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(Note: This article is a part of our 31-day series, “31 Days to a Whole Body Makeover“.)
Ladies, you know we all get it, yet we all find it so embarrassing: unwanted facial hair!
I am going to show you a step-by-step tutorial for waxing your own facial hair using a super simple recipe for sugaring wax you can make at home using just three ingredients!
What is Sugaring?
Sugaring wax, also known as cold wax is pretty awesome. I love it because it is so much safer than regular hot wax. The wax doesn’t actually adhere as well to the skin; instead, when it is applied, it creates a vacuum around each hair, trapping each on inside as it dries. When you remove the strip of wax (no messy muslin strips required!!), it doesn’t exfoliate the skin like hot wax does. Therefore, it is much safer to wax over the same area twice, whereas, you cannot do that with hot wax, which means it’s a great choice for those of us with sensitive skin.
Sugaring wax is meant just for small areas, though. It would take forever to wax your legs with this wax! Just one request: Do NOT use this on your eyebrows! Even though it’s perfectly safe to do so, it is nearly impossible to properly wax your own brows unless you have years of experience doing so. PLEASE take your brows to a professional esthetician, or you can use my Eyebrows 101 tutorial for shaping them at home with tweezers!
Suggested Supplies for Waxing Facial Hair at Home:
- Skin cleanser, made specifically for waxing.
- Cotton balls to apply cleanser, and post-wax treatment
- Sugaring wax (recipe directly below)
- Tea Tree oil for post-wax treatment
- Ice cube if needed to numb pain afterwards, and clear up redness.
The recipe is so easy to make, and I love it because if you get it on your fingers (you will), it rinses right off with water! With the wax you find in a salon or spa, it requires lots of oil to remove it from your skin.
Here is the recipe for sugaring wax (please feel free to print this out!):
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 cup water
- In a saucepan with tall sides, whisk together sugar, lemon juice, and water. Turn on stove to medium-high heat. Keep stirring until it begins to boil. Reduce heat to medium and stir for another 6 to 8 minutes, until it is starting to thicken into a syrup. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl.
- Allow sugaring wax to cool at least a half hour, until it is warm. No longer hot, just warm. You do not want to risk burning yourself. When you can comfortably put your fingers into the wax, it should be fine. Test it on the inside of your wrist before applying it anywhere on the body.
- The wax should turn a golden amber color as it cools.
Step-by-Step Directions for Waxing at Home:
When the wax is cool enough, it should be thick and drippy. It should be totally comfortable temperature-wise for you to put your fingers into it.
For safety purposes, test the temperature on the inside of your wrist. With a finger, dab a small stripe onto your wrist. Allow it to dry.
In fact, I strongly suggest you do this a few times to get the hang of how to apply and remove the wax. As you smear it on, go in one direction and as you come to the end, curve around a little as though you are frosting a cupcake. This will give it a little “lip” that when dry, will allow you to pick it up more easily!
Before you even apply the wax, you must cleanse your skin to remove any makeup, oil, and bacteria. I use Aveda’s Exfoliant for this, but another brand I’ve used for years before Aveda developed their waxing system, I used Clean and Easy Pre Wax Cleanser on my clients. Another great brand.
When you are ready to apply the wax, apply it in the direction of the hair growth. Sometimes you need to double check to make sure your hair is growing in the direction you think it is.
Notice how I am putting my tongue into the corner of my mouth and cheek? I’m doing this so that my skin is being stretched out and tightened so that the wax will go on more smoothly.
Now that it’s on, let it sit a few minutes. Let it dry! If you can touch it without it sticking to your fingers, it is ready.
A couple of steps ago, I told you about creating a little lip at the end of where you are applying it. In this image, I’m using my thumb and thumbnail to flick the lip up so it is creating a little tab for me to pull.
Notice again, I am keeping my skin really tight. The tighter the skin, the less painful this is going to be. Promise. The lip is already one of the most sensitive places to get waxed as it is!
I’m ready to grab my tab and holding my skin tight with the other hand, I am going to pull in the opposite direction of the hair growth. This is very important for hair removal!
Make the pull in one swift, quick motion for best results. Please note that I am keeping my hand close to the lip, and going directly parallel with the skin. If I freak out and pull the tab outward instead of in the direction intended, I could rip my skin off! It needs to go as close to the skin as possible. Sad to say, when I was studying to become an esthetician, removing skin from our beauty school clients’ eyebrows was the norm for newbies. Sigh… But if you just remember to go along with the skin, you’ll be FINE.
This is right after I’ve pulled it completely off. You can see on the right how I have that blonde hair, and now compare it to the side I just waxed. I even broke a little bit of a sweat, which is totally normal.
Once you are finished, you can go back with tweezers and tweeze away any stray hairs that didn’t get picked up with the wax.
This is very important: You are going to need to soothe your skin and help the capillaries and pores shrink back down. To do this, wipe the area with tea tree oil. This will soothe it and prevent post-wax breakouts.
I also prefer to use an ice cube on myself to numb the skin afterwards, and help any puffiness and redness go down more quickly.
You will know you are ready to wax again when the hair has grown back to about 1/4″ long.
This was just a tutorial for an upper-lip wax, but you can do this on other areas of the face as shown in the diagram below! Just follow the same rules, and double-check the direction of the hair growth to be sure which way to apply then remove the wax.