No matter if you have just graduated from beauty school or if you have been working as a waxing specialist for several years, you surely have already heard about the nonstop debate of whether it is safe to re-dip a spatula back into a wax pot after using it to apply the product on a customer's skin. Even though most beauty experts disagree with this practice –known as double dipping– for several understandable reasons, today we still find spas or beauty salons that offer waxing services where the estheticians defend and practice double dipping without hesitation.
Because of these two completely opposing opinions, double dipping has become a controversial subject that is constantly debated between estheticians and specialists without having reached a unanimous conclusion. In general, this is a matter that concerns solely strip wax or soft body wax–hard body waxes or sugar paste are applied with the hands and spatulas aren't used–but since most professionals work with all types of waxes, it is mandatory that every spa or beauty business establishes ground rules regarding this issue. A 'no double dipping' policy might seem immoderate if you consider the extra expenses and time, but the benefits truly outweigh the cost.
Why you should avoid double dipping:
- Anti-hygienic: A lot of bacteria resides on our skin, most of it isn't harmful, but some of it can travel from the spatula to the waxing jar if an esthetician re-dips the stick. Harmful bacteria can then infect anyone whose skin comes in contact with the wax inside that jar, especially people with poor immune systems or blood flow. Bleeding is also common during a waxing procedure; blood will undoubtedly contaminate the wax with germs, diseases, or bacteria.
- Bad impression: Nowadays, double dipping is a well-known term for both regular clientele and first-time clients. It's common sense really and it doesn't only apply to waxing. Imagine if a doctor re-used a tongue stick to examine your throat… would you even allow it? Same goes for food—double dipping a chip in a bowl during a party is considered unpolite because you can contaminate the entire bowl with your saliva. Although not that farfetched, double dipping when waxing can also come across as unsanitary from the clients' perspective.
- Not permitted by guides and standards around the world: The esthetician state boards of 50 states in the U.S. have banned double dip waxing. The Hair and Beauty Industry Authority in the U.K, an institution appointed by the government to set ground rules for beauty procedures in the country, considers spatulas as a single-use item and recommends using a new spatula for each dip into the wax pot. The National Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health, funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada, has a specialized document to explain the consequences of double dipping.
As you can see, the reasons why most experts and professionals oppose double dipping is quite straightforward; there is no benefit in continuing this practice, which is why more and more beauty businesses are starting to switch to a 'no double dipping' policy, whether for publicity or hygienic reasons. One can't help but wonder why there is still a debate about it? There are estheticians who continue to double dip. Here are the most common arguments they give to defend said practice:
- "The temperature of the wax kills all bacteria"
False. Widely speaking, the proper temperature to kill bacteria is 212 degrees Fahrenheit for a minimum of 30 minutes according to the Encyclopedia of Aesthetics & Spa Therapy. Waxes are never heated to that degree – that would just burn the client's skin!
- "Waxing spatulas are too expensive"
Disposing a spatula after just one use might seem like a waste of material and money, but clients won't mind the extra cents they'll have to pay for the service if it guarantees greater safety and quality; the extra expense isn't much of a difference if we consider that you can find packages of 500 wooden spatulas for less than $10. You can also turn to hard body waxes or sugaring if you find it more beneficial for the client's skin.
- "Too much environmental waste"
Caring about the extra waste you'll produce by using more spatulas is a valid argument; however, there are other strategies to avoid double dipping. Some beauty professionals have shared great ideas they have come up with to avoid this practice. For example, you can use one spatula to get the wax out of the pot and transport it to another spatula, one that you will use only to spread the product on the client's skin. With this method, you'll be sure that the wax inside the pot will never get contaminated. You can also buy a set of metal spatulas you can clean and sterilize after each procedure with a sterilization pouch. Waxing professional Andy Rouillard suggested in an article for Vitality Magazine that estheticians can also raise the price a little for a wax to make donations for reforestation projects if they are concerned about environmental waste.
The best spas or beauty businesses build a reputation for being safe, clean, and relaxing establishments where clients are 100% sure they are being treated with the best techniques and products, and in the care of the most qualified professionals. If you want your business to maintain or gain such a respected status, you first need to avoid double dipping – clients and colleagues respect beauty salons with firm health policies.
If you're a licensed esthetician and you're looking for quality wooden spatulas, hard body waxes, or sugaring paste to use at your spa or beauty business, Beauty Image offers a wide array of options to choose from. You can purchase our products from the comfort of your home or spa through our website; watch our video tutorials to learn how. If you have any questions, call us at TOLL FREE 888-513-8815 or fill out the contact form on this page, we will be happy to assist you! For more information about our products, find us on Facebook at Beauty Image USA, follow us on Twitter @BeautyImageUSA and on Instagram @BeautyImageUSA