Bikini waxes allow you to go weeks between waxing with no maintenance. The first bikini wax is the most painful, but the more you wax the less painful it gets; the hair pulls out easier each time. Not unlike shaving, waxing can cause irritation to the skin. To help minimize irritation, practice a few skin care tips.
Avoid Hot Water
Avoid hot baths, hot tubs, hot showers, saunas and steam rooms for at least 24 hours following a wax. The pores that have just been waxed are open and susceptible to bacterial infections. Hot water can also further irritate the skin.
Soothe the Skin
Some salons recommend a product called Tend Skin, a liquid that helps soothe skin and prevent ingrown hair. Cindy Barshop, salon owner, recommends applying aloe to the skin, and she cautions using moisturizers that can clog pores. Dermatologists typically recommend looking for skin products labeled “oil-free” or “non-comedogenic.” Claire Francoise Salons recommends using tea tree or lavender oil after every shower to soothe, heal and provide an antibacterial to the sensitive skin.
Avoid Regular Products
Don’t use shower gel, regular soaps or regular body lotion for at least 24 hours. Studio Urban Wax Pros recommend avoiding harsh products with perfumes or dyes for at least 48 hours. Pores can remain open and enlarged for a day or more, so it's best to avoid using products that could potentially irritate the sensitive skin.
Wear Loose Clothing
Don’t wear tight, synthetic clothing following a waxing. Allow the skin to breathe and heal from being pulled on and hairs being pulled from their follicles. Wear loose, breathable clothing such as clothing made from cotton. Tight clothing can rub and irritate the sensitive skin.
Not all experts agree, but most recommend exfoliating before a waxing to help prepare the skin. Don’t exfoliate again until at least four days after waxing. Exfoliating once per week following a waxing can help prevent ingrown hairs. Some recommend exfoliating immediately after with a gentle exfoliate, but others report this can cause irritation.
Use Hair Minimizing Lotion
Using hair minimizing lotion daily can moisturize the waxed area to soothe the skin, and can help prevent the growth from returning quickly. Cosmopolitan magazine recommends daily use of Aveeno Positively Smooth Moisturizing Lotion. Fab Sugar UK recommends using Bliss Get Out of Hair! moisture milk.
Brenda Barron is a writer, editor and researcher based in Southern California. She has worked as a writer since 2004, with work appearing in online and print publications such as BabyZone, "Cat Fancy" and "ePregnancy." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from California State University, Long Beach.