Grooming expert and salon owner Jodi Shays tells her secrets on how to properly prepare for your first Brazilian wax of the summer.
It’s summer, which means that if your chosen method of hair removal is waxing, your crotch is probably shivering in its boots underwear. Not too long ago, I was lucky enough to speak with the grooming expert and owner of the Queen Bee Salon & Spa, Jodi Shays, who has teamed up with Cottonelle to talk all about how women who want to wax can do so in the best way possible.
As somebody who goes back and forth all along the waxing/sugaring/shaving spectrum, I was still somewhat unfamiliar as to what makes for a solid waxing experience. It was great to hear exactly what people need to do for prep from Jodi because, after all, who better knows the ins and outs of it than a pro who has both waxed others for years and been waxed numerous times? Here are her methods on how to get your pink bits ready for the waxing table, including cleanliness tips and making it hurt less.
Pick the perfect waxer
It’s important to find somebody who is reputable, safe, and clean at a salon or spa you trust. If you get a bad vibe from a place, then leave; if you are not comfortable with somebody, the experience will probably not be good, and that is definitely not something you want to deal with while your pubic hair is being ripped out. Check Yelp, ask your friends, look for recommendations from blogs you trust (hi). If you’ve recently moved and had a person you loved in your old town, you can always ask your previous waxer if she knows anybody in your new city that would be equally great.
Don’t come in on your period
Avoid getting waxed while you are menstruating, as you’re likely to be more sensitive than usual, and it brings up obvious issues regarding blood, the professional, and the waxing process itself. If you absolutely have to be waxed, try to go on a day when your flow is very light. Jodi recommends wearing a tampon and using wet wipes if you find yourself getting a Brazilian while on your period.
Jodi informed us that a rather shocking number of people come in to get waxed without having taken a shower first, which seems…odd and ill-advised, not to mention rather inconsiderate towards your waxing professional. It’s like going to your dentist without having brushed your teeth–you just don’t do that, guys.
If you’re in a big hurry, you can use a bathroom wipe (unscented, plz). One tip Jody recommends is adding apple cider vinegar in the occasional bath to keep extra fresh-feeling prior to a wax (or any other occasion).
Don’t forget your backside…
I realize this sounds like a silly reminder, but if you plan on getting a full Brazilian (meaning the waxing specialist will remove hair from your pubic mons, vulva, inner thighs if necessary, and around your anus), then this is a very, very important step. Again, wipes are great for this type of tidying. Not only will it be embarrassing to you if you aren’t, *ahem*, totally clean, it’s also just not the kindest thing to force your waxer to deal with. Yes, you’re paying them for a service, but you wouldn’t show up to your hairdresser with gum and peanut butter stuck in your locks, would ya? I would apologize for the gross comparison, but this step is just too significant to not emphasize with awful analogies.
Trim the foliage
When you pull on hair that is very long, it can hurt a hell of a lot more than when you wax shorter hair. Jodi’s recommended length to trim to is 1/4″, so we’re sticking by that rule.
Eat, drink & be less miserable
I don’t know about you guys–and I honestly have never had a waxer tell me whether or not this is something pros recommend–but in my experience, I feel way worse if I haven’t eaten all day and get waxed. Something about the empty stomach plus hair removal pain just makes me lightheaded, but when I have had a decent meal within the past couple hours and am well-hydrated, the experience has invariably been more positive.
Get regular checkups to ensure your vulva and vagina are healthy. While Jody’s salon turns away women who have yeast infections, the fact of the matter is that people are coming in with yeast infections and simply do not know they have them. Be sure to check out any symptoms, pain, itching, or markings ASAP, whether you’re planning on getting waxed this summer or not.
Ingrown hairs are pretty much the worst, so be sure to exfoliate beforehand in order to remove all the dead skin cells from the surface and around your hair follicles.
It sounds patronizing, I know, but relaxing is so important to your mentality when you’re about to be waxed. Breathe, count, listen to that song that always makes you chill out when you’re in a crowded subway car in the summer at 8:30 AM. The more you tense up, the worse it will feel. Take some deep breaths from your diaphragm, and then exhale out as they pull off the strips.