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Waxing 101-The Do’s & Don’ts of Hair Removal.

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Waxing 101

There is more then one way to skin a cat, they say…..  I don’t know who says that but in terms of getting rid of unwanted hair, the same idea pertains.  That was an awkward way to get my point across but there you go.  Many years ago, I used to wax people.  You name it, I’ve waxed it.  Deep shutter as my eyes roll back into my head.  I hope I don’t have to wax people for money ever again, but during my time as a humble hair remover, I did learn a lot about the best ways to get smooth, hair free skin.  Since waxing isn’t really a natural beauty topic, I have just never really felt like delving into it (plus the traumatic memories) but I think you might find it helpful so let’s go for it.

I’ve never been much of a razor person.  I’ve always preferred waxing my legs, bikini area and arms.  The hair grows back softer and less visible and I have a serious mental block when it comes to spending $20+ on replacement razors!  This might sound controversial but I think DIY waxing is totally doable and much easier then you think.  Not to mention the money and time saved.  Plus, when sticking to your own personal pot of wax, you know it’s not full of other people’s bacteria.  Plus, I find that being in control of my own pain is much better then someone else being in control of it.

Supplies You’ll Need to Wax From Home:

You might not know that there are 2 types of waxes.  Hard and Soft.  Hard wax looks the same as soft but it is intended to be applied in layers and then removed without a strip once it has time to harden.  It is ideal for areas that are smaller and more sensitive.  You can go over the same area more then once and I find it grabs the hair very effectively.  Hard wax is meant to be applied against the hair growth.  For example, if your hair grows down, apply 2-3 layers upward.  Then rip downwards.  Soft wax is left for the legs and arms.  It requires a strip.  It should be thinly applied.  It should be applied towards the direction of the hair.  For example, apply downward on the legs, and rip the strip upward, against the hair growth.

Waxing Do's & Don'ts

Below I have brainstormed all that I have learned from waxing.  Please feel free to add to my list in the comments or ask me questions.  Hopefully I will remember everything you need to know!

  • Waxing is painful at first but as long as you don’t shave in-between waxes, the pain lessens greatly after 2-3 waxes.
  • Everyone’s hair grows at different rates and thickness.  Some waxes last 1-2 weeks, others last 6+ weeks.  It’s a very individual thing and tends to get better if you’ll stick to it.
  • When working with sensitive areas like the underarms and bikini line, (especially when using soft wax), pull the skin as tight as you can get it.  The tighter the skin, the less pulling and pain.
  • The first time you wax your legs, don’t expect to get smooth legs.  The hair sometimes grows in different stages and sometimes it can take months to remove all the hair at the same time.  **I shaved all last summer then decided to wax around October.  Just last month (March), I finally got my legs 100% smooth after a wax.**
  • Sensitive areas like the underarm and bikini area should only be waxed using HARD WAX.  Hard wax does not require a strip.  It does not pull on the skin like soft wax therefore making it less painful and gentler on the skin.  You can use soft wax but expect more pain.
  • Don’t let hard wax harden for long because once it’s too hard it will come off in pieces.
  • NEVER use soft wax over the same area 2x.  Bruising is very likely to occur.
  • If you are pregnant and thinking of waxing your bikini area for the first time, I would reconsider.  Pregnancy makes waxing much more painful.  You are very likely to bruise as well.  Unless you are damn determined to have a smooth exit door, I suggest skipping it.
  • When going to a spa to get waxed, always make sure your waxer is not double dipping.  A new stick should be used each time.  If not, put your pants back on and run.
  • Use oil to take off wax left behind.  Soap and water won’t cut it.  I like to use coconut oil with lavender essential oil.  It’s healing and will calm down inflammation.
  • You can burn your skin with wax that is too hot.  Find a wax pot with a dial that lets you control the heat and leave it on medium.  Like THIS one.  Microwavable wax is very risky.
  • I don’t recommend waxing the lip and side burns.  I find this skin does not react well and the pulling action worries me.  I prefer using THESE razors.  HERE is a full post on how to.
  • I stopped waxing my brows years ago.  Again with the puling action but also, I found it is too easy to get them too thin.  I now pluck and tint and that’s it.
  • The chin tends to take to waxing better then the side burns and lip unless hair is growing too far down on the neck.  If you can, use a facial tinkle razor on the neck.
  • Brazilians can be A LOT.  If this is what you are going for, don’t get in a hurry.  Use hard wax and work in very small increments.  It is doable on the thickest of jungles but patience is key.
  • After a bikini wax, go commando or wear loose underwear to avoid ingrown hairs and more irritation.
  • Ingrown hairs that have become infected should be treated like a zit.  First, apply a hot towel to bring the infection and hopefully hair to the surface.  Keep a hot wash cloth on the area until the infections (puss) comes to the surface.  If there is a white head, gently squeeze to remove the puss and hair.  Apply tea tree essential oil after it has drained to kill infection.
  • I’m going to say this again-DO NOT SHAVE IN BETWEEN WAXES!!!!!  You’re asking for trouble and that trouble’s name is PAIN!
  • An ice roller can be a great tool to numb the skin!
  • Use witch hazel to help close the pores after a wax, especially on the face.

