Archive for the ‘wax’ Category

Oh hey, Vancouver!

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Vancouver! We opened our 6th location on Friday March 24 and we couldn’t be more excited to bring what we do best (dazzle you) to Washington.

I have to say, it was a looooong few weeks! That is the deal with construction: it’s a lot of waiting until the last few weeks, and then: BOOM! Everything has to fit together in just a few short days. We did it, but it was a close one!

I love opening new locations. It is the most exciting time, and also I get to be surrounded by my favorite people. There is a whirlwind of activity, and everyone comes together to just get it all done. It is really amazing to see how the space transforms in just a few days.

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Do Angie and I look like zombies in this picture? At one point I looked at her and she looked grey from lack of sleep! That woman is not only always on the go, she also has a one year old baby boy at home! I will tell you, when she is tired she thinks I am very funny…so that is a bonus!

The Vancouver Chamber of Commerce came on Friday and we did a ribbon cutting that was very fun. Big scissors? Yes, please!

It was a great day and we cannot wait to see you there! Now…onto our next Vancouver location! Hazel Dell will be opening in July!

xo,
Shannon

Urban Waxx
16415 SE 15th St
Vancouver WA

 

 

Brazilian: Just the Facts, Ma’am

Looking at the Urban Waxx blog stats, the blog that I wrote in 2009, “What the heck is a Brazilian, anyway?” is by far the most read post. I can only guess it’s because there are still millions of people googling the definition of a Brazilian on a daily basis. I almost forget that there are people out there that have NO idea what a Brazilian bikini wax is, or how it will totally change your life. Ok, maybe it won’t change your life the way winning the lottery might, but it’s still pretty cool.

So let’s talk about it. What is it? Well, it’s the complete removal of all your hair from the entire bikini area. ALL of it. That means your complete “undercarriage” including labia and butt crack. However, you have the option of leaving some hair at the top. What do I mean by that? Well I’ll include a diagram, courtesy of the Brazilian Bikini Wax Spa, to give you an idea of what we can leave behind.

Get the idea? I would say that the most popular at Urban Waxx are probably the Landing Strip, or the Bermuda Triangle (we call it a Dorito) or the Clean as a Whistle. But, what we leave behind is as individual as the gal, or guy, that is getting the wax. Do you love this diagram? I kind of do. I might do something similar for the website. I think it’s brilliant!

You will see, whilst perusing waxing menus, that they are often set up differently. A lot of salons have wax prices like this:

Bikini wax $35 and up

or

Brazilian wax $70 +

This is something that I am not a fan of. At all. It leaves a huge gray area. I’m not a fan of “gray area” when it comes to the service industry. I imagine the dialogue going awkwardly like this: “Uhhh, yes, we USUALLY charge $70 for a Brazilian, but you, lady, you’re going to cost $95.” I mean, come on. So weird. We charge the same price across the board. It’s a protocol that we have at Urban Waxx that takes all of the uncomfortable conversation about the cost out of the Esthetician’s hands. Then they can spend all of their time focusing on the client…and get down to business!

We are also always asked if waxing hurts. As I have mentioned in several other posts, yes, I’m afraid it is not completely pain free. But isn’t there a certain amount of pain involved with almost any beauty treatment? I mean, have you ever worn high heels for more than a few hours? Now that’s pain. There is a little bit of pain involved, but honestly it is so quick, and we are SO good at what we do, that it’s very bearable. Seriously, I’m a huge baby when it comes to pain, and I am a regular waxer. But, just in the interest of full disclosure, and because I think this is kind of a funny YouTube video, enjoy the below video. However: please be aware of the fact that this is NOT at Urban Waxx, not our clients, not even the type of wax that we use. It’s just for laughs, people. Let’s not get worked up.

If you EVER have questions about waxing, wax, Brazilians, or YouTube videos about waxing (ok maybe not that one), then don’t hesitate to contact me. My email is shannon@urbanwaxx.com. And I LOVE to talk about waxing!

xo

Nostril waxing: you know you want it.

We talk A LOT about Brazilian waxing at Urban Waxx. A lot. It is absolutely our most popular service. However, sometimes I think we tend to overlook some of the other services that we do at Urban Waxx, like, for example, the nostril wax.

The next time you are in front of a mirror, under the unforgiving glare of a harsh light, check out your nostrils. How are they looking? Could they use a wee bit of wax to groom those stray hairs that are poking out? This service is particularly relevant for our male clients, but I think that almost everyone could use a nostril clean up. It’s an amazing before and after. I also feel that nothing makes your face make-up go on smoother than a quick lip and nostril wax. No more fine hairs to get in the way of your make-up routine!

Check it out. It’s like a breath of fresh air! And just like our other wax services, once you start, you’ll never go back! :)

Welcome to Urban Waxx, now gimme a Brazilian!

I think it’s pretty funny that part of my training process with new waxers is that they have to give me a Brazilian wax. I always wonder, as I’m laying on the table, what other jobs require you to see your boss naked. Not too many, I imagine. 
Clients always ask me, “Well who waxes you?” and I always joke and tell them that I go somewhere else. Come on! Of course I get waxed at Urban Waxx! First of all, we are the best wax around. I firmly believe that! But second of all, how could I possibly feel comfortable letting my clients get waxed by a waxer that I have never been waxed by? Oh no! No, I routinely get my Brazilians, and I am always so excited to be reassured that all of the girls blow my mind with how great they are!

