It’s about to get real TMI up in here. But I’m writing this to help all the girls who had the same questions I had before getting my first ever wax. So hopefully, if you’re reading this, you find it helpful.
I never thought I would get anything waxed. We always hear about how dreadfully painful waxing is, and those videos where boys get waxed and just scream like babies always seem to be viral. Scary much?
I used to get my eyebrows threaded but it was too painful and made me break out, so I quit getting it done. Everyone told me waxing hurt even more so no, I never planned to get waxed.
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But then I bought this super cute one piece from Aerie. The problem? It has super high legs so it shows a lot more of my bikini line than any other swimsuit I have. The simple solution would just be to shave, but I like to try new things. Well, that and I always get razor burn. Not cute.
If you’re considering
First off, if you’re even considering getting a bikini wax I would watch this Buzzfeed video. The Ladylike girls actually give themselves bikini waxes in this video. A wax expert is there to help them and talk them through everything, so by watching you learn everything about the waxing process.
If I hadn’t watched this video I would have felt naive going into my appointment. Because of the video, I already knew about the four step process along with the reasons behind each. But more into that later.
So you made your appointment
And now you’re freaking out and wondering why you ever hit confirm. Don’t worry, I did the same thing.
Now the important thing here is to NOT Google a bunch of waxing advice. If you do, you’ll just end up in the dark corners of the internet reading waxing horror stories and wondering if there’s anyone at the waxing center at 2am to cancel your appointment. There isn’t.
The day before
Wax experts recommend you exfoliate the area to be waxed prior to your appointment. This will remove any dead skin cells and make it easier for the wax to grab at the hairs. You can do this the days leading up to your appointment, just the night before, or the morning of.
No matter what you do, just make sure you shower. Your waxer will thank you.
Some people also choose to trim the hairs a bit before going in. This isn’t necessary because your waxer will do so as needed, but if you feel self-conscious about your hair length go ahead. Just please be careful. We don’t need you hurting yourself with a pair of scissors in your nether regions. Who wants to explain that to the ER doctor?
The day of your appointment
Again, don’t forget to shower if you didn’t the night before. And especially if you decided to go to pilates that morning to sweat some of the anxiety away.
Don’t use any lotions or oil around the area you want to get waxed. This will make it hard for the wax to cling to the hair. Meaning your waxer will have to go over spots multiple times, and that’s not what you want.
If you’re really worried about the pain, pop an Ibuprofen or two a half hour before your appointment. I did this but I don’t think it did anything because I also had a headache and that didn’t go away.
Let’s talk outfit for a minute. What do you even wear to get waxed?
Well you don’t wear any denim fabric or tight bottoms that’s for sure. Your skin will be a little irritated right after, and rubbing up against jeans is just going to make it worse. Opt for a pair of sweats or exercise shorts. Your top half doesn’t really matter. Just wear a shirt and you’re good.
Calm down. I need to tell you something I’ve been holding back: it doesn’t hurt nearly as much as you anticipate. And no I’m not just saying that to make you feel better. I’m 110% serious.
So here’s how it’s going to go down:
Your waxer will lead you back to your room and right away she’ll shut the door and ask you to undress. Don’t get all shy. She (I’m assuming it’s a girl because I’ve never heard of a male waxer) is an expert and this is her job. She isn’t going to judge your vag. Calm down.
Set your belongings on the shelf or stool provided, take your shoes off, slip out of your bottoms and panties, and place them aside as well. Climb onto the table and lay down. She’ll ask you to lay down with your legs in a butterfly position. Your feet together, but knees fall apart.
The woman who worked with me kept her back to me while I undressed and got situated, but kept up conversation. Your waxer will most likely do the same. She wants you to feel comfortable and talking helps a lot with nerves.
Once I was comfortable, she turned around and confirmed the service I was having done. I got a bikini wax, but there are other variations. I had to google them to know the difference, so I’ll save you the trouble.
Bikini line: Waxing around the outside of your underwear. Some places let you leave your panties on during this.
Bikini: This is the most vague one because it can mean so many different things. Basically you can get any of the hair that would normally be covered by your bikini removed (and the bikini line). Some girls choose the full removal, and others like a little triangle or rectangle left in the front. Totally up to you.
Brazilian: This is the bikini service plus an added strip around the back. Again, you choose how much you want to leave behind.
At this time, the waxer will ask how much you want off. Be honest with her. Don’t just go with her suggestion if you are not comfortable with it.
Then starts the four step process.
Your waxer will talk you through this if they know this is your first time, so tell them!! (You might even get a discount! Mine was half off!) You will be prepared for everything to come if you watched the video I told you about.
First, they will apply a pre-wax cleanser to remove any oil or lotion from your skin. Then they will add their own pre-wax oil along with some powder.
Next, comes the grand kahuna. The real wax.
They use those medical popsicle sticks to apply the hot wax to your skin. If the temperature is too hot, let your waxer know. You’re there to get smooth skin, not burnt skin. Your waxer won’t cover every hair you want removed right away. Instead, she’ll cover maybe a small strip or two and wait for them to harden. This will only take a couple seconds.
Before she pulled the first strip of wax, she asked me to breath in, then quickly said breath out as she pulled it. My first thought? “Man that didn’t hurt nearly as much as I thought.” She did the other side then asked how I was with the pain. I told her and she explained it gets easier each time, too. She also warned me when she was going to do the strips known to be more painful (bless her).
Honestly though, on a scale from “did she even touch me?” to “I just lost all layers of my skin,” it was about an “oof, that kinda hurt there for a second.” No tears, no teeth gritting, no cries of pain. Just deep breaths.
This doesn’t mean you’ll have the same experience. Everyone has different pain tolerances. I don’t have the highest pain tolerance, but it’s pretty far up there. I’m used to getting knots rubbed of my muscles that leave behind nasty bruises from being a runner.
After all the waxing is done, she’ll ask you if you want any more removed. Use this time to really look and not just glance down there and say, “Looks good!” so you can leave. You don’t want to leave and that night realize she missed a section!
When all the hair you want to be removed is gone, your waxer will apply a serum to help with ingrown hairs and bumps.
Then, as quick and awkward as you got undressed you are to get dressed.
You’re done! You survived the bikini wax! I think that would make a great t-shirt. “I survived a bikini wax.” I’m sure someone would wear it.
In the days following
You’re not home free yet though.
For the next 24 hours, there are a few things you should refrain from doing: vigorous exercise and sexual activities because they could cause chafing and irritation, as well as swimming in public areas and taking baths for risk of infection.
Your skin will be red (and possibly bumpy) for up to three days after your wax. This totally depends on your skin’s sensitivity.
Your waxer may try to convince you to buy an anti-bump serum after your appointment. But I would wait to buy it until you see how sensitive your skin is.
I was very pleased with my waxing experience, and plan to do it again in the future. I think one of the major reasons I had such a great experience was because of the place I chose: European Wax Center. You can get your’s done where ever you please, just make sure to do some research beforehand. Yelp is a great tool for this! People usually mention waxers’ names when leaving reviews, so you can use the reviews to find a waxer for you!