Lisa Marie Fernandez
Bikini waxing is generally quite an unappealing thing to embark upon, and DIY bikini waxing is a whole different ball game.
But, summer is here (kind of) and that means holidays, which means bikinis, which means bikini lines, which means… Hair removal. (Unless, of course, you want to leave it au natch then by all means do!) Though there’s many options (choose for yourself the lesser of the evils), waxing is one we come back to time and time again.
Waxing salons will do it for you, but for – frankly – quite a hefty price, and we don’t all have £30 plus to budget in to maintain a well kept bikini line.
Let’s do the maths… 30 x 17 (that's if you get a wax about every three weeks) = THAT’S £510 a year, which is obviously an insane amount for anyone to spend on an area that rarely, publically sees the light of day.
So, your other option? DIY.
We spoke to waxing guru Alley Laundrey from Parissa about how to wax, tips for before and after, and generally how to make the whole home waxing ordeal as bearable as possible…
1) Grow your hair to at least 1/8 of an inch long before waxing. If you shave regularly and are a first time waxer, grow your hair out for 2 weeks as the hair will be stronger and more deeply rooted.
2) Choose the right product for you. There's a whole range of wax kits, from hot wax pots to strips, suited to all different waxing areas. If you're a beginner, start with waxing strips (like Parissa Wax Strips, £8.79) which are pre-waxed and ready to use. Just press on and zip off. No heating or fussing required.
3) Apply wax in the direction of hair growth and remove in opposite. However much you're dreading it, remove it in a quick, swift motion parallel to your skin. If you're worried about chickening out after applying the wax, Parissa actually do a revolutionary wash off wax.
4) Keep skin taut when you pull it off to minimise waxing pain.
5) Take an ibuprofen half an hour before you start waxing so the pain relief has kicked in by the time you start.
6) Apply talcum powder to the area prior to waxing. The powder acts as a buffer between the wax itself and your skin which will minimise the discomfort.
7) After bikini waxing, exfoliate and moisturise regularly to remove any dead skin cells and keep skin soft. This will help avoid pesky ingrown hairs.
8) Apply Azuline Oil to avoid ingrown hairs. The formula includes chamomile for moisturising and healing the skin post-waxing, vitamin E and menthol that help soothe and cool, and azulene which promotes new skin cells. It also helps remove that sticky wax residue.
Not convinced about DIY waxing? Alley says: 'Laser is expensive, razors can nick, cut and irritate your skin; chemical depilatories can cause chemical burns and in both cases you’re often faced with rough stubble within a day or two. Waxing lifts hair right out from the root, so your skin stays smooth for weeks at a time. Not only are the results long term but your hair grows back softer and finer with repeated treatments!'.