Introduction to Men's Waxing
Male waxing. To wax or not to wax, that is the question we get asked on a frequent basis at Men's Den, Inc. Male waxing is an intriguing option for men's hair removal but has received a stigma because of certain movie scenes over the years. However, manscaping is very prevalent due to a variety of reasons. Studies show that a whopping 83% of men do some type of manscaping to achieve the desired result of men's hair removal. While shaving is a men's hair removal option due to it being inexpensive it will always have a place in men's hair removal, however, it also has its own drawbacks. Men who shave often experience razor burn, cuts due to the razor, as well as bites and nicks by an electric razor. Shaving also inflames the skin often leaving a red and swollen appearance. In addition, stubble appears much sooner because shaving only removes the longer hair at the skin's surface, not at the root like waxing does. Male waxing has gained popularity over the past few years and is a viable option for men's hair removal due to its longer-term results and convenience.
The 'Why?' Why Men Wax
In the past it used to be that only women utilized waxing services or visited salons only for waxing services. However, this trend has taken a different direction as the mindset and social influence on men's waxing has changed. Male waxing has become a valued service and is here to stay. As a matter of fact, the male waxing industry has grown by 22% over the last year.
Men in general have and are becoming more conscious of their appearance and are taking male grooming more seriously. Many men feel like the feeling of a fresh wax makes them feel more hygienic as well as aesthetically pleasing. Many men report that they are embarrassed by having body hair even to the extent that they will not take off their shirt in public in order to go for a swim. Men's hair removal improves self-confidence as well as improves perceived self image. Some men experience the reality that their significant other prefers that they wax to keep certain intimate areas clean. Some men are athletes and prefer the smooth, hair free feeling that waxing offers. Also, social media has had a big influencing effect on men's waxing as it is no longer a topic that is "taboo."
Men manscape for a variety of reasons. Modern men are well groomed and take a greater interest in their overall appearance.
Physiology of Male Waxing
Before we proceed to the benefits of men's body waxing it's important to understand what waxing is to decipher fact from fiction. Let us start with explaining exactly how body hair grows as well as the hair regrowth cycle. This is important to understand as it explains why hair may grow back less dense or appear to grow slower.
The four phases of hair growth are:
Anagen- The anagen phase is the longest phase of the hair regrowth cycle which usually lasts 3-5 years but can vary by individual. The anagen phase is the growth phase of the hair regrowth cycle.
Citagen- The citagen phase is classified as the transition phase of the hair regrowth cycle. This is a short phase and generally lasts around 10 days. Hair growth slows during the citagen phase as the hair follicle shrinks.
Telogen- The telogen phase is also referred to as the resting phase during the hair regrowth cycle. This phase lasts on average 3 months. New hair begins to form in the follicles but there is not any new hair growth and hair does not fall out or shed during the telogen phase.
Exogen- The exogen phase is also known as the shedding phase and lasts on average 2-6 months. During the exogen phase new hair grows in while old hair falls out.
After a brief review of the hair regrowth cycle, we can now understand the physiology of body waxing and the effect it not only as on men's hair removal, but also, we can begin to understand how the new hair begins to regrow. Many men who wax experience that the results will last 2-6 weeks and that the hair that grows back seems to be less dense. The reason for this is the hair regrowth cycle. Hair is pulled from the hair follicle during waxing and the reason it appears less dense is due to what phase of the hair regrowth cycle the hair was removed from. The hair regrowth cycle is a main difference men experience from waxing and shaving. Although body shaving has its benefits, this is not one of them due to the fact that hair is removed at the surface of the skin and not at the root like it is with waxing. Men who wax will experience that the results last longer than shaving and will not have the noticeable stubble as the hair is removed from the root and not cut at the surface of the skin. So, now that we understand the hair regrowth cycle, how frequently should men get waxed?
As previously mentioned, waxing results can last for up to 6 weeks but can vary by individual. The first 4 times a client visits for waxing services, Men’s Den, Inc. will ask that clients schedule exactly six weeks to the day. Why do our waxing professionals ask this? Hair grows on 4 different cycles and it is best to sync the cycles together. It is common to experience outgrowth between male waxing sessions because the hair is not synced. The goal is to get your body hair synced to where clients are clean for 4 weeks and growing out the last 2 weeks. The long-term goal is for clients to be able to stretch waxing services to every 8 weeks. However, everyone is different and may experience slightly different results. Simply put, over time clients will experience that they have to wax less often if done on a consistent basis.
Benefits of Male Waxing
Male waxing, as previously noted, has gained popularity over the past years. The reason that there has been growth in this segment of men's grooming is because of the numerous benefits that men's waxing offers over shaving. Simply put, the pros outweigh the cons. Waxing yields longer results over shaving as previously discussed. Men who wax experience a smoother finish for a longer amount of time versus men who shave. Again, this is due to the hair being taken from the root versus the skin's surface. Males who wax will notice that the hair that grows back is less dense due to the hair regrowth cycle and that on average (for most men) the results will last on average 4 weeks (2-6 weeks for some). Men also will get the added benefit of a body exfoliation service as the male waxing service removes dead skin cells. Also, large amounts of hair can be removed at one time. Further benefits also include improved self-confidence, enhanced muscle definition, as well as spousal appreciation.
