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Waxing & Hair Removal

This page is dedicated to giving you lots of information about the various forms of hair removal including waxing, depilatories and shaving. 

Let's start with waxing!

All About Waxing!

Clean hair free skin is in! Waxing is one of the oldest forms of hair removal and is a popular service at salons and spas. Unwanted hair is removed with warm wax leaving the skin silky smooth. 

The entire hair is pulled from the root and therefore, it has to regrow. A hair may take up to 6 weeks to regrow. Keep in mind, we all have different hair growth cycles. For some, hair grows very quickly and for others, hair grows slowly. In general, waxed legs stay hair free for 2 1/2 to 3 weeks and are ready to be waxed again in 4 to 6 weeks.

Before a waxing, hair must grow to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch to be embed in the wax and be pulled out. For most people, this is 10 to 14 days on areas that have been shaved. Long hair should be trimmed to 1/4 to 1/2 inch before waxing. Have a patch test done at the salon if you have never been waxed to see how your skin will react. Be sure to go to an experienced, well trained waxing technician or esthetician.

Both men and women benefit from waxing and almost any part of the body can be waxed. 

Hair should not be waxed from inside the nose, or from inside the ears, or from warts or moles (can be done with doctor's permission). I don't know how that nose hair waxing trend was allowed to be started!

It is fine for pregnant women to be waxed, although, their skin may be extra sensitive. 

Waxing is not as scary as you think.

Click here. Watch my bikini waxing video on facebook to see how easy it is.

Popular Areas to Wax

Legs, Bikini Area, Arms, Underarms, Back, Stomach, Neck,
Eyebrows, Upper Lip, Chin 
thick brows
Waxing is a quick service. An eyebrow waxing takes about 10 minutes, an upper lip wax takes 5 minutes, half of both legs takes about 20-30 minutes, all of both legs takes about 45-60 minutes, bikini line about 15 minutes, a high sides bikini 20-30 minutes, a Brazilian bikini 30-45 minutes, underarms 15-20 minutes. 

The skin may be pink after waxing but will fade within 24 hours. There may be red dots left where the hairs were that fade in a day or two. 

Remember this: 
The more you wax, the less reaction you will have. 
The more you wax, the less it will hurt. 
The more you wax, the weaker the hair gets! 

Stay on a regular waxing schedule, without shaving in between, to receive the most benefit from waxing.

Waxing Pros

The skin stays smoother longer than other temporary forms of hair removal. Shaving only lasts a day or two. Depilatories last a few days. Waxing lasts weeks.

There is no rough stubble, razor burn or cuts.

There is no smell or chemical irritation that happens with depilatories.

The skin feels smooth even as the hair regrows.

Dead skin cell build up is removed during waxing leaving the skin looking younger.

Hair becomes weakened by continuous waxing. Over time, the hair becomes thinner and growth is discouraged.

Waxing Cons 

Hair must grow to 1/4 - 1/8 of an inch to be waxed.

Sun exposure must be avoided at least 24 hours before and after waxing.

There may be some skin sensitivity after waxing.

Some People Shouldn't Wax

Those with circulatory problems such as phlebitis, diabetes or varicose veins, should not be waxed unless medical permission was received first.

Consult with your waxing technician about skin care products you are using on your skin and medications you are taking. You will need to take a break from some cosmetic medications before waxing. 

Those using Accutane, Tetracycline, Retin A, Glycolic Acid, Steroids, immune supressive therapies or other skin sensitizing medications may experience skin abrasions. These medications thin the skin and can cause an excessive amount of skin removal. Waxing is not recommended.

People on chemotherapy should not be waxed unless a doctor okays it.

Anyone with sunburn, excema, dermatitis, warts, a recent scar or skin infections on the area to be waxed cannot be waxed.

Before and After Waxing

Avoid the sun and tanning beds at least 24 hours before and after waxing. The skin will be too sensitive and freshly waxed skin can react to UV rays and darken.

Avoid using Renova, Alpha Hydrox, Beta Hydrox and acne treatment products 5 days before facial waxing to reduce irritation and excess skin removal.

Avoid facial waxing 7 days after receiving a glycolic or other types of cosmetic facial peels. If you had a medical facial peel you will need to wait longer, Consult your doctor.

Avoid hot water, saunas and steam rooms for 24 hours before and after waxing.

Avoid anti-perspirant or deodorant for 8-24 hours after an underarm waxing. Apply powder.

