Of all the bad decisions I’ve made in my life, I count the time I tried an at-home Brazilian wax as easily among the top five.
I am a hirsute woman. So hirsute, in fact, that a doctor once asked me if I was of Mediterranean descent. I am not of Mediterranean descent. My ancestors are Irish and Scandinavian, so you know—not overly hairy people.
Not like me.
Still, armed with a strong self-awareness about the tenacity and the volume of my own body hair, I nonetheless came to the conclusion that giving myself a Brazilian wax seemed like a reasonable idea.
The very first bit of advice I can give you, and it is really important, is this: DON’T FUCKING DO IT.
However, if you do decide to go through with a self-waxing, you should follow these simple steps:
1. The instructions say to make sure that all of the hair you will be ripping from your most personal of areas is trimmed to no more than 1/4 of an inch. FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS.
2. After trimming the lady lawn, consider backing out of the whole process before any wax actually touches your “area.” Go watch Netflix instead. Or take a nap.
3. If you don’t back out, then remember this: once that wax hits your hoo-ha, you will have no choice but to continue.
4. When you rip off that first strip, you will experience a burst of pain that will make you smell colors and hear voices from 1972. Give yourself a few minutes to whimper. Decide if maybe just the one strip is enough.
5. If you choose to continue, congratulate yourself. You are a motherfucking badass. And also a dumbass. Because WHO FUCKING DOES THIS TO THEMSELVES?
6. Have a towel close by, because the volume of the flop sweat you will produce will rival that of a marathon runner.
7. For all that is holy, if the instructions say NOT to apply the wax when it is too runny, then don’t. Runny wax can find its way into areas that have no business being a part of the waxing experience. Remember that if wax goes into areas best left alone, it still has to be removed. Painfully.
8. In between ripping off the strips of wax, give yourself plenty of time to close your eyes and cry a little. Also, be aware that muttering “No no no no no no no” after an application will not make it feel any better. But the fact that it will not make you feel better won’t stop you from muttering “No no no no no no no.”
9. The instructions will tell you that the entire process takes no longer than thirty minutes. This is a lie. If you get done within ninety minutes, it will be a miracle. You’re going to spend thirty minutes on the whimpering alone.
10. At some point in the process, you will think that you are finished. Because, even though you should be using a mirror, you’ll probably have applied each strip using the Braille method. This method is not effective. When you do grab a mirror to examine the results of your pain and suffering, you will find that your lady garden went from looking perfectly normal to looking like you thought scootching naked on the ground in Chernobyl was a good idea.
11. Steel yourself, reheat your wax, and get that shit finished.
12. After you’re done, you will have the unpleasant sensation of having a sunburned hootchie. This is not a sexy feeling. In fact, all of your sexy feelings will go away for twenty-four to forty-eight hours.
13. When regrowth starts, you might experience some irritation. And by irritation, I mean you will be in a horrific mood for over a week. Take this time to decide that your body is designed exactly as it should be. Accept that someone in your distant past fucked a Bigfoot. Life is what it is.
C’est la hair.