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Confessions of a Bikini Waxer

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As told to Phillip Picardi.

I have been an aesthetician for almost 20 years. But, as far as learning to wax…that’s a different story. Basically, I just went through cosmetology school, and was thrown into aesthetics (facials, waxing, etc.) at my first job. I did a crash course in skin care and brow waxing and all of that good stuff, but at the time, Brazilians were just starting—they weren’t as pervasive as they are today. One day, my boss was just like, "There’s a Brazilian in your book tomorrow!" But, I had never done one before. So, she sent me a video tutorial to take home and I remember watching it over breakfast. My husband was there and there were some painters doing work in the house, and they were like, "What is this?!" I knew about as much as they did.

Long story short, it was baptism by fire. I just had to do it. It took me a long time, and I learned there’s always a tricky situation to avoid—especially on people’s butts. If you don’t do it properly, one cheek sticks to the other and you can leave a hickey mark. There can be some really scary moments. Thankfully, everything turned out just fine. Except, the woman I was waxing kept talking about sex with her husband and how he’s going to love this, and it was a little uncomfortable given that it was my first time.

There are so many of those sorts of stories, and every aesthetician has one, but I have to say, bikini waxing allows you to really develop an intimate relationship with your client. There are plenty of people who can do facials or eyebrows, but, generally, once a regular decides to finally bite the bullet and come in for a Brazilian, I know that she’s loyal. In fact, I’ve been seeing my regular Brazilian clients for over a decade. They’re my most loyal clientele. And, that’s because the whole situation builds a mutual amount of trust—she’s nervous or outside of her comfort zone, maybe, and I’m there to help in a way that hopefully feels delicate and safe. It’s weird to say, but that can be somewhat rewarding. Here are a few mores tories of my time at the table.

Playing for Keeps
Of course, it only got more interesting. My second client was absurdly neurotic when I would wax her. I used a hard wax, and every time I’d do a section, she’d ask for the pieces of wax with her hair in them because she wanted to see how much was removed. She’d collect it and take it home with her, asking for a paper towel to put it all in. You’re in a position, as the aesthetician, where you have to be professional and you can’t act like it’s weird or uncomfortable—you just keep your cool no matter what.

Hot Wax...Is Hot?
Nobody tops my ultimate Brazilian client. This woman was sort of a VIP at the salon—she got very expensive haircuts and color with the owner, and then eventually started coming in for bikini waxing, and then she wanted Brazilian waxing, which is usually about how it goes. If I ever waxed her butt, she would say things like, “Oh, this is really hot.” And, I would just pretend I didn’t hear it. I tried to make conversation about, like, the most bland things or, you know, anything that doesn’t have to do with what’s actually happening. Usually you talk about the weather! But, she always got turned on.

One time, she was actually moaning and she kept repeating that, saying, “This is really hot!” And, I just thought to myself, how can you change the topic? She doesn’t eat gluten—let’s talk about that! But, nothing worked. She just kept moaning every time I would rip a section. Finally, I finished the service and left the spa room, but she ended up staying in there with the door closed for almost a half-hour. God knows what was going on. Later, she called the salon complaining that she got some sort of folliculitis or something like that; it was pretty much the ultimate nightmare. [Head to Refinery29 for the full story!]

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