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Can I Wax Over a Tattoo?
February 10, 2020The popularity of waxing continues to grow, with more people appreciating its advantages and specialized products hitting the market to respond to all needs and skin conditions. When it comes to waxing over a tattoo, however, there is a number of concerns that often come to mind. Clients worry about affecting an area that's already sensitive or causing damages to the tattoo design even months after the ink has been applied. To ease these clients' concerns, it's important to use the appropriate hair removal products and make sure the healing period is over before starting a waxing treatment on tattooed skin.
Is Waxing Over Tattoos Safe?As we've explained on previous occasions, waxing is the process that removes hair from the root of the skin (either via hard wax or soft wax) and exfoliates the epidermis, which happens to be the top layer of the skin.
First of all, let's clear up the myth surrounding wax and tattoos: waxing poses no risks to healed tattoos, whether we are talking about the skin or the art itself. When getting a tattoo, the ink is injected into the dermis. The dermis is the second layer of the skin, right below the epidermis where the wax is applied. Wax doesn't come in contact with the ink. If anything, it helps recover the original vibrance of a tattoo after removing the dead cells from the surface portion of the skin.
A period of 4-6 weeks must follow the completion of the tattoo before applying any hair removal treatment, though the overall healing process is determined by a person's skin type and the complexity of the work made by the tattoo artist. Once the healing period is over, waxing is the ideal way to revitalize the skin while maintaining the vividness of the details in the tattoo. To help you provide first-rate services for clients in the weeks after getting a tattoo, we bring a series of useful tips and recommendations you can share with them to ensure the best results in the areas they plan to wax. Check out our blog post "The Right Wax for Each Skin Type" to complement the information below and don't forget to look through the "Questions Estheticians Need to Ask New Clients Before a Waxing Session" to learn other important details that you must discuss with your clients in advance.
Pre-TattooBefore injecting the ink into the skin, the area that will have the tattoo is shaved to avoid ingrown hairs during the tattoo healing process; it's a basic step that usually marks the beginning of a tattoo session. As the trend surrounding tattoos continues to grow and evolve, it's become more common for clients to seek the assistance of estheticians before getting tattoos inked on their skin. While you can guide them through moisturization and hydration treatments, pre-tattoo waxing can irritate the skin if it's done soon before the tattoo session. If it's done well in advance, however, a waxing treatment can save time and effort for the tattoo artist while ensuring the outcome envisioned by the client.
Post-Tattoo Waxing TreatmentAfter getting a tattoo, most people will likely maintain a routine to keep the smoothness on the tattooed portion of the skin. While shaving is the quickest and least expensive choice, a waxing treatment offers important advantages regarding skincare and hair growth cycles. Waxing is also an ideal alternative to avoid the effects caused by other modern methods like laser hair removal, which distorts the ink's design and, more importantly, causes severe damage to the tattooed skin due to an unusual production of heat.
Communication between esthetician and client is imperative to make sure there are no medical conditions that could make the skin respond poorly to waxing. This feedback will also help you make sure the scar left by the tattoo is healing properly to schedule a session.
Just like in a regular waxing procedure, the products and accessories are chosen according to the thickness of the hair, the amount of hair to remove from the skin, and the sensitivity levels in the area where the treatment will be applied. Hot wax is more suitable for larger areas, so it will probably be your best choice when dealing with big portions of skin covered in tattoos, like arms and back. In the event of ingrown hairs, the best approach would be using hard wax or sugaring paste to avoid irritation on the sensitive skin.
Depending on the client's individual hair grow rate, the tattooed area will remain smooth and hair-free for weeks after waxing, helping enhance the lines on the tattoo itself.
Skincare and AftercareIt's important to show attention to the client's skin during a session. Integrate organic skin care products to complement the treatment with natural properties like calendula, bacocalmine, and tropical fruits. A cold compress is welcomed by clients after waxing, and moisturizing lotion can quickly ease the remaining discomfort left by the procedure. Proper hydration will always be a sure way to maintain the vitality of the skin and this, in turn, will brighten the tattoo itself.
While several techniques can help you provide comfort after waxing, there are also recommendations you can pass on for clients to apply in their skincare routine:
- Protection from UV Rays: The skin is more sensitive after waxing so it's advisable for clients to refrain from staying under the sun in the days following the session.
- Refresh the Skin: Cool gels and compresses in the aftermath of the session are easy and pleasant ways to refresh the skin.
- Keep Away from Tight Clothes and Chemical-based Cosmetics and Lotions: Otherwise, the client could potentially irritate the sensitive area.
- Moisturize the Skin: Clients can introduce moisturization treatment a couple of days after the session to prevent impurities clogging the pores in the skin.
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