Same Same But Different – Waxing versus Sugaring

Lilliane Caron discusses the differences between waxing and sugaring.

Sugaring has been around for centuries and is an early form of waxing. It’s currently enjoying a resurgence in the beauty scene. While most therapists are well aware of sugaring and it’s deep history, Body Sugaring is becoming an increasingly popular request from clients, today.

So why, after centuries of flying under the radar and being outshone by waxing has sugaring started to make a comeback? These days’ consumers are looking for more natural alternatives for their food, skincare and cleaning products. We are taking more notice of what were putting on and in our bodies.

Firstly, let’s discuss what body sugaring actually is. The technique of sugaring uses a natural toffee-like substance that is kneaded into the skin repeatedly, removing the hair as it goes. The paste is spread or moulded onto the skin by hand or with a spatula against the direction of hair growth. It’s said to seep down into the hair follicle and wrap itself around the shaft of the hair. When the sugaring paste is ‘flicked’ off, the hair including the bulb, slides out in the direction in which it grows. This technique differs to waxing which removes the hair in the opposite direction. One of my very first memories of hair removal is making my own sugar paste with my Lebanese friends and using it on each other! Back then sugaring was more common because you would actually make it yourself in a pot on the stove. How funny it is, that everything seems to work in a full circle!

While waxing and sugaring techniques are different, the results are much the same when performed correctly. Therapists who have been trained in waxing and decide to offer sugaring essentially need to ‘unlearn’ everything they know about waxing to become proficient in sugaring and perfect their technique.

Some clients will swear black and blue that sugaring hurts less than waxing, but just like any treatment it really comes down to the skill of the therapist. Both techniques remove hair from the follicle and that’s not going to tickle. They can however be substantially less painful if the therapist is performing the treatment with good technique. Sugar addicts claim that waxing can lead to more broken hairs, however without a proficient technique sugaring can too. So the key message here – is whatever your choice – waxing or sugaring – ensure you are well trained and you use good quality products on your clients.

Anyone who has ever heard me talk about waxes, will know that the consistency of your wax is vital when it comes to delivering the perfect waxing treatment. Sugaring is no different. Sugaring paste is warmed only slightly, making it almost impossible to burn clients. The paste gains temperature through body heat and this can play a role in how it works. It can also work differently in warmer climates and spoil easily. It will crystallise if exposed to moisture – even the smallest amount of sanitising solution or water can affect the consistency and effectiveness of the product, and if it’s heated too much it will burn. A big advantage of sugaring is that generally only one ball of paste is required per body part, so there’s no going back and forth to the wax pot or risk of double dipping.

Sugaring pastes are available in different varieties. Firm pastes are ideal for beginners as they’re easier to control. They are designed to be used on warmer areas of the body like the Brazilian and underarm, are good for smaller areas of the body and for use in warmer climates. A soft paste is suited to a more experienced therapist and for use on larger areas such as legs and arms that normally aren’t as warm. I find using a sugar-based strip wax in conjunction with your sugaring paste can speed up the process of removing hair from the larger areas whilst still giving your clients an all-natural treatment.

Ingredients in waxes can vary greatly; they can be derived from unrefined resins (pine resin) or synthetic resins. There is much less room for variance when it comes to manufacturing sugaring pastes. Sugaring pastes or gels are essentially made from sugar, water and lemon juice. While all recipes are slightly different, it has been made from those same basic ingredients since it originated in the ancient Middle-Eastern practice centuries ago.

Because of the basic and natural formula, sugaring is gaining a reputation for not causing skin irritations, which is backlash that waxing can sometimes cop. Sugaring can absolutely be a solution for clients that choose not to wax because they suffer from reactions and irritations from even the most sensitive waxes.

If you’re considering adding body sugaring to your treatment menu, there are some important things for you to think about. Firstly, ask your clients if they are happy with their waxing treatments? If they’re not happy, delve into the reasons why. Are your therapists lacking confidence or expertise? Rather than re-training your staff in a skill they have already learnt, maybe they would benefit from a refresher waxing workshop. Getting their waxing skills up to scratch will be a lot easier, quicker and cost effective than learning an entirely new technique.

You need to determine if sugaring fits your business model. Some salons and spas base all of their offerings around natural, vegan friendly and organic products and services, and this can be a real point of difference. There will always be a niche client market wanting holistic and natural treatments, and business savvy salons can reap the benefits of this. Salons offering this exclusive service will generally charge more than a waxing treatment as it does take more time to perform and while cost effective, the paste does cost more per kilo than most waxes. In saying this, clients seeking natural alternatives are generally willing to pay that little bit extra.

If you have a mobile business, sugaring can be a great option, especially if you’d like to specialise in it. It requires little to no heating, making travelling and setting up for appointments easy and one ball will generally get you through an entire treatment. As sugaring paste can simply be washed off with warm water, no extra product is necessary during the treatment or for cleaning-up. Clients can be turned over quickly and efficiently. Just remember to clean your mobile station regularly as ants LOVE sugar!

You should also keep in mind personal preference, it’s no secret that I favour waxing, I find sugaring more taxing on my wrists. But everyone is different, I know therapists who find sugaring to be much easier on their body, so it really does come down to what you like doing and how your body works.

While sugar paste will not necessarily replace all waxes, there may be a place for it alongside the waxes on your trolley.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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WHY YOU NEED A PASSION FOR WAXING!

Lilliane Caron discusses what happened to the art of waxing and those who have a passion for it.

WHY YOU NEED A PASSION FOR WAXING!

It’s the season to be merry so what better time to reignite your passion for waxing. Get ready for an influx of old and new clients wanting to look great and have silky smooth skin for summer – all at the last minute!

Every day we hear salon owners asking the same questions; where can I find therapists who are happy to wax all day long? And why are so many therapists hesitant to master both the male and female Brazilian? These questions always seem to come up at the busiest times of year whilst you should be thinking about preparing salon and retail promotions, rosters, gift vouchers and your extended trading hours! Whilst not forgetting to update those client details, email addresses and posting to social media – just to add to your already busy workload!

With so many different decisions to be made and services to master within the beauty industry, it can be difficult to know what is important to focus on. Salon owners and therapists can often get side tracked by services that don’t generate much income for a salon. Waxing is the bread and butter service of any salon and as a therapist you should not only list this skill on your resume, you need to be sure you excel at it too.

There are a variety of benefits and amazing opportunities that come with being a skilled waxing therapist. Focussing on improving your skills will make you passionate about waxing and you will never lose clients when you’re a passionate and efficient waxer!

THE OPPORTUNITIES:
Many different types of people look to waxing as an affordable method of hair removal, so the work opportunities are endless for those who want to make waxing their full time profession. The truth is that the clientele for hair removal is not just limited to ‘twenty-something year old’ females anymore! Men now too are interested in the benefits of waxing, and why not, it is a great solution that is very effective.

Male waxing is a trend on the rise, and it doesn’t look like it will be going away any time soon. We have seen men feeling more and more comfortable with taking care of themselves and the way they look. Which means; the male Brazilian, XXX intimate waxing for men! It’s truly important as a therapist to master your male and female Brazilian waxing technique; otherwise you’ll be cutting out half of your potential profits! If you aren’t feeling one hundred percent confident with intimate waxing there are plenty of resources available to you for mastering this technique.

According to The Guild of Beauty Therapist’s 2017 Beauty Industry Survey, waxing and shaving combined still remains the most popular form of hair removal at 65% of participants. A small number of clients chose alternative methods such as, Intense Pulse Light Therapy (1.5%) Laser Hair Removal (2%) Sugaring (4%) and Threading (28.1%)

IPL and laser hair removal is not accessible to everyone (such as those with skin conditions, younger skin, and certain hair types) so waxing is the only alternative for a lot of the population.

Sugaring can be more painful and irritating for some people, more so than regular waxing. As Sugaring isn’t available everywhere it is still considered a niche hair removal treatment with limited availability.

Shaving remains the most convenient method however we have to remember that it isn’t always the cheapest or most effective option. You can cut yourself, which is a huge cause for concern, as cuts in the pubic area can leave people more vulnerable to infections such as STIs. Waxing really is the safest option as it may prevent repeated injuries since it removes the whole hair follicle and extends the period before the hair grows back.

On average, 15 wax treatments are carried out each week in the UK by over 36,500 salons. This adds up to 23.4 million per year!! Clients don’t wax for a special occasion either; 79% claim that they always like to be hair free, meaning that you can rely on wax appointments as repeat business for your salon. With those kinds of statistics it’s difficult to dispute that waxing is a thriving salon service and there is significant money to be made!


Top waxing services:
1. Eyebrow shape
2. Brazilian & Intimate XXX waxing (Male & Female)
3. Back Wax – Male
4. Chest Wax – Male
5. Full Leg Wax
6. Arm Wax (Half)

YOUR SECRET WEAPON:

As you can imagine, the product used when waxing is just as important as the technique! Inconsistent wax makes the therapist’s job more difficult, especially when waxing sensitive, intimate or XXX areas.
Over 35% of therapists use the wax brand that they were taught with in school. Caronlab believe in supporting the future of waxing and we offer a range of training, product knowledge, waxing kits and workshops for school, teachers and students.

Inferior waxing companies continually change their wax formulations without letting the end user know, but when waxing with Caronlab products you can be certain they will help you to master your art! We are committed to salon innovation and are the preferred brand for both Beauty Therapists and their clients. Known for our superior products and the results they deliver Caronlab Australia is the only choice in professional hair removal products and accessories.

TRAINING

If you are serious about a career in beauty, waxing is definitely a must know treatment! And if you’d like to brush up on your skills or you need more confidence in intimate waxing, our courses are the best on the market. I have a very specific waxing method that is both unique and I have taught it to many around the world. It will give you the confidence you need to build on your waxing skills. Please contact our team of qualified trainers who can offer you one on one workshop or group training.

My first business (opened almost 40 years ago) is a salon called Smooth & Tan. Designed by a therapist for beauty therapists, my waxing rooms are built to make waxing more efficient for both the therapist and the client. Still running today, I invite you to come and visit my salon if you are in the Geelong area. Let my knowledge and passion for waxing help you!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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BRAZILIAN WAXING AND DAMAGING CLAIMS OF PIGMENTATION

Lilliane Caron discusses hyperpigmentation and why it’s an avoidable and unacceptable side effect of waxing. for your salon.

BRAZILIAN WAXING AND DAMAGING CLAIMS OF PIGMENTATION

You may have read that waxing can cause darkening and darker skin patches called hyperpigmentation. The facts are, with superior product and expert technique, waxing won’t cause hyperpigmentation at all. Products or packages on offer that include serums claiming to reduce hyperpigmentation after waxing are essentially degrading to the wax industry. Skin damage due to waxing is unacceptable. A client shouldn’t leave a wax treatment feeling anything less than amazing, let alone loaded up with after-care products for an avoidable condition. Hyperpigmentation can occur after skin lifting, burning, irritation and bruising, all of which are completely unacceptable during the waxing process. Promoting a product/cure to treat an avoidable occurrence is simply lowering industry standards and that’s just not good enough for clients or our salons.

Hyperpigmentation occurs when excess melanin forms deposits under the lower layer of the epidermis and darker patches begin to appear. There are two types of hyperpigmentation, Passive Pigmentation and Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH).

