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Frequently asked questions for waxing services and post care
Why should I wax? Waxed hair grows back smooth and fine, unlike the stubble that shaving causes. Each time you wax, the hair follicle weakens and can eventually die, leaving you with less hair. Waxing also lasts significantly longer than other hair removal methods.
Is there anyone who should not get waxed? If you are on medication that increases your skin’s photosensitivity, you may not be a good candidate for waxing. If you are using Retin-A or retinol products on the area we are waxing (face, neck), discontinue the use of these products 10-14 days before your appointment to avoid complications such as skin lifting. If you have received a chemical peel or laser skin treatment you must wait at least two weeks before waxing that area. Clients taking the oral prescription Accutane should wait 12 months before waxing ANY area. Clients undergoing Chemotherapy treatments may not be waxed until treatment is completed and their Oncologist provides a release for such services.
What kind of wax do you use? We use the absolute highest quality wax available, both hard and soft wax. All of our waxes are low temperature, and gentle on the skin. We prep the skin with specialty products before the wax, as well as apply post-wax products after the service.
How long does waxing last?
You have three different hair growth cycles that are each approximately 10 days long so, we recommend consistently waxing every 4 weeks. Please be aware that you may not be 100% smooth the very first time you wax. Because of the different hair growth cycles, your hair may grow back “patchy” after the first few visits. The more consistent you are, the smoother you’ll be as all of your hair will be on the same growth cycle. There are many benefits to maintaining a regular hair removal cycle. Waxing regularly will cause the hair to grow back finer, thinner, and more sparse!
Does waxing hurt? Can I reduce the pain?
We are removing hair from the follicle, so there is some pain involved. However, as your hair grows in thinner and finer after establishing a waxing routine, it does get easier each time! Here are some tips to help minimize the pain. First of all, be consistent. This results in a less painful wax. Get on a consistent schedule and stick to it! Year round is ideal. Try to avoid caffeine before your appointment, as caffeine is a stimulant, and can make your skin more sensitive. Exfoliate before you come in. We also suggest scheduling your first appointment right after your period. Your pain threshold is higher during that time, and you’ll be more comfortable. Stop shaving! We like you to come see us about two to three weeks after your last shave.
What is the ideal hair length for my wax? We advise half an inch (1/2″) of hair. While everyone’s hair grows at a different rate, this generally takes 14 days to a full three weeks after your last shave. We know it’s a pain to grow it out, but it’s very important that there’s enough length for the wax to grab onto! We will decide if your hair is too short, and may ask to reschedule your appointment for a few days/weeks later to let the hair grow out. If the hair is too short to wax, please be aware that you are still responsible for the cost of your scheduled appointment that day! So please, for everyone’s sake make sure you haven’t shaved, waxed, tweezed, Nair’d or any other form of hair removal for 2-3 weeks.
How safe and clean is this service? Do you “double-dip”? Double dipping, as it’s sometimes known, is when a wax stick is used to apply wax on a client and then dipped back into the wax pot. This is highly unsanitary, unprofessional and is a risk for the spread of disease. There is absolutely no double dipping here! Wax sticks are used once per dip (and boy do we use a lot of them!) and other items are fully disposable or able to be disinfected (using hospital grade disinfectants) per state regulations. We pride ourselves on providing a safe, clean and sanitary space where you can feel comfortable being waxed.
What’s the minimum age to be waxed?
Anyone under the age of 16 receiving a service for the first time must have a parent or guardian present at the initial appointment to give written consent. Brazilian waxes will not be performed on any minors under the age of 18 without a parent or guardian present. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, but appreciate your understanding in this matter!
What is a Basic Bikini wax VS an Extended Bikini wax? The Basic Bikini is everything that would be outside of a normal pair of underwear, to the crease of the leg and extending about 1.5-2 inches out from the crease of the leg. The Extended Bikini removes a little bit more from the top line and bikini line at the leg crease to allow for smaller underwear or swimwear, but does not include the full labia or any of the backside. Adding in the full labia and backside makes it a Brazilian wax. If you’re unsure of what kind of Bikini wax you want, but you know you don’t want a full Brazilian, just book an Extended Bikini and we will explain the differences.
What is a Brazilian Wax? Hair will be removed from the front to the back and everything in between, and extending about 1.5-2 inches out from the crease of the leg. Some prefer to remove all hair in the bikini area and others will leave some at the top, this is really just personal preference and we can accommodate leaving a strip, if desired. If you would like us to wax beyond that and include the buttocks, we will happily wax that for an additional charge.
