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1:1 with Liz Lugo: Why is My Wax Not Removing Hair?

by Kirstyn Porter January 19, 2024 2 min read

Why is My Wax Not Removing Hair?

Hairless strips are no fun, we totally get it! After spending the time heating the wax to that perfect consistency, applying the strip to the skin, and removing it… just to see that the hair is STILL on your body. All the pain, with no gain? No, thank you! 

When your wax is not removing all the hair it can be incredibly frustrating. Sometimes it is hard to pinpoint exactly why your wax is not pulling out hair. The first thing to do is to ensure you're using a high quality and trusted formula.

Luckily, if you use Nova Wax and this happens, the issue won't be the wax - just your technique! It happens - whether you are an inexperienced waxer trying to learn how to wax yourself at home, or a professional that is unintentionally rushing through the process.

Created by master esthetician and hard wax specialist, Liz Lugo, Nova Wax’s premium formula is effective in removing any kind of body hair, however, it does go hand-in-hand with a stellar technique.There are key questions to ask yourself when using  your hard wax to avoid leaving behind hair, let’s strip them down:

  1. Are all products on the skin’s surface removed? Yes, even moisturizers are included!
  2. Is pressure being correctly applied (firm) to the wax upon applicationandat a 90-degree angle? 
  3.  Has a lip been created to remove the strip thoroughly? 
  4. Are you using enough wax?
  5. Are the edges on your strips evenly spread - without thick or cracking barriers? 

We will get more into these questions below, but they are helpful as a quick guide if your wax isn’t waxing the way it should!

Kirstyn Porter
Kirstyn Porter

Your skin should be cleansed and completely dry before waxing

Any barrier between the wax and your skin completely changes the effectiveness of the wax. When your wax is not sticking to hair, it usually means there is something on the skin that is preventing it from fully enveloping the hair.

Whether it isa moisturizeryou put on this morning or leftover makeup from the night before, these are barriers that distract the wax from the hair. Before you wax any area, it needs to be properly cleansed so it is nice and fresh for the wax.

It is important to cleanse with something that is gentle and not overly stripping; our pre-wax cleanser is a great go-to. Once cleansed, make sure the skin is completely dry! 

Read:All About Pre and Post Care

Apply enough pressure to the skin when applying hard wax

If the wax is not pulling out hair, the main factor is usually a lack of pressure. If you do not apply enough pressure, the hairs cannot fully adhere to the wax strip.

Learning how to apply wax to the skin with the appropriate amount of pressure usually eliminates the problem of the wax not pulling out hair. You want firm pressure that is still gentle enough to glide on the skin - no tugging over here!

Holding your stick at a 90-degree angle will provide you with the proper positioning to spread the wax properly. A flat stick is a no-no... save the buttering for your toast! 

Read: Why Is My Hard Wax Breaking?

Follow through on your removal of the strip

Whether you fear the pain you’re about to feel (or you’re scared how the person you’re waxing is going to react), the uncertainty in the strip removal process can also lead to your hard wax not removing all the hair. You may think that removing the wax strip gently to minimize the pain as much as possible is a good thing - but it does a lot more damage.

When you do not pull the strip hard enough and you leave hair behind, you will have to apply ANOTHER strip to cover the missed area which can then irritate the skin.

Touch-up strips are totally normal and necessary in some cases, however, you should be grabbing the majority of the hair in your first strip so that the cleanup strips to follow are a lot thinner and can be removed in a gentler, peeling motion.

When removing your hard wax strip, you want to have a really firm grip on the lip. Squeeze the lip throughout the entire removal, not just in the beginning, and completely follow through with the same energy from start to finish.

Liz likes to lift the lip and then fold it over to ensure that the strip is going to stay strong and intact during removal. If you put your effort into it in the first go, you will most likely not need as many touch-up strips afterward. Nova Wax is gentle on all skin types so pain and irritation are very minimal. Just go for it! 

There are some great tips on how to use hard wax in this blog. If you’re having trouble the section about creating a lip might be very helpful.

Use the proper amount of wax, depending on the area you are servicing 

There is no universal amount of wax that is effective for EVERY treatment - we wish it was that easy! Tailoring the amount of wax you use to the area you are servicing prevents you from wasting wax while also ensuring that the hard wax will remove all the hair.

You will use less wax for an upper lip wax because the hairs are finer and the area is smaller, but for a larger area like your lower leg - don’t be stingy! If your wax is not pulling out hair effectively, it is most likely because your strips do not contain the proper amount of wax.

If you are not pulling enough hard wax for your strip, it will not be strong enough to grasp the thicker, deep-rooted hairs. Thin strips will dry out very quickly on the skin, which will lead to cracking and breaking of the hairs.

If the strip is breaking or pulling, your wax is not REMOVING the hair - it is just breaking the hair at the surface and not pulling it fully from the root. Since the hair was only partially removed, this can lead to more frustration when the hair seems to be “growing back” too quickly. Avoid the hot mess (literally) and grab an ample amount of wax! 

Make sure your wax strip is even 

When applying your hard wax on the skin (with good pressure!) you also want to make sure the strip is evenly spread across the area. Janky edges are not allowed!

We know it is easy to rush through the application because you fear the wax will dry out too quickly when applying, but this will only lead to uneven edges and a painful removal process. If you have the right consistency and the right amount of wax, your application will be flawless! 

Hand in hand with using the proper amount of wax, you want to glide the wax across the skin evenly. The lip should be slightly thicker so you have a good grip for removal, but the rest of the strip should be even in texture.

Another reason why your hard wax is not removing all the hair could be because your strip is not strong enough throughout. If the strip is really thick at one end and thin on the other, the wax will not dry evenly. This uneven texture can lead to a patchy removal and your wax not pulling out all the hair in one go.

Learning how to use hard wax (if you are a newbie) will be difficult at first, but as you practice and perfect your hard wax application technique - all the key items above will become second nature! With consistency, the process will become easier and feel way more like a comfortable routine instead of a checklist of things you need to do.

Master each step as you carry along in your waxing journey and you will see how everything just falls into place. Even if you are a professional - it never hurts to re-analyze your waxing technique and spend time on little tweaks to make it even better! 

With Nova Wax, we do not just provide you with a stellar product - we are here to help you every step of the way as you use it!If you ever have any questions, our blogs are a great resource.

Check out the video below to go 1:1 with Liz about why your wax is not removing hair and how to fine-tune your hard wax technique to avoid it!