• Fri, Oct 25 - 11:40 am ET

Crowdsourcing: How Do You Prepare For The Horrors Of A Brazilian Wax?

I don't want to go GIF

Greetings, readers. I’m going on vacation for my birthday and I want to get a Brazilian wax, but I’m terrified.

I have gotten two waxes on my nether region. Well, three, if you count the time I unsuccessfully tried to wax myself (and sort of four, if you count when I literally plucked out all the hair in eighth grade due to shame). They were unpleasant, as waxes tend to be.

I regularly wax my lip and eyebrows, as the aesthetic is pleasing to me and I prefer to have a smooth upper lip and arched brow. But waxing a small area with fine hair is completely different than having a stranger apply hot wax around your vulva and tear out the fucking hairs by the root. I had sugaring done earlier this year which I actually didn’t mind nearly as much as the soft wax, but I’d like to just try all different kinds in order to determine the one my skin reacts best to.

Obviously, I am doing this all by choice and I’m well aware that it will suck. I’ve written in the past about why I don’t remove my pubic hair very often, which is true, for the most part. I rarely shave my legs except when I have to wear tights (because it’s super uncomfortable otherwise) and I just don’t feel the drive to remove anything else below the belt very often. If somebody doesn’t want to sleep with me as a result (which has never happened, actually) then that’s entirely up to them. I just hate shaving and I don’t have the money to run around getting a wax every month or two.

The aesthetic of minimal pubic hair nevertheless appeals to me once in a while, and I like how it looks when I wear a bathing suit (which I will be doing this week!). I also have a tattoo on my pubic area that I like to be able to actually see, though I guess it will primarily be visible to myself. But still! Visible nonetheless.

SO, I need your advice: how do I make this less awful? I know it won’t be painless because, again, it involves hairs being ripped out from the follicles. But I am extremely sensitive to pain and I am a terrible worrier, so I’d like to do something to make it a little better. Any products or preparations I should do? Let me know!

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  • Cee

    Buy triple chocolate mouse after?

    Glob, I don’t know! I have never had one. I always fear that my hair is so thick that the waxer will pull my skin along with my hair. Sorry, I’m weird!
    Buuut people always say it felt better than they thought it would, so there is that?
    Gosh, I am of NO help!

    • Joanna Rafael

      I’m trying that chocolate mousse trick next time I get waxed.

  • Bikechick2

    Ask the salon for tips – they want you to be happy. Take some Advil half an hour before, it helps. Ask if they have the hard wax option that is usually used on lip/brow – it shrink wraps to the hair, sticks less to the skin, and hurts a little less. Usually an extra charge for this wax.

    I have to say, my first B was the most painful thing I’ve done (no, I don’t have kids) but they get less painful as you go, less hair per square inch each time, but this won’t matter if you’re only doing it once. If you will do upkeep, go every 5 weeks.

    Here’s some info and good luck. Don’t be embarrassed to yell, it does hurt, and anyone who says otherwise is fulla crap! (But it’s worth it, if that makes sense)

    http://www.cutiepiewaxbar.com/waxingtips/

  • Peaches

    Trim that bush before you go, otherwise it will be super painful. Take an advil. Grin and bare it :D

  • CaitlinCorsetti

    It gets easier the more times you do it, I swear. The first few times aren’t the best feeling in the world, but your hair starts to thin when you wax regularly.

    Take some Advil at least an hour before and always go with hard wax, it’s much better for your skin and is less painful. I personally have my girl count down for me. I take a deep breath and exhale when she pulls. It doesn’t hurt at all!

    • Brianna

      Agreed. Deep breath and then exhale for the pull definitely eases the pain.

    • DreaTheGreat

      “It oesn’t hurt at all!” You are a massive liar.

  • becksss

    It makes me sad how much it you seemingly felt you needed to justify your preferences. I wish it was just universally understood that feminism means the achievement of choice and has nothing to do with policing what individual women actually DO with that choice.

    • Samantha_Escobar

      You know, I thought about that while writing this. It’s one of those things where I would never judge anybody else for their own self grooming preferences, but I admittedly do feel the need to preemptively defend myself since I’ve criticized the insistence that all women should be hairless before.

    • Leetoki

      I liked Becksss comment, and I liked your thoughtful response even more. Honesty on the internet! No shit flinging over feminist concepts and defensiveness! Loving it!

  • Roxanne Marie Zoltan

    Bring a stuffed animal friend to hold. Make sure to bring a picture of what you want it to look like just like at the hairdresser. Eat avocados before and after and all the time forever. Give your vagina a pep talk beforehand and maybe burn some sage and waft it around so the ghosts know what you’re about to do and that you mean business. I’ve never waxed anything before but these all seem like logical steps to me.

