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Wax-On, Wax-Off

Posted by on Oct 3, 2011

Wax-On, Wax-Off

No, this post isn’t about The Karate Kid movie, nor is it about karate lessons.  But yes, it has something to do with wax.  You see, Mr. Miyagi’s, “wax-on, wax-off”, was the very phrase I uttered the very first time I gave this popular hair-removal method a try.  And the process is pretty much that way anyway – “wax-on”, as the wax is applied to the skin, and then “wax-off”, as the wax is pulled off… followed by Gollum‘s “aaahhhh!!!  It burns!!!”.  (Just kidding!  :))

With the popularity of waxing nowadays, I am sure many of you have already tried it.  Maybe you liked it.  Maybe you didn’t.  It may have worked for you, or maybe it hasn’t.  But as popular as it is, there are still a number of women who are still clueless about the many benefits of waxing and what important things they should know about the process.

The last time I had my waxing done, I took our kasambahay (housemaid) Aiza with me.  It was her first time to experience it and it took me weeks to convince her to come with me because a lot of misconceptions about the process held her back. Of course, part of her reason for not wanting to go had nothing to do with fear, but rather, was caused by what we Filipinos call “hiya” (a feeling of embarrassment), since it is not a common practice for an employer to treat her staff to a beauty service of any kind.  But to a much larger degree, ignorance was what caused her to be afraid to try it.

Aiza is 21 years old.  Since she started working for us three years ago, in my heart she has – to some degree – become much like a little sister to me.  We’ve had our share of “girl talks”, including taking better care of her body.  Since she likes wearing shorts around the house, I told her that hairy legs are totally unacceptable.  So off we went to the salon one day and I was delighted to see her face beaming with joy as she testified that the experience wasn’t as traumatic as she imagined it would be after all.

I believe that many women think much like Aiza does when it comes to the practice of waxing as a means of hair removal for women, even though this method has been around for quite some time now.  Again, I reiterate that I realize ignorance plays a big part.  That is why I decided to write this time about the basics of waxing.  (I promise I’ll do my best to be concise!  :))


Okay, What Should I Need To Know About Waxing?

Waxing is a method of removing unwanted hair from almost any part of the body by applying wax (hot or cold) to areas of the body with unwanted hair, and then peeling the wax off, which removes the unwanted hair along with it.  Whether cold or hot wax is used, waxing is one of the best methods of hair removal available since – in this method – the hair is pulled out from the root of the hair shaft resulting in less frequent visits to the salon since it will take about three weeks before the hair grows back again.  The less frequent trips to the salon and not having to deal with hair removal on a daily basis is a huge relief to a lot of women.  Most importantly, your skin is left stubble-free and silky smooth.  It reduces ingrown hair that you often get from shaving.  The hair regrowth after waxing is finer and sparser and with regular and continued waxing, as many women have claimed, the hair growth is even significantly diminished.

Waxing can be done on almost any part of the body but the most popular areas that get waxed (for women) are the legs, underarms, face and bikini area.

Wax-On, Wax-Off


Hot or Cold…Wax The Difference???

The difference between a hot wax and a cold wax is that in a hot wax, the wax obviously is heated first before the application.  It is also the preferred method used for the more sensitive areas such as the underarm and the bikini area.  The heated wax is applied using a roll-on applicator.  Then a strip of cloth is pressed against the waxed area and after the wax is allowed to cool down for a few seconds and slightly begins to harden, the strip of cloth is pulled off in an abrupt, jerking motion, pulling the hair off with the wax.  The cold wax is basically what you’ll find in those store-bought home waxing kits where the strips come pre-coated with the wax, which remains to be in a sticky, semi-solid state throughout the waxing process.  I personally prefer the hot wax since it’s more thorough in getting the hair out than the cold wax does, resulting in a much cleaner and smoother finish.  Another term for hot wax is hard wax, while the cold wax is also referred to as soft wax.


Like A Virgin… Hurts The Very First Time!

Wax-On, Wax-Off

A waxing session normally takes about 30 minutes if you have already been doing it regularly, but may last about two hours the first time, depending on how much hair you’ve got on the area that will be treated.  The stinging sensation that you will feel immediately after the strip of wax is peeled off will probably make you wonder why the heck you even let me talk you into doing it, but truthfully, it’s just a matter of getting used to.  The stinging sensation really does subside quite quickly (literally just a few seconds).  Eventually, the body adjusts until there really is no sting at all. Women who have been doing it regularly (myself included) swear that this method leaves their skin looking and feeling much better than shaving with a razor ever will.  To test for sensitivity, or to avoid possible skin irritation, doing a patch testing on a small area of the skin is advisable.


Bikini or Brazilian Wax?

Wax-On, Wax-Off

Again, it’s a matter of preference.  A standard bikini wax generally involves removing all the hair sticking out just outside the top and sides of the bikini or swimsuit line.  My own opinion/personal preference is that a bikini waxing (at least) ought to be a REQUIREMENT for every woman!  I mean, can you imagine going out to the beach, donned in a cute little string bikini only to have to deal with the humiliation caused by a strand or two playing peek-a-boo down there!  Hallur!!!  Even if you are not going to the beach, you’ll still look sexier and yummier to your man if that part of your body looks clean and silky smooth.

