Wax on, hair off – my sweet introduction to sugar waxing

Wax on, hair off – my sweet introduction to sugar waxing

As a black woman, achieving smooth skin has always felt like an uphill battle, given my abundant body hair. From the sting of razor burn to the endless frustration of stubborn, ingrown hairs, it seemed like I was constantly at war with my own skin. Each attempt at hair removal, though hopeful at the start, often ended in disappointment. My body hair seemed to grow with the relentless vigour of weeds in a thriving garden—an exaggeration, perhaps, but it certainly felt that way to me. I often felt outside the narrow societal standards of beauty, which seemed to dictate a very limited allowance for women’s body hair. Just when I was about to give up, a serendipitous Instagram ad introduced me to sugar waxing. This method promised a gentler experience and better results, sparking a glimmer of hope for my quest for smoother skin.

What is sugar wax?

Image via Helloglow

Sugar waxing is deeply rooted in centuries of tradition and cultural significance. It has its roots in Nigeria’s beauty culture, particularly in the Northern part of the country, in parts like Maiduguri in Borno state. Known locally as “Halawa” in Shuwa and Kanuri languages, sugar waxing is a routine beauty tip used predominantly for brides before their weddings.

Originating in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, this timeless hair removal method has been embraced by Nigerians for its effectiveness and natural ingredients. Sugar waxing offers a gentle and eco-friendly alternative to traditional waxing methods. Its exfoliating properties leave the skin smooth and radiant, making it a favourite among Nigerians seeking flawless skin.

Image via Simplepurebeauty

Beyond its effectiveness as a hair removal method, sugar waxing holds a profound significance in Nigerian beauty culture. It empowers women and promotes overall wellness. While this ancient practice achieves smooth skin, it enhances embracing one’s natural beauty and reclaiming ownership of one’s body.

The testaments to the effectiveness of sugar waxing are splayed in the review sections of beauty salons; take the glowing declaration of Holly B, a client who tried the sugar wax service at  City Girl Sugaring Plus Skincare, stating that “the results last so much longer than anything else I’ve tried!” And then there’s Gazelle Wax Bar, which had a client named Valentine Anyanwu, whose testimonial reads on how amazing her skin feels after every sugar waxing session.

With the surging craving for sugar waxing treatments, these testimonials underscore its transformative impact in bolstering confidence and self-love. Sugar waxing transcends a mere beauty ritual for countless women, symbolising womanhood’s celebration and empowerment amidst societal pressures. As women across Nigeria embrace sugar waxing as a holistic approach to hair removal and skincare, they’re not just indulging in self-care but reclaiming their bodies and rewriting the narrative of beauty on their own terms.

Why should you try sugar waxing?

  • Natural Ingredients: Embrace a gentler approach to beauty with sugar waxing. Crafted from simple, natural ingredients like sugar, lemon juice, and water, this method is a blessing for those with sensitive skin. Shaynae Walcott, a seasoned beauty aesthetician from South London, champions sugar waxing not just for its effectiveness but for its alignment with holistic wellness practices, offering a skin-friendly solution that nurtures both body and soul.
  • Less Painful: Sugar waxing is often seen as a less painful alternative to traditional methods. This technique, favoured by Yemi Ashiannan of Brown Sugar Co in Atlanta, gently removes hair by adhering primarily to the hairs, not the skin. This reduces discomfort and irritation, making it a preferred choice for a soothing hair removal experience.
  • Exfoliating Properties: Beyond hair removal, sugar waxing doubles as a gentle exfoliation treatment. As Shaynae Walcott explains, the wax lifts away dead skin cells and impurities, which helps unclog pores, prevent ingrown hairs, and promote a radiant complexion. Regular sugar waxing not only keeps your skin hair-free but also enhances its overall health and glow.
  • Longer Lasting Results: Experience smoother skin for longer with sugar waxing. Priscilla Kadima of Halawa Pris Sugaring Spa notes that regular sessions can thin out hair over time, extending the duration between appointments. Unlike shaving or depilatory creams that merely trim the surface, sugar waxing pulls hair from the root, ensuring prolonged smoothness.
  • Suitable for All Skin Types: Sugar waxing’s gentle nature makes it suitable for every skin type. Its soft-paste minimises skin tugging, greatly reducing irritation risks. Yemi Ashianna highlights its suitability even for those with sensitive or allergy-prone skin, proving that you can achieve effective hair removal without sacrificing skin health. Whether your skin is dry, oily, or sensitive, sugar waxing adapts to meet your needs with its gentle touch.