Waxing 101

Wow, I could go on and on.  I was an aesthetician for 10 years and unfortunately I was not financially stable enough to nix the waxing.  You see a lot after 10 years of it.  I’ve had exhibitionists that felt like taking every stitch of clothing off for a bikini wax, I’ve had several couples wanting Brazilians, I’ve had men wanting bikini waxes and yes, I did one and there wasn’t enough water in the city to wash that weird feeling away-insert emoji with gritted teeth and then the one with waterfall tears and if there was one with a sad face rocking back and forth in the corner, that one needs in on this too.  Yeah, I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it all.  But hey, I was young and naive and totally desensitized.

Leave me comments below if you have questions or want to share any of your funny waxing stories!  I can’t believe I admitted to a man bikini wax-my mom’s going to kill me!

xx, Jenni

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Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips worked as a licensed aesthetician for over 8 years before creating the green beauty blog, Jenni Raincloud and her natural skin care line, J. Raincloud Organics. Jennifer has been blogging full time for 9 years and loves to gain and share knowledge on how to achieve beautiful skin the natural way.

15 thoughts on “Waxing 101-The Do’s & Don’ts of Hair Removal.”

  1. Love this post! LOL on the sad face rocking back and forth in the corner emoji!! Lots of great tips! I tried to use hard wax on my legs…….FAIL!!! LOL It cools to quickly. I guess I need to get some soft wax. I hate shaving!

  2. OMG Jenni….dying over your experiences! Like you, I over waxed my eyebrows and now pluck…hardly even have to do that. I would totally love to wax my legs, and have tried many times. It was just such a long process to get them smooth that I always ended up shaving.

  3. Hey Jenny,

    Liked this Post. Really interesting stuff you have mentioned here. I would defininately like use soft was on my legs. Thanks for informative guide on Hair Removal.

  4. Very helpful. I’ve never waxed. But! I’m going in! Hahaha! I wish I could’ve waxed my abusive Mother’s head! I can’t believe I said that!!! But I loved the stories! When it came to the mans bikini wax, I wanted to poke out my mind’s eye! 😮

  5. Hi, I like shaving, but sometimes give a thought to start waxing some zones. Why is it much more uncomfortable and painful if one has shaved before :)? Could be the length?

      1. Ouch!, lol ok so, it doesn’t actually make it much thicker in itself, as that’s a myth, but just a little bit and slightly rougher isn’t it? I might make it fully grow back when I want to wax then and it won’t be that much more painful than if I didn’t shave?
        Thanks again for you site and sharing those facts and tips on skin care and hair removal, btw.

  6. My wife has been thinking about getting her legs waxed, so that she can look a lot better. She would really like to get some help from a professional to make sure that it works properly. Thanks for explaining how to wax that is left behind can be taken off with oil which can calm down inflammation.

  7. HI JENNI!

    I am a first time at home waxed! I bought a melting pot with hard wax beads and plan to wax sometime next week as my hair grows out.

    Do you have any advice on what should be applied after waxing? What items specifically can be used? In your post you mentioned witch hazel, but are there other items as well? Like aloe Vera gel, lotion, tea tree oil, etc?

    1. Hi Constance! What are you planning to wax? Legs? I typically use a carrier oil (like sweet almond oil, macadamia nut oil) that has some essential oils (lavender and tea tree) in it. Oil removes any leftover residue from the wax and since you’ve just waxed, you pores are more open, dead skin is gone and so your skin gets a good dose of moisture. However, you can also use aloe or just a cream. If you’re worried about irritation or ingrown hairs I have an aftershave spray you might like as well!
      Good luck!!

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