New Air 10: $80 OFF with code "MOMS80" Shop now
Iconic Air 3: $90 OFF with code "UPOWER" Shop now
Spin to win $100 OFF code

Should I Exfoliate Before Waxing?

By Laura
April 12, 2024
6 minutes
Should I Exfoliate Before Waxing

Exfoliation removes dead skin cells accumulated in the pores, pollutants that come in contact with the skin every day, and products that create a build-up in the skin.

These accumulated impurities create an extra layer on the skin, clog the pores, and can interfere with the results of waxing leading to a bumpy appearance of the skin as mentioned in After Brazilian Wax Bumps: Cause, Treatment, and Prevention.

This makes exfoliation a must before waxing. However, the timeline for exfoliation before waxing, the right method to exfoliate, and the right products to use can be confusing, right?

So, let us talk about “Should I exfoliate before waxing”, and how to exfoliate before waxing in this article.

Table of Contents:

Part 1: Should I Exfoliate Before Waxing?Should I Exfoliate Before Waxing

While most women and waxing experts believe that exfoliation before waxing is mandatory for optimal results and a silky smooth hairless body, a few argue that exfoliation might do more harm than good to your sensitive and delicate skin. So, let us explore the opinions of different people.

Opinions in Favour of Exfoliation Before Waxing

A waxing expert from the Hiss’N Kitten Wax says,

“During a waxing appointment, each hair will be pulled from the root. As a result, a brand-new baby’s hair will grow back in. Since this is a new hair, it will be softer and finer than a hair that has been shaved. Because of this, sometimes it can be harder for that fine hair to push through the skin, causing it to turn back under the skin and result in ingrown hair. This is where exfoliation comes into play!

Another expert from Infinity Laser Spa says,

“To remove dead skin and help with ingrown hair, you should exfoliate once or twice a week. You should do it well ahead of waxing though as the oil and product in the scrub might stay on your skin and make waxing more difficult.”

Opinions Against Exfoliation Before Waxing

Muhammad Bilal, a Fashion and Beauty Expert expresses his concern about exfoliating before waxing,

“It is generally best to exfoliate your skin after waxing, rather than before. Exfoliating before waxing can cause your skin to be more sensitive and prone to irritation, making the waxing process more uncomfortable.”

A Lady from Skin Studio talks about her experience of exfoliation before waxing saying,

“Simply no. It will peel off your skin. You must do only one thing a day, wax or exfoliate. Once I have done this to my skin this peels off my skin in a bad way. Because I have sensitive skin.”

What Should You Do?

Keeping both opinions in view, the final answer would be that you should exfoliate your skin before waxing. However, schedule your exfoliation and waxing sessions a few days apart so that sensitive skin is not hurt during it.

Also, here is a table to compare both.

Exfoliating Before Waxing Not Exfoliating Before Waxing
●        Removes the dead skin cells and unwanted oil

●        Cleanses the deeper layers of the skin

●        Prepare the skin for waxing

●        Might compromise the barrier of the skin

●        Can cause skin sensitivity

●        Makes skin red and adds to the side effects of waxing

Part 2: Why Should You Exfoliate Before Waxing?Why Should You Exfoliate Before Waxing

Let us discuss some benefits of exfoliation to know why you should exfoliate before waxing.

1. Enhanced Sticking Properties of Wax

Exfoliation before waxing prepares the skin for waxing. It removes the top layer of dead skin cells leaving fresh skin underneath. Wax adheres better to this fresh skin. Also, the pores are open which enhances the sticking of waxing to the unwanted hair.

Consequently, the application of wax becomes easier and the results are amazing.

2. Dealing with Ingrown Hair and Strawberry Legs

Ingrown hair occurs because of the twisting of the growing hair strands inside the top layer of the skin. Additionally, strawberry legs are the bumps that form on the skin because of clogged pores.

Exfoliating the skin unclogs the pores and allows the ingrown hair to grow out of the skin.

