Let’s not beat around the bush (pun intended).
Let’s face it. Popping into the salon on your lunch break and paying a stranger to pour hot wax on your unmentionables is never anyone’s idea of a good time.
But for those of us that like to keep it super smooth down there (is there any better feeling than a pair of satin panties gliding over hair-free skin?!), Brazilian waxing is a must. Whether you get every single follicle removed, or prefer to leave a cute little landing strip left behind, the results are always well worth that awkward 20 minute encounter behind the treatment room curtain.
However, much as you may love sporting a hair-free huhah, you could be setting yourself up for unnecessary pain and discomfort, and a place in your waxer’s secret Burn Book if you’re breaking these cardinal rules of Brazilian waxing etiquette, like…
1. Not going to a waxing specialist
Why not: If you don’t go to a professional who’s had proper waxing training, chances are they won’t be using the right products, and your wax will hurt a whole lot more coming off than it has to. Most waxing horror stories, like skin being removed, bruising, or just generally a bad waxing job, are the result of not going to a professional beauty therapist and opting in for coupon deals at salons who use the wrong kind of wax for the wrong area and fail to follow proper salon hygiene practices.
How to avoid it: Ensure you see a therapist who’s had proper training in Brazilian waxing and uses the right products. Some salons resort to cheap strip wax for all of their waxing services, which Lydia Jordane, CEO and Founder of LYCON, absolutely does not recommend.
“Strip wax is fine for large areas, such as the legs, arms, back or chest, but hot wax is an absolute must for the more delicate areas, like the bikini line, Brazilians, under-arms, or the face,” she explains.
“The reason hot wax is best in these areas is because it’s gentle, easy to use and doesn’t remove skin. It can be reapplied multiple times and remove hair which is much shorter, resulting in a better wax.”
2. Being unprepared
Why not: We get it. You’re time-poor. Who isn’t? But rushing into your waxing appointment without doing the necessary prep is likely to make you your beauty therapist’s least fave person, and put you at risk of ingrowns and infection.
How to avoid it: Make sure your hair is long enough to wax before you book your appointment – around a third of an inch, or one centimeter, is ideal. Any less and you have a recipe for bad results.
While you’re at it, avoid showing up fresh from the gym or after a long day running around working up a sweat, as it’s not fun for your therapist when you flick your panties off and unleash that smell into the room, and built up sweat and bacteria can make their way into your open pores when hair follicles are removed, setting you up for infection. If worst comes to worst and you don’t have the time, use the salon-supplied wet wipes.
3. Not cleaning up beforehand
Why not: Just out of courtesy to your waxer, you should be as clean as possible downstairs.
How to avoid it: Ensure you shower prior to your appointment and clean yourself a little more, *ahem* thoroughly than usual (think: outside, inside and don’t forget your butt) when you do.
Either use warm running water, or a safe feminine wash product which won’t affect the pH of your vagina, like LYCON PINKINI Intimate Wash. Either way, absolutely have a shower or clean your bits before the appointment; it’s just good manners!
4. Not knowing what a ‘Brazilian’ is
Why not: There are many different techniques and styles of waxing, so it’s easy to get confused when deciding what’s best for you. But not knowing what you’re signing up for could result in walking out the salon with something completely different to what you actually wanted.
How to avoid it: Know your stuff! A conventional Brazilian typically leaves a small landing strip of hair behind, and a small amount of hair on the labia. Bikini waxes literally just remove hair that pokes outside of your bikini line, and more daring treatments like ‘The Hollywood’ and ‘The Playboy’ remove absolutely everything.
Some waxers even offer shapes created on the pubic bone, like a heart or lightning bolt. So when making your appointment, to save time and avoid potential confusion, ensure you know which type of waxing you really want and are actually asking for.
5. Expecting zero pain
Why not: Removing hair with hot wax is never going to be a completely Zen experience, so being prepared for at least a small amount of discomfort will help realistically align your expectations if you’re a Brazilian first-timer.
How to avoid it: The good news is, in the hands of a pro, and once you’ve had a few treatments and the hair has weakened significantly, the discomfort caused by a Brazilian wax can be pretty minimal.
However it’s important to keep in mind that everyone has a different pain threshold, and the amount you feel will depend on your own unique physical make-up, the wax used, and the therapist’s level of skill and technique.
If you’re freaking out about the ouch factor, ask your therapist to use a pre-waxing oil like Pre-Waxing Oil before each application. It can seriously lower the amount of pain you’ll feel because the wax won’t stick to your skin, just the hairs, like it’s supposed to. Combine this technique with a good quality hot wax and the pain can practically be a thing of the past.
6. Ignoring your beauty therapist’s advice
Why not: Your therapist will probably tell you how they want you to position yourself during the wax, and also what kind of aftercare you need to follow. Not listening to this advice can mean you have a more uncomfortable time during and after your appointment.
How to avoid it: There’s one major reason you should head to a salon and see a beauty therapist and not do your own Brazilian wax – they’re the expert, and you’re not. But, some of us are good at doing things, even doing our own Brazilian, or just a touch up when needed. If you’re a DIY girl, have no fear, it’s so easy with the Wax-cellence home waxing kit. It has everything you need to do a Brazilian in the privacy of your home.
Whichever way you go, you should follow your beauty therapist’s instructions to the letter and absolutely never have a Brazilian wax performed by someone who hasn’t had training. Hot wax, a vulva, and an amateur are not a fun combination. Trust us.
7. Ditching aftercare
Why not: Everyone hates being given homework, but just like preparing for a wax is crucial to how it turns out, what you do after leaving the salon can also have a massive effect on the quality of your wax.
How to avoid it: Definitely don’t just leave your waxing appointment and think the hard part is over. There are certain things you simply shouldn’t do after a wax – like going swimming, having a scalding hot shower, applying fake tan or having sex for the first 24 hours. If your intimate areas are a bit tender after the appointment, try a soothing treatment, like Tea Tree Soothe.
The other major issue that could arise after a Brazilian wax is the potential ingrown hairs or folliculitis infection, if aftercare is ignored. There are products you can – and absolutely should – use post-appointment to avoid this, such as Anti-Bump Foaming Gel (which can be used anywhere you get waxed, not just on your privates) and Ingrown-X-it Solution.
“This product is antibacterial and a very gentle exfoliator with Salicylic Acid, so the hair won’t become imbedded and infected. And, it also contains, Allantoin and Arnica, which have soothing benefits and can help with skin repair.” explains Jordane.
So, go forth and have your privates waxed. It’s not as daunting as you’d think, provided you follow these tips.
Images via tumblr.com, giphy.com, tenor.com, wifflegif.com.
Comment: Have you ever had a Brazilian Wax? How’d you find the experience?
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