The Complete Guide to Leg Waxing
For a lot of people, just the thought of shaving their legs is enough to elicit a groan from them. It’s tedious, it’s awkward, and because the area is so large, it’s tough to have the time to get it done accurately and all at once. Enter leg waxing. Whether you’re looking at time, convenience, or overall results, there are a lot of benefits of waxing legs in comparison to shaving.
Considering making the jump from shaving to waxing legs? When you do so, it’s important to educate yourself about the results, prices, frequency, and how to care for your legs before and after a full leg wax. Plus, if you’re thinking of skipping a trip to the esthetician and are wondering how to wax legs at home, it’s even more important to get all of the leg waxing tips you can in order to give yourself the best waxing experience possible.
Why Do People Wax Their Legs?
So outside of shaving, what’s the most popular method for leg hair removal? The answer to that is leg waxing - but why? There are a lot of pros of leg waxing to look at, but for most people it tends to come down to time and effort, of which leg waxing requires very little, while yielding long lasting results.
Is Leg Waxing Worth it?
For many people who are tried and true leg waxing aficionados, there’s no question that leg waxing is worth it for many reasons. However, there are some aspects to leg waxing that are considered to be drawbacks, including pain, cost, or having to take time out of your day to make a trip to the salon. However, in comparison to shaving, the benefits vastly outweigh the drawbacks.
Additionally, though we always recommend visiting a professional esthetician or a salon for all leg waxing services, leg waxing services can also be carried out with even more convenience from the comfort of your own home. If you’re wondering if leg waxing is really the method for you, keep reading for all of the information and advice you need to make sure your experience is as affordable and as customized as possible.
Is it Better to Shave or Wax Your Legs? (Pros and Cons)
Though everyone has their own preference, if you’re looking to make a switch, it’s important to know the pros and cons of both waxing and shaving, and how both methods stack up against one another.
Leg Shaving Benefits
Shaving’s biggest selling point is cost and convenience. Chances are, when you’re looking for a quick fix or just trying to shave a small part of your legs, you’re not going to run directly to the salon for a complete leg waxing session. Shaving is easily accessible, and great for when you need a low cost option for leg hair removal.
Plus, razors are available in almost any grocery or convenience store for very inexpensive prices. It’s also painless (unless you accidentally knick yourself!). Shaving’s accessibility and ease-of-use aspect is where the method has its selling point.
Leg Shaving Drawbacks
When you look at the bigger picture, the drawbacks to shaving are unfortunately pretty apparent. Shaving is pretty time consuming when done at home, and is tough to make effective, since it’s tough to make sure you’ve covered everywhere you’re interested in shaving (especially if you have longer or coarser hair, which could require several rounds with a regular razor).
In addition to its lack of effectiveness, shaving can also easily cause skin irritation, razor bumps, razor burn, cuts, and ingrown hairs - yikes! Frequent shaving can also cause skin discoloration in more delicate areas of the skin, including the front and back of your knees or ankles, where skin is thinner.
Shaving’s final coup de gras, in addition to its lack of effective coverage when it comes to accurate shaving, is it’s lack of long term results. Shaving only cuts hair at the root, which does not address hair growth at the root, and allows it to grow back quickly - making you then have to shave again soon after.
Overall, shaving sees its success in the areas of affordability and accessibility, but comes up short in all other aspects. However, if you’re looking for a temporary fix for a small or easy to reach area for a very affordable price, shaving is a great option! Just make sure to exfoliate prior and moisturize after to minimize irritation, razor bumps, and ingrown hairs.
Leg Waxing Benefits
Despite its minor drawbacks, leg waxing has a huge amount of benefits which make it stand out from other hair removal methods.
Since waxing removes hair at the root, hair takes longer to grow back. However, hair also thins out over time if waxing is practiced consistently using best practices. Though you have to come into a salon or esthetician’s office, your appointments will be weeks or a couple of months apart, which is overall a smaller time commitment than trying to shave your legs everyday, or multiple times a week.
