Friday, May 18, 2012

The Skinny on DIY Waxing

Before I stopped drinking, I'd have a glass or two of wine, gather up my courage and heat up the hard wax needed for the deed. It was beach season again and a clean shaven maven was just not enough. The tell all sun of the beach was merciless shining light on even the lightest bikini line stubble. So, I'd take a breath, apply, allow to cool and ... rip! And after multiple repeats, reheats and *bleeps*, it was over. Or was it? Sometimes I noticed that even after multiple strips and rips, I was never quite..ahem..bare. In addition to waxing, I'd have to shave or *cringe* tweeze the rest. However, I learned that besides the obvious pain, I became more prone to ingrown hairs when I waxed myself. It turns out that there's a technique to waxing when you DIY:

1. Prep work: When warming wax, use extreme precaution. Make sure the wax is warm and NOT hot. The consistency of the wax is a great indicator of its temperature. When the wax is too thin, that means it's very hot and you need to cool it 1-2 minutes before applying it to the skin. Warm wax will have a thicker (not gooey) consistency.  Gooey wax means that it is too cool and needs to be reheated.

Prepare linen strips if required, have a wooden spatula, have oil, powder and lotion as well as a towel and/or disposable napkins. (Powder to apply to skin prior to waxing to absorb any moisture, oil to remove excess wax once you're done and lotion (or cooling gel) to soothe area post waxing).

2.  Apply powder to skin before the wax to avoid skin irritation.

3.  Apply the wax from inside out pulling the hair in the reverse direction of hair growth.

4.  Make sure you pull the skin tight - no bending. This will cause less pain and achieve a cleaner, smoother result.

5.  Remove excess wax with mineral or baby oil. To avoid irritation, use a medicated ingrown hair preventative cream immediately after waxing and for the next couple of days. This step is crucial to avoiding ingrown hairs. I would recommend Bikini Zone's Medicated Gel. There are pricier brands out there but this brand works just as well.

6. Do not take a hot shower directly after waxing and no sun or tanning beds for 24-48 hours.
If all of this information scares you, visit a good, clean well reviewed salon. ;-)


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