Passive Pigmentation occurs when an internal imbalance stimulates our melanin producing hormones and generally occurs in women around times of hormonal changes such as puberty, pregnancy, contraceptive medication, and menopause.

Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation, is the result of skin trauma. When our skin is in distress, our melanocyte cell is stimulated to send melanin to the skin’s surface (between the dermis and the epidermis). Where waxing is concerned, the preventable trauma associated with hyperpigmentation occurs when the skin layers have been damaged due to lifting, burning, irritation and subsequent bruising. The occurrence of ingrown hair can be lessened during waxing when using the correct techniques. The scarring and darkening of the skin due to an infected ingrown is similar to acne scarring and can occur when the hair diverts while growing back through the surface of the skin.

Our products are best sellers because they are trusted to deliver a smooth and efficient Brazilian waxing treatment, without any side effects. Our kits offer every in-treatment product required delivering the entire service from pre-waxing hygiene, to postwax treatment and even room hygiene once the client has left the treatment. We’ve never considered wholesaling or retailing unnecessary after-care products because our waxes and pre & post products are superior and we care about your salon’s bottom line.

But it’s not just inferior products that are damaging the industry. Improper technique, speed waxing, 7 minute Brazilians, and the like are all grounds for skin trauma and un-happy clients. My article The Truth About The 7 Minute Brazilian goes into more detail about the importance of looking after our clients and taking the time to make sure we use gentle techniques. Again, hyperpigmentation is an avoidable side effect so let’s talk about prevention…

Prevention is better than a cure

• Conducting a thorough skin analysis is imperative to getting to know your client’s requirements. Observations to consider include skin tone (darker tones are more prone to hyperpigmentation upon damage), the client’s age and any medications he/she may be using, as well as topical skin care products and ingredients. Each of these factors can determine skin health and elasticity and what wax treatments are most suitable. For all skin types, when waxing sensitive and intimate areas, we recommend Brilliance Hard Wax. It contains Titanium Dioxide to reduce skin redness.

A skin analysis is also a GREAT time to cross-promote your services. Whilst talking to the client on the condition of their skin you can upsell a suitable facial or body wrap to improve the health and appearance of their skin.

• Skin preparation is imperative to an effective and trauma-free wax. Micro Defence Foam is ideal for facial and intimate areas as it is an alcohol and chemical free biocide that eliminates germs, removes oils, surface dirt, moisture and makeup. Caronlab’s Pre Waxing Skin Cleanser is ideal for the body. Prepping the skin ensures that the area is clean and the wax grips the hair first time every time so no need to repeat waxing the same area which can lead to skin lifting.

• If you use an inferior product or you haven’t considered a suitable wax for your client’s skin type, it can lead to skin lifting, burning, pulling and bruising which as we know can lead to hyperpigmentation during the healing process.

When you’re assessing your wax ask yourself the following; does it grip the hairs? Is the consistency stringy? Does it smell of resin or chemicals? Does it lift the skin? Does it cause redness and irritation? Does it cause ingrown hairs or pimples? Does it require the use of a pre-wax oil to protect the skin? If you answered yes to one or more of these you definitely need to rethink your wax. Consider a wax that is pliable, consistent, nourishing on the skin, has a subtle aroma, and of course, is removing hair properly. Brilliance the original white wax has been the number 1 selling wax in Australia for 10 years. If you are using a superior wax with a good reputation and still experience difficulty, it may be your technique. Don’t hesitate to ask the manufacturer. They can provide some tips on the best consistency and technique for using their wax. After all, they know it best!

• The number one most crucial step to avoid the horror of skin damage during waxing is technique. Training and up to-date knowledge is imperative to protect your clients and your salon’s reputation. Caronlab provides extensive training and support through hands-on workshops. Keeping informed and up to date on the latest products and techniques is paramount to running a successful salon. Innovations in products can change the way our industry performs treatments. We’ve seen a huge rise in the use of film wax since our Brazilliant beaded film wax hit the market. This new product has a lower melting point, unique application and removal technique and can be used all over the body.

• Soothing with an after wax treatment can nourish and cool the skin. Caronlab’s After Care lotions with Mango and Witchazel or Tea Tree Oil, have pharmaceutical properties that actively soothe skin after waxing.

Another factor to consider post waxing is that during the natural process of waxing, dead skin cells are lifted revealing fresh new skin cells. These new cells may be more sensitive and reactive to UV light which is something to be aware of for hyperpigmentation prone clients. We recommend all skin types to wear protective clothing and an SPF 50+ to protect their skin after waxing and beyond.

• Following up with appropriate and affordable aftercare advice is a great way to protect the integrity of your treatment. Breakouts can occur after waxing the lip for the first time, to avoid this use Bump eRaiser Medi Paste. Also as a preventative measure, the entire range of Bump eRaiser (Cool Splash, Triple Action Lotion, Zesty Wash, Exfoliating Mitt) can counteract the possibility of ingrown hair. As a retail option you can make a great profit on-selling this necessary range to your clients and in-turn they’ll be wrapped with the results.

As Therapists, it is our job to do all we can to make a client’s waxing experience, including the treatment itself and the results afterwards as pleasant as possible. Globally, salons and aestheticians have a healthy, booming waxing industry. With IPL becoming increasingly popular we need to protect our client base from scaremongering about avoidable side effects. And if clients suffer from severe side effects because we aren’t using the right products or technique – they definitely won’t be back!

Contact us today if you’re considering a re-fresh in your training and skill set. We’d be more than happy to come and teach you more about our latest products and how they can lead to repeat business and happy clients.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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FOR A BETTER SALON THIS SUMMER WAXING SEASON

A waxing experience always makes you feel fresher lighter & brighter especially when it’s performed by a confident therapist or esthetician using the correct technique. Here are my 10 top tips on how to have a better Salon this summer waxing season!

FOR A BETTER SALON THIS SUMMER WAXING SEASON

1 – The set up

When it comes to your trolley, less is more! Waxing should be a quick and precise process. Wax dries atmospherically, this means you need to work quickly. Make sure your waxes are placed towards the front of your trolley; with all your pre and post products placed behind, or when possible hanging from the side. This allows fast and easy access to your waxes and if you happen to drip wax in the process you are not dripping it all over your other products and tools! This will save you plenty of time when it comes to clean up. Hanging all your ancillary bottles off the side of the trolley will not only making room for your wax pots, but it is also a great way to have quick and easy access to each product. Trigger sprays are a lot easier to work with. There is no need for cotton pads/tissues, you simply spray the intended area and rub in prior to or post the waxing treatment.

2 – Let there be light

Good lighting is extremely important, not just good lighting in the room but extra lighting to make sure you get all those sneaky little hairs! Trolleys with a magi lamp attached are great or even Magnifying glasses that have a light attached (like the eyelash technicians use) are also a perfect tool that won’t get in the way while you are doing the treatment. Simply shine the light over the area after you have finished waxing to check if any hairs have been missed. Make sure your trolley has wheels especially if you have one with a light, this way it can be moved easily around the room and accessible at all times. You would be amazed at the difference a good trolley with all the right features will make!

3 – Make your bed

If the room you are working in is purely for waxing – which is advisable, as this can be a sticky service, it is important waxing table is set up correctly! This is usually the first thing a customer will look at and it is important they feel like they are in a professional and clean environment. The best set up (which requires the least laundry and clean up!) is; the waxing table, covered by a large towel to provide comfort, then covered in industrial plastic, like a transparent table cloth. This way, the bed still looks comfortable and luxurious with the soft white towel; however the plastic cover saves the towels from getting stained by wax, and saves you from changing the towel after each client. If you do happen to drop wax, you simply pick up your citrus solvent and wipe the wax off using a wax strip. If you are looking for an alternative set up, bed roll is okay too, but can also be a bit difficult if the client rolls over and the bed roll goes with them! Perhaps, when performing facial treatments, put a fresh perforated piece of bedroll under the client’s head to protect the pillow. When performing a Brazilian or bikini treatment, place the perforated paper under the body, but not so it is covering the entire bed.

4 – Waxing efficiently

Using an inferior product or the wrong products will make the Christmas period a nightmare! I can’t stress this point enough. It is human nature to want to save a few dollars here and there; we are all guilty of looking for low prices. However, when it comes to waxing the saying “you get what you pay for” has never been more true! If your wooden spatulas are splitting, or your wax is going brittle and you’re leaving half of it behind on your customer’s bikini line – have you really saved anything? If anything you have probably lost a customer as well as a handful of people they know. Having high quality products is important; you also need to make sure you are not cutting corners when it comes to buying everything you need. I have experienced waxers who in the warmer weather stand beside their clients and wave their hands over the hard wax until it sets. I have three words for you, Quick Dry Mist. This product will be your new best friend especially during summer. You simply spray the mist over the wax and it sets instantly. Having the best products will ensure you and your clients walk out happy and you get the results desired without irritations, redness or an embarrassing waxing story!

5 – Toot your own horn

Tell your clients why you are the best. It’s often hard to talk about your own business, and what makes you so great. Generally, we don’t want to be seen as “tooting our own horn” but talking about your products that make you the best is a completely different thing! Tell your customers what products you use and why you use them. Tell them why you picked that brand and what benefits they are getting buy choosing your service over another salon. This lets your customers know that you are open about what you are using, and that you have 100% faith in the quality of your products. Doing this, will go a long way in making sure your clients keep coming back. You don’t want them thinking they can get the exact same treatment anywhere else – because they can’t.

6 – Keep it Clean

Cut your cleaning time by working smarter not harder. Cleaning doesn’t have to be hard unless you make it hard. As I touched on earlier, it is the little things that make life easier for you in the long run; like the way you set up your trolley or the precautions you take with setting up your bed (see points 1 & 2). In addition to these, chose a cleaning product that works. I use a concentrated citrus cleaning product, which requires no elbow grease. You simply spray it on the wax which breaks down instantly making it easy to just wipe off! I always try to do a quick clean up in-between customers rather than staying behind after a long shift to clean when you have Christmas shopping to do! I always ensure my waxing rooms look magnificent and more importantly hygienic. The bin is to be placed out of client sight and the wax pot is to be shining and clean after each client, before the next client arrives. Cheap pots can be impossible to clean. Make sure you have a pot that is efficient, with interchangeable skirts for both hard and strip wax. I recommended having a pot where the wax jars are placed directly into the metal insert, this way there is no pouring of wax, and you’ll never have to clean another heater insert again. You simply heat it up in the microwave and place it into the pot. There’s no mess, no fuss!

7 – Cross selling

Having your legs waxed? What about we make those feet look beautiful to go with it? Just because someone has come in specifically for a wax doesn’t mean they would be against having their nails done – I definitely wouldn’t! If the client has booked in for over half an hour of waxing and you have a spare therapist, upsell a mani or a pedi that can be done from the waxing bed. This way the client is not sparing any extra time and you have just made another sale. Add an extra discount to multiple services i.e. if they have only booked for one area to be waxed, offer a further 15% off if they need another area done, this way the client feels like they are getting a great deal rather than just a regular special. Don’t forget to also upsell your treatment products. Retail an ingrown hair treatment range and try adding a product to the sale at the end of every treatment.