I bring this up because yesterday I received a Brazilian from our newest addition, Gina. She is absolutely charming and adorable, and I knew during her training that she was a very talented waxer. So I wasn’t nervous at all. However, as strange as it may seem: I am a HUGE baby when it comes to getting waxed! My pain tolerance is about a 2 on a scale of 1-10. I whine. I fidget. I constantly look at the area being waxed to see how much longer have. I sweat. I complain. Yup, I am pretty much our idea of a “nightmare client.” So, I always tell the gals that I am the worst case scenario. I think that they assume that I am doing it to test them, but really, I am just pretty wimpy.

Yesterday I tried our new numbing serum, Numb-IT. It was pretty amazing. It definitely numbed my nether regions and helped with the Brazilian. And, as I expected, Gina was quick and efficient and in no time I was hair free and on my way. I still think it’s funny that my entire staff has seen my privates, but I guess when you are in the business of Brazilians, it comes with the territory!

Just what the heck is a Brazilian, anyway?

We received an email this morning from a new client. She said that she loved the blog but wondered if I would be so kind as to explain what the different types of bikini waxes that we offer on our menu are. Well, I would be happy to oblige!

When I came up with our Urban Waxx menu, I tried to be as blunt and to the point as possible. Let’s start with the most basic bikini wax, appropriately named: “The Bikini Wax”. So, this wax will remove any hair that is showing if you are wearing a smaller pair of bikini panties. This wax will leave all of the hair on your labia and your butt, but will clean up the sides and the top, leaving a cute little triangle of hair. Sometimes a gal might want more hair on the front of her bikini area, but have the backside waxed smooth. In that case, she may choose the “Bikini and Crack” option. That covers the bikini, as described above and, you guessed it, the butt crack.
The next option for a wax is the “Thong Wax.” The thong is pretty self explanatory. We leave a thin strip of hair from the top of the vagina all the way down. Basically what is left is what would be concealed if you are wearing a small thong, hence the name. The thong leaves the hair on the labia and the butt crack, unless you opt for the “Thong and Crack” option, which would also take off the hair in the butt crack.
Last but certainly not least is our most popular wax, “The Brazilian.” In fact, this service is so popular that last year we did almost 4000 Brazilian waxes! Now that’s a lot of practice! Anyway, a Brazilian is basically having it ALL taken off. That includes the labia and the butt crack. Now some clients at first are a little apprehensive about having their “tail feathers” waxed off. They think it will hurt or that they are the only lady in the world who has a little hair on the hiney. Well, I am here to tell you: EVERYONE has hair on the hiney! And if you are getting the hair everywhere else waxed off, why hold on to the hair on the back end? I mean really.
Another Brazilian option is to not go completely bare, but leave a little landing strip or a little triangle of hair at the top. That kind of lets the world know: “Hey! I am old enough to have hair, I simply choose NOT to have any!” 
Well, whatever shape, style and size you choose to have your bikini line. we are here for you. We don’t judge and more importantly: we LOVE what we do!

What was I afraid of?

Ah, the irony. Imagine a gal who owns a waxing salon and is afraid to have a Brazilian. Can it be so? Yes, friends, it’s true. The main reason that I was so nervous about getting a Brazilian is that I hadn’t had one since before I gave birth. And I mean, way before. I would say it has been a solid 7 or 8 months. That’s too much. Seriously. 

So, after much nagging from my lovely staff and my poor boyfriend, I put myself on the schedule for an appointment with Mindy yesterday. As the appointment approached, I understood again why our clients can be so nervous before they come in. It can be scary. You know it will hurt, you expose yourself to a veritable stranger, you let someone see your most intimate of areas. But as I lay there on the table, chatting away with Mindy, I realized that what I tell my clients every day really is true: It is not that big of a deal! It really didn’t hurt like I expected it to, even after such a long sabbatical from hair removal. Mindy and I were talking and laughing and before I knew it she announced “Last strip! You’re done!” It was amazing!
After she finished, I felt like all of my clients must feel after they have their Brazilians: liberated! Tough! Sexy! All of those things! It really made me feel great about what we are doing at Urban Waxx. I always tell the waxers to get Brazilians from each other so that they can experience what our clients feel. I think it keeps us empathetic. And having my first appointment in a LONG time made me feel so grateful that the waxers are as good as I always say they are. It was a great wax, and I made a promise to myself: NO MORE SABBATICALS!

Is all wax created equal…NO!

