ASK THE WAXTHETICIAN™: How do I prepare for a wax and what do I do to take care of it?
Ask the Waxthetician™ is an ongoing series of questions that our customers ask. If our fabulous customers are pondering these questions, maybe you are too.
What is a Waxthetician™? Well, we made that word up because it sounds awesome and we like it :-) To us: a waxthetician™ is an esthetician who specializes in waxing.
Let hair grow
Hair should be a 1/4" long, if hair is fine. Coarse hair should be 1/2" long. Essentially, this means that you should let your hair grow at least 2 weeks prior to waxing.
For face waxing
You should stop using retinol products 2 -4 weeks beforehand, accutane at least one year beforehand, and antibiotics about a week beforehand.
Take the pain reliever of your choice (no aspirin - it makes you prone to bleeding) 30-45 minutes before service; if you feel it may be too painful. While in the midst of your service if you still experience pain, ask your waxthetician to wax in smaller sections.
Don't plan anything physical right afterwards. Allow 24 hours for sex or fitness activities that will cause you to excessively sweat in the waxed area.
Don't wear tight clothing or panties for at least 24 - 48 hours. This prevents chafing, ingrown hairs, and other irritations.
Avoid putting hands on freshly waxed skin; this can cause irritation
Don’t take excessively hot showers
Begin to exfoliate 48 hrs after service
Sexual activity should be avoided for at least 24-48 hrs
Avoid pool or beach for 24 hrs
Limit sun exposure for 24 - 48 hrs
Moisturize skin daily after treatment with ingredients such as lavender, tea tree, and witch hazel creams because follicles are open and prone to infection.
Two questions that I've heard quite a bit since I’ve started my job as an esthetician are how do I prepare for a wax and how do I take care of my skin afterwards. Both of these questions are very important. Some people are surprised to find out that there are things you should do to prepare for a wax and don't understand why they should have to prepare their skin to have hair removed from it. Preparing your skin for waxing, especially in larger areas, is extremely important in order to keep it from having problems during, or after your waxing service. You should always cleanse, exfoliate, and moisturize the day before you get waxed.
Keeping the area clean is also important because you don't want any dirt, oils, or bacteria getting into your open pores. After the hair is pulled out of the pore it is like having an open sore and can easily get infected and irritated if not clean and properly cared for.
The reason for exfoliating is to make sure that you don't have the layer of dead skin in the way of completely removing the hair. This important step prevents your esthetician from having to go over the area more than once, which can lead to irritation and a longer recovery time.
Moisturizing helps to make your skin more resilient and healthy. It will help to ensure that the area being waxed tolerates the service better and recovers more quickly afterwards. Dry and/or damaged skin can possibly tear and peel, which can be very uncomfortable and can take much longer to heal and get back to its pre-waxed state.
Remember these three steps before every wax, and you should have a good experience after every service.
Now to talk about how to care for your skin after your service. After your hair is removed, your skin has been exfoliated with the waxing, and again, your pores are open and susceptible to infection if not taken care of properly. For 24 hours after waxing, you shouldn't do any activities that will make you sweat excessively, such as exercising. After 48 hours you should start exfoliating and moisturizing again regularly. This will ensure that the dead layer of skin won't build up and prevent the new hair from coming through. When the new hair can't get through the layer of dead skin it can cause ingrown hairs and bumps, which can be itchy and uncomfortable to deal with. As long as you keep up with your exfoliation and moisturizing your skin shouldn't have any problems at all after waxing, and should always be ready for any future waxes. Even people who don't wax should keep up with exfoliating and moisturizing their skin simply because it promotes healthy skin, and everyone should want that!!