8 – Making time

The summer season and leading up to Christmas is a hectic time for everyone! People are preparing for holidays and events and there’s always extra skin on show! Put the passion back into waxing, make your customers feel like they are valued. Don’t be afraid to spend that little bit of extra time talking to them and offering suggestions on how to prepared for summer. Make sure your salon trading hours are tailored to meet everyone’s needs. This way you accommodate your customers’ as well as having the opportunity for your business to make more money. Extend your hours between Christmas and New Year. It is very common for retail to have a slump in the first two weeks of January. For this reason, encourage customers to come back during the quiet period by offering them a rebooking discount for January.

9 – Silent Selling

Promotional material is an important selling tool. You would be surprised at what manufactures’ and distributors can provide for you if you just ask! Promo material is made for the soul purpose of communicating information about a product or service in a quick and effective way. In a busy salon environment you don’t always have the time to tell each and every customer about a great new product, or what deals you have on each week. Utilise your manufactures; ask them for posters, brochures, online banners, t-shirts, product samples, window decals. Anything that is going to potentially do the selling for you is important – especially during the busy times of year.

10 – Christmas – we meet again

Christmas comes around in what seems like a blink of an eye. Gear up your staff, they’re likely to be working harder and longer so make sure they know they’re appreciated and having fun with the festive time of year. As much as this season is chaos in the salon industry it is also the best time of year to pick up some extra sales! Don’t forget to stock up on extra products to have around the salon. Having a gift packs available is quick and easy money. Make sure you keep these close to the counter and prompt your customers “Have you finished all your Christmas shopping, would you like to purchase a Christmas gift pack?” You would be surprised how effective this is. People often don’t think to do their Christmas shopping at their beauty salon so don’t forget to remind them that they can!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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WAXXXING VS SHAVING

The age old hair removal battle!

By Lilliane Caron

WAXXXING VS SHAVING

Wish you had a dollar for every time a client who came in for a pedicure and said, ‘sorry about the hairy legs I forgot to shave!’? Well, I’m here to tell you that you can! If that comment isn’t an invitation for an open discussion about waxing I don’t know what is! Let’s get started by listing the usual pros and cons of waxing vs. shaving…

Client Pros of waxing
• No more shaving rash / razor burn
• No itchy regrowth
• No more cuts
• Longer between treatments – 2 days vs 3-4 weeks
• No pain, no gain. A little bit of discomfort for the freedom of the razor every second day

Client Cons of waxing
• Cost
• Pain
• Ingrown hairs
• Having to let it grow out in between treatments as it removes the hair from the root
• Need to book in an appointment

As a therapist or esthetician it’s our job to not only pamper and treat our clients but to also provide solutions to their needs. Keeping the salon business afloat means going that extra mile to provide exceptional service and up-sell treatments to clients where possible. With increased competition, we need to find new and inventive ways to keep our clients coming back. Something that’s not only their 3 monthly facial or 4 week mani and pedi combo, but a regular treatment that is minimal in cost to provide but has a high return.

Our most loyal clients can quite often be time poor but not money poor, so never assume they won’t be interested in what you have to offer.

How many clients do you see on a regular basis that say during their pedi “don’t mind my legs, I haven’t shaved today” this opens up the line of communication to explain to your client the benefits of a waxing service over regular shaving.

Generally, most people’s hesitation comes down to a fear of the unknown. If you have a nervous client that’s never waxed perhaps offer after the current treatment a “sample” wax of a small, discrete patch of hair so they can experience it and judge for themselves. Explaining what you use and how it works in a waxing treatment to a newbie can make the experience far more pleasant and relaxed!

Once you get the client over the fear of the pain, they rarely go back to shaving. Always check with the client if they have had a bad experience with waxing in the past. This can scare some clients off for life, so take the opportunity to talk them around as a bad experience usually comes down to technique and/or the wax used. The good thing is, if you’re a confident waxer and using a good quality wax, you should be able to overcome their issues with waxing very easily.

A more experienced waxing client might lead you to a great discussion like “What about a Brazilian?” or “Have you ever tried your underarms, the results are amazing!” With a Brazilian being one of the most profitable treatments on the menu, it’s certainly worth planting the seed. Plus, if you have the correct stance, flow and technique, there should be minimal physical output! The easiest way I find to up-sell a Brazilian wax to a shaving client is to explain that there are certain areas that can’t be shaved and that a Brazilian wax will get all of the hair out of. The actual definition of a Brazilian or XXX wax can vary salon to salon or even therapists and estheticians within the same salons so explaining this to your client is crucial. There is always going to be a little bit more discomfort involved in ripping hairs out from the root rather than cutting them at the surface, however having a smooth and confident Brazilian down under for longer is always going to be a better end result for the client!

With general body waxing, quite often the reason they haven’t even tried waxing is due to the cost. Razors and hair removal creams can be cheaper; however the results are much less impressive. More often than not the client just needs to see and feel the difference and they may then sacrifice something else so that they can afford their monthly wax, particularly those clients with course dark hair. Some clients may believe that waxing causes more ingrown hairs than shaving. The reality is skilled waxers quite often notice less ingrown hairs on regular clients as the hair growth can often decline.

If hairs are removed correctly, against the hair growth and without snapping, over time the client will notice a slower and finer rate of hair growth. This is caused by weakening of the hair follicle which in turn breaks down the papilla and the hairs will be lessened, something that is never a result of shaving!

All in all, the results clients feel and see from waxing speaks for itself and this is why the service will continue to thrive. The way to build upon it is to educate and open our shaving client’s eyes as to what they are missing out on!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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WAXXXING CHILDREN, HOW YOUNG IS TOO YOUNG?

There are milestones in every mother-daughter relationship and hair removal is one of them. Once upon a time most mothers wouldn’t have had to worry about this until puberty, but these days the conversation may start a little earlier than expected. If you asked me to put an age limit on when waxing became acceptable, I couldn’t. I believe that some girls are too young to be waxed, but I also believe there is an exception to every rule. The real question is what is our duty of care as Beauty Therapists or Estheticians in these kinds of situations?

WAXXXING CHILDREN, HOW YOUNG IS TOO YOUNG?

Times are changing

The general notion is that girls may start to be interested in hair removal once they hit puberty and hair growth spikes, but that is not always the case. While most young girls experience a small amount of hair on their bodies, I have seen firsthand, girls as young as seven with excessive hair growth on their legs, arms and face. This can be related to cultural and genetic factors, however I believe it is also a result of our changing environment. Children are physically developing a lot earlier than years gone by due to what we are eating and using in our day to day lives. Foods are full of hormones and as a result, girls are getting their periods younger – which means entering womanhood and everything that comes with it is also happening sooner. When I began my career, women would generally start waxing when they were about 18 but in today’s society girls are growing up faster than ever before.

Social Influence

With social media being so prominent in our lives, children are being exposed to more and more things that would have once been beyond their years. Kids are seeing models and celebrities acting, dressing and looking a certain way, and of course want to mimic that look. It’s not just celebrities that are influencing today’s youth; their friends and families are playing a big role too. Kids as young as 10 years old have blogs, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube accounts. As adults, we can understand that most photos uploaded to social media are carefully styled, have filters applied and multiple photos were actually taken at slightly different angles, all for that ‘perfect’ shot. But young, susceptible minds don’t always understand this.

Not only are young girls being subjected to unrealistic body images but young boys are too. Early on, boys notice women being represented in a certain way – with flawless, hair-free, skin. Because of the portrayal of woman in the media, there is a stigma related to hair on the body. The ability to differentiate between women and girls is becoming blurry. Children at school are surrounded by others who all have their own thoughts on facial and body hair. Some are bullied and tormented for hair growth that is completely natural. Hair on our bodies is not a new revelation; it is a part of being a human. Children should never have to worry about this. As adults we spend far too much time criticising ourselves and our flaws and it’s upsetting to think that children are starting to do this from such a young age. With a whole new spotlight on hair removal and minors, we as therapists have to recognise and sympathise with this issue.

The Motive

We need to be able to spot the motive behind unwanted hair removal. If a child is being bullied or feels self-conscious about their body hair, I can completely understand the reason behind wanting to remove it. My concern is that children are simply jumping aboard the waxing train to be ‘cool’, not because they need to. When a child comes in with very little visible hair on their legs and without the supervision of an adult, this is where it gets tricky. In this type of situation I urge you to consider a few things. Does the child have extreme hair growth? Is the child suffering from bullying or peer pressure? Does the child participate in a sport or activity where it may be embarrassing for them to have hair showing? Swimming, gymnastics and dancing activities may require young girls to wear leotards or costumes that expose bikini, underarm and leg hair. It’s easy to see how this would be embarrassing for anyone, especially those lacking confidence as their body is changing. All these are important factors and I believe each individual needs to be looked at on a case by case manner.

Mother knows best

Most of the time the decision for a child to be waxed or not will come down to the mother – and some mothers want their children to start waxing early. Perhaps they have their own insecurities from when they were a child or perhaps they feel pressure to keep up with what the other mothers are doing. One mother may get her daughters eyebrows waxed, and she will tell another mother, and that mother will tell another, and then before you know it you have multiple children booked in who don’t even need their eyebrows waxed because the mothers think that it is a the normal thing to do. It can become a social norm in many circles. Mother’s competing with one another is becoming more and more apparent and no mother wants to feel like there child is getting left behind.

As a parent, your role is to identify issues, educate and guide your children along the right path. While it is not our place to judge any parent on these decisions, it is our place to be there as a guide for mothers and their daughters and offer them some advice and education about hair removal in particular. This goes for mothers who may be starting their daughters too early, or for mothers who are scared of letting their daughters start too young. Often mothers will call us in for backup; after all, who better to explain the hair removal process than us? Children don’t often realise that waxing requires regular maintenance and once they have started; they could be doing for the next 50 years. We need to highlight the bigger picture so they understand waxing is not just a once off thing, but a commitment they need to be ready to make.

Common Sense

I am a business woman, however when it comes to children I believe you need to set aside your business cap for just one moment. While we of course want to secure business, in these contentious cases we are dealing with young impressionable minds and it’s extremely important to remember that. Often my rule is that if I am standing two feet away and cannot see any hair, then in my opinion there is no hair that needs to be removed. It ultimately comes down to using your common sense. It is our right to say no if we don’t feel comfortable removing the hair, especially if the child is pre-pubescent or there is no guardian approval involved. You can always look at enforcing a policy for your salon such a ‘children under the age of 16 may not get waxed without parental consent.’ This way you and your staff are protected from any backlash you may receive from unaware parents.

how young is too young The last thing any of us want are young girls sneaking around behind their parents backs or attempting shaving at home with no supervision or experience. At least if they are starting their hair removal routine with waxing, over time it will help to break down the hair follicle quicker and over time they will begin to notice less hair growth. Once they start, they should keep up with regular appointments. Generally with young clientele it is not necessary to wax every 4-6 weeks. Often every three or four months is sufficient – but again, this depends on the child’s hair growth.

If removing hair is going to make a someone feel better about themselves and give them the confidence to walk around happy, then I am all for it. Don’t forget that there is a slight discomfort involved with waxing, and some children simply do not have the pain threshold to cope with it, it often depends on their maturity levels. I would always use a hard wax for delicate areas such as face, bikini and underarms, and a creamy gentle strip wax for larger areas such as legs. Using a low temperature, high quality wax can help to reduce the pain associated with waxing.  If you choose not to wax a minor, you could try to offer them a treatment other than waxing to boost their self-esteem, make them feel older and pampered. A mani or pedi, a facial or a massage is a lovely treat and could take their mind off wanting to wax.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Caronlab Australia and Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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A BEAUTY OF A CAREER!

