How to use home waxing kits without a big mess

Written by liz tomas
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How to use home waxing kits without a big mess
Remove hair at home without making a huge waxy mess. (Ruslan Olinchuk/iStock/Getty Images)

Those who don't have the time or money to have hair removal waxing done professionally can buy waxing kits to use at home. However, home waxing can be messy if you're not careful. Additionally, improper waxing technique can result in irritation and torn or bruised skin. Learn the best way to apply wax without making a big mess.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Body scrub/buff puff
  • Baby powder
  • Ibuprofen
  • Old towel or newspapers
  • Waxing kit
  • Wax heater/water bath/microwave
  • Baby oil
  • Soft cloth

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  1. 1

    Let your hair grow to the recommended length. Most kits recommend hair should be at least 6.5 mm (1/4 inch) long. This is necessary as the wax needs to be able to grab the hair. If hair is too short then the wax cannot surround the hair or remove it. But if the hair is too long then it will break off and won't come out entirely from the skin.

  2. 2

    Exfoliate the area that will be waxed 24 hours in advanced with a buff puff or body scrub. Exfoliation will get rid of any dead skin cells. This allows the wax to easily attach to hair and not pull off any skin when it is removed. However, if you exfoliate just before waxing then the new skin will be sensitive and become inflamed and irritated.

  3. 3

    Take an ibuprofen at least an hour before waxing. Waxing can hurt and an ibuprofen can make a difference.

  4. 4

    Wash and dry skin thoroughly. Apply baby powder to ensure that the skin is dry. Baby powder will also take care of any oil on the skin.

  5. 5

    Lay down an old towel or newspapers where you will be waxing. This will catch any wax should it drip on to the floor and makes the clean-up very easy. With newspapers you simply need to gather them up and recycle. This eliminates the need to scrape wax off the bathroom floor.

  6. 6

    Heat the wax to the specified temperature and keep it at this temperature. A small wax heater or water bath is the easiest way to ensure the wax is at the correct working temperature. If the wax is too hot then it will burn skin and drip everywhere. If the wax is too hard or cool it will be difficult to apply and will not grab the hair for removal. This can be the most difficult part of home waxing. If using a microwave to heat the wax, reheating it every few minutes keeps the wax at the proper temperature. The wax should be between 43 to 68 degrees C (109F to 154F).

  7. 7

    Apply the wax with the provided spatula or roll-on. To be as neat as possible, scrape off the spatula after each application. If wax is left on the spatula then it can begin to harden and this will make it very difficult and messy to apply additional wax. It is not necessary to apply large globs of wax. Smaller amounts applied to small areas can result in a much better waxing job. Roll-ons make less of a mess than spatulas but most kits will contain spatulas. If waxing is a frequent activity then purchasing a roll-on is a good idea.

  8. 8

    Apply the strip provided in the kit to the waxed area following the manufacturer's instructions. Smooth out the strip several times before pulling it off. Ensure that the strip completely covers all of the wax. If the edges of the wax are not covered clean-up on your skin difficult can be difficult. Gently rubbing the strip on to the wax helps it adhere.

  9. 9

    Grab the bottom end of the strip and pull in the opposite direction of the hair growth. Hold the skin taunt with your other hand for easier hair removal.

  10. 10

    Repeat the waxing procedure until all the hair is removed.

  11. 11

    Apply baby oil to a soft cloth and gently rub the skin to remove any small spots of wax that were not removed in the waxing process. Do not rub too hard as this can irritate the skin. The wax will come off quickly.

  12. 12

    Turn off the water bath or wax heater and allow the wax to cool. Depending on how much wax was used, you can save the tub for further applications. Allow the wax to cool completely and store in a dry place. Clean off the roll-on or spatula and store as well.

Tips and warnings

  • After waxing avoid going in water for several hours. Water can cause infections in the skin. Also avoid waxing on any areas that have a scab, acne or may be extremely sensitive. Never wax after sunbathing or tanning. If you are at all unsure about the waxing procedure then call up a local spa and talk to a professional. They will not have a problem answering any of your questions.

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