There is that one dreaded appointment in a girl’s diary that makes her wince every time she thinks about it. ‘Is it that time already? Didn’t I just have it done?’ – a heavy sigh at the prospect of the inevitable. Because as much as you would like to, you can’t postpone/cancel/pretend you don’t need it/acquire a magic power/cast a spell on it, and have no choice but have a shower, get dressed and drag yourself to that waxing appointment.
And it’s not just because waxing itself is rather an unpleasant procedure but because you are required to expose parts of your body that come under category ‘Restricted Personnel only’.
There is a saying in Russian ‘красота требует жертв’ which means beauty demands sacrifices. And I couldn’t help but wonder if whoever said that actually meant that very experience of hair being mercilessly ripped off your body with melted wax, procedure bearing a faint resemblance to a medieval torture, in the name of the very beauty in question.
But although the experience in itself isn’t exactly what one would call relaxing, it really isn’t half bad. And with the right attitude and the right person you can be set free, from the unwanted hair that is. I remember my first waxing exodus with my current beauty therapist.
It was a cold November night. One of those nights when you yearn for layers and layers of jumpers, with the feet cosily wrapped in woolly granny socks, topped with a blanket while clutching a steaming cup of tea and munching on anything stodgy and with as many calories as possible, because who counts calories when it’s this cold?! That very night I arrived for my first waxing appointment.
After the pleasantries were over we went to her beauty parlour which was pleasantly warm, courtesy of a little portable heater in the corner. In fact, it was so balmy in there that I immediately forgot the cold outside and was more than happy to bare all.
When it comes to waxing etiquette and getting undressed , the biggest question a girl has to face in front of a new waxing beautician is knickers on or off. Up until that moment I have always kept my knickers on so when she casually dropped ‘Oh, just take them off, they will only be in the way’ I suddenly felt really shy. And I’m not a shy person, ask the girls in the gym!
‘I can do this’ – I thought. And with a light air of bravado I slipped off my little thong and climbed on the couch. I was now laying there wearing nothing but my top. There is something very unnatural about wearing your top but not your bottom. Even when getting dressed, I always put my knickers on first and only then, my bra. So to be on the couch wearing my top and nothing else below my waist felt very odd.
And then she started waxing. I knew the drill here, I was an old waxing veteran – wax applied, then a strip, skin stretched, the strip ripped off and voila – a bit of my body hair free for 4 to 6 weeks. She kept chatting to me while meticulously applying-stretching-and--ripping which put me at ease and I stopped feeling conscious about the lack of underwear and complete exposure of my lady parts to absolute stranger.
And as I became almost-comfortable, out of nowhere came something that took the whole experience to a completely new level - ‘It’s not a very good light here, let me get the lamp’. The use of lamp was a completely new and a tad alien experience to me; a) I felt shy and the last thing I wanted was more light on my ‘keep out’ area, b)I didn’t think the light was that bad c) did I mention I felt shy?
The lamp was living in the opposite corner from the heater and looked like a love child between spaceship and a medical theatre – steel, slick and ever so slightly scary. I don’t know whether it was the lamp itself or the idea of its intentions but I suddenly felt nervous and uncomfortable; however I had no choice but to trust my beautician.
A couple of minutes later I was laying there: no knickers, with my legs in the air and what felt like the Sun itself shining brightly at my area 51 and my new beautician bent over that very area, like a surgeon, waxing and tweezing with scientific precision. I think it is safe to say that up until that moment I had never ever felt so exposed in my entire life. Or ever since for that matter.
The thing is it strangely felt ok, and I think it was a combination of factors - of the girl not pausing for a breath and talking like there is no tomorrow whilst going about it in such a matter-of-fact fashion that it almost felt normal to be laying on a stranger’s couch with no underwear and with my legs in the air.
Before I knew it I was done - de-haired, moisturised and feeling pretty-damn-good. And the feeling of being exposed, uncomfortable and almost-humiliated melted away like yesterday’s snow when she gave me a hug as I was leaving, wishing me a good week with the next appointment in 4 weeks time safely in our diaries.
On the way home I realised that I had just had the best waxing experience of my life and had discovered the holy grail of hair removal having met the Waxsiah herself. That night I got saved. From the unwanted hair. And it really wasn’t half bad.