You don’t hear the words “painless” and “waxing” together very often – something about ripping your hair out from its roots just doesn’t spell ‘comfort’. To avoid this supposed pain, many prefer to stick to known, pain-free hair removal methods such as hair removal creams. The general perception is waxing = unbearable pain and endless shrieking. However, hard waxing beans would very much like to be excluded from this narrative, and for good reason! The future – a.k.a painless waxing – is here, thanks to waxing beads.
Waxing beans are basically small depilatory beads that can be melted using wax warmers (or your vessel/method of choice) into a smooth and creamy wax which can then be applied to your skin and removed easily with your fingers, without using any sort of fabric or strips. In addition to being stripless, they are also mess-free and fuss-free as they require minimal time and effort for use. But the most attention-grabbing feature? Waxing beads are a painless method of hair removal.
When it comes to hard wax beans, this is the first question on everyone’s mind. The simple answer is yes; the more detailed answer comprises three, simple and clear points.
If we’re going to talk about how/why waxing beans are painless, a large part of the answer lies in their formulation – what are hard waxing beans made of?
The ingredients generally depend on the manufacturer, because every company will use different ingredients in their products – some are completely chemical free, some contain nourishing ingredients like lavender, aloe, or cocoa butter, and others come in different types of colors and scents (strawberry, green tea, vanilla), etc.
However, a quick review of the ingredients list on most hard waxing beads products reveals that one key ingredient they have in common is a substance called rosin – a natural, solid form of resin, which is extracted from coniferous plants such as pine trees.
Thanks to the rosin (and various other ingredients which complement it and work together in conjunction), hard waxing beans heat through easily and evenly, and melt quickly into a smooth, non-sticky/non-stringy wax. This wax is not only easy to spread, but remains flexible and pliable after hardening, making it super easy to remove with your fingers and less prone to flaking or breaking. But most importantly, the formula of hard waxing beans ensures that the wax grips and shrink-wraps only the hairs, and does not stick to the skin. This plays a huge part in making hard waxing beans painless, resulting in zero bruising and screaming.
If used correctly, waxing beans are painless, compared to other hair removal methods that remove the hair from the roots, like regular hot/cold wax, threading, etc. However, using the right technique is key.
Firstly, the wax must be applied in the direction of the hair growth, in a nice, even patch which is thicker around the edges (making it easy to grip and pull). Secondly and most importantly, it must then be ripped off QUICKLY, FIRMLY, and SMOOTHLY, in one fluid motion.
People who find the procedure painful are generally doing it wrong. The wax patch needs to be ripped off super quick, against the direction of hair growth. Do not be scared and take ages to peel it off, and do not hesitate and jerk it off in intermittent pulls or at a steep angle. It needs to be ripped off swiftly and cleanly, like a band-aid, while being kept as parallel to the skin as possible. If the correct technique is employed, wax beads are completely painless and a breeze to use.
While I (and many others) have found waxing beans to be painless, pain is subjective and the amount you feel will depend largely on your pain threshold. For those with a low pain threshold, the sensation may range from a small pinch to slight discomfort (although it is still likely to be far from the unbearable pain of regular waxing methods) – however, I would like to point out that my pain threshold is generally pretty low, and waxing beans are still completely painless for me. Those with a high pain threshold are likely to experience no pain at all.
So, to conclude, the ingredients found in hard wax beans, coupled with the right technique, make them a painless experience. However, keep your pain threshold in view (but even in the worst case scenario, it’ll probably just pinch a bit).
Hard wax beans were reviewed by the ladies over at Buzzfeed – 2 out of 3 gave it a “pain-free” rating, while one (who admittedly didn’t use the proper technique) said that it hurt just a tiny bit – check out their reviews here.
In addition, waxing beans have also received a thumbs-up, “pain-free” rating from countless beauty and makeup reviewers such as this one.
(just for lolz, click here for a video of guys trying to wax each other with hard wax beans.)
In addition to being painless, hard wax beans are also:
Mess-free: Apply, let dry, and rip off. There’s zero residue or stickiness to wipe off, and no sticky strips to dispose of! This makes hard wax beans incredibly easy to use.
Cheap: A bag of waxing beans will cost you far less than regular trips to the waxing salon – some brands are even available for $20 or less a pop.
Effective: Thanks to their special formula, hard wax beans firmly grip each unwanted hair and ensure that it is removed from the roots. This means smooth, hair-free skin, and the results are incredibly long-lasting.
Apply and remove in correct directions: Remember to apply in the direction of hair growth, and remove against the direction of hair growth. Waxing beans will not generally distort your hair follicles, so this isn’t a hard and fast rule – however, it is the best way to go about it, if you want good results and a pain-free experience to boot.
Rip it off quick: Don’t be scared! It’s just body hair. For real though, the hard waxing beans game is all about ripping that patch off quickly, firmly, calmly and absolutely fearlessly – in one go! Once you do it a couple of times and realize it doesn’t hurt at all, you’ll get better and better at it. The ‘Rip’ is where that pain-free nirvana is at.
Start small if you’re a newbie: I know DIY waxing with hard wax beans sounds like an amazing prospect (and it is) but if you’re a newbie, remember – baby steps! Take it super slow, give yourself time to learn and understand how you can best go about the process of using waxing beads on yourself (or others). Practice on less sensitive areas like your arms and legs, and wax in small patches so you can get the hang of it before you move on to covering larger patches and/or waxing more sensitive areas! Taking the time to learn, practice and understand will ensure your experience is pain-free.
Given their natural ingredients, hard wax beads for hair removal are generally safe for all skin types. However, as with all waxes and hair removal products, you need to make absolutely sure you do not use hard wax beans on broken, irritated, inflamed or injured skin, or on warts, moles, sunburned areas or areas of the skin that have recently been affected by surgery. In addition, be careful not to wax your skin within 2 hours after showering or sunbathing, and do not go for sunbathing, tanning, or exfoliating for at least a day or two after you’ve waxed.
In order to make sure you do not have an allergic reaction to waxing beads, test a small bit on a small patch of your skin (preferably on the area inside your forearm) – if, after 24 hours, all seems well and you haven’t developed a rash or experienced any other adverse reactions, it means you are good to go.
Do not use hard wax hair removal beans if your skin has reacted badly to wax products in the past. If you have skin conditions/skin-related disorders like eczema, or are using medication that has an impact on your skin, please consult your doctor before use.
Remember guys – hairless, smooth skin is a major goal, but it’s also important to be super careful about your health and skin, so if you think a product is affecting you adversely, discontinue use and consult with a doctor immediately! XOXO
Hardcore beauty enthusiast, fashion maven, fitness fanatic, and aspiring dermatologist, Isabella is a long-time-frequenter-of-waxing-salons turned DIY-er. Always on the lookout for depilatory products that are painless and easy to use, she's a waxing beans convert and determined to teach you everything she's learned about achieving perfectly hairless and smooth skin!