What is the ideal hair length for my wax? For traditional waxing, we advise half an inch (1/2″) of hair. While everyone’s hair grows at a different rate, this generally takes 14 days to a full three weeks after your last shave. We know it’s a pain to grow it out, but it’s very important that there’s enough length for the wax to grab onto! We will decide if your hair is too short, and may ask to reschedule your appointment for a few days/weeks later to let the hair grow out. If the hair is too short to wax, please be aware that you are still responsible for the cost of your scheduled appointment that day! So please, for everyone’s sake make sure you haven’t shaved, waxed, tweezed, Nair’d or any other form of hair removal for 2-3 weeks. If the hair is grown out and it has been over two months since your last hair removal or your last trim, we advise trimming the hair at home before your first appointment while still keeping in mind the specific hair lengths that we ask for. Half an inch! Waxing long, dense hair tends to hurt much more as long hairs tend to get pulled during the application of the wax. We will not trim the hair for you.
Why don’t you trim the hair? The last place I went to trimmed it! Well, there’s two reasons. First it’s a matter of keeping a clean, sanitary space for us and our clients. Unfortunately when trimming it’s impossible to control where these tiny loose hairs go. Friends, there’s no delicate way to put this – no one wants pubic hair all over the treatment table and the floors. Ewww, right? As Estheticians, we’re also not permitted by the CA State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology to trim hair (anywhere) with scissors or clippers, it’s simply not in our Scope of Practice and our studio adheres to all state regulations. As stated above, if it has been over two months since your last trim, we advise trimming at home before your appointment while still keeping in mind the specific hair lengths that we ask for. Sit on the toilet and use scissors to trim in a downward direction while lifting the hair away from the body. It just takes a moment and will make for a more comfortable waxing experience!
What do I need to do to prepare for my waxing appointment? Please shower the day of your appointment. If you’ve been to an extra sweaty gym session since your last shower and you know you’re not the freshest, please shower before your appointment. For several days before your appointment, it’s best to moisturize and exfoliate the area. If your skin is dehydrated, it tends to hold onto the hair which can result in breakage rather than complete removal from the root. If you haven’t been exfoliating, some new hairs may be trapped under a layer of dead skin at the surface and won’t be grabbed by the wax so you’ll want to exfoliate with a scrub or a mitt to encourage them to surface. Also, don’t forget to relax! The more tense you are, the more pain you experience. It has been our experience that taking an over the counter pain reliever 45 minutes before your appointment will help alleviate some pain. Refraining from alcohol and caffeine is always a good idea as well.
What do I wear to my waxing appointment? You will be most comfortable if you wear loose fitting clothing and nothing too tight on the area that you are having waxed. For any Bikini waxes, I suggest wearing a skirt or loose pants, nothing tight (like yoga pants). We need this area to breathe for a bit post-wax.
What do I do when I arrive to my appointment? If this is your first visit and you haven’t filled out a Client Intake Form, we’ll have you fill that out so we can avoid contraindications and provide the best care for you. There are wet wipes and tampons (if needed) in the restroom inside the studio, and we encourage you to freshen up with the wet wipes (front and back) before your waxing service. Once in the skin care room, we will tell you how to change for your wax and step our so you can get undressed. We will need you to undress from the waist down, including your underwear if having a Brazilian wax or an Extended Bikini. I know it’s a little unnerving for you, but trust me; we do these ALL day long. To us, it’s all just skin and hair and we have seen it all. So, please don’t feel embarrassed. We will do our best to put you completely at ease!
How long after waxing can I have sexual intercourse or exercise? Are there any activities I should avoid? Your hair follicles will be open for up to 24 hours after waxing and during this time, you will want to avoid sexual intercourse, swimming pools, hot tubs, and rigorous exercise to limit sweating and skin irritation. Your skin may also be more sensitive. It is imperative to protect any freshly waxed skin from sun exposure (including tanning beds!).
How do I care for my skin after my wax? What can I do about bikini bumps/ingrown hair? Some people get ingrown hairs no matter what type of hair removal they choose. After 24 hours, we advise gentle exfoliation (with emphasis on the gentle). When this is practiced daily, the likelihood of various skin irritations and ingrown hairs may be greatly reduced. It has been our experience that combining mechanical and chemical exfoliation provides the best results. We offer a few different exfoliating products at the studio and encourage you to take some home for daily use.
