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Waxing 101: What You Need to Know Before Your First Wax

Updated: Oct 18, 2023


Waxing: a rite of passage for many, and a regular grooming routine for countless others. While the word might conjure up visions of pain and discomfort, the results often speak for themselves—smooth, hair-free skin that lasts. If you're considering waxing for the first time, you probably have a lot of questions: Is it painful? What should I expect? How do I prepare? This comprehensive guide aims to answer all these questions and more. So sit back, relax, and let us prepare you for your first trip to the waxing salon.

Part I: Understanding Waxing

What is Waxing?

Waxing is a semi-permanent method of hair removal that removes hair from the root. Unlike shaving or hair removal creams, which only remove the surface hair, waxing offers longer-lasting results by pulling hair out from the follicle.

Eyebrow hair removal using hot wax
Eyebrow hair removal using hot wax

How Does Waxing Work?

The process involves applying warm wax to the area you wish to remove hair from. Once the wax has slightly cooled and adhered to the hairs, it's quickly pulled off in the opposite direction of hair growth. This pulls the hair out from the root, leaving the skin smooth and hair-free for a longer period.

Different types of waxing tools

Different Types of Waxing Techniques

There are multiple methods of waxing, each with its own set of pros and cons. Here's a quick overview:

  • Hot Wax: Best for sensitive areas like the bikini line or face. Hot wax hardens as it cools, allowing for easier removal.

  • Cold Wax: Typically comes in pre-coated strips and is less messy than hot wax. However, it may not be as effective in removing coarse hair.

  • Hard Wax: Best for small, sensitive areas. It's applied and then removed by hand once it hardens, no strips required.

  • Soft Wax: Used for larger areas like legs and arms. Soft wax requires cloth strips for removal.

Part II: Benefits of Waxing

Long-lasting Results

Because waxing removes hair from the root, your skin stays smoother for a longer period. Most people find they don't need another session for four to six weeks.

Smoother Skin

Waxing also removes the top layer of dead skin, providing gentle exfoliation. This results in smoother, more radiant skin that isn’t just hair-free but also feels softer to the touch.

Less Skin Damage

One of the benefits that sets waxing apart from other hair removal methods like shaving or depilatory creams is that it causes less skin damage. There are no nicks, cuts, or harsh chemicals involved. Plus, with regular sessions, you'll find that hair regrowth becomes finer and sparser, leading to even less skin irritation.

Slower Re-growth

When you wax, you're pulling the hair out from the root. This not only ensures longer-lasting smoothness but also takes longer for the hair to grow back. You'll notice that over time, the hair that does grow back is often finer and less coarse than before, making future waxing sessions easier and less painful.

Part III: Preparing for Your First Wax

Picking the Right Salon

Choosing the right salon is the first crucial step in your waxing journey. Here are some tips on what to look out for:

  • Importance of Reviews and Ratings: Before booking, check out customer reviews on platforms like Google and Yelp. These reviews can offer insights into customer satisfaction and service quality.

  • Professional Certifications: Make sure the aestheticians are certified and well-trained. This ensures they follow industry standards for hygiene and technique.

  • Types of Wax Used: Check what types of wax the salon offers. If you have sensitive skin, ensure they offer a wax that caters to that need.

Skin Preparation

Preparing your skin can make a significant difference in your waxing experience.

Here's how:

  • Exfoliate: 24 to 48 hours before your appointment, gently exfoliate the area to be waxed. This helps remove dead skin cells and allows the wax to adhere better to the hair.

  • Moisturise: Keep your skin hydrated but avoid heavy lotions or oils on the day of your waxing appointment.

Hair Length Considerations

The length of your hair should be just right for effective waxing. Too short, and the wax won’t be able to grip the hair well; too long, and you risk more discomfort and breakage. A quarter of an inch to a half-inch is generally ideal.

What to Wear

Opt for loose, comfortable clothing to your appointment. Tight clothing can cause friction and irritation on freshly waxed skin.

Part IV: The Waxing Process

The Patch Test

Before you undergo full waxing, a patch test is often carried out to ensure you don't have any allergic reactions to the wax. This involves applying a small amount of wax to a discreet area and removing it. Wait for at least 24 hours; if there are no adverse reactions, you're good to go.

The Application

Your aesthetician will start by cleaning the area to be waxed and then apply a thin layer of wax in the direction of hair growth. For hot or warm wax, a wooden spatula is typically used for application. For cold wax, pre-coated strips are placed onto the skin.

The Pull

The most talked-about part of the waxing process is the 'pull.' The wax (or strip, in the case of soft or cold wax) is quickly removed against the direction of hair growth. While the anticipation might be worse than the act itself, a skilled aesthetician can make this step swift and as pain-free as possible.


After the waxing is done, a soothing lotion or gel is applied to the area to reduce inflammation and calm the skin. Some spas, like Artisa Spa, also offer post-wax serums that slow down future hair growth, offering an added benefit to your waxing session.

Part V: Common Concerns and How to Address Them

Pain Management

Let's be honest—waxing is uncomfortable, especially if it's your first time. However, there are ways to mitigate the pain:

  • Numbing Creams: Over-the-counter numbing creams can be applied an hour before the appointment.

  • Painkillers: Non-prescription painkillers like ibuprofen can help reduce discomfort if taken an hour before your session.

  • Breathing Techniques: Simple deep-breathing exercises can help you relax during the process.

Skin Reactions

Some people experience minor skin irritations like redness, bumps, or minor bleeding. Here's what to do:

  • Cold Compress: Applying a cold compress post-waxing can help reduce inflammation.

  • Avoid Heat: Stay away from hot baths, saunas, or excessive sun exposure for at least 24 to 48 hours post-waxing.

  • Use Soothing Lotions: Opt for lotions with ingredients like aloe vera or chamomile for their soothing properties.


Waxing is often considered a daunting task, especially if you're a first-timer. However, with adequate knowledge and preparation, it doesn't have to be an ordeal. Understanding what the process entails and how to prepare for it can go a long way in making your first waxing experience a more comfortable one.

By choosing the right salon, like Artisa Spa, and following pre and post-wax care, you're well on your way to achieving smoother, more radiant skin. Over time, the process becomes less painful, the results last longer, and your visits to the salon become something to look forward to rather than dread.

Ready to make the leap and book your first waxing appointment? Artisa Spa offers a range of waxing options tailored to meet your individual needs. Click here to book an appointment now, and step into a world of long-lasting smoothness and skin radiance.

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