I just completed and passed waxing after many weeks of agonizing hatred for the process. It's not a career path I was going to take down the road of beauty, but it's nice knowing that I know how to do it. Let's just say, your eyebrows are in good hands.
|Eyebrows waxed using hot wax + tweezing by me. Model: Cassandra|
Between practice in class, I had the opportunity to practice at home with my Lycon LycoPro Baby Wax Heater and products I was able to get at pharmacies, supermarkets and discount department stores (there were a few PR samples thrown in the mix), plus all the Lycon Professional products when I attended Beauty Expo. The ranges of products and accessories Priceline and Chemist Warehouse stock are quite up to date with trends in waxing and “ease of use” accessibility.
The main players in the at-home waxing game are Veet, Nair, and Nad's because of the trust consumers have put into these brands for years. I personally don't purchase them because they do not meet my requirements of being Cruelty Free. Without discounting their products, which I have in fact, used in the past, probably since the age of 12, they are household names. Never in the past, even with careful consideration of the instructions, could I ever execute a wax that allowed for results. Even all the gimmicky products like the facial wands and pre-waxed strips were very difficult to use when inexperienced.
Fast forward; the brands that I have in my stash since starting waxing are WAXAWAY; Caron Lab's very own consumer line of products; Andrea, a company that have also been around for at least 25 years and have worked with as a beauty writer; and DEPI WAX, which only have two products available at Priceline.
My consumer stash includes:
WAXAWAY Salon Wax, hot wax for microwave use
Andrea Assorted Wax Strips for Face and Body (received as a PR sample)
DEPI WAX 50g Refills, hot wax for use in the waxing pan kit
|My local Coles on any given day.|
My professional stash includes:
Lycon LycoJet Desert Rose Hot Wax
Lycon Apricot Strip Wax
Lycon LycoPro Baby Wax Heater
Caron Lab Pre Wax Skin Cleanser
Caron Lab Wax Remover Citrus Clean
The differences between at-home and professional waxing:
There is no doubt that the “professional” or “salon” quality label is found on a lot of at home use products. The formulas don't vary much, most of the consumer range of products do have similar, if not the same formulas to the professional products (NB; WAXAWAY), however, it really comes down to the application of these products.
Lycon, Caron Lab and many other professional only brands available through beauty wholesalers as trade-only products are only guaranteed if the person using them is trained. I don't believe it is illegal for the general public to purchase these products for at home use, however, it is discouraged, and to actually work as a waxing technician (with a Beauty Therapy Diploma), there are local, state and federal requirements to adhere to where permits are required for salons and individuals. These are the same standards held for body piercing and tattooing. What you buy from the supermarket have basic instructions, but you don't get the full training for each kind of treatment, including the health and safety procedures (most kits offer one spatula to be reused; okay if one person uses the wax, but a disaster if you intend to share). If in the event an injury were to occur during a waxing session in salon, and let me say, I have burnt and bruised myself (and admittedly, my models) on many occasions; the implications of responsibility falls on the professional, and it can have more than just monetary effects, a reputation can be ruined. A professional will know the procedure to treat such injuries and offer proper intervention, along with being covered by public liability insurance in the event of legal action. Just remember, if you're helping a friend wax with an at-home kit, you're entirely responsible for any injuries, and end of friendships.
Again, because the formulas aren't very different, just the experience of the person using the product is, there is a higher chance that a consumer may burn, bruise or rip skin off with poor technique and not understanding the temperature/consistency at which the wax is best for use. There's also the microwave heated wax which doesn't remain a consistent temperature and may need to be reheated (potential burning). Wax heating pots are available, but care has to be taken so as to maintain the correct temperature for the type of wax being used. The application of wax is also different for each type; hot/hard wax goes on thicker with “lips” at the end and strip/warm wax needs to be applied as thin as possible and bonded properly to the strip, which is then used in a rhythmic pattern to remove the wax and hair. Hot wax does well for small areas and coarse hairs, but works at a higher temperature. Strip wax is better to do large areas and fine hair, and the lower working temperature means less chance of burning yourself. The other important thing is keeping skin taught and supporting the area being waxed, it's slightly tricky on yourself because of only having two hands and needing to be a contortionist to get those funky places. Clients are also required to manoeuvre their hands as directed by the therapist.
|Andrea pre-waxed strips retail packaging. Supplied as PR Sample.|
Pre-waxed strips are designed for on the go applications and won't cause burns because they don't need to be heated (unless the ambient temperature is cold and rubbing between hands is required). Each strip can be used a few times before the adherence of the wax becomes too poor to remove hairs. These can cause you to go over the same area several times, a no no in the salon.
The salon results also speak for themselves. The benefits of paying $15 to have your brows waxed and shaped by a professional probably outweighs the $15 you'll pay to buy the at home kit to use once and potentially stuff up your eyebrows.
They are not without similarities:
Whilst you might have the magic touch and remove all the hair successfully at home, or if you do see a professional; you're definitely not immune to ingrown hairs and bumps. They just come with waxing, so exfoliation is a must! Facial waxing generally doesn't fall victim to these problems, but it can happen.
You're very unlikely to get the same results due to inexperience and lack of professional knowledge. Sometimes hanging up the consumer goods and seeing a professional will save you time and money in the long run. There's nothing stopping anybody from purchasing and using consumer wax kits, but it will not compare to the results attained in salon. Lastly, no matter what anybody tells you, waxing is going to hurt one way or another, but proper technique will minimize the pain.