Plan your waxing around your monthly cycle, wax 3-4 days before or 1-2 days after. Hormone changes and water retention increase skin sensitivity.

People who get very red or get hives after waxing could be experiencing an acid reaction. Try taking an antacid 1 hour prior to waxing. A salt water compress or baking soda and water compress after waxing will also alleviate an acid reaction. 

Read more about hives from waxing

Ice may be gently rubbed over overly sensitive skin for 5 minutes after waxing. 

Apply a soothing cream to the skin after waxing.

Use a body scrub in the shower 3 times a week to help prevent ingrown hairs. 

Application of an exfoliating lotion, such as Tend Skin or GiGi No Bump will also discourage ingrown hairs.

Begin exfoliation 48 hours after waxing. 

Use moisturizer daily to keep the surface of the skin soft.

Wear something comfy after waxing legs and bikini. Avoid wearing tight clothes, such as tight jeans that may rub and irritate sensitive skin. 

You can apply powder to the freshly waxed area to prevent friction.

After waxing home tip:

Do your legs still feel sticky when you get home after a leg wax? Massage away those sticky spots with a little olive oil. Not only does the oil get rid of the sticky remnants of wax, it soothes the skin and reduces inflammation.

The Bikini Wax

bikini bottom

The Bikini Line Wax
Hair is removed from the outside of the pantyline and just inside the pantyline.

The Full Bikini Wax
Hair is removed from the outside of the pantyline and far inside the pantyline.

The Brazilian Bikini Wax 
Most or all of the hair is removed.

Pre Bikini Waxing Tip:
When getting a bikini wax, long hairs tend to hurt more than hairs that are about 1/4 inch long. Give yourself a trim before you go for your bikini wax. No shorter than 1/4 inch or the wax won't pull those course hairs.

Arm Hair
Q. I hate the hair on my arms! I tried shaving it but the skin got irritated and my arms felt all stubbly. What should I do?

A. Some people bleach the hair on their arms if it is dark to make it less noticeable but then, you still have the hair.

The next easiest method is to trim the hair with clippers. Clip in the direction the hair grows to make it shorter (about 1/4 inch) and less noticeable. Too short will make your arms feel stubbly. But again, you still have the hair there.

There are depilatories such as Nair. They break the hair off just under the skin and last a few days. The problem is, many people are sensitive to the chemicals. 

Waxing works well to remove arm hair. It will last about 3 weeks, will regrow and can be waxed again in 4-5 weeks when the hair is about 1/8-1/4 inch long. The hair will become finer and more sparse with continuous waxing.

You could try laser. It requires several treatments, works best on dark hair and is a bit expensive. Look for a Med Spa that is run by a dermatologist that specializes in laser hair removal. 

I think waxing is the best option for a large area that needs hair removal. Look for a full service salon or spa that does a lot of body waxing. It should take about 30 minutes to wax the lower part of your arms.  Add on another 15 minutes to do more above the elbow. The process will get quicker and easier the more you wax. 

 Brow Waxing and Makeup Tip
Plan your brow waxing carefully. Your makeup may not go on well if you have your brows waxed a day before or the day of your event. Dead skin cells are exfoliated when the wax is pulled off leaving the skin super smooth. Foundation and eye shadow will not adhere well to that smooth skin.

Waxing Questions:
Skin Abrasions
Q. Sometimes when I have my eyebrows waxed, I get a sore strip of skin that feels like a burn. Was the wax too hot? 

A. It is unlikely that the wax was too hot because the wax pot is controlled by thermostat and shouldn't get too hot. More likely was is happening is too many skin cells are being lifted due to a topical treatment you are using or from a medication you are taking. Consult with your waxing technician about skin care products you are using on your skin and any medication that you are taking before you have waxing done. 

Those using Accutane, Tetracycline, Retin A, Glycolic acid, steroids, immune suppressive therapies or other skin sensitizing medications may experience skin abrasions. These medications thin the skin and can cause an excessive amount of skin removal. Waxing should not be done while you are taking or applying any of those medications. 

I have had clients with sensitive skin get a slight abrasion because they use eye cream with retinol! Stop using your anti-aging skin care products 3 days before your waxing. Be sure to mention that you have been using them to your waxing tech. You may want to have your brows professionally tweezed or threaded instead of waxing to avoid skiabrasions all together.

