With salons and spas closed during the coronavirus, mamas are turning to at-home kits to maintain their beauty routines. Last week, Molly Lee filmed herself using an at-home waxing kit and it's pure comedy. Lee wanted to get rid of her unwanted facial hair, so she did what any sensible person would do—she bought a kit from Amazon and got to work.
We love the video because it's incredibly real. It's a look into what at-home beauty is really like: the laughs, the mistakes, the pain—all wrapped into one big ball of confusion.
"Shelter-in-place has taken a turn... I bought a home waxing kit. My face will never be the same. #GoWithGod," she captioned her video on Instagram.
For the newbies, waxing involves a layer of melted wax that's applied to the skin and allowed to harden. It is then pulled off quickly (in the opposite direction of the hair growth), taking the uprooted hair with it.
What to know about facial waxing at home
Not all waxes are created equal so it is important to understand the differences between various types of waxes. When choosing a wax for your face, look at the ingredients and make sure it's nothing you're allergic to. "Certain facial waxes are made to improve skin's texture, while exfoliating, removing dead skin cells and impurities, and promoting blood circulation," says Noemi Grupenmager, founder of Uni K Wax studios. Be sure to find the wax that will give you the results you need.
Here are four additional tips from waxing experts to remember when trying at-home waxing:
1. Let it grow
Right now is the perfect time to let your unwanted hair grow out. "It only takes five to 10 days to grow out underarm hair and two to three weeks for legs so this will get you into a waxing routine that will last all summer," says Grupenmager. "For the best results, make sure your hair is grown about an eighth to a quarter of an inch so wax can grip the hair and pull it directly from the root."
2. Avoid retinols + retin-A
Using topical retinoids can lead to scaring when waxing. Grupenmager suggests avoiding using retin-A or retinol a few days before and a few days after waxing. Unwanted effects can include redness, dryness and lots of irritation.
3. Exfoliate before waxing
Perhaps the biggest thing to remember when waxing is to exfoliate before waxing—not afterwards when your skin will be sensitive. "Always exfoliate first. A well-timed scrub has plenty of benefits," says Natalie Ismiel, Brand Expert at Nad's. "It removes dead skin cells that block the hair follicle, which is the cause of undesirable ingrown hairs. Exfoliating also boosts circulation, encourages cell regeneration and improves skin tone and appearance.
Exfoliate a day or two before you get your wax because this helps the wax stick to your hair instead of your skin, says Grupenmager. "A good scrub or dry brush is the best way to exfoliate," she says.
4. Use a serum post-wax
A successful wax doesn't stop once the waxing is done. " Use a soothing serum to help calm your skin and treat any ingrown hairs, bumps, or breakouts," says Gina Petak, European Wax Center Education Manager. " Dry or brittle hair can easily break during a waxing service leaving behind a not so smooth result and increasing the chance of developing an ingrown hair. Using a serum gives you a soft-to-the-touch feeling."