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The idea of "painless wax" sounds like an oxymoron.
But such is the claim of these new hard wax beans. And while I've never waxed anything in my entire life, I volunteered to test out the new product to see if the claim was true. Did I regret it? Maybe.
In order to have a true basis of comparison, that also meant I had to try the traditional strip-wax method so I could know whether or not these hard wax beans truly inflict less pain than their counterpart.
I couldn't go through this alone so my co-worker, TODAY writer Scott Stump, was brave enough to put himself in this sticky situation with me.
Traditional strip wax
Our major mistake: We let our producers convince us to wax each other and, and we did so only with the guidance of a tiny set of instructions that came inside the box, which we read by the light of a dimly-lit studio. Only after tearing hair from each other's flesh did we learn helpful tips such as:
- Apply the wax in the same direction of the hair.
- Hold skin at the base of the paper before removal.
- Tear the paper away in the opposite direction of the hair.
I'm sure our ignorance led to a degree of added pain, but surely it wasn't responsible for everything.
We did add one step beforehand to make the experience more tolerable: We drank whiskey. That part of the process I can confidently recommend to anyone.
"Painless" wax beans
The first thing we noticed about the wax beans was that they required less materials and took less time to apply and dry. The material itself hardens into a plastic-y material that you simply pull off without the additional step of using paper.
While the hard wax beans stung a little less then the traditional, I now know for certain that waxing will never be a truly "painless" experience. Cross that off the bucket list?
For what it's worth from this waxing novice, I'd definitely say the hard wax beans are worth giving a go. At the very least, you'll know it can't hurt any worse than waxing already does.
The fact of the matter is, when you're having hair ripped from your body from the root, it's never going to be entirely void of pain. We learned that the hard way. But overall, the wax beans were less shriek-inducing than the strip-wax method.
If you're so inclined to try out either method yourself, here's where you can get them:
Sally Hansen ES All Over Body Wax Kit, $9, Jet
Auperwel Hard Wax Beans Hard Body Wax Beans, $14, Amazon
GiGi Space Saver Warmer, $30, Amazon
DUKAL Reflections Wax-Body Treatment Applicator Sticks, $5, Amazon