I started as a therapist/esthetician; then I opened my own salon and now I have a company that manufactures and exports wax, ingrown hair treatments, massage oils, lotions and much more all over the world. I would never have pictured myself having all these opportunities when I was just starting out! My career in beauty has even helped me develop my skills in other areas such as working in sales, conducting training, public speaking and product manufacturing.

A BEAUTY OF A CAREER!

Perfecting your technique and becoming a trainer can even land you gigs all around the world, meaning you get to see the world as an added perk! While the beauty industry demands a lot from its graduates, it is full of so many possibilities, with the ability to specialise in multiple treatments. For anyone that is seriously considering a career in beauty, or is part way through a course, I am going to share with you some advice for making sure you are successful in whichever path you choose to follow.

The Head Honcho

If you are interested in a career where you can be your own boss, then look no further. As a therapist/esthetician, you have the option of owning your own salon, working from home, or providing mobile services. The great thing about being a therapist/esthetician is that if you have quality products, a good technique and knowledge of the theory from your qualification, you can do it anywhere! If you are looking at opening your own business the key is not to over complicate things. You need to keep it simple and specific to what you know best. This applies for business in general not just with beauty therapy. Being a small business owner can be challenging. You will need some basic business skills, be able to problem solve and constantly look for opportunities to increase your sales. It’s a big responsibility but the rewards can be big too. It relies on good client relationships and great results – word of mouth is your most effective promotional tool. This is why it is important to make sure you are 100% confident in your technique and results. If you are not confident in getting great results each time, it may be beneficial to gain some extra experience first before taking the risk of opening your own business.
Being your own boss with your own business also means you can choose what services you offer. Different treatments require different energy levels, ambience and setup i.e. think about massages and facials, compared to waxing or nails. You always need to be passionate about what you’re doing. Your job is to make the treatment an experience the client wants to repeat. Regardless of what treatment you’re performing, the client should always leave feeling great. If waxing is your speciality, you may choose to open a wax bar, if makeup is your calling then you could become a makeup artist! This can be a great option for people who want to specialise in one area of beauty and really make it the backbone of their career.

The Salon Superstar

Working in a salon or day spa is great for graduates because it doesn’t come with the additional stress and responsibilities of running your own business. It is also a great way to get some extra hands on experience, especially early in your career. I always recommend getting a casual or part time job or work experience in a salon while you are studying. Cleaning, answering phones, working in reception are all part of running any salon business, and any good therapist/esthetician should have a good grasp of these. Practice makes perfect and while it may not all be hands on it is valuable experience that you will learn from.
A good work ethic, dedication and customer service skills can get you a long way in this industry. Graduates need to understand that there is more than just your technique involved when it comes to being a good therapist/esthetician. You can be great at waxing and amazing at facials, but if you have terrible customer service skills you won’t be hanging on to your job for very long! Make sure you work at building relationships with clients, after all this is a sure way to secure returning clients. Working in a salon, you will also learn how to deal with difficult clients, which is a very important skill to have.

Being able to cross-sell other services and retail products is essential as there is an opportunity to do this with just about every client. Get to know your clients so they feel comfortable asking you questions and taking your advice – this will go a long way in helping your retail sales increase and is sure to impress your manager!

The Jet Setter

Being a trainer or a representative for a large company or brand can be extremely exciting and can open doors to a lot of opportunities worldwide. Obviously training involves traveling so it is perfect for people who are confident and have a lot of get up and go. There are different levels of training and different types of travel involved depending on where you work. For example at Waxxxpress we have trainers who train local, interstate and international. The role obviously requires someone who is an excellent therapist/esthetician with communication skills second to none. To secure yourself a role in this area of the industry you’ll need to be self-motivated, prepared to travel, open to learning new techniques and believe in the products of the company you represent. Generally you’ll need to have some salon-based experience behind you so you have a good understanding of the challenges and issues that your students may be facing. Another opportunity for a therapist/esthetician with the travel bug is getting work on cruise ships. These roles are predominantly geared more towards relaxing treatments such as massages, facials, manicures and pedicures, and waxing is very popular too.

beauty career
No matter what road you choose within the beauty industry one thing remains the same, hard work and commitment is vital for success. To be successful you need to think it, visualise it, practice it and believe it. Just like with any job you need to start at the bottom and work your way up! Continuously challenge yourself and be open to using new products and trying new techniques. The worst thing you can do for any career is to stop learning and getting stuck in your ways. The beauty industry is constantly evolving, that’s what makes it exciting! The great thing about being a therapist/esthetician is that it is a skill set you will have for life; there is opportunity to leave and come back with the ease of just doing a small refresher course to relaunch your skills. As the world evolves so are our people in general we are now living much longer and have a much larger population. People are taking more interest and pride in their wellbeing and appearance. Because of this, the beauty industry will only get bigger and offer more career opportunities! With endless pathways and opportunities for the latest beauty graduates, it’s a great time to join the beauty industry.

Lilliane Caron is the Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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WAXXXING WHILE PREGNANT!

Pregnancy is a very exciting time for any mother to be, but it can also be riddled with worries about what’s safe for them and their unborn baby. It is not uncommon for expectant mothers to become over protective and cautious of their bodies; what they put in it, what they put on it, and what they expose it to. While there are many things that should be avoided during pregnancy there are also a few myths thrown in the mix! One being; ‘Waxing is not safe while pregnant.’ Several arguments exist as to whether waxing during pregnancy is safe or not, I am here to tell you it is completely safe!

WAXXXING WHILE PREGNANT!

While there are some products or activities to be careful of while pregnant; waxing is not one of them. Some believe that the ingredients from the wax used in a treatment can be dangerous, but the fact is, the wax is not absorbed into the body and therefore cannot affect an unborn baby.

While waxing is completely safe for both the baby and the mother during pregnancy, there are still a few things woman should be mindful of. During pregnancy there are hormonal changes in the body. Hair can grow thicker, darker and in places it’s never been before. There is increased blood flow, especially in the pubic area which can make the skin feel more sensitive and susceptible to pain, for this reason women may find waxing more painful than it previously was. They also may find that their skin is more likely to get itchy and irritated. In these instances therapists/ estheticians should opt for a premium quality synthetic wax. These waxes are designed to be gentle on the skin and cause less redness and irritation. Generally I advise to never change waxes however if you are not already using a gentle wax in your day to day treatments you really need to make sure you have one on hand when waxing a pregnant client. For Brazilians and small areas it may even be a good idea to stick to using a hard wax only. Hard wax is far gentler on the skin and can be less painful for the client than strip wax. No matter which wax you choose, make sure you always do a test patch first so that you can check for reactions and your client can gauge the pain level. Even if you are treating a regular client, pregnancy can affect the body in mysterious ways, so it’s always best to do a quick test.

Some therapists/ estheticians won’t perform a waxing treatment on anyone in their first trimester and the reason for this is that they have not been trained and do not feel confident, it’s not because it is actually harmful to get waxed within that time frame. I believe this is unnecessary, not only are you sending out a negative association between waxing and pregnancy, but you are also costing yourself many potential clients. It is not uncommon for women to be completely unaware they are even pregnant for 6-8 weeks and carry on living life completely normal!

Some salons are realising the value of pregnant clients to their business and opening boutique salons targeting solely pregnant mums. This is an untouched market with a lot of potential. It’s not only beauty salons that are capitalising on expectant mums either – there’s businesses dedicated to pregnancy yoga, pregnancy massage, pregnancy swimming and aerobics.
As a therapist, the most difficult time to perform a waxing treatment on a pregnant client is when they are close to their due date. Many women will book treatments right before they are due, particularly Brazilians. Not only does being completely hair free down there make them feel clean and comfortable, but it also helps when it comes to post care and recovery.

For heavily pregnant women, trying to conduct at home waxing treatments on their legs or bikini region becomes near impossible! Because Brazilians in particular are very popular in the weeks leading up to birth, therapists need to know how to handle heavily pregnant women. There are particular techniques and positions that need to be used. For example heavily pregnant women cannot lay flat on their back, they need extra support and you need to be able to manoeuvre them properly and as comfortably as possible. Waxing pregnant clients is not something you can bluff your way through, nor should you try. If you are not confident with waxing pregnant clients, look at getting some extra training, trust me, the investment will pay for itself after just a few clients. Half of being a good therapist/ estheticians is educating your clients. Make sure you open the lines of communication and assure them it is completely safe to continue their regular waxing routine while pregnant. Most pregnant women ooze a beautiful healthy pregnancy glow, so why shouldn’t they have beautiful smooth, hair free skin too?

Lilliane Caron is the Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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THE TRUTH ABOUT THE ‘7 MINUTE BRAZILIAN’

You can have the best wax in the world but if you do don’t know how to perform a proper waxing treatment; you’re going to be in a lot of trouble. From my experience, Brazilians are the treatment that therapists struggle with the most. There is a lot of hype about ‘7 Minute Brazilians’ at the moment and let me tell you, it is a joke! Can you rip all the hairs from someone’s private parts in less than seven minutes? Yes, absolutely! But there is a reason we all have jobs, and it’s because people expect as professionals we know how to do it, and we know how to do it well.

THE TRUTH ABOUT THE ‘7 MINUTE BRAZILIAN’

We take our time, and make sure the treatment is done properly, resulting in no irritation/pain or redness – this is why they pay us! The fact of the matter is this is that rushing a treatment like this is not a safe, professional or even a humane way of preforming a Brazilian! I have seen a demonstration of this treatment in real life and let me tell you, it wasn’t even done in seven minutes! If you’re looking for a quick way to lose over $1000 and be absolutely horrified then sign right up to the class! What you really need is a Waxing Mentor, and a demonstration that shows you step by step, where you can actually see the results up close and personal.

Put yourself in the client’s shoes for a moment and let me paint a picture for you. You’re lying on the waxing bed, a little sweaty from that usual anticipation that’s common before a wax. Your therapist walks in and bam! Bottom’s up and you’re on all fours before you know it! There’s hot strip wax everywhere. It’s all over your private bits, and wax strips are being ripped off left right and centre (literally)! There is no chit-chat, not even a “Hi, how are you?” because as a therapist, she has a seven minute deadline to work with and she only has two minutes left. No time for proper post waxing care, you’re in, you’re out; you’re back in the car quicker than you can say “I’m here for my Brazilian wax thanks.” You’re covered in sticky wax residue and when you get home, see a number of hairs that haven’t even been removed! How do you feel?

Now picture this instead. Your therapist walks in, she greets you by name and asks what you’ve been up to since your last appointment. You lay there comfortably on your back with your head supported by a pillow. She uses a combination of hard and strip wax as she understands the sensitivity of the different areas of the skin and which areas require a more gentle touch. She removes the wax in the opposite direction to the hair, as this will prevent bruising and ingrowns. She is gentle, yet firm. To set the hard wax instantly, rather than pushing on the wax with her hands, she uses a refreshing spray that instantly touch dries the wax. It feels lovely and cooling on your skin. She then uses a wax strip to apply oil, removing any leftover wax residue and rubs mango scented after waxing lotion to sooth the skin. She walks you to the counter and books in your next appointment. Now how do you feel?

