Why You Need To Shield Your Skin From The Sun After A Bikini Wax

The summer is almost here, which means that bathing suit season will soon be in full swing. With that said, you might be considering getting a bikini wax before hitting the beach or going on vacation. If you never received one before, this is everything you need to know to prepare for your first bikini wax. Prior to your appointment, you should know what kind of wax you're getting. For instance, do you want to get a Brazilian and wax all of your hair off, or do you only want to do some light grooming around the bikini line?

Whatever you decide, you should ensure that your hair is long enough before you wax. Experts recommend the hair be a quarter of an inch to make the waxing process as smooth as possible, and showering and exfoliating right before your wax is also advised. If you're worried about pain, take Advil and refrain from drinking alcohol and caffeine; both of these beverages can make your skin sensitive. Last but not least, you should know of the possible side effects of waxing, including irritation and ingrown hairs. And if you just received a bikini wax, experts say you should avoid the sun to reduce any other adverse reactions.

Waxing increases the skin's sensitivity

Per Verywell Health, bikini waxes can, unfortunately, cause the skin to be extra sensitive to sunlight. While you might want to lay out on the beach immediately after your treatment, it's crucial that you stay out of the sun for a day or two, because your bikini area will likely be inflamed from waxing. Adding heat to this mixture via sun exposure can cause even more discomfort, inflammation, and pain. A rash could form on the skin, or you could develop a sunburn on your bikini area. By removing some of the skin, waxing increases its sensitivity and vulnerability to the sun.

Esthetician Marta Grochowska explained that there are other potential (and potentially permanent) issues like hyperpigmentation that can be caused by prematurely exposing your waxed skin to sunlight (via Glamour). Verywell Health notes that individuals on birth control pills are more susceptible to photosensitivity, and these medications can also make your skin overall more sensitive to waxing. While this does not happen to everyone, it is something to be aware of. 

If you can't stay out of the sun, you should wear sunscreen with SPF 50 or above. Likewise, wear clothing that protects you from the sun. Getting a bikini wax to prep for a vacation? You should wax at least three days before leaving for your trip.

More bikini waxing don'ts

You should never get a bikini wax if you have sunburnt skin; It will hurt more and amplify the possibility of adverse side effects. You should also avoid swimming at the beach or a pool right after getting a bikini wax, as bacteria from these sites can enter the skin and cause an infection. Aesthetician Leyda Quintero told Well+Good, "salt water and chlorine will get into your open pores and cause more irritation if you get a bikini wax the day of." Similarly, experts say you should not spend time in the sauna or take baths.

However, there's more to bikini wax aftercare than you might have been aware of. Be prepared to ditch tight clothing for dresses and other loose-fitting pieces to decrease friction. It would help if you also avoided any activities that can cause irritation, thus, you should not exercise or have sex until two days after your bikini wax. To prevent further irritation, don't spray tan your skin or use certain skincare products. "Avoid any lotion, soap, or other toiletry items with artificial fragrance or color," said Marta Grochowska (to Glamour). While getting a bikini wax can be a wild ride, the pain will decrease with each wax and leave you with lasting results.