waxing. Being hair-free for more than a few days is lovely but, as with anything else, it comes with a price. And as nice as it is to have a professional handle such sensitive jobs, it can really strain your purse strings after awhile. If the only price you’re willing to pay is pain (save for the couple bucks to get you started), then we’ve got some tips to get you through your next at-home waxing sesh.
Choose your wax. For smaller jobs like your brows, chin, or upper lip, go with a strip free wax like Parissa’s Hot Wax kit, which costs only $9.
For big jobs, use hard wax with strips, as it will be the most successful at removing most if not all the hair in one pass (giving you the most bang for your buck). The BodyHonee Spa Wax Kit ($27) is all natural and ready in just 30 microwaved seconds.
Or try Nair’s Wax-Ready Strips For Legs & Body, which don’t require warming and provide a no-mess, fuss-free method of waxing.
Once you’ve got your wax, you’ll want to clean and exfoliate your skin using a body scrub and/or loofah. After drying off, apply some baby powder on your parts to absorb any excess moisture for proper adherence of the wax and/or strips.
Check your hair length. Less than a quarter inch? It’s too short to wax, which means all pain no gain, so it’s best to wait a bit or opt for another hair removal method. Longer than an inch? Trim the hair for maximum efficiency and minimum pain.
Check the wax temp. Too cold, and it won’t spread smoothly, and too hot can result in burns and possibly removing more than you bargained for (i.e. your skin). The proper temperature should be comfortable to the touch on the inside of your wrist.
And while we’re talking about pain, accept the fact that it will hurt. The level depends on the person–(I am one of those weirdos who finds Brazilians a breeze but leg waxing pure hell)–but at the end of the day, no matter how tough you are, no matter how pain-free a product claims to be, you’re still ripping hair out of your body and so, it’s inevitably gonna hurt. Anyone who says it doesn’t is lying.
BUT BEAUTY IS PAIN LADIES!!! And what better excuse to get pop open some wine for a little numbing action, amirite?
Mind your direction. When applying, spread the wax and/or strip with the direction of the hair growth. When removing, go against the grain. Do so in one swift motion while holding your skin as taut as you can. Keep the motion as close and parallel to the skin as you can, rather than lifting it straight upwards.
Follow up with steady, even pressure to the area as this will help reduce pain and sensitivity while preventing potential bruising (OMG, yes this is actually possible “ just keep telling yourself, no pain no gain).
Remove any stray hairs with a pair of tweezers rather than waxing the same area over and over. And remember this rule: 1 strip = 1 sip. *cheers*
Clean off any leftover with some soothing olive or baby oil. If you’ve just survived a leg or bikini waxing (bless your heart), finish the wine, put on your sexiest pair of silky PJs that will feel oh so nice against your baby-smooth skin and invite bae over to enjoy you in all your hairless glory.
Also, be sure to exfoliate every time you shower to help prevent ingrown hairs and always follow up with a nice hydrating lotion to keep you super silky day after day.
If ingrowns do happen, resist all temptation to pick them, and instead use a salicylic acid treatment after your shower, like these Bliss Ingrown Eliminating Pads ($50).