Beauty is Pain (especially when it comes to waxing vs. sugaring)
Want to know what’s not fair? My hair grows like a wooly mammoth. Yep, I said it. I don’t know if it’s the Italian blood in me or what, but MAN oh MAN. I can’t keep up! Seriously, after 24 hours, I have to shave my legs and underarms again. It’s annoying and absolutely ridiculous. Why, oh why, do I have SO much hair?
If I’ve successfully grossed you out, this may not be the blog post for you. On the other hand, if you’re like YES GIRL, THAT’S ME. Then, listen up!
Hairy Girl Options
The way I see it, us hairy girls have limited options when it comes to hair removal…
- Shave (If I counted up how much time I’ve spent shaving in life it would be depressing…and don’t get me started with razor bumps and irritation).
- Laser Hair Removal (If you have the money for this then you are one lucky gal!)
- Wax (You know…hot wax slapped on your body with a popsicle stick and ripped off with a strip of fabric..)
- Sugar (A paste [usually all natural] made of lemon, sugar and water that promises to be less painful than waxing…)
- Let it grow…
Now if letting your hair grow is your kinda thing then you do you girl, but I prefer quite the opposite! And since I like to be as hairless as possible, I absolutely have to use the most effective, long-lasting method that doesn’t break the bank. I’ve experimented with shaving (obvi), waxing, and sugaring and here are my results…
I’ve been waxing for I don’t even know how long…probably freshman year of high school? I’ve always had overgrown eyebrows and a shadowy upper lip so those were the first to be taken care of early on. Ever since, I’ve had experience with waxing my brows, upper lip, full arms, and bikini area. With all my experiences, here are my pros and cons to waxing:
- It’s fast!
- It’s more available than sugaring. More estheticians have been trained in waxing so it’s much easier to find in most areas.
- A good wax (for me) lasts about 4-6 weeks, depending on the area.
- It hurts! Some areas are way more sensitive than others to me, but all-in-all, it’s not pain free.
- Since the wax pulls on your skin (both dead and alive cells), it can cause a lot of irritation.
- It’s hard to know what exactly is in the wax…aloe? Toxins? Who really knows?!
- Sometimes it doesn’t play nice with the skincare products you’ve been using…ever break out in a rash after a wax? Check the ingredients on your face wash or lotion…it may cause irritation with wax.
- Traditional waxing techniques pull hair in the opposite direction of your hair growth (a.k.a. More pain and irritation)
All in all, waxing has become my bestie that I love to hate. I rely on it for just about all of my hair removal needs, and have for years, but when I started seeing more irritation and the countdown toward my wedding was getting closer, I started to do some research on healthier alternatives…
I became intrigued over sugaring after watching some bloggers on their Insta stories walk into their sugaring appointments, which promised to be healthy, non-toxic alternatives to waxing. Sounds good right? Because the sugar paste is only made (usually) from three ingredients: water, sugar and lemon, it’s easy to know what’s being put on your skin. With it, everyone promised less pain and less irritation…so obviously I was ready to give it a try. I found the ONE sugaring studio in my area (yes, one) and ventured on.
- It claims to be faster than waxing since the esthetician doesn’t have to keep going back and forth to apply wax, grab cloths, etc. He/she will use one bunch of paste throughout the majority of your appointment. (My experience was NOT faster…but putting this out here in case you get someone that’s faster than the girl that handled my appointment.)
- It’s chemically-free, non-toxic, etc.!
- Apparently, it only pulls on your dead skin cells, not your live cells, so it should, in theory, be less painful.
- Sugaring pulls hair in the direction of your hair growth…so less pain and irritation.
- The actual application of the sugar (before it pulls out the hair…this is the step equivalent to applying the wax with the popsicle stick in a waxing service) hurts like heck. It’s not comfy. The esthetician has to push and pull the sugar down the area, in the opposite direction of the hair growth, which allows the sugar to grab ahold of the hair, and it honestly hurts…a lot.
- Since you’re ripping hair out of its follicles, it can still cause irritation and redness.
- It’s hard to be precise with the sugar. Most sugaring places don’t even recommend having your brows sugared because they can’t be specific in its placement.
Here’s the thing, sugaring is a solid option, but if you live in the metro-Detroit area, it might not be a solid option yet. Full disclosure, the parlor I went to was truly AWFUL. I’m not going to name names, but if you google sugaring in Detroit, you’ll find it…there’s only one. At the end of this blog post, I’ll give my waxing/sugaring studio recommendations and must-avoids.
Okay…Picking My Poison
Ding ding! Waxing vs. sugaring…who’s the winner? I’m caught between a rock and a hard place right now…I truly HATED my sugaring experience, but the results, skin wise, did seem to be better than waxing. After the initial pain and swelling went down, I noticed less irritation than when I wax. No bumps or ingrown hairs…success!
Waxing, on the other hand, gives me much more precise results and my hair seems to grow back slower. By precise results I mean there’s less hair missed. I think the wax itself does a better job picking up hairs than the sugar so there’s less need to go over the same area twice.
Honestly, they’re both painful, but in the end, I think I’ll stick to my wax. I like the idea of a one-stop-shop and since I can’t get my brows sugared, I’ll stick to wax for brows and everything else. I’ve learned to trust the process and the esthetician I use. She gives me great recommendations to combat irritation and I never have any missed hairs with her. And honestly, if the wax keeps the hair away longer then…by all means, sign me up!
Have you tried sugaring and/or waxing? What are your thoughts?! Everyone has different experiences so let’s help each other out and comment below!
Review on the Metro-Detroit Sugaring Parlor
If you live in the area and you’re interested why it was so bad…here’s why. The owner, who I scheduled my appointment with, answered my phone call that day to confirm my appointment to tell me that she isn’t able to do my service because she injured her arm. She assured me she was leaving me with the best-of-the-best and it would all be okay…
I went in the first day to honestly a not-so-great first impression. It was cold, dark and poorly renovated (not that it means everything is going to be bad, but aesthetic is huge for me). I was put into a room and told to lay on this portable, wobbly massage table that had NO cushion or paper or anything. It was just cold, fake leather on my bare skin and I was getting a brazilian, full arm, and underarm so you can imagine how this felt. The room was dirty and the table she had all her supplies on was disorganized and messy. The girl was fairly new (she admitted to me) and didn’t seem to have a lot of experience. I was in SO much pain throughout the entire appointment and I left with my underarms bleeding. I’m just going to leave it at that.
UPDATE: A friend of mine suggested I try This Girl Lori Beauty Spa in Birmingham, MI for sugaring. She had a super positive experience so if you’re looking to try sugaring…start there!
Review on Georgi’s Waxing Studio
If you live in the area, I highly recommend Georgi’s in Royal Oak and Birmingham. The studio is beautiful, clean and so warm and friendly. All of the estheticians I’ve used have been great, but Alex is my favorite, by far. The actual waxing rooms are clean, calming and feel more like a spa room than anything else. If you ask, they’ll tell you what kind of wax they’re going to use and will always give you an ingredients list. They do great work here! I highly recommend.