Before I could dive into this treatment, I had to confront my biggest fear: pain. The mere thought of waxing sent shivers down my spine. Would it hurt? Would I regret my decision? Would I emerge from the experience looking like a half-plucked chicken? These questions swirled in my mind as I nervously booked my appointment.

My experience!

On the day of my appointment, I entered the cozy waxing studio, instantly calmed by my aesthetician’s welcoming smile. Her warmth melted my anxiety as she expertly mixed the sugar waxing potion with care, promising to turn my wild tangle into silken smoothness.

As the sugar waxing started, I braced for intense pain, but only a mild tug greeted me—far from the fierce pain I had dreaded. Though it wasn’t exactly a breeze, the discomfort was surprisingly bearable. I chuckled, thinking of my sister who claimed she felt absolutely nothing during her session just days before. Let me be clear: you do feel something—it might be just a sting or a pull, but it’s definitely there.

After the session, as I stroked my silky, hair-free skin and stepped out of the studio, a wave of emotions hit me: relief, elation, and a powerful boost of confidence. Walking away, I realised that sugar waxing wasn’t just a beauty routine for me anymore; it had evolved into a celebration of my body in its most natural state and a shedding of my insecurities.

This experience transcended mere hair removal; it ignited a profound journey of self-acceptance and emotional wellness. Sugar waxing helped me embrace my body’s natural essence, peel away layers of doubt, and stand proudly in my authenticity. It’s astonishing how a simple beauty treatment can have such a deep impact, empowering us to feel confident and comfortable in our own skin.

Tips for first-timers!

I offer a few pearls of wisdom gleaned from my experience for those embarking on their first sugar waxing adventure.

  • Communicate openly with your aesthetician about any concerns or questions.
  • Exfoliate your skin a day before your appointment to remove dead skin cells.
  • Schedule your appointment when your skin is least sensitive, such as a few days after your menstrual cycle.
  • Embrace the process and trust the expertise of your aesthetician – the results will be worth it in the end!

Where to get sugar waxed!

Regarding professional sugar waxing services, Belle Bar and Gazelle Wax Bar are excellent options known for their expertise in sugar waxing techniques and commitment to providing clients with top-notch experiences. These establishments employ skilled estheticians with specialised training to perfect their craft. From precise application to expert hair removal, these professionals utilise various techniques to ensure thorough and effective results. They understand the nuances of sugar waxing, such as the ideal temperature and consistency and the proper angle and pressure for hair removal. Their expertise allows them to easily navigate different skin types and hair textures, minimising discomfort and maximising the longevity of the results. While DIY sugar waxing kits are available on the market, such as those from The Bare Base and Wax by Sugar Bee, attempting sugar waxing at home can be challenging and may yield different results than a professional treatment. So, for a smooth and stress-free experience, trust the experts to leave you feeling silky-smooth and satisfied.

Image via Brijohnson Studio

If you’re tired of fighting unwanted hair or curious about new ways to remove it, sugar waxing might just be what you need. Dive into the experience, accept the feelings that come—whether it’s discomfort or surprisingly little pain—and discover the empowerment each session brings. It’s more than just getting smooth skin; it’s a celebration of accepting our natural selves, imperfections and all.

After a satisfying sugar waxing session, as you enjoy your smooth skin, you realise that you’re doing more than just removing hair. You’re building deeper confidence and acceptance within yourself. Each session is a step towards loving your body and affirming your self-love.

In places like West Africa, where beauty standards can often feel strict, choosing natural methods like sugar waxing is a strong move. It’s a way to push back against those rigid norms and celebrate what makes you unique. By encouraging open talks and creating community forums, we can help build a beauty conversation that values diversity and authenticity. Let’s work together to create a beauty culture that celebrates authentic self-expression and the power of being yourself.


React to this post!
No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.