Pushing people in and out your door is not the way to create ongoing, loyal customers. Not to mention, anyone would prefer to relax on their back for majority of the treatment rather than be put in awkward and compromising positions. This first scenario mentioned uses a rough and quick technique; this can cause the hairs to snap at the surface which can result in severe ingrown hairs, bruising and very tender and sore skin for your client.

While you get quicker with experience, a good Brazilian wax generally takes on average 20 minutes to complete. It’s not uncommon however for it to take up to an hour when just starting out as you need guidance and can sometimes be a little timid! With a new client, I would always make a longer appointment as you never know what you are going to be dealing with. If you are shown a good technique from an experienced waxing mentor to start with, after a few goes you will feel much more confident and be able to perform each treatment in a reasonable amount of time with flawless results!

There are always hair removal fads coming and going within the beauty industry (see my previous article ‘Waxing is here to stay’). In this article I discuss why many other hair removal techniques are fads. The 7 Minute Brazilian and new waxes claiming they are not waxes are no different! Do not be fooled by marketing tactics, they are designed to trick and confuse you.

After traveling in the USA and UK, it is common feedback that Estheticians or Beauty Therapists are only using one type of wax; either strip or hard. It is absolutely necessary to have both! Strip Wax and Hard Wax are used on completely different areas, not just for Brazilians but with the whole body. You need to be mindful of different types of skin you deal with. Mature skin, dry skin, oily skin, sensitive skin. Older clients for example have very delicate skin and we need to be especially gentle as it can tear and bruise easily. I would always use hard wax on older clients as it is much easier on their skin, this also goes for women who are going through menopause. Caring for your client is part of being a good therapist and ultimately, it comes down to you being passionate and confident about what you do.

Waxxxpress offers one-on-one training, group sessions and in-salon workshops where you learn proper techniques and are educated about superior waxing products. You have to like what you do, in any career and continually update your skills. Treat your clients the way you would like to be treated and make their appointment more than just a maintenance routine but an experience that they look forward to each month.

Always keep in mind that it will take more than seven minutes to perform a treatment AND win over your new clients. With the time it takes arranging advertisements and marketing to draw in new customers (not to mention the costs involved) spending that extra time ensuring you keep a client is only common sense.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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SIMPLE CHANGES TO MAKE YOUR MASSAGE TREATMENTS MORE ECONOMICAL

Money is never something you should take for granted. The economy is completely out of our control and can change in the blink of an eye! This is why it is always important to consider ways to minimise wastage and costs within your workplace so you are prepared for anything. Currently, the massage industry is thriving, especially these days where more and more people are realising just how beneficial a regular massage is for their health and wellbeing – not just a yearly treat!

SIMPLE CHANGES TO MAKE YOUR MASSAGE TREATMENTS MORE ECONOMICAL

When it comes to saving money it involves more than just looking at the dollar sign on each product. Sure, the product with the lower price tag may seem like the obvious choice, but is it really the most economical? The quality and performance of a product plays a much bigger role than its cost. Choosing products based on price is not the way to save money – often they will end up costing you more due to a number of factors. When it comes to massage in particular, your choice of oil alone can save you huge dollars!

Choice of Product

Using a water dispersible oil is not only a pleasant surprise for your clients (who rejoice when they leave without the sticky, oily residue of their treatment) but also a pleasant surprise for your pocket! Oil can leave very obviously stains on both your uniform, towels, carpet etc. The cost of continuously replacing these items every couple of months is proof enough that a water soluble option is going to save you money in the long run. Water soluble oil is easy to wash off; you can simply place your towels in the wash at the end of the day and have fresh, clean, new looking towels ready for the next day. Top quality oils will also not leave your salon smelling ‘fatty’ over time or go rancid.

Application

The packaging may seem like a very minor aspect when choosing a product, but can play a huge part in the amount of wastage there is. For example, oil that needs to be poured into a secondary container inevitably results in small amount of waste that is left behind in the container, but the great risk here is over pouring and over estimating the amount of oil you require for the treatment. An easy way minimise waste is to use an oil with a trigger spray. This allows for a thin layer of oil to be even dispersed over the client and allows the therapist full control over how much product they use. Plus you don’t have the risk of spilling and wasting the product during your treatment.

Buying in Bulk

Using unscented massage oil and adding your own essential fragrances is a cost effective alternative to buying multiple oils. Make sure you find an oil that will not alter the fragrance of your essential oils once added. Oils that are made with inferior quality ingredients can alter the fragrance so it is something to be mindful of when finding your perfect base. Generally you will receive a better price for buying in bulk, making the concept of customising an unscented oil a great way to save money (not to mention some storage space also!). Just make sure you use a funnel to avoid spilling and wasting the oil when re-filling.

Your choice of Towels

When selecting towels to use in your salon, big, think, fluffy towels are not necessary. Look for a high quality towel that is reasonably thin and light-weight. This will not hinder your treatment and will mean you can fit more in your washing machine. They will also dry much quicker, saving you time and money.

Multipurpose products

Finding products that can be used for more than just one purpose is a great way to save a few dollars. These days there are other mediums on the market that can be used in your massage treatments, such as creams and gels. Not only can you use them for your massages but are also make great bases for other treatments on your menu. This is great for salons who also offer pamper treatments such as facials or manicure and pedicures. Gels in particular are extremely lubricating, which means a little goes along way and they also give you fantastic grip and glide. They can be a more economical choice than some of the expensive face creams on the market where you generally don’t get a lot for your money.

So there you have it, small but effective changes which are easy to implement. You may look at these suggestions and think “How much difference could it really make?” I challenge you to put it to the test, you will be surprised! Every single dollar matters in business. Smart businesses will always save on costs and minimise wastage wherever possible – it’s only logical.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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WOULD YOU LIKE FRIES WITH THAT?

Retail products have a much higher profit margin than most salon services. They have the ability to increase your bottom line dramatically, which makes them a very important part of your business.

Up selling retail products at the end of a treatment can sometimes be a challenge, especially if you’re not stocking the right products, or products you are familiar with. You need to make sure you select products that are most relevant to your services and your client’s needs.

WOULD YOU LIKE FRIES WITH THAT?

When it comes to choosing which products to retail there are a few things you should consider:

1. Does it work?

Now this might sound fairly obvious but generally in the beauty industry, people want products are going to help fix an issue i.e.; Ingrown hairs, dry skin, skin irritation etc. Make sure you stock products that actually do what they say they do! You only really get one shot to prove to you client that you have their best interest at heart, selling them a product that doesn’t work will hinder your chances of ever upselling them a product again.

2. Price point

Understandably price plays a huge factor in whether or not a product will sell successfully. You are much more likely to up-sell a $20 product rather than a $90 product, especially when the client is already handing over money for a treatment. The key is to make sure you stock products that are affordable to your client, yet still offer a reasonable profit margin for you.

3. Education & Training

Look for companies that actually provide their stockists with education and training. Some companies will offer this on their website through an online portal or via a company rep that will come and do product knowledge with you and your team. You can’t sell something you don’t know about, so making sure your team are educated about the products you are trying to sell is extremely important.

4. Marketing Support

When it comes to retail, any little bit of marketing can help. Stocking a brand that will provide you with free marketing support such as posters, brochures, t-shirts, window decals, shelf wobblers or even samples can be extremely beneficial. Having content your clients can read while waiting for their appointment is a great way to ‘plant the seed’ and encourage your clients to consider their own needs. It may even prompt them to ask you about a particular product instead of you having to ask them!

5. Values

Whether your products are vegan friendly, Australian made or not been tested on animals can be huge deciding factors for many consumers. Do your research! Choose products that are manufactured locally by Choose Cruelty Free Accredited companies. This can be your go-to selling point or a great way to spark conversation about why you like the brand and their products.

6. Comprehensive offering

Often it is easier to sell items when there are several products in the range. It shows that you have a solution for various clients. For example, you could sell a body scrub with a moisturiser or an exfoliating mitt with an ingrown product.

7. Reputation and quality of the brand

Stocking brands that have a good reputation can definitely increase your chances of making a sale. These days, consumers are paying more attention to what they are putting on their body. Many people read ingredient listings and have a wealth of knowledge about what ingredients may or may not be good for them. Having products that have a good reputation, and known for being made with high quality ingredients means half the work is done for you!

8. Competition

Make sure you are familiar with other products on the market. Know the strengths and weaknesses of competing products so that when asked, you can explain to your client why your product is better.

Whether your retail display is large or small, browsing for products should be an experience! Keep your displays organized and clean. No one wants to buy a product that is dusty; not only is it visually unappealing, it also looks like no one else liked the product enough to buy it.

Make sure you only choose products you believe in, this will make selling them much easier. You will no longer feel like you’re selling anything – you’re just simply recommending products you know will be right for your client’s needs. Your recommendation will start building a trusting retail relationship with your clients, which will ultimately lead to further retail sales.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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WHY MASSAGE IS A NECESSITY, NOT A LUXURY

Generally when people think of the word ‘massage’ they associate it with ‘luxury’, ‘indulgence’ and ‘pampering’. It’s seen as a treat, and something people may allow themselves once or twice a year. The notion that massage is ‘just an indulgence’ is not true. The benefits of massage are endless and something very few people are aware of. Massage can help with balancing emotions, anxiety, circulatory issues, joint and muscle pain, insomnia and much more. It is important that we share the benefits of massage with our clients and teach them that massage should be much more than a little ‘treat’ every now and then. Regular massages help to establish and maintain good health and wellness. From a client’s perspective, understanding this can make the difference between returning on a regular basis vs once or twice a year.

WHY MASSAGE IS A NECESSITY, NOT A LUXURY

It’s easy to see why massage is commonly described as a luxury; it makes you feel amazing! I love a good massage as much as the next person. That feel-good emotion that we all love is due to the release of endorphins that produce a feeling of wellbeing, whilst stress causing hormones such as adrenalin, cortisol and norepinephrine are reduced. Cortisol is a stress hormone and unfortunately when you feel anxious, your body pumps out even more of it, fuelling your stress levels and causing them to rise. For people who suffer with depression, a massage can be hugely beneficial. Massage therapy helps the body relax by relieving muscle tension and therefore the mind can also relax. Whilst massage is not a long term or sole treatment for depression or anxiety, it can help to temporarily alleviate some of the symptoms, leaving sufferers feeling happier, energised and full of endorphins.

While many people may not be aware of how massage can help on an emotional level, most people are fairly aware of how good a massage can be for your body. Aches and pains in muscles and joints is one of the most common reasons people book in for a massage. These days we are much more ‘deskbound’ than we used to be. Many careers require you to sit at a desk all day long, even as a therapist, we stand on our feet all day long and the most movement we get is walking between clients. It doesn’t matter what career you are in, a repetitive routine and minimal movement will always be taxing on our bodies. Sitting or standing in the same position all day means our muscles don’t get the blood flow they need, resulting in them being stiff, sore and achy. There are even studies that link sitting all day to cancer, and it’s more prevalent in woman. Luckily regular massages can somewhat counteract the imbalance and side effects.

A simple massage can alleviate neck, shoulders and back pain and improve blood flow. Improving the flow of the circulatory and lymphatic systems, allows the body to deliver oxygen and nutrients to other areas of the body and remove toxins more efficiently, leaving our bodies feeling cleansed.

