International Day of Waxing

9 Most Common Waxing Mistakes

Waxing from home can be intimidating if you’re new to it! However, the benefits are immense: savings on salon bills, blissful convenience, and having smooth skin within minutes. Join in on International Day of Waxing to learn a few expert waxing tips.

With just a little bit of practice and technique, you will be an at-home waxing expert in no time. To help you on your waxing journey, here are some of the most common waxing mistakes (and solutions) that you can avoid making when you wax your unwanted hair.

1. Incorrectly Prepping Your Skin 

To wash or to not wash, it all depends on the type of wax you’re using!

Do wash your skin if you are using a sugar-based wax. Sugar wax is soluble in water, and it doesn’t like any residual oils on the skin. Clean and dry skin to help the wax grab onto the hair for the best hair removal results.

Don’t wash your skin if you are using a resin-based ‘salon’ style wax. Resin-based waxes are oil soluble, therefore, you need that layer of natural skin oils to reduce discomfort. The wax will still effectively grab and remove hair yet stick less to your skin. Don’t panic if you have washed your skin, but it is highly advised to use some talc or soft powder to give that layer of protection between skin and wax.

2. Applying the Wax Too Thick or Thin

It’s important that liquid wax be removed with epilation strips, and be applied in a super thin layer of wax. This will ensure the best possible results. This may sound counterintuitive, however, a thin layer of liquid wax will remove hair more effectively.

To apply the perfect layer, you’ll need the correct temperature to heat your wax and therefore correct viscosity. The ideal wax consistency is like liquid honey. Waxes all require some heating to be used. A wax warmer is the best way to warm wax efficiently. If the wax is too cold, the wax will be thick and hard to spread. If the wax is too hot, it will be too runny and may potentially burn you.  

3. Waxing When Your Hair is too Short

Waxing too short of hair is a very common mistake. To achieve amazing hair removal results on the International Day of Waxing, you’ll want to grow out your hair. We strictly advise a ‘two-week rule.  You do have to wait for at least two weeks before waxing, especially if you previously shaved that area. The hair length should be around ¼ inch or 1 cm. This will give the wax enough hair to grab onto for the best results.

If you combine a too-short hair length, with using the wrong wax type (previously shaved legs will need Wax Strips or Warm Wax), then you are headed for a hair removal disappointment.

While it’s tempting to wax right away when you see new hair growth, it’s always best to wait at least two weeks before you wax again. This will ensure that the hair is long enough for effective hair removal and super smooth results.

4. Waxing the Most Difficult Areas First

We hope everyone is inspired to wax on International Day of Waxing. However, if you have never waxed before, you may wish to get comfortable with the process before starting with a Brazilian or your underarms. An easier area to start waxing is your arms or legs as they are more easily accessible. As you learn good waxing techniques and gain confidence, you may choose to aim for more delicate areas such as your bikini area, underarms, and face. Wax strips are the best choice for beginners!  

5. Choosing the Wrong Type of Wax 

Waxing products are not one-size-fits-all. Understanding what each type of wax is intended for will help you achieve the best hair removal results, as well as reduce discomfort.

Hot Wax

Hot Wax is best for the face, upper lip, underarms, bikini, and Brazilian. It’s also an option for eyebrows if you’re skilled with the application. Hot Wax (or Hard wax) is a ‘salon’ style wax for waxing smaller sensitive areas and areas with short or very coarse hair. It firms as it cools and shrink-wraps around hair follicles for effective hair removal. Hot Wax is not always best for waxing large areas such as your legs or arms. It’s time-consuming, and there are better options for waxing larger areas.

Warm Wax

Warm Wax is for arms, legs, body, and chest. It is also a ‘salon’ style wax and is great for all hair types, even coarse hair. Choose Warm Wax (over Hot Wax) if you are waxing a larger area. This wax type covers larger areas and the waxing process will be faster. In addition, Warm Wax will be the very best option for waxing leg hair that has been previously shaved. Once you have perfected the technique with Warm Wax, you’ll be surprised just how speedily you can zip away hair.

Wax Strips

Wax Strips come in different sizes and can be used on legs, arms, bikinis, and smaller ones for the face and brows. The wax is also a ‘salon’ style wax. Choose Wax Strips for convenience and efficiency. Wax Strips are perfect for those new to waxing. There’s no liquid wax to deal with and no heating. The wax is pre-lined on a cellulose (see-through) strip. Simply press on and zip off.

Sugar Wax

Sugar Wax can be used anywhere. It is washable and the gentlest of all wax types, making it perfect for sensitive skin. However, it’s not best on short hair. You will get the best results with fine to medium hair types. If you have short, coarse, or very dark hair, see your options above for a ‘salon’ style wax.

5. Using the Wrong Method to Clean Up After Waxing

Create a fabulous waxing experience on IDoWax by following some key post-waxing steps. Similar to skin prep, what wax is made of dictates the best way to clean it.

Sugar wax: wash away with water. For sugar waxes, you can remove any excess or spilled wax very easily using soap and water.

Resin-based wax: remove with oil. For resin-based ‘salon’ style wax, you must use oil to remove any excess or spilled wax. These waxes are not water-soluble. For best results, use a soothing post-hair removal oil to treat sensitive skin. Of course, you can also use other gentle oils such as baby oil or mineral oil to clean these waxes.

6. Using the Wrong Waxing Techniques

Minimize discomfort by following these correct wax removal techniques.

Zip-off quickly. Have you ever tried to pull off a wax strip very slowly? It is not very effective, it hurts more, and you will leave more wax on your skin. Be sure to always zip off the wax quickly for the best performance. The quicker you remove the wax, the better the results.

Hold your skin taut. Avoid tugging your skin outwards or upwards when removing the wax. For best hair removal results, hold the skin firm and tight. Zip-off in a direction that is parallel to the skin. Stay close to the skin and remember to pull in the opposite direction of hair growth.

8. Not Patch Testing the Wax Temperature

It is possible to burn yourself by using liquid wax that has been heated for too long. Before applying a large amount of wax to your skin, test the temperature with a patch test. Even better, look at its consistency. If the wax is very watery or runny, it’s likely too warm. As you gain experience you’ll learn to tell when the wax is the right temperature by how thick it is. It’s important to read the instructions, follow the heating times and be careful when applying. Most waxes only need to be gently warmed.

9. Not Having Everything Ready Before Starting to Wax 

For a stress-free waxing session, have your supplies ready. You’ll want must-haves such as your epilation strips and wax warmer at hand before you apply wax.

Do you know what you need for your waxing session? At-home wax kits usually include everything that is required. However, here are a few extra things to keep close by:

A floor covering for accidental drips.

A pair of scissors for trimming long hairs and tidying up any missed hairs.

A wax warmer for keeping liquid waxes at the right temperature.

A post-waxing oil, or other oil, for cleaning up ‘salon’ style waxes.

A damp cloth for cleaning up sugar waxes.

Do you still have questions about how to start waxing? See all our IDoWAX posts for the more key ti