You can also have your waxing technician use hard wax instead of soft wax if your sensitive skin is prone to skin abrasions. Hard wax does not adhere to the skin as much as soft wax so it is less likely to cause an abrasion.

If you have gotten a skin abrasion, apply an antibiotic ointment several times a day and use cold compresses. It will get a scab that's not so pretty. It will heal quickly but that area of skin remain sensitive for a while. 

Once the scab is gone, apply aloe, Vitamin E and lavender products to help the sensitive skin continue to heal. My favorite remedy to heal sensitive skin is YonKa Lotion followed by aloe vera gel or Vitamin E oil. Yonka Lotion is a botanical skin toner containing lavender, geranium, cypress, rosemary and thyme. It's an amazing product!  Avoid waxing that area for a couple months.

Lip Hair 
Q. Will waxing my upper lip make the hair come back thicker and darker? 

A. No. The first time your upper lip is waxed, the hair will grow back the same as it was. It may seem darker because the skin was smooth and hair free. Keep on waxing! Hairs become damaged from repeatedly being pulled out. Hair growth becomes lighter and some hairs won't come back at all! This is true for any area that is waxed. Most people have their upper lip waxed every 2-4 weeks depending on how fast their hair grows.

Q. My skin gets super red when I get my lip waxed. Is there any thing I can do to make it less red?  I don't want to stop waxing it! The hair is worse than the redness!

A. The skin can have an acid reaction when it is waxed.  Avoid caffeine the day of your waxing. Try taking an antacid, such as Tums, to neutralize acid in your body a half hour before you get waxed. You can try a salt water compress, which is alkaline, to help neutralize acid after you have been waxed. Always stop using Renova, Retin A and alpha hydroxy products 3 days before you have a waxing.

There are still hair left after waxing
Q. I just had my legs waxed but they don't feel smooth. They look hair free, but when I rub my legs in an upward motion, I feel stubbly hair. What happened?

A. Unfortunately, it can happen. You let the hair grow 2 weeks after shaving like you were supposed to and you still didn't get a good wax. It is actually a common problem. It's really hard to get a completely hair free waxing due to the way hair grows. 

Here are a few things could have happened.

Some hairs too short
Each hair has it's own growth cycle. Some hairs are growing, some are resting, some are shedding. Some hairs are long and ready to be waxed while others are just starting to come through the skin. Waxing only will pull the hairs that are long enough to be become imbedded in the wax and be pulled out. The shorties are left behind.

Hairs were trapped
There were hairs trapped under a layer of dead skin that could not become embedded in the wax and be pulled out. The skin may look smooth but you can feel the bumpiness of the hair under the skin.

Hairs broke
Sometimes there is hair breakage during waxing. It can be because the hairs were not pulled in the proper direction, but more likely, hairs were weak are simply broke during the waxing process.

Stay on Schedule
I find that my clients who only wax, without any shaving in between, rarely have the problem of short hairs remaining. I think it is because the hairs have become finer through constant waxing and pull out easier even if they are a little too short. Stay on a consistent leg waxing schedule every 4-5 weeks with no shaving in between. You should start getting smoother waxing results.

Better Skin Care
Try stepping up your skin care to get better waxing results. 

Use a body scrub regularly in the shower to remove the dead skin cell build up that can trap hairs under the skin. Skip the scrubbing the day of and the day after waxing to avoid skin sensitivity. 

Use moisturizer daily to keep skin and hair soft and conditioned.

Get your Vitamins
As for breakage, it's hard to remedy if the hairs are brittle. Taking a hair, skin and nail vitamin may help the condition of the hair. 

Go to an Experienced Waxer
Waxing technicians are trained to pull hairs properly. It's possible a new waxer may make a mistake. Try going to veteran waxing technician if you feel your waxing was not good due to technical issues.

In the mean time, get your legs feeling smoother right after waxing by breaking out the tweezers. Pull the shorties out. Your waxer may tweeze for you if there aren't too many short hairs.

Hope this helps!

How to Get The Perfect Shave

Sexy legs must be hair free!  For a perfect shave you need warm water in a nice shower or bath, a shaving cream (or hair conditioner works well for sensitive skin!) and a clean sharp razor. A dull, dirty razor can promote folliculitis (infection in the hair follicles) and skin irritation. 

Step 1: Soften
Start by letting the skin get warm and softened with warm water. Try using a warm wet washcloth as a compress for a few minutes in the shower for extra softening. 

