I Thought Wax Was Only For Cars And Surfboards

I know this is probably a personal question and I'm fixin' to get way T.M.I., but how do y'all remove your body hair? I'm old-fashioned. I just shave. I used to use shaving creams and whatnot, but I don't do that anymore. I just shave with water. I think I stopped using that extra stuff when I moved out on my own and figured out that I needed other things, like food and electricity, more than I needed shaving cream. When you don't make much money, it comes down to small things like that.

But that's not what I really want to talk about. I'd like to hear y'all's horror stories with hair removal. I'm going to give mine. (I told you I was fixin' to go T.M.I.)

When I was in high school the beauty companies were just starting to come out with all kinds of different Body hair removal products (I was concerned only with my legs. You know, tanning and all. Shorts and skirts were also a concern for me.) Now that I think about it, these different kinds of products were most probably available way before I found out about them. I'm sure they were available in larger cities, but when I was in high school, I lived in a town of 3,000 people (which is actually larger than the place I live now, but at least it's not an hour and a half away from a major city).

Anyway, I was in Wal-Mart one day with my dad (Wal-Mart was pretty much the only store in that town.) and I spied this wax hair removal treatment in the beauty section. I thought, "How cool. I'll just heat this stuff up, put it on my legs and I won't have to worry about them for a month!" What I wasn't thinking about was exactly how I was going to go about heating it, using it, or disposing of it. That's where the story gets bad.

I got home with my new treasure and I waited until dad left the house on some kind of errand. I went into the kitchen with this cube of wax and realized I had no idea of how to heat it. I had the box with the instructions on it, but I didn't know if I should heat it in a pot like soup or in a skillet or what. Then I thought, "What if it dries and hardens in one of dad's soup pots? He'd kill me!" (Such are the thoughts of a 15-year-old embarking on the big waxing experiment.) So, I decided to heat it in one of dad's soup pots, a metal one, because I figured if it hardened in the metal one it would be easier to scrape off than if I heated it in something like Corningware. Besides the Corningware was much more expensive and I knew I would get in trouble for sure if I broke it.

I managed to heat it enough to where it was all melty. I looked at the instructions and couldn't figure out whether to put it on my legs right then or wait for the wax to harden a little. Of course, like I said before, then I got panicked and thought that I wouldn't be able to get the wax out of the pot when it hardened, so I took a soup ladle and just ladled it on my legs. Right there in the kitchen. Holy crap it was so hot! You wouldn't think a 15-year-old would know so many curse words, but I think I managed to use them all. The wax was dripping everywhere and getting all over the kitchen floor and I was having a really hard time managing to get it evenly spread over my legs. Firstly, because it was so hot and secondly, because it was so drippy and thirdly, because I was hopping around the kitchen cursing the fact that I had ever had this "cool idea" to put wax on my legs in the first place.

Finally, the wax cooled on my legs (relief you can't imagine). So, I figured that was the time to pull it off. Again, I didn't think about the fact that hair being ripped from the follicle might hurt just a bit. The first thing that was frustrating was that I couldn't figure out how to get the wax off my legs in one fell swoop. I had seen these glamorous models on tv commercials do it so easily and I thought, "God, I'm an idiot. Why can't I do this right?" I wound up peeling it off very slowly in tiny strips, of course with the recurrent cursing. I couldn't decide which was worse, the pain from the hot wax or the pain of ripping my leg hair out by the roots. It took me forever-and-a-day to get all that wax off my legs (I had slathered it from my ankle all the way up my leg).

Eventually and inevitably, Dad came home. He saw me sitting in the kitchen floor peeling strips of wax off my legs and saw all the wax on the floor. God, was he mad at me! Then he saw the hardened wax in the metal soup pot and freaked out, "How am I supposed to get this crap out of the pot? It's going to take a jackhammer to get this stuff out!". Pretending to be "mature", I took full responsibility and promised him that I would clean everything up and that I would most definitely get the wax out of the soup pot.

Finally having gotten all the wax off my legs, I swept/scraped all of it off the kitchen floor (that took forever). Then, I came to the problem of what to do with the wax in the pot. Have y'all ever had that experience where a novel idea comes over you and if you could imagine it in cartoon form, you would have a light bulb switch on over your head? That's what happened to me in the moments I stood staring at the wax-hardened pot. I thought, "This wax came in a hardened form and it melted when I heated it. I'll just heat it again and it will be liquid again." So, that's what I did, only after I heated it I again came to a crossroad in this seemingly never-ending day. I didn't know how to dispose of the wax. I thought, "I can dump it outside in the yard, but then that would kill the grass and dad would kill me. I could dump it in the trash can. I could pour it down the toilet, but what if it hardens and then the toilet gets backed up. No, Dad would definitely kill me." At that point, I had another "light bulb" experience and decided to pour it down the sink in the kitchen. I had seen both my mother and my father pour grease down the kitchen drain and they had always told me if I ever had to do that, to make sure that I ran really hot water with it so that the grease wouldn't harden in the pipes and clog them. I figured the same would work with the wax. I poured it down the drain along with the hot water and just to make sure I think I ran the hot water for like 20 minutes after I poured all the wax out. I patted myself on the back and told myself that I had done an outstanding job of taking care of that fiasco. I felt very grown-up.

Let's fast-forward to a few weeks later. The kitchen sink was backing up. When we ran the dishwasher, the sink would back up. The toilets were backing up and sometimes overflowing. The water pressure in the showers and the sinks wasn't what it had been. So, my dad hired a plumber. He had to dig down through all the tree roots in our yard to finally get to the pipes. I remember him telling my dad with this really confused look on his face that he had found a hardened lump of wax down in the pipes and that that was what was causing all the problems.

I was grounded for two months and had to go around my neighborhood asking people if I could mow their yards or clean their houses for money because I had to pay back my dad for the cost of the plumber. I think that took the rest of the school year and all of summer vacation. Suffice it to say, I have not used wax ever again.

The good thing is that now you can get all sorts of better products for waxing. My best friend, in fact, waxes regularly and she has no problem whatsoever with it. I've had other friends use creams and whatnot instead of shaving to remove hair not only from their legs, but also from their underarm areas. They all think I'm crazy for still using a razor. They tell me that I wouldn't get ingrown hairs so much and that the skin on my legs would be so much smoother. I might give a try to an alternative means of hair removal. I don't know. Since all my friends have had positive experiences, I should probably trust them. I think I'm scarred for life from that waxing fiasco from my teenage years, but one has to be willing to try new things in life. Right?

This post is sponsored by Natural Wellbeing.com.



Anonymous Dawn said...

Ohhh ouch! LOL. I've used wax a grand total of once on my own, and have had a professional waxing once also. Both times were enough to convince me that spending money on shaving gel from time to time isn't really all that bad, and far less painful lol.

Here via Blogexplosion.

February 05, 2007 12:22 AM  
Anonymous GeL said...

OMG- Enjoyed your TMI tale, R!
Except I couldn't help but wince that you were in pain so many times.
I'm also only use water and shave, but I have severe skin allergies. I bet wax works great for those who don't have skin as weird as mine. (I cannot tell you a good tale; too pubic...I mean public ;). roflmao (now, not then and no I don't shave there and I'm not asking who does!)

February 07, 2007 7:45 AM  
Blogger Bubbles, Ink. said...

Ooooo, we're wincing.
Blogmad hit.

February 08, 2007 8:40 AM  

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