The Brazilian wax, on the other hand, has been gaining more popularity recently.  Perhaps this is because this unconventional technique of waxing a woman’s intimate area turned out to be a major turn-on for most men – not to mention that a good majority of both men and women swear to the fact that the bare skin also feels better.  Brazilian waxing refers to the removal of hair from the entire pubic region, from front (the crotch) to back (the anus).  This is obviously a more intimate type of waxing.  Some women opt to go totally bald, while some prefer to leave a small (trimmed) strip or patch of hair above the vaginal area.  Women who want the freedom to wear even the most revealing styles of swimwear or lingerie go for this technique.  I would not recommend that you do a self-waxing if you’re going for the Brazilian look.  Get a salon professional to do it for you if you want a far more thorough and cleaner job.

You will be asked to remove all your clothing from the waist down and a towel will be draped over you until your waxing session starts.  You may request a disposable bikini if you are extremely shy, or you may bring your own if the salon doesn’t provide one.  But if you can muster enough courage and can convince yourself to be comfortable with it, the best results will be achieved if the waxing is done without any underwear.


Pre- And Post-Waxing Care

So you’ve managed to gather enough courage and boldness to get a waxing.  Good for you!  Bravo!!!  How then should you prepare for your waxing appointment?


  • Exfoliate your skin at least 24 hours before the waxing to remove uneven patches of dead skin on the surface of the area to be waxed
  • Don’t schedule your appointment the day before your special event to give your skin enough time for any redness or minor irritation to subside
  • Refrain from using lotions and moisturizers before waxing as it may hinder the wax from sticking properly
  • Do not shave the area to be waxed for at least 10-14 days before your appointment
  • Avoid scheduling your bikini or Brazilian wax 2 days before or after your monthly period.  Your skin, at this time, is more sensitive and waxing will be more painful.
  • If your tolerance for pain is low, it is advisable to take painkillers such as ibuprofen or paracetamol 30 minutes before the waxing to lessen the pain
  • Wait 24 hours before you bathe in the sun, use antiperspirant or spray on any perfumed product on the waxed skin
  • Exfoliate regularly (except for the first 24-48 hours) to prevent hair ingrown
  • Avoid the sun after waxing.  Newly waxed skin is prone to hyper-pigmentation (permanent dark spots on the skin)
  • Avoid saunas and steam rooms for at least 48 hours after waxing
  • Avoid heavy exercise for at least 24 hours after waxing
  • Avoid tight clothing 24 hours after waxing to prevent skin irritation


The No-No’s

Waxing is not for you if…

  • You are diabetic
  • You are taking blood-thinning medication
  • Your skin is being treated with Retinol, Glycolic Acid or Accutane
  • Your skin is sunburned or you are experiencing other skin-related problems
  • You have allergies, unless you have consulted and received permission from your doctor or dermatologist


The Price Of Beauty

Wax-On, Wax-Off

So in conclusion, whether or not you should go and give waxing a try (if you have never done so) will all depend, I guess, on how important it is for you to take care of your body, more than the mere desire to look good.  For many women, to experience a little bit of pain once every three or four weeks is a small price to pay in order to be beautiful to the touch as well as to the eyes, and to feel comfortable in one’s own bare skin.

What about you?  If you haven’t yet, will you give waxing a try now that you have learned these facts?

For my fellow “waxers“, tell me… Bikini or Brazilian?  ;)




About The Author: Myla “MyMy” Upshaw

Myla “MyMy” Upshaw is a stay-at-home mom who prides herself on her status as a Filipino Christian wife and mother and “domestic goddess”. She blogs about popular subjects for stay-at-home moms such as fashion, family, beauty, relationships, entrepreneurialism (“mompreneur”), movies, self-improvement, health & wellness as well as about her faith as a follower of Christ.

To learn more about Myla Upshaw, please click here:



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Join the conversation and post a comment.

  1. Sai

    Actually, I prefer sugaring. I found the recipe online. I read that it’s better for sensitive skin and it smells great :) I used to get my legs waxed but something always happens — I get burned or irritated. With sugaring, I can do it at home and it leaves my legs soft… just like being waxed.

    • Myla Upshaw

      Hi, Sai! Great to have you back. Yes, sugaring is definitely a great alternative for those with even more sensitive skin. I intend to feature that sometime soon. Would you like to share your recipe with the rest of our readers, as well as your own testimonial about the process… pleeeeaze? I’m sure everyone here would love to hear it. Hugs!!! :)

  2. Sai

    Here’s what I use (and I’ll try to keep it real short):

    *In a saucepan, combine 2 cups sugar (just your everyday granulated kind), 1/4 cup lemon juice, and 1/4 cup water.
    *Using a candy thermometer, cook on low heat stirring occasionally. Make sure it doesn’t boil over.
    *Heat mixture to 250F (121C). This is the hardball candy stage. It should have a nice amber color.
    *If you don’t have a candy thermometer, use the cold water method. Drop a small amount of the mixture in a bowl of ice cold water. Put your hand in the water and try to form a ball from the mixture, then take it out of the water. If the syrup holds its ball shape but is still sticky, then you’ve reached the hardball candy stage.
    *Remove from heat, let cool and transfer to a microwave-safe jar/container. Mixture can be reheated.
    *Now you can use the mixture like you would use wax. You can either use cloth strips or use the “flick” method. The mixture is water soluble so clean up is a breeze. Just wash off excess sugar :)
    *For best results, make sure legs are clean and dry, free of oils/lotions. You may dust some cornstarch before you begin.

    Hope this helps!

  3. Neida Belidor

    My brother recommended I might like this blog. He was entirely right. This post truly made my day. You can not imagine simply how much time I had spent for this info! Thanks!

    • Myla Upshaw

      You are very welcome, Neida. And thanks to your brother for recommending my blog to you. I hope to be able to keep making your every day with my future posts. Thank you so much for your support.

  4. Milagros Robasciotti

    Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive learn about waxing like this before.

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