By far the biggest fear when discussing the benefits of male waxing is the pain factor. "Does waxing hurt?" Well, yes and no. Actually, it depends on the individual. Many men who wax do not experience the sting or pain the stigma perceives while some will. However, if communicated correctly, men who wax can have a very positive and relatively low pain experience.
The reason that men experience any sting or pain from waxing is simple. Often the greatest strength can also be the greatest weakness. Remember that when hair is removed with wax, the hair is pulled from the root. However, with regular male waxing services the sting or pain can and will actually lessen as the follicle loses its grip on the hair over time.
Simply put the more men wax the less amount of pain they will experience over time.
Male Waxing Process and Contraindications
Although men's waxing is gaining in popularity as more men are choosing to wax, there is still some uncertainty and nervousness that can be experienced by male clients. The waxing professionals at Men's Den, Inc. have constructed a process that centers around communication, is safe, and meant to put the client at ease before, during, and after the waxing process. We are here for our clients every step of the way.
Pre men's wax preparation:
Ensure that the hair present in the desired area to be waxed is at a minimum an 1/8” of hair to wax. Ideally, 1/4” to 1/2” of hair growth is recommended. To put this another way, usually 2 weeks from the last time you shaved is adequate. Hair that is too short would have to be waxed over in order to pick up the short, stray hairs which may result in a frustrating and skin irritating experience. Although we are not doctors, we recommend taking ibuprofen (if there are no allergies present) at least 1 hour before your scheduled appointment. Ibuprofen will help reduce any pain or swelling experienced during the process (remember, everyone is different). The professionals at Men's Den, Inc. also recommend that clients hydrate prior to their waxing appointment. Also, moisturize the area you desire to be waxed a couple days before the waxing appointment. Do not moisturize the day of the waxing appointment as this may not allow the wax to adhere to the hair and skin. In addition, exfoliate a couple days before the waxing appointment. Exfoliating the desired area to be waxed assists in opening up the hair follicles. Apply a numbing agent, if desired, approximately 45-60 minutes before your scheduled appointment. This will allow with the tolerance of any pain that may be experienced.
Men's Den, Inc. waxing process:
1. Upon arrival, clients will fill out a brief questionnaire on current health status. Information collected is kept confidential but is necessary to ensure your safety and that you do not have any waxing contraindications that could compromise your health.
2. An in-depth consultation is conducted with our waxing experts. They will review the health questionnaire to ensure your safety. The consultation will also review what to expect during the waxing process as well as calm any nervousness you may be experiencing. The post care process will also be explained in depth.
3. Undress to the extent of the area to be waxed.
5. Cleanse and prepare the area to be waxed.
6. Wax application and process.
7. Calm and moisturize the waxed area.
The waxing experts at Men's Den, Inc. will apply Cirepil After Wax Refreshing Gel immediately following the waxing process. This gel has anti-inflammatory properties and will also assist in skin irritation that sometimes occurs. Again, we are not licensed physicians, but some clients benefit from the use of an antihistamine after waxing. Histamines are a physiological response by the body and is released when the body suspects a foreign invader or trauma.
Following the day of the waxing process, the waxing expert at Men's Den, Inc. will call to ensure you are doing well and answer any questions you may have. Skin may still be sensitive for 24-48 hours post wax. Remember to regularly exfoliate 2 days after your wax as exfoliation is key to keeping ingrown hairs away, moisturize 2 days after your waxing appointment, and to keep the freshly waxed area clean. Keeping the waxed area clean helps to avoid folliculitis, a condition that can also be experienced with shaving. We also advise that clients avoid tanning (direct sunlight exposure), chlorine (pools and hot tubs), sauna (steam rooms, and intensive exercise workout regimen). Please keep the area as clean and dry as possible as previously noted. In addition, intimate contact may cause irritation, so it is advised that waxing is scheduled at least a day before the romantic activity.
Waxing services, although gaining rapid popularity, are not for everyone. Please see below for a list of contraindications for those individuals who waxing is not recommended.
If you are currently using any of the following prescription medications, you cannot receive a waxing service. Discontinue use of these medications for a minimum of three 3 months prior to waxing. The exception is Accutane: You must be off this medication for a minimum of one 1 year prior to waxing.
*Accutane (Acne medication) *Adapalene (Acne medication) *Alustra (Retin A) *Avage (Acne medication) *Avita (Retin A) *Azelex (Peeling agent) *Clindamycin *Differin (Acne medication) *Doxycycline *Erythromycin *Isotretinoin (like Accutane) *Madifloxicine *Metronidazole
*Prednisone *Renova (Retin A)
*Retin A (Acne and anti-aging medication) *Tazarac (Acne medication) *Tazarotene (Tazorac) *Tetracycline *Tretinoin (Retin A)
Use extreme caution:
Use extreme caution if you are using any of the following. The following products can make your skin more sensitive. Thin, sensitive skin is more vulnerable to lifting and sensitivity during waxing.
