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The Difference Between Traditional Wax And Sugaring Wax

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Sugaring wax has become a popular trend, and we can almost guarantee just about every woman, at the bare minimum, has heard of it or looked into it! And that’s if you haven’t already tried it yourself. 

Though it seems like new hair removal trends pop up on the regular, this type of hair removal technique is not a new one! 

Actually, sugaring has been around since the ancient Egyptians were here from the 1900s B.C.! So, sugaring was never technically a new trend; it was just one that became more popular within the past few years.

If sugaring has always been around, then what makes it so special to become a popular new waxing trend just recently?

Is sugaring wax that different from traditional wax, and frankly, is one better than the other?

Let’s take the most basic question first: What is sugar wax?

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What Is Sugaring Wax?

Sugaring wax is a handmade sticky paste made up from a blend of natural ingredients used to remove hair from the body. The process is relatively similar to traditional waxing, but the ingredients are very different.

We’ll give you an example…

Sugar Wax Recipe

A basic sugar wax recipe you can use to make yourself is:

  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • 1/8 cup of water
  • 1/8 cup of lemon juice

That’s it! See, very natural and basic ingredients you most likely have at home already.

The challenge with sugar wax is less about the ingredients and more about the process to achieve the wax-like consistency.

How To Make Sugar Wax

Essentially, the thought of making this wax shouldn’t be too hard. In reality, it can be quite a challenge to get it to just the right consistency. Why?

Take a gander at the process first.

First off, you need to add all the ingredients to a saucepan on medium heat. Continue to stir all the ingredients together so they mix evenly. The mixture will begin to bubble.

It’s at this point that you need to keep a close eye. You want the mixture to become a golden brown color, and you need to consistently stir the mixture so it never burns at the bottom.

Once the color reaches its golden brown, you turn off the heat, move the saucepan off the burner and allow it to cool for a half-hour or so. At this point, you can stir it occasionally to help dissipate the heat all over the wax, but you don’t need to stir it continually.

Now, this is the tricky part. By the time your wax cools, you’re going to see if you took it off the burner at just the right time, too early, or too late. If it’s still too runny and not thick like wax, you will have to put it back on the burner and re-heat it until you’re at more of the golden color and then let it re-cool.

If it’s too thick, you won’t be able to wax with it and need to start over.

If you got it just right, call it a miracle because that’s how it can seem when you’re first learning how to make it!

You see how this can turn into a very time-consuming project and be quite frustrating if it doesn’t come out just right?

Also, after the wax has cooled in the pot, the wax needs to be stretched by hand to continue to help it cool and make it pliable enough to become a “wax.” Often even after thirty minutes, the wax can still be scalding hot, making it very difficult to touch with hands and potentially cause burns.

Difference Between Traditional Wax And Sugaring Wax

An obvious difference between traditional wax and sugar wax is the ingredients within them.

Traditional wax is made out of a blend of paraffin, beeswax, and other ingredients.

Sugar wax is simply made up of sugar, water, and lemon juice.

Another difference between traditional waxing and sugar waxing is in regards to how you achieve just the right consistency. With traditional wax, it’s easier to achieve since you have a blend of ingredients to help give it the perfect texture immediately after melting.

However, with sugaring wax, like stated above, it can be tough to reach the right consistency on your own, and finding salons that offer sugaring in your exact location may be difficult.

Traditionally, there are two types of wax used in salons: soft or hard. Which kind you use is still up to preference from yourself because both have their pros and cons.

The wax used in sugaring has only one kind, there are no choices.

Sugaring is most relatable to a hard wax because it uses no strips to remove hair, which allows for it to be more of a gentler hair removal. 

In comparison to soft waxing, where you have to be careful not to pull the skin with the strips because you can potentially stretch it and cause damage, with sugaring wax, this isn’t an issue since there are no strips used. However, the same does apply with hard traditional wax; you don’t have to worry about it attaching to the skin.

A high-quality traditional hard wax doesn’t adhere to the skin; it only adheres to the hair making skin irritation much less probable. 

You will also find the application and hair removal itself is a little different with sugaring and traditional wax.

With traditional wax, you always apply the wax in the direction of hair growth and pull in the opposite direction. With sugaring wax, you do this reversed. You apply in the opposite direction of hair growth and pull in the direction of hair growth.

Sugar Wax

Can You Sugar Wax Yourself?

Yes, you can certainly sugar wax yourself! Since the ingredients are simple and accessible, you can make your own sugar wax and wax any hair that you want to be removed, if you are up for the task.

Be aware that the process of making the wax and sugar waxing yourself can take quite a bit of time and won’t always leave the same results you would find if you were heading to the salon and getting traditionally waxed by a professional esthetician. 

Is Sugaring Better Than Waxing?

Everyone justifiably has their own opinions towards which hair removal process works best for them. If you examine the entire process at length, we find that both effectively remove the hair from the root and it really all depends on your needs.

We’ll tell you why.

We always see the benefits of a few ingredients and how simple ingredients can also help our skin by reducing skin irritation, so for that reason, yes, sugaring can be very beneficial for your skin. 

It can also be better for sensitive skin and reduce some of the pain that comes with the hair removal process! 

But, if you find a traditional wax, like this hard wax, that is gentle, sensitive to skin, and helps reduce irritation, you’ll find that your skin will be just as pleased even with the different ingredients.

There is a high risk in how you make the sugaring wax regarding causing serious burns not only on the area you are waxing but also on your hands and fingers from massaging the wax to cool it down.

By using traditional wax, you always use a spatula to apply the wax eliminating the risk of burns on your end. Since wax has a longer setting time, you can wait a few seconds to cool it down once you take it from the melting pot, reducing the risk of burns during application as well.

However, If you don’t want the struggle of making the sugar wax, there is more availability than ever by buying it online, which can eliminate this frustration.

With traditional waxing, you will find far more licensed and trained professionals to complete your service compared to trying to find a professional salon that does sugaring.

Equally, they both are effective at providing ample exfoliation and leaving your skin smooth and supple after hair removal. You have to choose for yourself what is more important and which one works better for your skin and hair. 

In Summary

Sugaring wax is pretty popular nowadays, and we can understand why! Sugar wax only contains three ingredients, and the results leave you with ones similar to traditional wax by removing hair off your body directly from the root.

Though it may seem much easier to just do it yourself at home with ingredients you probably already have, examining the entire process might keep you sticking with traditional wax as your hair removal method, or you may find the sugaring benefits outweigh the risks.

High-quality traditional wax helps exfoliate your skin and keep irritation low, just like sugaring does. Except with sugaring, the process of purchasing ingredients, making the wax, risking burns, and learning to apply it yourself can take quite a bit of time.

Finding professional estheticians using traditional wax can be much easier to do and often guarantees you much better results than when attempting to do it yourself, all while taking less time, too. Because, honestly, who really has extra time to waste? 

Yet, if you try sugaring and notice that it leaves you with less pain and less irritation, maybe sugaring is your personal winner! 

So, don’t be afraid to try sugaring wax! If it doesn’t work for you, you can always go back into the traditional wax route. If traditional wax is your number 1 choice, try out some hypoallergenic wax.

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Jessica Sweatt

Jessica is a world traveler and takes pride in running her home.

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