Estheticians do a great job calming tender skin at the end of a waxing appointment, but once you've left the salon, it's normal for skin to feel a bit irritated in the hours immediately following.
Diana Larkin, CEO of MyHare, a waxing and body care brand, says the culprit behind redness or irritation post-wax is inflammation of the skin caused by the procedure.
"Sure, pulling hair out of the follicles will add to this reaction, but the hyper exfoliation of the skin is the main reason," Larkin told Shop TODAY. "Also, the more sensitive your skin is, the redder you get, but [it] will always subside within a few hours."
Larking walked us through the do's and don'ts of after-wax care. Plus, we compiled several soothing (and top-rated) products that are perfect to use in the days after your treatment, from calming lotions to gentle exfoliating scrubs.
How should you care for your skin after waxing?
Larkin said avoiding sun exposure is one of the most important rules when it comes to caring for your skin after getting waxed.
"Think of it as just exfoliating the top layer of your skin off," said Larkin. "New fresh skin....will burn easily now. I also wouldn't jump into the salty ocean the same day as my waxing appointment either, unless you love the sensation of stinging and burning."
Larkin also mentioned that you should be extra gentle with your skin care routine if facial skin has recently been waxed.
"Never use anything too harsh or that lathers a lot," she said. "That means it's too astringent and drying."
What not to do after waxing
"After waxing, you should avoid applying perfumes, deodorant and products with fragrances because these can contain alcohol," Larkin explained. "Think of it as if you had a very mild burn and let it heal naturally or using products that are clean and natural."
As for workouts post-wax, Larkin says to remember you have open pores where hair follicles used to be, so be aware that there's a possibility for clogging, especially if you're prone to breakouts.
"If you're not prone to breakouts, then I say pick up that dumbbell. Otherwise, those pores will close up in 24 hours," Larkin added.
What products should you use after getting waxed?
While you're waiting for the skin to feel less irritated, there are products Larkin recommends using at home. From natural remedies like liquid from an aloe vera plant or a cold compress to items like cortisol cream and tea tree oil from your medicine cabinet, Larkin says there are plenty of ways to help post-wax skin feel better.
Larkin also recommends products that contain glycolic and salicylic acid, which help prevent ingrown hairs. Products that contain aloe (which helps skin heal) and honey (which has antibacterial properties) are also helpful.
Post-wax products to use for wax burns
This product from Kiehl's will add a refreshing and plump effect to your skin almost instantly, according to the brand. The Tibetan ginseng in this moisturizing mist helps the skin maintain its moisture and increase skin cell respiration. Plus, the spritz isn't oily or heavy, making it great to carry on-the-go for a quick skin refresh.
You can use this product before and after a wax treatment, thanks to the combination of salicylic acid and glycerin that hydrates the skin while gently unclogging pores. Aside from soothing any post-waxing effects, this formula with 3,200+ verified five-star ratings prevents razor bumps and ingrown hairs.
"The alcohol and glycerin have a cooling effect almost like aloe with menthol but the viscosity is very thin and it doesn't get tacky as aloe does," one Amazon customer noted about this topical solution.
If you're someone that's dealing with extra sensitivity, this concentration will help soothe irritation caused by hair removal. The gentle oil smoothes the pores and works great on sensitive skin. According to a trial study from the brand, 95 percent of users agreed this product soothes any discomfort, while 86 percent agreed this formula "softens skin and hair to help trapped hair out."
Looking for a post-wax treatment for your face? These masks can aid in calming and soothing your skin thanks to the combination of aloe, cucumber and narcissus bulb extract. According to the brand's clinical results, 97 percent of participants agreed their skin felt soft after using this three times in five days.
Keep skin exfoliated and prevent ingrown hairs with this affordable sugar scrub from Shea Moisture. Packed with coconut oil (which has anti-bacterial, moisturizing properties that help with healing sore skin), customers agree that the gentle, creamy scrub left their skin feeling like silk fabric after using it.
"You only need a little and it goes a long way. This is great after a workout which is when I use it to make feel refreshed and radiant," added one reviewer.
For stressed skin, this soothing moisturizing gel is the perfect replenishing product. It's also perfect for using post-sunburn or as an after-workout skin boost.
This gentle Tree Hut sugar scrub is perfect for exfoliating skin to prevent ingrown hairs. The incredible pink grapefruit and peach nectar scent is an added perk.
One Shop TODAY writer pointed out that this "scrub is definitely infused with shea butter because after one use on my legs they were as soft as butter. There was no greasy or excessive residue left by the product, just much-needed moisture."
While this nourishing lotion makes the perfect addition to any skin care routine, the lavender essential oils, beeswax and soy oil contained inside each bottle make it perfect for soothing tender, irritated skin.
Keep a vitamin-rich shea body butter — like this Nectar USA variety — in the refrigerator for a cold, soothing boost when skin is at its most irritated and tender.
This lightweight gel serum is great for sensitive skin. Packed with botanicals like calendula and chamomile, the serum fortifies the skin's barrier and protects skin from environmental damage.
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