    • Samantha_Escobar

      This is the best fucking comment I’ve ever gotten.

  • DaisyJupes

    Use No Scream Cream (or something similar, waxing places will sell this. Apply to a thick white paste and DO NOT rub in. It numbs everything), take the max dose of your painkiller of choice, and go for a salon that has someone who specializes in only sugaring, not waxing to minimize pain the most. Trimming down to 1/2 inch (some places want 1/4 inch) will also minimize pain. I used the cream and sugared my own bikini line, and aside from tearing myself (which is why someone else should do it for you!), it didn’t hurt and went smoothly…well, even tearing myself didn’t hurt thanks to that cream if that tells you how well it worked.

  • Jo

    Go to Uni-K Wax, they use good wax and are relatively inexpensive. If you can, see Natalina on the Upper East Side—she’s the BEST (I don’t live on the UES but I travel to see her).

  • fabher

    Go to European Wax Centers, 15 minutes in and out painless and 1/2 off first time. I take excedrin 1/2 hour before I go.

  • Elizabeth

    I’m lucky to have a pretty good pain tolerance, so I usually just take an ibuprofen, but I’ve heard that some people use topical Orajel as a numbing agent. Maybe worth a try?

  • Jules

    Don’t hype yourself up about this thing. YES, the first time will be the most painful, but ask whoever is waxing you to go slow and not go over the same area too many times. Definitely take an Advil or toe before you go and wear loose bottoms if possible because it will be more comfortable afterward. Do you live in NYC? I recommend Shobha in SoHo to everyone because they really know how to make waxing as painless as possible.

  • sarahk

    1. Know that the first few times are bad and after that, it doesn’t hurt much at all
    2. I prefer a mix of sugaring and hard wax (my waxer customizes what each client receives)
    3. Lamaze breathing

  • Crickett

    If you want a good waxing experience, go to someone with experience, good technique and hard wax. I wouldn’t recommend EWC. They may be quick and cheap, but the quality of their waxing is very poor. They break more hair than they remove. You get what you pay for, so if you want a more pleasant experience and a cleaner wax, be willing to pay for it. And as has been said, take advil 30 minutes prior. Also try to avoid going around your period as that will make you more sensitive. Numbing creams don’t really work and some can even make it harder to remove the hair. Hope you find someone good.

    • Samantha_Escobar

      “You get what you pay for” is so remarkably true when it comes to almost any sort of hair, skin or body modification process, aghhh. I have friends that get $19 waxes and wind up in so much pain and with tons of bumps :(

      Thanks for the advice!

  • Nunkubyjbuyv

    I waxed for a few years but a year ago I went for lasering. If you are a pale gal with dark hair lasering is your best friend. It hurts slightly more than waxing but because you don’t have to worry about adhesives you can use a numbing lidocaine cream. I only ended up needing 2 sessions because of my colouring. Lasering was the best decision I’ve made in a while, my pubes are now pretty much upkeep free
    As far as waxing I echo that hard wax is best, as well when I was doing the Brazilian on myself I used to dust some baby powder down there to decrease the amount that the wax adhered to my skin

    Also try to breathe deeply and not tense your body

  • glitterforbrains

    Okay, I’m going to give you the same advice I’ve given to dozens of girlfriends: I take a painkiller about an hour before my appoinment. Then, I use a numbing cream about 30 mins before. As in, I slather it all over the parts that will be waxed. (But not so much that it makes your skin super-greasy and difficult to wax). The combination works wonders for me. Go forth!

    • Samantha_Escobar

      Question! Which numbing cream do you use? Thanks so much for advice :D

  • Sadie

    Advil or aleve 1/2 hour before the appointment. Hard wax. Go with a waxer who is super fast and efficient. Less pulls, less pain, and less time. It won’t be that bad :)

  • nabila

    head to your local Sally Beauty Supply and purchase the GIGI lidocaine spray. It will numb the area and you wont feel a thing! I spray it on the area a few minutes before the actual waxing happens so it has time to take affect and lasts 15-20 min.

  • mazuiud1992

    Recently I was extremely low on money and debts were eating me from all sides! That was UNTIL I decided to make money on the internet! I went to surveymoneymaker dot net, and started filling in surveys for cash, and surely I’ve been far more able to pay my bills! I’m so glad, I did this!!! – 09a5

  • vchorseguy

    Hard Liquor; lots of it, and a designated driver.