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Hair Removal by Waxing - Hot and Cold Waxes

By Bridget Mwape

Waxing is an effective method of removing large amounts of hair at one time. With hot waxing, a thin layer of heated wax is applied to the skin in the direction of the hair growth. The hair becomes embedded in the wax as it cools and hardens. The wax is then pulled off quickly in the opposite direction of the hair growth, taking the uprooted hair with it. Cold waxes work similarly. Strips precoated with wax are pressed on the skin in the direction of the hair growth and pulled off in the opposite direction. The strips come in different sizes for use on the eyebrows, upper lip, chin, and bikini area.

Waxing is a temporary method of hair removal which removes the hair at the root. New hairs do not grow back in the waxed area for three to eight weeks. Almost any area of the body can be waxed, including eyebrows, face, bikini area, legs, arms, back, abdomen and feet'. But don't be fooled into thinking that waxing is for women only. Today's fashion trends have men waxing their bodies for cosmetic reasons, and many athletes such as bodybuilders and swimmers have been waxing for years.

The concept of waxing to remove bodily hair can be traced all the way back to ancient Egypt where the wives of Royalty and the well-to-do looked at hair removal as a way to remain young and forever beautiful. That concept continued throughout the world with the Greeks and Turks as well.

Most waxes are comprised of some proportional mixture of paraffin or beeswax, natural oils or fats, and a specially designed resin to help the wax adhere to the skin. Some brands of wax add Vitamin E or other supplements. If you think that you might want to try waxing, the first step, whether you are a male or female, is to decide if you want to use the 'hot' or 'cold' wax technique.

The hot wax method involves heating the wax to a comfortable temperature. A thin layer of wax is spread onto the area to be treated in the direction of the hair growth. Once the wax is cooled it is quickly torn off, in the opposite direction of the hair growth, and the hair is removed with it. With the cold wax process, strips of cloth are pre-coated with wax. You apply the strips to the area to be treated, rub the strips in the direction of hair growth, and then pull the strips off quickly in the opposite direction. Although hot waxing techniques are a bit more messy than cold wax ones, many people find that the hot wax gives better results.

Post Waxing Skin Treatment

You can apply a non-perfumed moisturizer to the treated area if you want to. Moisturizers that are fortified with Vitamin B and/or Aloe vera are also good. Avoid the following activities for at least 24 hours after waxing:

- Swimming

- Using a Spa or Hot Tub

- Sunbathing

- Applying perfume, aftershave or deodorant to the treated area

Always check to make sure that the hot wax is below scalding or burning temperature before applying. People with diabetes should consult a doctor before waxing. Never wax over sunburned skin or peeling skin, lesions or infections, moles, warts, skin abrasions, rashes, or varicose veins. Never wax the eyelashes, nose or ear hairs, nipple hair, or hair which is growing directly on the genitals (bikini area is okay). Waxing is a great solution for the temporary removal of unwanted hair if you're tough enough to stand a little pain. Some hair removal experts recommend professional waxing for the best results.

About The Author

Copyright 2005. Bridget Mwape writes for the Chemist's UK Website at: and she's also a regular contributor to the Discount Pharmacy Website at


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