Having your body feeling relaxed and de-stressed is also very important when it comes to getting a good night’s rest. And when it comes to functioning properly, rest and quality sleep is vital to ones wellbeing! According to the Centres for Disease Control (CDC): “Insufficient sleep is associated with a number of chronic diseases and conditions—such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression—which threaten our nation’s health.” It is quiet concerning, the effects sleep deprivation can have on our lives. Massage helps the production of serotonin, which is essential for the production of melatonin. What is melatonin you ask? Good question. Melatonin is a hormone that is produced by the pineal gland in the brain. It basically helps control our body clock so we can function properly during the day and sleep properly at night. Most people’s melatonin level starts to go up about two hours before they go to sleep. Melatonin tablets can be purchased; they are typically used by people suffering from insomnia or people who travel internationally to help with jet lag. While these tablets are an option, there is a natural way to go about increasing your melatonin levels, and that is through massage therapy. It the perfect drug free alternative for people who struggle with insomnia.

As you can see there is much more to massage than it just being a ‘yearly indulgence’. Massages are a necessity, not a luxury our clients should feel guilty about spending their pennies on. These are just a hand full of examples that demonstrate the power massage can have on our health and wellbeing, it is important to educate yourself and your clients further so they can maximise the health benefits and you can maximise your business!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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TO DIP OR NOT TO DIP! THAT IS THE QUESTION

To dip or not to dip, that is the question. When the average person thinks of double dipping they picture someone dipping their carrot stick back into the hummus after they have already taken a bite. Now amongst friends and family this may seem like no big deal right, but how would you feel about sharing that one bowl of hummus with countless strangers you have never met? You may be a bit more hesitant to eat the hummus, which is completely understandable!

TO DIP OR NOT TO DIP! THAT IS THE QUESTION

Double dipping in the waxing industry is much the same; an esthetician uses a spatula to apply wax to a client’s skin and then reuses that same spatula after dipping it in the wax pot multiple times. To some this seems perfectly fine; it is thought that the wax is kept at a high enough temperature which kills the bacteria and germs making the process hygienic. However, many esthetician’s believe this is a myth and that double dipping is one of the biggest health risks associated with waxing. Personally I can see where both sides are coming from. I know this article is going to be very controversial but I’m going to play devil’s advocate.

While everyone seems to have their own twist on what is okay and what’s not, one side of the double dipping debate is that it’s fine; “as long as there is no blood drawn” or “on the legs is ok, but not on intimate areas such as Brazilian.” The ‘dip and dispose’ method is shunned by many also because a treatment uses significantly more wooden spatulas, which increases treatment costs, and also results in increased wastage and landfill. Many therapists also prefer to use a metal spatula with strip wax in particular, as they retain heat and reduce pulling on the skin.

With guidelines and regulations differing from council to council and so many personal opinions being spruiked, it’s understandable that there is such confusion about what is right and wrong. I have no doubt that many esthetician’s are completely baffled over this dispute. I have been in the industry for over 35 years (for many of those, I did double dip) and even my opinion has changed a few times on the matter over my waxing career.

Yes it is concerning to think that double dipping could possibly cause the transition of any diseases or bacteria between clients and of course no one agrees with putting the safety of their clients in jeopardy. But let’s back in the old days, wax was recycled which meant melting down your wax (that contains hair, skin particles, sweat and who knows what else) every night, sifting out the hairs and then reusing it the next day. Some esthetician’s to this day still sift their wax. So why the uproar now?

These days consumers in general are much more ‘educated’ and aware of what can harm or affect us. We hear things on the news, we find things on the internet and we actively hunt for information regarding products and procedures. With double dipping being the talk of the town at the moment, let me tell you, many clients are looking out for it! I’ve noticed that some salons are even using the fact that they don’t double dip as a selling point.

Clients judge us from the minute they walk in; our customer service, our personal hygiene, appearance, presentation of the salon and our work station. Of course our technique is just another part of the experience that our clients choose to return for (or not!) With all the negative connotations associated with double dipping these days is it really worth the risk of losing multiple clients based on your hygiene practices alone?

It’s clear that the hygiene standards throughout the world are vast and what some people deem as acceptable is totally unacceptable to others. For example, my local area guidelines state that double dipping is not encouraged (but is not illegal) and if you are to do it “all waxes should be kept undisturbed at a minimum temperature level of 70–80ºC for a minimum of 15 minutes between clients.” I know many people will be mortified at the thought of this.

When you think about it, using cartridges on more than one client is essentially the same as double dipping. Some people believe that when the roller head is applied to the skin and then rolls back through the wax, bacteria and skin particles are being rolled back into the wax cartridge. Refillable cartridges are an extremely economical choice for esthetician’s and are very common. I recommend that the refillable roller head be removed, disinfected after each client, refilled and returned to the warmer for 15 minutes to eliminate any bacteria.

Another controversial subject is gloves. When I first started I never used gloves; I would always disinfect my hands and the only time I would wear gloves, was if I had a cut. I have come across many esthetician’s who still chose not to wear gloves. The one-glove technique is extremely popular in some areas of the world. Many find gloves restricting, especially when they don’t fit properly. They can cause sweating, can rip, get sticky and slow down your treatment, as well as increase your supply costs.

Again, the thought of any esthetician’s not using gloves may seem unacceptable to many but if they are following good hygiene, using hospital grade disinfectant on both them and the client, scrubbing under their nails and doing everything else right, is there really an issue? What concerns me more than anything I’ve mentioned above is that people are so worked up about double dipping but not that there are unlicensed, incompetent esthetician’s out there bruising, drawing blood, damaging skin and traumatizing clients with bad waxes which are turning people away from waxing forever. I’ve been in salons that have wax all over the floor, pot and trolley; trimmed pubic hairs left on the bed and used strips hanging out of the bin! Just because they don’t double dip does not mean they’re even close to maintaining a sanitary salon

In relation to wax becoming contaminated with skin or blood borne viruses from one client to the next, the Health Guidelines for Victoria, Australia (where we manufacture our products) state “There is insufficient evidence to clearly demonstrate the extent of this risk, but it would appear that the risk is low.” Low is good, but low is not 100%, so why would you risk it? Double dipping is against the law in a number of places around the world and completely acceptable in others. Become familiar with your local guidelines. Your personal opinion on the matter and what you do in your salon don’t have to be one and the same. Whether or not you agree that double dipping is unsafe, if it is against your local health regulations it is not worth receiving a hefty fine or losing your cliental over! We should always assume the worst and perform our services responsibly to minimise the risk to our clients and to ourselves.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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A CHAT WITH WAXXXPRESS FOUNDER LILLIANE CARON

A CHAT WITH WAXXXPRESS FOUNDER LILLIANE CARON

What made you want to be a beauty therapist?

Being a Beauty Therapists opens so many doors; I think a lot of people forget that there is much more to this field than just working in a salon day in, day out. Becoming a Beauty Therapist, for me, has pathed the way for a life changing career. I have experienced so many different aspects of beauty therapy, as have many of my staff. Working in the salon, working in sales, conducting training, public speaking, manufacturing, travelling the world –the list goes on! The possibilities and experiences are endless and I think that is what sparked my passion initially. I also love the level of faith people place in me. There is a personal level of trust between myself and my clients when I am conducting a treatment, they are confident in my technique and experience to provide a safe and comfortable treatment. There is also the trust between my company Waxxxpress and the customers who trust (and expect) our products to give them the best results every time – there is nothing quite like having the support and trust of so many people to make you want to keep going and be the very best.

What are the most important attributes of a person that you would hire?

The top things I look for in my employees have to be Initiative, a willingness to learn and awareness of others. I have hired many people who before they walked through our doors knew absolutely nothing about wax or waxing. Knowing wax is in no way a pre-requisite that we look for in an employee, but having the enthusiasm to learn and an understanding that learning is continuous is very important! As I travel frequently, I need a team that will use their initiative to make sure everything keeps flowing smoothly while I am away from the office. There are always a million things that need to be done on any one day and I’m very thankful to have great employees that can push themselves to ensure we reach our goals. The most important trait for any employee in my eyes is awareness. It is so important to have people who are aware of others of what is going on around them, who can see when things are tough or stressful and are prepared to put their hand up to help a fellow colleague. These people are passionate not just for their job but for the company as a whole. You cannot realize a dream without a team, so having the right one is extremely important.

Do you have a role model or other sources of inspiration that have helped inspire you during your journey?

My parents would have to be my biggest role models. My mother was an extremely hard worker and had the most dedicated work ethic of anyone I’ve ever known. This has been instilled into me and I strive to be more like her every day. When I believe in something I put everything into it. When I was young my father would always tell my sisters and I not to fight and to be kind to one another. As we grew older so did his lessons and his number one rule for us all was to “surround yourself with young people – they will keep you moving and young at heart.” I love this piece of advice, and it’s very true. Especially in this industry you need to surround yourself with people who keep you young, vibrant and full of energy as it can be quite a demanding role. I also travel regularly to conduct international training and I gain a lot of inspiration here. I am very fortunate to be able to visit other countries and see firsthand not just how the beauty industry works differently but the world – these trips are always eye openers for me. A lot of people think that after this many years you could maybe sit back and enjoy all your hard work, but for me there is always something else to do. We are constantly evolving and taking aspects of the company to a new level. To this day I am still in the office almost every day in a sales capacity, researching, developing and training. I am surrounded by a great team of staff who all have different skills and talents that they bring to the table; I admire and learn from them all each day.

What is your favourite Waxxxpress product?

Coconuts Hard Wax. Our ingredients were unlike other waxes on the market as we used synthetic resin. Synthetic resin also known as hydrocarbon resin or polycyclopentadiene is a manmade resin. We are trained to think natural is always better, but when it comes to resin this is not the case. Resin derived from trees are unrefined and can cause allergic reactions and product instability. This is what made Cocnuts stand apart it was much safer, more consistent in production batch to batch and easier for the therapist to work with. High quality synthetic resins are easy to colour and fragrance and often appear fresh and clean, hence the creamy white colour of Coconuts! Coconuts has quickly gained a reputation for its exceptional flexibility which makes Brazilians and waxing delicate areas so much easier. It will not go brittle or crack on the skin, delivering unrivalled results and giving confidence to even the most inexperienced therapist. Coconuts combined with my unique waxing technique ‘The Butterfly’ and ‘The Secret Garden’ provides exceptional results for both the therapist and the client. Every week I get emails from therapists telling me just how much they love this product and how they as well as their clients can feel the difference.

What advice do you have for students who want to become successful in the industry?

To be successful you need to think it, visualise it, practice it and believe it. Just like with any job you need to start at the bottom and work your way up, this gives you a better understanding and appreciation for when you finally achieve your goals! Nothing good comes easy these days, you have to work for it and then slowly things become easier because you have done the hard yards! Get a casual job or work experience in a salon while you are studying; cleaning, answering phones, working in reception. Practice makes perfect and while it may not all be hands on, any experience is good experience. A good work ethic, dedication and customer service skills can get you a long way in this industry, not just with getting hired but also when it comes to getting regular repeat customers.

If you are looking at opening your own business the key is not to over complicate things. You need to keep it simple and specific to what you know best. This applies for business in general not just with beauty therapy. There is nothing more satisfying than making your dreams happen, but you need to be prepared to work hard. Running your own business is in no way easy – if it was easy everyone would do it!

