Hard Wax vs. Soft Wax
One of my favourite things about getting into esthetics and waxing, besides getting to perform the services, is all of the products that I get to play around with. Waxing specific, there are so many different types of waxes to learn about and try out. You have your Soft and Hard Wax at the top of the tree, but then you also have sub genres of different types of those waxes. There’s fruit wax, sugar wax, chocolate wax, creme wax, even fun wax with glitter in it! They’re all formulated to help serve clients in any situation, like if they have sensitive skin, and to help make waxing more tolerable.
What is Soft Wax?
Soft wax is commonly used to do full body waxing, from your face to your toes. Soft wax can be made with a few different ingredients, however the base of most soft wax is made from Pine Resin, mineral oil and honey (or Mel). Which gives it its sticky consistency. Soft waxes can also be infused with emollients and oils to help soothe the skin during waxing. Soft wax is applied to the skin using a waxing spatula and removed with a Muslin strip.
What is Hard Wax?
Hard wax is a strip-less wax, that also has a Rosin base as well as Beeswax. It is also infused with emollients and oils, but is a little bit more gentle on the skin. It usually comes in the form of beads or pellets, and is thicker in consistency than soft wax. Hard wax grasps onto the hairs, kind of like a shrink-wrap effect as it hardens, but doesn’t adhere to the skin.
Is Hard Wax Better Than Soft Wax?
I wouldn’t say one wax is better than the other, but we do all have our favourites. For me, I like using the soft wax for large areas like the arms and legs, as well as for facial waxing. Soft wax grabs onto those soft vellus hairs to make for a crisp and clean end look, while hard wax has a
hard time grabbing onto those soft hairs. Hard wax is a favourite for doing Brazilian and Underarm waxing, where the hair is coarser.
Can You Use Soft Wax For A Brazilian?
Yes you absolutely can! Lots of esthetician’s will use only soft wax for their Brazilians, some will only use hard wax, and some will use a combination of both. There is no wrong or right type of wax to use, it just depends on the esthetician and what they’re comfortable using. They are both excellent to use for the service!
Does Hard Wax Hurt More Than Soft Wax?
I’ll be honest, hair removal is not fun. It’s no secret. However, I personally find hard wax to be far less painful than soft wax. Soft wax adheres to the hair and skin, gently exfoliating a layer of skin in the process, which is why you can feel that slight sting. Whereas hard wax only grabs onto the hair, so I do find the sensation to be a bit less. It’s no tickle, but it definitely feels better. There are many articles you can read to avoid waxing side effects.
"To soothe and protect the skin around your bikini line, legs, or armpits, apply a non-comedogenic ingrown hair treatment oil to the waxed area daily, but especially for the first 3 days following your wax appointment. Always wash your hands before applying the oil anywhere on your body." READ MORE ABOUT WAXING AFTERCARE.
Some consumers may not be suitable for waxing and for this we typically recommend trying a bikini trimmer to prevent irritation.
How Is Soft Wax and Hard Wax Applied?
Both wax’s are applied with a waxing spatula, which is kind of like a tongue depressor. Soft wax is applied in a thin layer in the direction of hair growth, a muslin strip is pressed on top into the wax and pulled away against the hair growth. Hard wax can be applied in a “spread the butter” technique, to get all the hairs entangled in. Since it is a strip-less wax, a thick edge is left at one end so once it is hardened it can be flicked up and removed against the hairs direction.
Can I Re-melt Used Hard Wax For Hair Removal?
If you’re re-melting it down after use at home on yourself and no one else, it’s fine, but I would not recommend it. Our skin carries bacteria and dead skill cells and when you wax it sticks to it. If you’re melting it down again it doesn’t heat up enough to kill the bacteria. All in all, it’s kind of gross and it’s far better to just continue using fresh wax every time! Use a new stick each time as well, because you’ll just be transporting dead skin cells and bacteria into the wax pot. If you see double dipping happening at any salon, run!
Waxing Professional's will never do this during your wax.
How Hot Should Wax Be At For Hair Removal?
Soft wax heats up to 30-40 Celsius (86-104 Fahrenheit) and takes around 20 minutes to get to the desired temperature. Hard wax heats to 37-45 Celsius (130 Fahrenheit) and takes a bit longer, about 30 minutes to get to the desired temperature to start waxing. Heating them higher than this can burn the wax and will even burn your skin if applied at a hotter temperature.
Is Sugaring And Hard Wax The Same?
They are both very similar in the way of the removal, as they both only grasp onto the hair, making it much more gentler. While hard wax has quite a few ingredients, Sugaring wax only has three: lemon, sugar, and water. Sugaring is becoming increasingly popular amongst people who are looking for a natural form of waxing, but both are fantastic waxes!
As you can see, both waxes hold up pretty steady on their own. They both contain a great list of benefits and formulas, and with all of the different kinds you can pick based on what you think would be best for you and your clients. A lot of the waxes are trial and error, while you may love some, you may also hate the next. So if you’re just starting out with waxing and aren’t sure which brand or kind to get, try and reach out to local esthetician's or join a Facebook group. They are full of esthetician’s and waxers from all over. We are always open for supporting and helping out those who are new in this exciting industry!