Considering that Christine is going to be taking an island vacay with the fams, this is totally apropos.
I especially read this and thought, yeah I definitely need to make sure that these steps are taken the next time I get some waxing done in the nether regions.
Okay....enough with the tmi...I'll move on now.
Here's some great advice from Shobha Tummala Founder and CEO of Shobha, to get you ready for bikini season safely and hygienically.
Here's a little quote from Tummala that will really get you thinking about times that you've thrown caution to the wind and plunked yourself down on some random waxing chair...we provide our clients with a list of precautions prior to receiving any treatments. In fact, we inform people that waxing can cause minor bumps, rashes, etc. - more specifically, it can potentially result in the temporary enlargement of hair follicles that can allow bacteria, normally residing on the skin, to enter the follicles and cause superficial or deep skin infections.
FYI...I highly doubt that your local nail salon does that. I know mine doesn't.
Can you say ewww?
Read on for some tips from Shobha on safe bikini waxing...
1. Observe Your Surroundings – similar to preventing infection during a manicure or pedicure, waxing facilities must be clean and strict sanitary processes followed to provide uncontaminated supplies, eliminating the potential for infection during the treatment process. Your practitioner should use clean, disposable implements or hospital grade disinfectant for any tools that are reused.
2. Steer Clear of Double Dipping - the nauseating truth is that double-dipping is common practice in wax application. This method uses the same spatula for the entire treatment, re-dipping the used applicator back into the vat of wax. This contaminated wax is then reused for treatments on other individuals. Unfortunately, this technique can increase the chances of potentially harmful bacteria spreading from one client to another, which is particularly disturbing when dealing with the body's nether region (aka the bikini zone). At Shobha, their No Double Dip Policy (SM) is strictly followed for all sugaring and waxing treatments. If the facility does not offer such a policy, request a new can of wax at the start of your treatment to avoid contaminated supplies that have been used on other clients.
3. Know Your Professional – by law, your wax practitioner must be licensed with the state to perform professional treatments. This license should be displayed in the place of work. For New York State, you can check online to make sure your practitioner is current with his/her paperwork online.
4. Be Menstruation Free – generally, it is best to get a bikini wax at least a few days before or after your period. The closer the treatment is to your actual period, the more sensitive your body becomes because your immune system is lowered, making you more susceptible to infection.
5. Patch Test – before undergoing a full treatment, if you have never waxed previously it is best to try a small area (known as a patch test) first. Wait 48 hours between the test and full treatment to see if you have any adverse reactions.
1. Be Comfortable – the bikini area is one of the most sensitive parts of the body. Wear loose comfortable clothing after treatments to avoid irritation caused by friction or rubbing.
2. Expect to be Sensitive - (especially if it is your first time) for 48 hours after your treatment the area will be more sensitive than usual. Apply a cold compress and then an anti-inflammatory cream, like hydrocortisone, if your skin is especially tender.
3. Use Warm Water - hold off on taking hot baths for at least 2 hours, but do bathe after waxing to further clean the area, just go easy! Resist the sauna & steam room for at least 48 hours.
4. Abstain from Sex - medical experts recommend waiting 48 hours after any type of bikini wax. This time period is when your body can be most susceptible to outside bacteria, which can potentially cause an infection. for your safety & health, it is better to abstain, but not required. It is really a personal choice, so just keep in mind that your skin does need some time to recover.
5. Avoid Ultra-Violet Rays – steer clear of tanning beds and sunbathing for at least 48 hours, and always where sun protection.
6. Watch Out for Acidic Products - refrain from the use of any products containing acid, i.e. alpha-hydroxy, glycolic acid, salicylic acid, etc. for 48 hours. Acids, although helpful for exfoliating the skin and helping prevent bumps and ingrown hairs after hair removal, can be irritating to the skin during the first 48 hours, since the waxing process already exfoliates the top layers of skin during the treatment.
In case you aren't lucky enough to live in the NYC area, my suggestion is that you find a reputable salon and/or spa in your area.
Ask around or just go by your instinct.
Generally your higher end (meaning...pretty expensive) locations are worth the cost. But still be smart...even those can use questionable sanitary practices.
I suggest asking the receptionist (or manager) when you are booking about what steps they take when waxing. Be vocal and even check out the location in person beforehand.
If you are lucky enough to live in NYC, or plan on visiting there soon, check out myshobha.com for more info and for locations.