Step 2: Cream up
Then, apply shaving cream to one leg. Allow the shaving cream to sit on your leg a couple minutes.

Step 3: Shave
Shave in the opposite direction of hair growth, usually upwards, if your skin is tough and doesn't irritate easily. If your skin is sensitive, shave in the direction of hair growth, usually downward. The skin will not feel as smooth shaving downwards as shaving upward, but the skin will be less irritated. Use long smooth strokes with the razor using very little pressure. Don't rush!  Bend your knees to shave the kneecap. Flex the foot when shaving the back of the ankle. Point your toe to shave the ankle at the front of the leg.

Step 4: Double Check
Feel for any missed hairs.

Step 5: Rinse & Repeat
Rinse. Do the same procedure for the other leg.

Step 6: Moisturize

Apply a moisturizer to condition and soothe the skin.

Shaving Questions:
Ingrown hairs

Q. I have been slacking off in the shaving of my legs because it's winter. I thought it would be good for my skin, but the skin is really dry and is bumpy. What's going on?

A. Start shaving regularly again! The bumps could be ingrown hairs. Shaving removes dead skin cells (exfoliation) along with the hair. Removing the dead cells helps prevent ingrown hair and makes the skin look less dry. You can also try waxing. It also removes dead skin, too. 

Q. I have these little pimple like bumps on my legs. What could they be?

A. It could be folliculitis. We all have staphylococcus and other bacteria normally living on our skin causing no trouble at all. But, sometimes the hair follicles become infected causing small pimples that can hurt or itch. An infection can occur from friction from clothing, an injury to the skin or from shaving, especially with a dirty razor. Most folliculitis outbreaks clear on their own in a few days. See your doctor if the infection does not clear or gets worse.

Folliculitis Remedies 
1. Wash with an anti-bacterial soap.
2. Apply a warm compress of 1/2 white vinegar and 1/2 water twice a day.
3. Apply an antibiotic ointment.
4. Always use a new clean towel and wash cloth.
5. Use a clean razor blade when shaving.
6. Avoid shaving irritated skin.
7. Try waxing!

Shaving and Pedicure Tip
Avoid shaving your legs right before a pedicure. Bacteria from those whirlpool foot baths can enter a small nick and cause infection.

Lip hair removal options
Q. I have some hair on my upper lip and it is so noticeable in the sun on the beach! I'm afraid to wax it! What can I do?

A. Waxing really is the best choice!  The hairs are removed from the root and have to grow back so you are clean and shadow free for about two to two and a half weeks. It does hurt a bit though. Not so much. It's like pulling off a bandaid. Then, you may be a little red for a few hours. Not so bad. 

If you are not ready to try waxing, you have some other options. You can start by bleaching the hair or using a depilatory at home.  Try Jolen Cream Bleach (not tested on animals). It will lighten the hair so it is less noticeable. About $5.50 at CVS and amazon.

A depilatory will break the hair off just below the skin line leaving the skin smooth for a few days. Try Sergi Cream Depilatory Extra Gentle for the face (also not tested on animals). Find in drug stores and on amazon for about $4.50. 

Still, I recommend waxing. It's the best choice! Have it done quick and easy at your salon. It only takes about 5 minutes!

The nono hair remover

Q. Have you heard anything about the nono hair remover. I was wondering if it is an option for the hairs on my neck that just won't disappear!

A. I have not tried the nono hair remover and I don't know anyone who has used one, so I did a bit of research on it. This hair remover uses Thermicon Technology. Heat is transmitted from the device to the hair, sending it down the follicle into the root, thereby disrupting cell communication responsible for hair growth. The company, Radiancy, claims this process will reduce hair growth in 4-6 weeks. 

I checked for reviews. The product rating  average was 5.2.  Most of the reviews said the device did not work and was a big waste of money. Only a few people liked it.  

Next, I check the reviews on amazon. These reviews also were not good.  The people said it didn't work and some people said they were burned by the device! Only a few people said they saw some hair reduction.  Over all, it doesn't sound like the product works.  

I recommend electrolysis. It is a great option for getting rid of a few random hairs and it is the only permanent form of hair removal.

I hope this page helps you be beautifully hair free. Need more help being hair free?

See me at Styling Point in Media, Pa for your perfect waxing, 610 566-1070.

        Have a Beautiful Day! 
Licensed Cosmetologist, Esthetician, Makeup Artist

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