Why you should avoid exfoliating and hot showers after waxing

There is little more annoying than waking up the day after a wax to redness, irritation and those pesky little bumps that are ruining you super sleek, low maintenance legs. Where did it go wrong? Where are the silky-smooth legs you were promised? And most of all – how do you fix it?

It’s important to remember that some soreness is to be expected after your wax – small bumps and a little redness are perfectly normal – you’ve just stripped hair from it’s root. These symptoms will fade, but there are lots of things you can do the first 24-48 hours after a wax to care for your soon to be super sleek legs!

Cold showers only!

Anonymous young woman washing hair under shower

Sorry to those of you who love your roasting hot morning shower! Excessive heat will irritate the area, opening up the pores and inviting in bacteria. Bacteria thrive in warm, wet environments, so keep the shower setting to lukewarm at the most.

Avoid polls/steam rooms/Jacuzzis

Free stock photo of adult, athletic, bath

The same principal as the shower applies here – you don’t want to open up your pores just yet when the area is already irritated. Plus, being somewhere like a steam room or pool has added chemicals that could really sting the vulnerable skin where you had the treatment. It also means that other people and all their bacteria has been in that water – not something you want your sensitive skin exposed to right now.

Keep away from the sun

Woman Smiling While Lying on Beach Sand

The waxing will have taken some skin along with the hairs, leaving the treated area dry, exposed and super sensitive. Putting SPF on the affected area may really irritate it depending on the ingredients and not wearing SPF leaves the skin exposed to severe sunburn – it’s best just to stay away. The same thing goes for fake tan – the skin is too sensitive for that right now and plus it will only look patchy anyway.

Take a workout break

Woman in Black Tank Top and Gray Leggings

The gym, intense workouts, jogging – all of these things will cause friction and irritation – not to mention sweat. Sweaty clothes are the perfect environment for bacteria to make their way in an cause an infection which is the last thing you need. It’s also a good excuse to take a break to flake out on the couch for a couple of days.

Keep your hands clean

person holding white printer paper

Or better yet, just keep them away form the affected area all together. When touching or scratching the treated area – which will be tempting – you may inadvertently transfer harmful bacteria that will easily infect exposed skin. If you’re applying moisturisers or any other product make sure to wash your hands beforehand with a gentle wash.

Keep clothes light and loose

Red and Blue Floral Skirt

Wearing super skinny jeans or unbreathable fabrics like tight fitting lycra stifles the skin and causes heat and sweat to build up, which, as we’ve already discussed, is a disaster for newly stripped skin. Keep materials around the area light, loose and non-irritating like cotton and linen.

Stay away from harsh chemicals

Woman doing leg massage with cream

This unfortunately includes a lot of your regular skincare. Deodorants, body sprays, body washes, body butters – anything thick or scented or strong is probably not a good idea right now. As your clinician or skin therapist after the treatment about what kinds of products you should be using to moisturise and look after the treated skin. Some recommend things like baby oil or the fragrance free Aveeno products that are designed for very sensitive skin, but it’s always important to get your clinician’s recommendation.

Avoid over-exfoliating

Person Scrubbing Her Leg

In fact, avoid exfoliating the first 48 or so all together. The skin is compromised right now and attacking it with anything like that won’t do it any favours and definitely won’t make the red bumps disappear. Exfoliating too soon cause ingrown hairs and skin damage so be sure to wait a few days.

Fiona Murphy is a freelance writer, specialising in book-related content, fiction and poetry. She can be found drinking tea, craving tapas or attempting to finish her never-ending-novel.




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