Lilliane Caron – Founder of Waxxxpress If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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HOW TO SPEED UP YOUR INTIMATE WAXXXING TREATMENTS WITHOUT COMPROMISING ON EFFICIENCY AND QUALITY

Brazilian’s can be one of the most daunting treatments for therapists who are just starting out, however they don’t need to be. My advice is to get your foundations right. Find yourself a mentor, someone you can ask for advice. I often get students and even experienced therapists emailing me, in need of advice, and I’m more than happy to help. Sit in on a demonstration or if you feel like you need it, book yourself in for a one-on-one workshop. Then practice, practice, practice! The more you do, the more you’ll experience different body shapes and sizes, different hair types and challenges that you need to find your way through.

HOW TO SPEED UP YOUR INTIMATE WAXXXING TREATMENTS WITHOUT COMPROMISING ON EFFICIENCY AND QUALITY

It is very important that you have high quality products, especially your waxes. Hard wax should not go brittle and break when you’re removing it as this takes up time, and is also not pleasant for the client. If you’re finding that your hard wax is taking too long to set, then try a Quick Dry Wax Mist. Ideal for hot and humid conditions, this will touch-dry the wax instantly and can also be used to spritz over the client if it’s a warm day.

how to speed up waxxing

Ensure your trolley is set up properly with your pre and post products hanging from the side, and your wax pot at the front. There’s no need to reach over products to get to the wax – this only makes for more clean up. Keep your wax pots turned on throughout the day, even if there are no clients booked in. Too often I see salons with their pots turned off and it means they completely miss the opportunity of servicing walk-in clients, or they lose precious time waiting for the wax to heat up. Make sure you top up your wax pot after every client, either by pouring more in or adding a hard wax melt. Microwavable waxes can save lots of time, and make topping up your wax pot very convenient.

As you perfect the above, you will reduce the time it takes to do perform each treatment and your waxing will ultimately will become a ‘waxperience’ the client will want to repeat.

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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THE HISTORY OF WAXING

Lilliane Caron explains the evolution of waxing, from an ancient technique to how we know it today.

The beauty industry is an amazing world to be a part of. It’s forever changing and expanding rapidly. Trends come and go and products that were once revolutionary now seem so mundane, as if there was never a time we didn’t have these kind of luxury’s at our finger tips.

THE HISTORY OF WAXING

Hair removal may not be considered the most glamourous aspect of the beauty world, most people prefer to talk about makeup tips, or which fake tan gives you a flawless finish. However, waxing is a multi-million dollar industry and is the bread and butter of most salons. The ease of waxing today is often taken for granted. Waxing has been around for centuries, and while it is not a revolutionary concept, the products and formulations that are now available are revolutionary, and should be recognised on just how far they have come. The transformation of waxes and other hair removal techniques over the past few decades is amazing and we should all take a minute to thank our lucky stars we have never had to use a sharp rock or pure beeswax straight from the hive to remove unwanted hair!

The Egyptians are known for the being the ‘trendsetters’ for many beauty rituals. The woman of ancient Egypt used to remove all of the hair on their bodies, some including the hair on their heads! While hair removal these days is considered part of any beauty regime, purely for aesthetic reasons, it first originated in Middle Eastern countries in order to reduce parasites, fleas, lice and body odour which were all very common when living in such hot conditions. It has long been tradition that even the men are completely hairless. With few options, they made waxes out of sugar and beeswax and used tweezers made from seashells (can you believe!?).

Sugaring is an early form of waxing and is still popular in Arabic countries today. It uses an all-natural paste or gel made from food-derived ingredients like sugar, water and lemon juice to remove the hair. The toffee like substance is kneaded into the skin repeatedly, removing the hair as it goes. The thing with sugaring, even to this day, is that it is quite harsh on the client’s body and strenuous on the therapist’s wrists, back and body. While these homemade waxes were derived from natural ingredients, they would actually have been quiet harsh on the skin and caused irritation, redness, itchiness and bumps – reactions that can quiet easily be prevented or treated in this day and age.

During the Roman Empire the lack of body hair was also considered a sign of wealth and class, but even the wealthiest people in this period could only use what limited resources were available, generally tree sap, razors made from flints and sharp stones to scrap the hair.

In the 1930’s the first commercial waxes were manufactured in France to be sold to the public. As time went by, waxes became more available to the public and quickly became the choice of woman all over the world for removing unwanted hair – It was quick, convenient and effective! Men at this stage still opted for the razor but woman rejoiced in a method that gave them longer lasting results.

In the last 50 years or so the waxing industry has evolved immensely. Yes, by the 60’s there were both strip and hard waxes on the market; however the formulas and ingredients used to produce the waxes were inferior to those on the market today. While the idea had been marketed, the waxing industry was far from perfect and had a long way to grow.

From being in the waxing business myself for over 30 years I have witnessed the growth of this industry first hand. In 1979 I was working long hours in my own salon and became frustrated with the expensive, inferior, difficult to use waxes on the market. The strip wax crystalized and the hard wax went brittle on the skin.

Not only were they poor quality, but we had to sift the hair out of the wax and reuse it. Imagine putting your used wax in a fish and chip fryer every night and sifting out the hair because that’s what we were originally doing! I was sick and tired of a system that was desperate for a makeover, so I set about formulating my own range of hard and strip waxes.

In the year 2000, the world’s first white wax was formulated by my company in response to the growing trend in Brazilian waxing which was rapidly making a comeback. The Brazilian has been around since the early BC’s, and the trend has come and gone countless times. History tells us that Catherine de Medici, the Queen of France in the mid 1500’s actually banned the removal of all pubic hair! Who would have thought anyone would ban such a thing!? This revolutionary wax gripped to the hair without pulling the skin, it didn’t crack or go brittle and delivered unrivalled results; to this day, it is still Australia’s number one selling XXX wax.

The waxing industry is currently thriving in both a retail and salon environment. The idea of having smooth silky hair free skin is not considered a luxury; it is the norm – particularly for women. It is accessible to everyone in one way or another whether they are paying a professional or doing it in the comfort of their own home.

With convenience in mind for both beauty therapists and at-home users, there are perfectly sized hard wax pallets which mean there’s now no need to smash up hard wax with hammers. There are water soluble, dripless, microwavable, as well as powdered waxes on the market. There are waxes that contain Titanium Dioxide and other ingredients that decrease redness and irritation, a side effect that had no solution centuries ago. This kind of innovation makes me excited for what the future holds. In 30 years’ time who knows what kind of waxes we will have and what they will be capable of. It’s funny to think how time goes by and all we can do is wait and see where it takes us!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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HOW TO TACKLE THE VARIOUS SIDE EFFECTS OF WAXXXING!

Having been in the beauty industry for almost 40 years I have seen and heard about every possible waxing side effect you can imagine. Everyday people we have just met literally strip down to the nude and reveal to us personal experiences or side effects they have had from waxing (and often a whole lot more, but that’s a different story!).

HOW TO TACKLE THE VARIOUS SIDE EFFECTS OF WAXXXING!

‘Is this normal?’ ‘What’s gone wrong?’ ‘How do I fix it?’ I’m sure you can all relate to these questions and most of the time, the side effects they’re referring to are completely normal. In saying this, it’s much better for these questions and queries to arise before the client leaves the salon so that we can work together to eliminate them. I’m going to tell you how you and your clients can reduce the chances of nasty waxing side effects getting in the way of your waxing treatment to ensure your clients keep coming back.

REDNESS & INFLAMATION

A common and natural side effect of waxing is redness and inflammation. Now, to a degree there will always be some redness particularly with people with pale and sensitive skin. We are literally ripping the hairs out from the follicles; that’s always going to cause the skin to react in some way. However using a superior wax, with high quality ingredients is going to decrease the reactions and cause much less irritation to the skin. I can’t stress this enough; wax is not just wax. Cheap, inferior wax, made with poor quality products is the main cause of irritation.

Usually we are told “natural” is better but when it comes to pine (tree) resin in waxes, unrefined resins can cause allergic reactions and product instability. Top of the range synthetic resins are much safer, more consistent in production batch to batch and easier for the Therapist to work with. Synthetic resins are usually declared as hydrocarbon resin or polycyclopentadiene. High quality synthetic resins are easy to colour and fragrance and often appear fresh and clean. Pure white waxes can only be made from the best synthetic resins available. They provide the manufacturer with better quality control over the product and in turn give the Estheticians confidence in the treatment being performed.

Not only do you need to choose the right wax, you also need to choose the right pre and post products to go with your treatment. If you’re using a wax that requires pre-waxing oil, make sure you use one! This removes any traces of dirt, makeup, cream, body oil; you name it. Peppermint oil provides a refreshing cool feeling and acts as a soothing agent. It also improves the adherence of the wax to the skin meaning you won’t have to go over any areas more than once – another sure way of reducing irritation to the skin. In saying this, if you are using a superior gentle Hard Wax, no pre waxing oil is required at all!

When you have finished your waxing treatment use an After Waxing Soothing Lotion – I suggest our Body Icing in Tea Tree or Mango and Witch Hazel. These ingredients have soothing properties which calm and replenish the skin with vital nutrients. Not only does the After Waxing Lotion help with soothing the skin but it also helps prevent the formation of ingrown hairs and pustules. This brings me to some other common side effects of waxing. That’s right, those dreaded bumps!

INGROWNS, BUMPS & PIMPLES

Ingrown hairs and pimples are extremely common after waxing. Ingrown hair treatments are the perfect addition to any treatment as well as a great retail product for your salon. An ingrown hair product such as Bump eRaiser Concentrated Serum is best used after waxing as natural fruit acids soothe irritated skin and help prevent ingrown hairs from occurring. If your client has already existing ingrown hairs, I suggest recommending a targeted ingrown hair spot treatment such as Medi Paste. It is ideal for healing ingrown hairs quickly and can also be used on pimples as it rapidly draws out the infection. These products are easy to upsell with any waxing treatment. Don’t forget to encourage your clients to exfoliate daily too, every client you treat should walk out the door with an Exfoliating Mitt; after all, prevention is always better than a cure!

At the end of my treatment I always use Keep Calm and Waxxx Off. This is an After Waxing Oil that removes any wax residue. It contains Tea Tree Oil and also works an anti-bacterial. Unlike paraffin and vegetable based oils, it is easily absorbed and doesn’t leave the skin greasy. Leaving a clean, smooth finish it also helps prevent ingrown hairs and bacteria from causing pustules and pimples.

PAIN & BRUISING

We all know that waxing doesn’t tickle however there are ways to make it a less painful experience. Using an incorrect waxing technique can cause serious damage to a client’s skin including unnecessary pain and bruising. Get to know your wax. Invest in a good heater and get to know the perfect consistency of your chosen wax.

If you are treating an older client, be especially gentle as their skin can tear and bruise easily. Always remember to always ask if they have started taking any new medication before each wax. A lot can change in 4 weeks and medication can also play a factor in how a client’s skin will react to your treatment.

Another product to help ease discomfort as well as speed up your treatment is a Quick Dry Wax Mist like Jet Set! Jet Set not only sets your wax instantly but it also contains natural AHA which is known to reduce redness. It can also be used to spritz over your client to cool and add an ambience to your treatment during the warmer months.