3. Calming the Pain and Discomfort of Waxing

As exfoliation opens the pores, removes the impurities, and enhances the adherence of wax to the skin, the overall result is reduced discomfort. Moreover, it also reduces the common side effects of waxing including skin irritation, swelling, and redness.

Part 3: When Should I Exfoliate Before Waxing? The Ideal Time to Exfoliate

While exfoliation before waxing is essential, you should never exfoliate the same day as that of waxing as the experts advise. So, when should you exfoliate?

What is the Perfect Time to Exfoliate the Skin Before Waxing?

Well, the perfect timeline to exfoliate the skin is 1 to 2 days (24 to 48 hours) before your waxing appointment. This allows the dead skin cells, excess oils, and impurities to be removed beforehand in addition to giving skin a downtime to heal.

What Happens if You Exfoliate the Skin Immediately Before Waxing?

If you exfoliate a few hours before waxing, the skin is sensitive and it could lead to peeling of the skin and a painful waxing experience. Thus, we suggest you avoid exfoliating your skin near your waxing appointment.

Moreover, exfoliating once or twice every week is recommended for healthy skin in general as well. Also read: Can You Shower After Waxing? All You Need to Know.

Part 4: How to Exfoliate the Skin Before Waxing?How to Exfoliate the Skin Before Waxing

Let us learn how to exfoliate your skin gently before waxing through our step-by-step guide on exfoliation.

Step 1: Collect All You Need to Exfoliate the Skin

First of all, decide which type of scrub you want to use. Here are some options you can use to exfoliate,

  • An exfoliating glove
  • An exfoliating brush
  • A washcloth
  • A gentle body scrub

While selecting the product, make sure that it is mild and gentle on the skin. So, choose a brush with soft bristles and scrubs like oat scrub or sugar scrub.

Step 2: Rinse the Treatment Area

Cleanse your skin with a mild cleanser and keep it damp. Whether it is an exfoliating brush, glove, or scrub, using it on damp skin is the best as it provides the skin with enough lubrication for the scrubs to work gently.

Step 3: Use the Exfoliating Product of Your Choice

Grab your exfoliating brush or scrub, and start scrubbing the area in circular motions with little pressure. Move from one area of the body to another gradually. Do not be too harsh during this as it might damage the skin barrier.

Step 4: Post-Treat the Skin with a Lotion

Once you are done with exfoliating, rinse the dead skin cells off your body and apply a moisturizer to hydrate your skin.

Part 5: How Do You Prepare Your Skin for Waxing?

Exfoliation might be a necessary pre-care step of waxing. However, that is not all. Therefore, here are some tips to prepare your skin for waxing.

1. Intact Barrier to Reduce Side Effects

Ensure that your skin barrier is intact before your waxing appointment and hair is longer than ¼ of an inch. So, you must not have any acne, cuts, sunburns, redness, or skin irritation before waxing.

2. Clean Skin with No Remnants of Products

Any product like moisturizer or sunscreen reduces the adherence of the wax to the skin. So, cleanse your skin well before your appointment.

3. Talcum Powder to Prevent Sweating

Waxing in summer can make the skin sweat and the sweat also reduces the sticking properties of the wax. A thin layer of talcum powder on the skin can help in keeping the skin dry and free of sweat. Thus, it improves the application of the wax and the removal of hair.

The Final Verdict

Exfoliation before or after waxing has been a matter of confusion for both women and waxing experts. However, most experts agree that exfoliation before waxing is the right way to pre-treat your skin and prepare it well for the wax.

While exfoliation before waxing is now regarded as mandatory, exfoliating only a few hours before waxing is not recommended. Therefore, get rid of those dead skin cells, excess oil, pollutants, and other impurities accumulated in the skin at least 2 days before your waxing treatment.

Lastly, exfoliation can also save you from many side effects of waxing including a histamine reaction as mentioned in Histamine Reaction After Waxing: Causes, Treatment, and More.

Subscribe Win Free Air3 & 100 OFF
Featured Products
Ulike Air 3
90% hair reduction in 4 weeks
$239 $329
Ulike Air +
78% hair reduction in 4 weeks
$219 $309
Related articles
Latest article