We get all kinds of questions about what we do at urban waxx. In fact, in days to come I will devote an entire entry to questions about embarrassing topics that you were afraid to ask. Believe me, no matter how embarrassing you think they might be, I have been asked it at least 50 times. But we’ll save that for another day.
Today, I will discuss something that is very near and dear to my heart, something I spend too much time thinking about: wax.
In the past 12 years, ever since I was a lil pup in esthetics school back in New Jersey, I have worked with a lot of different waxes. Before I ever decided to go into this business, I used to go to the local nail joint to have my lip and brows waxed. Each and every time, the woman waxing me would rip the top layer of skin under my brows off, leaving me with shiny red skin for a day, then a lovely scab for about a week after that. In my naivete, I was pretty sure that was how brows were supposed to look. Well, clearly, that is not the case. I attribute that scabbing to cheap, crappy wax that is WAY too hot.
I was waxing for about 5 years when, in 1997 or so, I started to hear the buzz about Brazilian waxing. To be honest, I was a little nervous about taking the plunge. I was very concerned that without proper training, I could easily rip something off that someone really needed. I mean, you have to be careful down there…as we all know. But, the more I heard about it, the more I was intrigued. I started adding Brazilians into my repertoire, learning by trial and error, basically.
The next summer, I went to New York for a little vacation. While I was there, I decided to check out the supposed waxing mecca: J. Sisters. From what I had heard, J. Sisters was THE place to get a Brazilian, especially since Gwyneth Paltrow had announced that the J.Sisters had “changed her life.” I was curious.
I made my appointment for my first Brazilian. Now, although I had been performing Brazilians for a year or so at that time, I had never actually had a Brazilian. Control issues…it’s a problem. So, I showed up for my scheduled appointment with my boyfriend at the time. I checked in and then a beeline for the tiny closet of a bathroom. After peeing, I just wanted to bend over to take a quick peek at my privates to make sure everything was on the up and up, considering that a stranger would be investigating that area in about 5 minutes. Satisfied that everything was inspection worthy, I stood up, in the process soundly cracking my head on the paper towel dispenser and making an enormous, resounding noise. After the stars cleared, I stepped directly into the small, crowded waiting area to be met with curious stares. Not a good start.
My Esthetician came out to get me. At this time my BF asked her how long it would take. She answered firmly; “Seven minutes.” Seven minutes!?! That made me a little nervous. I considered myself pretty proficient, and I had NEVER completed a Brazilian wax in seven minutes. I gave my BF a fearful look and was led away.
The room where she waxed was TINY. Basically four walls and a table, and her waxing cart. And the strangest part…no ceiling. After she left and I was undressing, I could hear the waxing going on in the rooms on either side of me. All of the “rrriiippps” and the grunts of pain did not make me feel any better. I felt like I was a voyeur…and not in a good way.
So, my waxer opened the door and the fun began. I was laying on my back on a tiny table, and she immediately began chastising me, in a thick Brazilian accent, about the fact that I had shaved a few weeks ago. “This will hurt,” she announced. Oh, brother. She applied the honey colored wax to my areas, pressed the muslin strip down, and then rip. I blacked out. THIS is what I was doing to women all of this time, I thought? Oh my God I am a sadist!
In the end, the wax took less than 10 minutes, and that included the tweezing (yes, tweezing. not good). At one point I glanced down and noticed that she was not wearing gloves. I was suddenly horrified, wondering how many other New Yorker’s privates she had touched that day. Did she wash her hands? Was there Purell involved? To finish me off, she squirted some gel into her hand and gave my thoroughly annoyed vagina a vigorous rubdown. I felt like maybe she should have at least bought me dinner, first.
I flew out of the room, white as a ghost (except for my lobster-red privates), paid, and got the hell out of there. I explained to my BF that she was not wearing gloves, she didn’t talk to me at all, she used the hottest wax ever, and after she rubbed cream on me like she was trying to get a stain off of a dress. At that, his eyes lit up a little. “Huh. So…did it feel good?” he asked. Ahhh, men. So silly. So simple sometimes.

Anyway, what is the point of me regaling you with my Brazilian horror story, you ask? Well, firstly, to tell you that I too have felt the pain of a bad wax…and I would NEVER let that happen again. I know the difference between a fabulous experience and a nightmare hair ripping. And, secondly, to illustrate the point that all waxes are different. In my experience, I have found that the soft wax, that wax that is heated until very thin and then removed with a strip of cloth, is NOT suitable for the more private areas. It burns, it removes skin, it leaves you red for days.
After much trial and error, I found and fell in love with the 3 waxes that we use at urban waxx. For more sensitive areas, such as the bikini, underarm, face, etc., we use 2 types of hard wax. One looks just like Silly Putty, and the other is deep purple. Both are applied to the area, they set up, and then you pull the wax off. No strip, no sticky residue. Because the wax is not heated until thin and melty, it is much gentler on the skin, doesn’t leave you red, and allows us to go over the same area more than once (no tweezing)!
The 3rd wax that we use is a strip wax, and we use that for larger, less sensitive areas, like the legs, back and chest. It also leaves no sticky residue, and really grabs those little baby hairs.
Clients that come to urban waxx and experience our amazing wax selection versus other lesser quality wax always comment that it hurts SO much less. I agree. Higher quality wax+talented waxers=a pretty painless experience, all things considered.

So, that’s enough about wax and my pain for today. I can assure you that I have had hundreds of Brazilians since that first experience, and they have been much, much better. And I am a pretty big baby when it comes to pain. But I thank you for letting me wax poetic. Get it?