As Estheticians, it is our job to do all we can to make a client’s waxing experience, including the treatment itself and the results afterwards as pleasant as possible. After all, if they suffer from severe side effects because we aren’t using the right products or technique – they definitely won’t be back! With a combination of having the correct technique, using the right products and offering the appropriate aftercare advice, we can minimise our clients’ side-effects and ensure our waxing treatments are a ‘waxxxperience’ they will want to repeat!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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DO YOU CHOP AND CHANGE YOUR WAXXX? IS IT DOING YOU MORE HARM THAN GOOD.

WAXXXPRESS FOUNDER LILLIANE CARON HIGHLIGHTS WHEN YOU SHOULD AND SHOULDN’T CHANGE YOUR WAX.

The key to being a successful and confident therapist is finding what wax suits you. All therapists are different and there is certainly no one size fits all approach when it comes to waxing. If I asked you right now, what is your favourite wax and why? You should be able to answer me within a few seconds. As a therapist, having the right wax is the most important ingredient for any waxing treatment.

DO YOU CHOP AND CHANGE YOUR WAXXX? IS IT DOING YOU MORE HARM THAN GOOD.

Many therapists seem to find it hard to commit to just one brand of wax, and not only that but they have absolutely no idea of what wax they are even using! I have been in salons that have 10 different waxes, from 10 different brands, and all half used. This is not the way to run a business nor is this the way to conduct any kind of treatment. You need to find a hard and strip wax and make a commitment! They will be your partner in crime. Your clients should not see a range of different waxes around your salon and have to play a guessing game in order to find out which brand is being used on them. If you are experiencing difficulty or poor results from your treatment, changing your wax every second week is not going to help, in fact it’s doing you and your clients more harm than good.

Finding the right wax can be life changing, and you will wonder how you ever survived before you found it! I know it can be tempting to opt for a cheaper product, and save a few dollars here and there, but one thing you cannot risk is the quality of your wax. Price should not defer you away from a high quality product. Paying that extra couple of dollars can make all the difference when it comes to securing repeat business and long-term clients. A salon providing high quality treatments, with high quality products can be extremely profitable. One 800g jar of wax can do at least 200 eyebrow waxes. If you charge £10 for a treatment, that is £2000 you have made from a £1o.00 wax. A salon using cheap wax may save £3 per jar, times that by a carton of wax and you have saved roughly £36. Sure you have saved £36 straight off the bat but if you are using an inferior wax the chances of you even rebooking 200 treatments let alone 100 is not great. Cheap waxes cost more in the long run. The same goes if you are using more product to get the result, you actually have saved nothing and could ultimately lose the customer if you continually send them home with irritated skin and a substandard result. It all comes down to how many clients you have, and how many choose to come back to YOU over any other salon.

A lot of people I talk to (including many trained therapists) believe side effects such as swelling, redness and bruising are normal after waxing. They also think that some hairs cannot be removed due to them being ‘too short.’ Yes there are situations where the hairs may be too short, however most of the time if someone is booking in for a wax, it is because they have adequate hair in the area, why else would they pay for an appointment? If a client is willing to pay to have these hairs removed, it is the therapists job to not be lazy and work the area in order to remove as many hairs as possible. This comes down to having a good wax and knowing how to use it. Many waxes cannot be reapplied as the poor quality ingredients irritate the skin. However there are a number of waxes on the market that are gentle and allow you to go over the same area more than once. As a therapists you need to have a relationship with your wax and know how to get the results. As for the irritations and side effects, these are not ‘normal’ and are reactions that are easily avoidable if you are using a good wax with the correct technique. Having so many beauty therapists believing that these side effects are unavoidable is why a lot of therapists and clients are scared of waxing or being waxed. Waxing is not scary, or painful. It is the most effective method of hair removal with results lasting as long as 4 – 6 weeks. Plus, with regular waxing the hair will start to weaken the hair follicle, resulting in less hair growth. We need to educate our clients that waxing does not have to result in pain and nasty side effects.

When you are assessing your wax ask yourself the following; does it grip the hairs? Is the consistency stringy? Does it smell of resin or chemicals? Is it dark and highly perfumed? Does it lift the skin? Does it cause redness and irritation? Does it cause ingrown hairs or pimples? If you answered yes to one or more of these you definitely need to rethink your wax. Inferior waxes cause redness, irritation and ingrowns, not to mention, they do not maintain temperature as well as a top quality wax. Find a pot that is able to maintain the temperature of your wax without burning it. If your wax is pliable, consistent, nourishing on the skin, has a subtle aroma and, of course, is removing hair properly, there’s no need to change! You have struck gold! If you are using a superior wax with a good reputation and still experience difficulty, don’t jump ship too quickly, it may be your technique. Don’t hesitate to ask the manufacturer. They can provide some tips on the best consistency and technique for using their wax. After all, they know it best!

Lilliane Caron is Owner & Director of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Lilliane Caron for some advice on your own salon,email [email protected]

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BRAZILIAN WAXING MYTHS BUSTED!

By Waxxxpress Head Trainer, Holly Hayes

As a Beauty Therapist we come across many different perceptions on when it is ok to get a wax and when it is ‘definitely not ok’– especially when it comes to ‘the land down under.’ Some people tend to get a little uncomfortable discussing this area and seem to think it is on a completely different level to every other body part. They don’t understand that Beauty Therapists literally see hundreds of vaginas a year and to us, really if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all! There are so many myths floating around the about Brazilian waxing such as ‘you can’t get a wax while on your period’ or ‘a glass of wine before getting a wax will ease the pain.’ As a matter of fact alcohol actually tightens pores, which can lead to a more painful waxing experience! So many people have it all wrong when it comes to Brazilian waxing. I am going to bust this can of worms right open and share with you the most common myths surrounding downstairs waxing.

BRAZILIAN WAXING MYTHS BUSTED
  1. You can’t go, when Aunt Flow is in town. The common theory that you can’t possibly get a wax when you have your period is completely untrue. Woman’s menstrual cycles are a part of life and whether we like it or not they will appear once a month for the majority of our lives. While this is certainly a myth, there is still a downside to having a wax while on your period, you are more sensitive, but this goes for every part of the body. I don’t advise coming in on your first day of menstruation, perhaps come towards the end. In saying this, let’s not forget there are 3 other weeks each month where you are completely free. So unless you really need it done, it’s best to make use of the time your Aunt Flow isn’t in town.
  2. Maybe if you trim it, it won’t hurt as much. Giving your lady parts a little hair cut before coming in for a Brazilian does not minimise pain. In fact, the more hair the better! The longer the hair the easier it is to grip and properly release from the root. As beauty therapists we don’t care how long anyone’s pubic hair is, it could be as long as Chubaka’s hair for all we care, it is our job to remove it. The Lilliane Caron Brazilian Waxing method does not revolve around the length of pubic hair and her number one rule is do not trim!!! I promise you it does not reduce the pain.
  3. I’m getting too old for this… There is no age limit in relation to having a Brazilian. I have waxed woman well into their 70’s and I say, good on them! Our clients should never be made to feel like the treatment they require is inappropriate or they are too old for anything. As a Beauty Therapist our job is to make people feel comfortable and confident no matter what age. When treating an older client we need to be especially gentle as their skin can tear and bruise easily. I would always try to use a hard wax on older clients as it is much easier on their skin. This also goes for woman who may be going through menopause. Woman’s hormones are constantly changing and especially as they get older. None of this means they have to stop waxing, it just means we have to be extremely delicate, while waxing their ‘delicates!’
  4. Hold it mister…no hanky-panky tonight. I am about to make every man’s dream come true. Yes ladies and gentlemen, the whole ‘you can’t have sex straight after getting a Brazilian’ is a myth! A lot of clients and therapists are under the impression that you need to wait at least 24 hours after a Brazilian before having sex, because the friction and perspiration might aggravate the skin or bacteria will get into the open follicles. As long as you are being waxed with a high quality product that is designed for sensitive areas and then shower after your cheeky rendezvous there is no reason you can’t celebrate your smooth new look with your loved one.
  5. I can manage childbirth, but I can’t manage a Brazilian. The idea that Brazilian waxing is too painful to bare is a common misconception by women who have never had a one. I have heard many women say they are ‘too scared’ or ‘couldn’t handle the pain.’ Um hello, that child you have attached to your hip would have hurt a hell of a lot more on their way out than having some hair removed – if you can handle child birth, a Brazilian is going to be a walk in the park! I’m not going to lie and say it doesn’t hurt at all, your most intimate hairs are being ripped from where the sun don’t shine, that doesn’t tickle… But with a confident therapist and the right technique Brazilian’s don’t have to be painful and are probably a solid 1.5 on the scale of 1 – childbirth.
  6. Brazilian’s – that’s a girl thing Brazilian waxing is in no way gender-specific. For a long time Brazilian’s have been seen as a female only treatment, but fellas, those days are gone! More than ever, men are reaping the benefits of waxing their private areas. Male grooming is increasing rapidly these days and the stigma behind men taking pride in the way they look has taken a real backseat. There is absolutely no shame at all in men wanting a smooth hair free undercarriage! So, there you have it, Brazilian Waxing Myths BUSTED! Of course all of these decisions are a personal choice by our clients and ultimately it comes down to whether they feel comfortable or not. A good therapist should always communicate with their clients and put them at ease. It doesn’t matter what time of the month it is, how old you are, whether you are male or female.

    Everyone can reap the benefits of a smooth confident Brazilian down under! Holly Hayes is Head Trainer of Waxxxpress. If you’d like to ask Holly for some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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THE DO’S AND DON’TS OF USING CARTRIDGES

Here’s some handy hints to preserve the life of your Roller Wax Cartridge Heater, prevent issues including roller heads cracking, fixed heads falling off and reduce the risk of burns to yourself and your client.

Do you use cartridges in your salon

DON’T

  • Never re-heat cartridges.
  • Never leave cartridges heating longer than necessary. Re-stock heater as required.
  • Never exceed 4.5 on the temperature dial.
  • Never attempt to refill cartridges.
  • Never attempt to remove cartridge heads & use with a spatula.
  • Never force a cartridge to roll. It should not drag on the skin.
  • Never leave heater on overnight.
THE DO'S AND DON'TS OF USING CARTRIDGES

DO

  • Always use a new cartridge on a client. Cartridges are single use and should not be re-used.
  • Always ensure the cartridge head is firmly in place and not off-centre before use.
  • Always roll a new cartridge on to a wax strip before use on a client to ensure the wax is flowing through the cartridge head evenly. Roll cartridge with a light application and never force it.
  • Always wipe drips off the cartridge head in between applications with a wax strip and Waxxxpress Keep Calm & Waxxx Off After Waxing Oil.
  • Always keep working temperature consistently at 4.5 on the dial.
  • Use a timer to help ensure that the wax is at the right temperature when it’s required. Timer should automatically turn heater off at the end of the day.
  • Always wipe any wax residue off heater at the end of the day with Waxxxpress Clean & Glo Citrus Clean.

Adhering to these guidelines will:

  • Prevent cartridge roller heads from cracking
  • Prevent fixed roller heads from falling off
  • Preserve the life of your heater
  • Reduce the risk of burns to yourself and your client
  • Ensure your Heater is being used in the most energy efficient way

If you have a question or need some advice on your own salon, email [email protected]

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