Leg waxing’s appeal also comes in the form of its effectiveness, in addition to its long term results. Waxing results in smooth, hair-free legs, without the annoyance of missing areas or not cutting hair down enough, as shaving does. Additionally, by practicing proper pre and post waxing care, you can further elongate the results of your leg waxing service and delay hair growth.
Just as is the case with shaving, leg waxing has both advantages and disadvantages in terms of ease of use, convenience, cost, and results. If you’re looking for long term results and highly effective hair removal overall, waxing is the way to go.
Leg Waxing Drawbacks
Just like with shaving, or any hair removal procedure, waxing comes with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Depending on your needs or situation, waxing may not always be the most convenient means of leg hair removal for you, but is definitely a great option for long lasting and long term results.
When you first consider waxing, the first drawback that might come to mind is the level of pain that might be involved with the process. So does leg waxing hurt? In short, usually - though no waxing service is going to be completely painless (hair is being forcibly removed at the root, after all!), but pain can easily be minimized by practicing proper pre & post wax care, by using only the most high quality, professional waxing products.
Another drawback for some is leg waxing cost. Leg wax price differs from salon to salon, and also depends on whether you’re getting a full or partial leg wax. However, though leg waxing is more expensive than shaving, it’s also more effective, has longer lasting results, and also thins hair over time. Waxing also requires clients to schedule, plan, and commit to waxing at proper intervals to maintain it. Waxing isn’t just a one and done process, nor is it as convenient as shaving, as you need to come in for an appointment, instead of just trying to shave what you can before running out the door. However, for a higher quality experience and better results, waxing is the way to go.
Leg Waxing 101
Now that we’ve tackled the pros and cons of both shaving and waxing, it’s time to take a look at the different approaches to waxing - including both professional and at-home services. From how to prepare and take care of skin after, to leg wax price, to how to wax your legs, we’ve got all of the leg waxing tips you need to make an informed decision when choosing a professional waxing service or tackling waxing at home.
How to Prepare for Leg Waxing
Whether you’re going to a professional for your leg waxing services or figuring out how to wax legs yourself, one of the most important aspects of the waxing process is to make sure your skin is properly prepared and in top shape prior to your wax.
Before a waxing service, make sure your legs are cleansed, exfoliated, and moisturized to ensure that they are protected from ingrown hairs, breakouts, or irritation from the wax itself. Properly preparing your skin for your wax also minimizes waxing pain. There are a variety of high quality, specially formulated pre-waxing products on the market made to protect your skin and keep it hydrated prior to waxing, like Starpil’s Original Pre-Wax Gel or Starsoft Pre-Wax Gel, which is formulated for those with especially sensitive skin types.
Professional Leg Waxing
Once you’ve properly prepared for your wax, if visiting a professional, your esthetician will then prepare your wax. Though there’s no one best wax for legs, there are a variety of wax types to use for leg waxing services. Generally, it just comes down to your or your esthetician’s recommendation for your skin or hair type. Many estheticians prefer the use of Starpil’s high quality hard waxes, including our Blue and Pink Film Hard Wax Beads, which offer full body coverage and highly effective results without the use of wax strips.
After your esthetician applies your wax, they’ll remove the hard wax swiftly, and parallel to the leg in the opposite direction of hair growth. If using soft wax, they’ll smooth a waxing strip over the area and do the same. Expect slight but fleeting pain at removal, but this pain should not be extreme in any way if seeing a professional and using high quality products.
Following your waxing service, you’ll be prompted to schedule a follow up appointment in order to maintain your smooth, stubble-free legs and overall wax results. So how long does leg waxing last? The longevity of leg waxing results varies from person to person, and generally depends on your hair type, skin type, and really just how quickly your hair grows. Generally speaking, however, your leg wax should last up to six weeks.
How to Wax Legs Professionally
For a complete visual step by step guide for how to wax legs, check out licensed esthetician, Crystal Quattrone’s professional leg wax walk-through.
Post Leg Waxing Care
Following a professional or at-home waxing, it’s normal to experience slight redness, irritation, or inflammation throughout the freshly waxed area. If you experience this sort of irritation, you might wonder how to make legs smooth after waxing, but the solution is very simple. Skin is easily soothed by practicing proper post-wax care.
