What should I be aware of when going to a salon for a bikini wax?

It's important to be aware of the things around you that could raise red flags regarding a salon's cleanliness when you go for a bikini wax.

You can learn a lot about a salon just by walking in the door. First, take a look around at the products and waiting area. Are shampoo bottles dusty? Are magazines and empty glasses strewn about the lobby? These could be indicators that things behind the scenes also need some tightening up.

Good signs include a friendly, informative receptionist who asks you to fill out a new client questionnaire that inquires about any sensitivities, allergies or other health issues, as well as a neat and tidy product display.

Once you meet the professional who will be doing your bikini wax, be sure to ask her any questions you may have before the procedure, including potential side effects and after-wax skin care. When doing this, gauge her knowledge and don't be afraid to back out if she can't answer your inquiries, particularly if they pertain to her certification or licensure. It's better to risk offending someone than to end up with an uncomfortable rash or infection. After all, this is a very personal area you're letting her tend to.

Additionally, take a look around the room. All equipment should appear clean, organized and reasonably new. There should be a clean paper sheet on the table, and all sticks, strips and other disposable supplies should be in sealed containers.

Your waxing professional should wear gloves and should never, ever double dip. Double dipping is when a cosmetologist keeps dipping the same spatula or applicator into the tub of warm wax, then reheats that wax for the next client’s procedure. She should either use a new disposable spatula each time she dips or use a palette on which she pours enough wax for your individual treatment.

If the technician uses a wax roller, the roller head should be a new disposable roller. If it’s not, ask if it was sanitized between clients. There should be no hair on the roller or other tools or surroundings before your procedure begins.

If you're getting a full-on Brazilian wax, you probably won't be offered disposable panties to wear during the procedure. Otherwise, feel free to ask for a pair if it makes you more comfortable.

After the waxing, avoid any potential skin irritants for 24 hours after waxing. These can include hot temperatures from showers, tanning or hot tubs, as well as perfumed soaps, deodorants or sprays on the area where skin was removed.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.