I am pregnant, can I get waxed? Sure! There is no need to be concerned about waxing while you are pregnant. We wax many of our clients up to the time that they are due to deliver. It is nice to be all cleaned up down there before the baby comes. Some are just a little more sensitive during the wax but not all are.
I’m Plus-Sized, can I get waxed? Absolutely, yes! We welcome clients of all shapes and sizes and are comfortable working on plus sized women. We understand how embarrassing it can be to bare it all to someone, and we are happy to guide you through the service to get your body in the best position to be comfortably waxed. Waxing is for everyone!
Uh Oh! It’s the day of my Brazilian wax appointment and I started my period. What should I do? If you are not shy, we have no problem waxing you, providing proper hygiene has been exercised. When you arrive to your appointment, there are extra tampons and wet wipes in the restroom inside the studio and we encourage you to use them and freshen up before your appointment. Be aware that waxing may be more painful during your period. If you’re only able to use sanitary napkins/pads we will need to reschedule your appointment for sanitary reasons.
I’m nervous! Can my partner/spouse/friend come into the appointment with me? Our policy is to allow only one person in the treatment room at a time, unless it is a minor getting waxed then a parent is allowed in the room. We have found that this allows us to give the absolute best and most professional service available.
What if I’m transgender and identify as a woman, but have male genitalia? Can I get a women’s Brazilian wax here? Although we sympathize that it can be tough to find service providers who perform this service, we are unable to offer waxing services for those with male genitalia. It is certainly a specialized service requiring different training due to the very delicate tissues involved, and at this time Skin by Tara does not have the training necessary in order to provide a safe service. Thank you for your understanding!
Ingrown hairs occur when the hair growing under the skin’s surface isn’t able to find an opening at the surface and becomes trapped under the skin. This can range from mild to severe (a hair you can see just under a layer of skin that you can tweeze out, or very inflamed, difficult to locate hair with hard areas of skin on top of them) and can be prevented or eased with proper home care routines and products. Some individuals are very prone to ingrown hairs no matter the method of hair removal.
We recommend you start gentle exfoliation 24hrs after your waxing appointment and use the recommended post-care products. The two most common types of aftercare are mechanical and chemical exfoliation. Exfoliation means removing the dead skin cells on the skin’s surface. Removing this outer layer allows for an easier path for the hair to exit the skin. While mechanical exfoliation works on the surface of the skin, chemical exfoliation (such as salicylic acid) works on the inside of the follicles or pores to turn over the skin cells and keep the path clear. Using both mechanical and chemical exfoliation will significantly reduce and can even eliminate ingrown hairs.
Histamine reactions – what is it?
A “histamine reaction” is a normal reaction a large percentage of people get within minutes up to 24hrs after being waxed. Waxing removes the hair from the follicle and the hair’s blood supply, and when the body perceives this as a potential injury it responds by sending histamine to these hair follicles to attempt to protect them. Some people will turn bumpy and pink or red with itchiness, or even develop welts. This is NOT an allergic reaction to the wax or products used! It’s simply the body’s defense system triggered by the irritation of waxing. When the hair is removed it stimulates the body’s defense system, sounding an alarm to protect itself. This is most often seen on the face (upper lip, cheeks, brow), chest (for men). Clients who experience this have often seen relief by taking an anti-histimine before their waxing appointments and generally this only lasts a few hours. The more consistent you are with your waxing schedule, the less likely you are to experience this as your body adjusts to regular visits.
Bacterial reactions – follow your post-care instructions!
This is quite different from the above histamine reaction and is most commonly seen on the upper lip, bikini areas, back and chest (for men). A bacterial reaction presents as tiny white pimples, 24 to 72hrs after waxing. This happens because bacteria has made its way into freshly waxed, open follicles and pores. The top causes are dirty hands, sweat, makeup and clothing. The first thing a lot of people do after being waxed is run their hands over the waxed areas to feel how smooth it is. When they do this, it transfers bacteria from their hands into the open pores of the skin and begins the bacterial reaction. The pustules can last up to two weeks if not properly treated. Using an antibacterial/antimicrobial ointment to eliminate bacteria in the affected area (like Polysporin) and post-care products (we can recommend these for you!) with antimicrobial ingredients may help clear it up sooner.
You can prevent this by following your post-care instructions so you don’t get it to begin with!
Avoiding sweating, exercise, saunas, steam rooms, swimming pools, hot tubs, sexual activity, and anything that can introduce bacteria to the waxed area for the first 24 hours after your wax is strongly advised.