By using products like Starpil’s Post Wax Oil and Post Wax Lotion, which are made specially for regenerating cell growth and delaying hair growth while soothing, hydrating, and moisturizing freshly waxed skin, you can ensure that your skin will be nourished and in top shape following your service. Massage these products into skin following your wax to enhance both your results and your skin’s protection from irritation and ingrown hairs.
Leg Waxing At Home
When it comes to waxing legs at home, the most important steps in the process are practicing proper pre and post waxing care, and making sure to follow proper instruction both in regards to the use of your wax, no matter what type, as well as the process of waxing itself. By making sure you’re following the proper process, you can ensure success for yourself, and make sure your legs are kept happy and healthy as well.
Leg Waxing At Home Tips
When you’re able to practice waxing at home, it can be easy to be tempted to wax more than you should, or more than is healthy for your skin. How often to wax legs all depends on your skin type, hair type, and hair growth. So how long does leg hair have to be to wax? In most cases, you’ll want your leg hair to ideally be at least a quarter inch long to make sure that hair can really be taken out by the root.
When approaching an at home leg waxing service, you’ll also want to make sure to properly research which wax is right for your leg waxing needs. If using a hard wax, you’ll want to use a professional, high-quality wax ideally suited for your skin type. In addition to our previously recommended Blue and Pink Film Hard Waxes, additional options for the best results when using hard wax for legs include Starpil’s Black Film Hard Wax, as well as our hypoallergenic and hypersensitive skin friendly Starsoft Hard Wax.
If you’re looking for soft wax for leg waxing, in additional to our easy to use, full-body friendly and efficient Blue Roll On Wax, you’ll also want the best wax strips for legs, which are also available for use with our soft and roll on waxes to make sure you get a clean hair removal process.
How to Wax Your Own Legs
When at home, you might wonder how to wax legs in the most safe and efficient manner. Make sure to set up your warmer and waxing supplies in a safe area of your home that’s easily accessible and away from any surfaces that you might want to keep any stray wax away from. Additionally, make sure you’re using the right waxes and products for your skin and hair type.
If you’ve chosen your products and are wondering how to wax legs with hard wax, the process is much the same as when your esthetician does it. Warm your wax to the appropriate specified temperature on both your beads and your respective warmer. We usually recommend using a Starter Warmer or Standard Hard Wax Warmer for at home leg waxing use.
Apply wax evenly using a spatula in the direction of hair growth, and wait for it to harden. Once hardened, use the end of your spatula to bring up the bottom edge of your hardened wax, and remove parallel to the skin in the opposite direction of hair growth. Be careful not to pull up on your wax or skin.
When using soft wax, the process is much the same, but you’ll be using strips to remove your wax. Apply wax to the leg in the direction of hair growth with a spatula (or directly to the skin with a Roll On Wax cartridge), and smooth wax strips over the application area. Remove strips with soft wax parallel to the skin in the opposite direction of hair growth, and without pulling up on the strip or skin.
Following your waxing session, make sure to apply your post waxing care products to your freshly waxed legs to ensure that your skin is left soothed, moisturized, and to prevent ingrown hairs.
Now that you’ve learned all of the reasoning behind waxing your legs, how leg waxing stacks up to shaving your legs, as well as the processes involved with both professional and at home leg waxing services, you have all of the tools you need to make an informed decision as to your future with leg waxing.
Whether visiting an esthetician for a professional leg waxing service or leg waxing at home, it’s important to know the pros and cons of the process before you switch over from the world of shaving. Once you’ve made the jump, you’ll want to ensure that you’re practicing proper pre and post waxing care to both maintain your wax, and to keep your skin in the best shape possible.
Overall, leg waxing is a safe and effective approach to leg hair removal for the best long term results. Though every hair removal process has its benefits and drawbacks, it's clear that waxing holds much more promise than downsides, and is an excellent option for those sick of trying to maintain their short term and ineffective shaving results at home.