Other acne medications not listed above:
*Alpha Hydroxy Acids (Glycolic, Lactic) *Oral Antibiotics *Topical Antibiotics *Retinol *Salicylic Acids *Any acid-based products *Exfoliants
These precautions and considerations should always be followed:
You must wait a minimum of seven 7 days before waxing after a light chemical peel or microdermabrasion. Do not wax if you have had a laser skin resurfacing within the past year. Do not wax if you have had a physician administered peel within the past two 2 years and do not wax on sunburned skin or irritated areas.
These factors are known to make waxing more prone to "skin lifting"
*Taking blood-thinning medications *Taking drugs for autoimmune disease *Medications for Lupus *Taking prednisone or steroids *Psoriasis, eczema, or other chronic skin diseases *Recent cosmetic or reconstructive surgery *Recent laser skin treatment *Severe varicose leg veins *Rosacea or very sensitive skin *History of cold sores or fever blisters (waxing can cause a flare-up) *Using hydroquinone *Recent surgical peel, microdermabrasion or chemical peel using glycolic, alpha hydroxy, or salicylic acid, or other acid-based products
When to be cautious:
Be cautious if you are on hormone replacement or if you are taking antibiotics. Your skin may be more sensitive to waxing and it is best to have a patch test 24 hours before getting waxed. Smokers or those with Rosacea. Waxing can irritate dilated capillaries (weak or broken blood vessels) which are common with smokers or people with Rosacea. If the capillaries are very red, stay away from waxing that area. Taking blood thinners, diabetes, phlebitis or want post-cancer hair growth in the side-burn area removed. These all relate to medical conditions so first get a doctor's approval before waxing and it's advised to bring in said approval on doctor's letterhead. The use of powerful exfoliators on your skin. Salicylic, alpha-hydroxy acid or if you use any product with white willow bark as white willow bark extract and enzymes all strip cells from the skin. Too much exfoliation combined with waxing could make the skin red, bleed, or even lift and turn scabby. Consumption of caffeine. This stimulant in your system can cause skin to be extra sensitive to waxing meaning you could get more red or inflamed than usual. Drinking alcohol the day of or the night before waxing as alcohol causes the blood to rise to the surface of the skin and can cause the skin to bruise easily. Stop using the above products in the area getting waxed for at least three 3 days before, and 3 to 4 days after waxing.
Never wax when:
*You currently take Accutane or have stopped taking it for less than a year. *You’re taking any prescription acne medication. *You have Lupus or Aids. *You’re in cancer therapy getting chemotherapy or radiation. *You have been in direct sunlight for a long period of time. *You have used a tanning bed within the last 24 hours. *Areas you’re using any alpha hydroxy acids over 8%. *Over or around body piercings.
*Never wax irritated, inflamed, cut, or sunburned skin.
Men's Den, Inc. Salon and Spa Male Waxing Services
Men's Den, Inc. employs a highly trained and qualified staff who is well versed in men's waxing services. Below is a list of the salon and spa waxing services that are offered. If interested in scheduling an appointment, please click here.
Spa waxing services:
Full arm wax
Full leg wax
Full Body wax
Salon waxing services:
Nape of neck wax
Waxing products used at Men’s Den, Inc.
Cirepil hard and soft wax is used for waxing services at Men’s Den, Inc. Cirepil is the gold standard for body waxing. At Cirépil by Perron Rigot, we believe: “It’s not just about what we remove. It is about what we leave behind. . . healthy skin!” Unlike traditional methods of waxing, Cirépil wax adheres to the hair rather than the skin, reducing the pain of waxing by 50%! Cirépil wax encapsulates the hair, removing the hair from the root while leaving the skin undamaged. When the integrity of the skin is uncompromised, there is reduced inflammation, redness and downtime for the client, making painful waxing a thing of the past!
Men's waxing services are on the rise for a variety of different reasons most notably the self confidence that is gained from the experience and the results that are achieved from the waxing experience. Modern men are more conscious of their appearance and that includes unwanted body hair. In addition, many spouses appreciate a nicely manicured and hair free partner.
Shaving can yield the same results as male body waxing to a certain extent. Shaving will result in the hair free appearance that men desire. However, body shaving only removes hair from the surface of the skin and often results in troublesome and irritating stubble just a couple days later. Shaving also can result in red swollen areas, cuts, and nicks from razors and electric trimmers. Male waxing lasts longer than shaving because the hair is extracted from the root and also due to the hair regrowth cycle. Men who wax often notice that hair grows back is less dense. The irritation or pain associated with waxing will decrease over time as the follicle loosens its grip on the hair shaft.
Men's Den, Inc. employs a highly skilled and knowledgeable staff that has over 80 years in men's salon and spa services. Please call 260-739-7081 or visit mensdeninc.com to schedule your men's waxing appointment.