No matter if you’re traveling for business or pleasure, getting a bikini wax is an absolute must-have. But when should you get one?
Marta Grochowska, the esthetician at Haven Spa in NYC, advises against waxing during your period because the skin is more delicate.
1. Don’t Get Waxed the Day of
If you’re taking a beach vacation or city break, getting a bikini waxed before leaving is an excellent way to ensure your skin stays smooth and hair-free while away. Plus, it frees up more time for relaxation and enjoyment of your trip.
According to the London-based salon Guys & Dolls, it’s wise to book your appointment two or three days before traveling. This gives your skin time to heal and the hair a chance to grow out naturally, leading to smoother results with minimal pain during the procedure.
Before your waxing appointment, Nikki Babian, an esthetician at Spruce & Bond recommends exfoliating the area to prevent dead skin cells from interfering with the application of the product. She suggests using an exfoliating body scrub such as ELEMIS Frangipani Monoi Salt Glow which is gentle yet effective on the skin.
“Exfoliating your skin is essential for a thorough wax,” according to Natalia Romanenko, CEO of BriskNPosh. She suggests using either physical exfoliators like Malin + Goetz Peppermint Body Scrub ($35) or chemical ones like Eminence Organics Mangosteen Daily Resurfacing Concentrate; both will leave your skin soft and hydrated.”
Another important tip is to avoid getting your waxed area wet or sweaty before and after the service. Doing so could prevent the adhesion of the wax, leading to discomfort or irritation.
Before your appointment, avoid showering or bathing in too hot a temperature. Heat can aggravate the area and dry it out, leading to redness and itching, recommends Chimento.
Finally, if you plan to tan after your wax, wait 24 to 48 hours before doing so. This gives your skin time to recover from being exposed to the sun which could aggravate itchy or inflamed skin.
Before your appointment, it’s best to abstain from caffeine and alcohol. These stimulants may cause your skin to become more sensitive, making it harder for you to relax during the treatment. Furthermore, drinking plenty of water will keep both your skin and body hydrated.
2. Give Your Skin Time to Heal
Before you head off on vacation, it’s essential to give your skin time to heal after waxing. Here are a few tips on how to speed up recovery:
1. Avoid friction, sweat, and heat (like tanning beds and saunas) for at least 24 hours after your wax. Doing this will protect your skin from bacteria which could exacerbate any redness or irritation that you may experience.
2. Avoid wearing tight clothing over the waxed area to avoid rubbing against it and further irritating the skin.
3. Exfoliate before your wax appointment to prepare the skin for removal.
Waxing is an effective way to remove excess hair, but it can leave your skin dry and itchy. According to Lele Gomes, esthetician at Rita Hazan Salon in NYC, an exfoliating body scrub like ELEMIS Frangipani Monoi Salt Glow can help keep your skin healthy, soft, and supple before waxing sessions. She recommends this gentle polishing body scrub as a great pre-waxing step that leaves skin glowing.
4. Tea tree oil is an effective natural moisturizer that can soothe irritated skin after waxing. Additionally, it prevents clogged pores that could lead to bumps or ingrown hairs.
For optimal results, dilute tea tree essential oil with a carrier oil such as olive or coconut oil before applying it to your bikini area.
5. After waxing, use a fragrance-free moisturizer to prevent clogging pores or triggering allergic reactions.
6. Do not pick at or scratch any bumps after waxing to reduce the risk of infection.
The skin surrounding your bikini area is delicate, and anything can irritate it. Scratching or picking at this area may result in prickly heat, irritation, and even ingrown hairs.
7. If you have sensitive skin, avoid retinoids before scheduling your waxing appointment as they can aggravate irritation and damage the skin.
8. It is essential to moisturize and hydrate your skin during this time, for it to recover quickly after waxing.
A gentle body scrub containing aloe, which is known to be a moisturizing agent, can help your skin heal more quickly and reduce irritation and discomfort after waxing.
3. Don’t Work Out After Your Wax
When scheduling a Brazilian wax or other bikini wax, it’s best to avoid working out before and after your appointment.
After waxing, skin becomes especially sensitive and vulnerable; this leaves it more susceptible to irritation, ingrown hairs, and even bacterial infections.
Gina Petak, Learning Program Manager at European Wax Center in Dallas, states that excessive sweat and friction from exercise can clog pores, leading to inflammation and discomfort. She suggests taking a day off exercising before your next wax or scheduling workouts well before and after your appointment so the skin has time to heal from the treatment.
After your wax, avoid using any scrubs or body cleansers on the area. These products may aggravate your skin, as they contain harsh ingredients which could irritate freshly waxed follicles.
Instead, use products designed to soothe post-waxing irritation like a cool compress or witch hazel toner. This will help relieve pain, redness, and swelling while protecting you against infection.
Finally, Rachel File – licensed esthetician and founder of Beauty Ritual Skincare – recommends that you avoid wearing tight-fitting clothing that could irritate the skin after getting waxed. Anything that rubs against your body too closely could rub against it and trap moisture, leading to ingrown hairs or an infection.
For the remainder of your vacation, opt for loose-fitting cotton underwear and a comfy pair of swimsuits. Covering up helps minimize the redness and irritation caused by waxing.
To reduce irritation, apply topical anti-inflammatory creams and lotions like Starpil’s Ingrown Hair Serum 24 hours after your wax. This will help prevent ingrown hairs – when the hair follicle becomes trapped beneath your skin and causes a bump.
After your wax, consider getting a facial treatment to refresh and revitalize your skin. Many options are available at your local dermatologist’s office or health-food store that will leave your skin feeling smooth and supple.
4. Don’t Go Swimming After Your Wax
Although we all enjoy a dip and some sun, it’s best to wait at least 24 hours after your wax before going swimming. Doing so allows the skin time to heal and reduces the chance of developing an infection.
According to esthetician Marta Grochowska of Haven Spa in NYC, the first 48 hours following a bikini wax are particularly sensitive, and this period is when your pores are most open. This puts you at greater risk of getting burned and developing hyperpigmentation in this timeframe.
Another reason to avoid pools and beaches for at least a day after your bikini wax is that chlorine or salt water can dry out the skin, leading to redness and irritation that makes the newly waxed area more susceptible to ingrown hairs.
If you must swim, consider covering recently waxed areas with a light sunscreen or oil before entering the water. These products will keep your skin moist and partially shield it from irritation so that healing can proceed as expected.
Michael Rubin, MD recommends that you refrain from wearing tight leggings or other clothing that rubs raw spots on your skin. Doing so could irritate and inflame the newly waxed area.
It’s also best to wear loose-fitting clothing that allows your freshly waxed area to breathe, as this will aid in speeding up healing time.
We advise against working out or doing anything that causes you to sweat for at least 12 to 24 hours after your waxing session. This includes hot showers, saunas, whirlpools, and any other activities that cause body aches or overstimulation over an extended period.
Exercising or doing anything that causes you to sweat for an extended period can be particularly painful and irritating, leading to a rash or other issues like ingrown hairs.