No matter if you’re soon going to a salon to remove unwanted hair or if you’re about to try doing it at your own home, one thing is for certain, here you will find the answers to what is the difference between sugaring vs waxing.
Rest assured that there IS a difference between sugar wax vs regular wax.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases if you shop through the links on MissCoty. For more information, read full disclosure here.
- Sugaring and Waxing 101
- What is the Difference between Sugaring and Waxing?
- What is Body Sugaring?
- How does Sugaring Hair Removal Work?
- What is Sugar Wax Made Out of?
- What is the Difference between Sugaring Gel vs Paste?
- Does Sugaring Work on Coarse Hair?
- Does Sugaring Hair Removal Work for Sensitive Skin?
- Is Sugar Waxing Good for Facial Hair?
- Can You Use Sugar Wax for a Brazilian?
- How Long Should Hair Be for Sugaring?
- How Long does Sugar Waxing Last?
- Does Sugaring Hurt Less than Waxing?
- Can Sugaring Remove Hair Permanently?
- How to Prepare For Sugaring
- Pros and Cons of Sugaring
- Final Thoughts
Sugaring and Waxing 101
Let’s jump right into the frequently asked questions, perhaps you’ve also had one of the questions below in your mind but haven’t yet found the answer to. Fret not, I’ve got you covered.
What is the Difference between Sugaring and Waxing?
Both hair removal methods are very similar, both get the hair out by the root. We could say that both are essentially like waxing – something sticky is put on your skin and then the hairs are ripped out.
But there still is a difference to be understood… keep reading.
What is Body Sugaring?
Ok, if sugaring is very similar to waxing, then what does sugaring mean, really?
Well, the main difference between sugaring and waxing is the ingredients that are used to make this hair removal product.
In sugaring, the main ingredient is, yes, you guessed it, SUGAR!
I’ve previously talked about how to get rid of strawberry legs and that sugar scrubs are a good exfoliant.
Perhaps that’s where all the hype about sugaring comes from, it really makes a difference in conquering strawberry legs.
How does Sugaring Hair Removal Work?
If we’re talking about how each method works, what is the difference between sugaring and waxing?
- The appliance
- The direction of removal of unwanted hairs (the ripping part)
In sugaring, the sugar wax is applied against the hair grain or against the hair growth. For regular waxing, it is the opposite way.
Imagine the direction your leg hairs grow. Downwards, right? Sugaring applies the wax upwards (from the ankle to the knee).
Now, the second part is also different in sugaring vs waxing.
The direction of the hair removing goes opposite of the appliance direction.
So, if the wax is applied upwards, the ripping/pulling will be downwards (from the knee to the ankle).
How does regular waxing work? Well, since regular waxing uses two kinds of waxes (hard and soft), please read more in this article about soft wax vs hard wax.
What is Sugar Wax Made Out of?
Ever wondered – does lemon and sugar remove hair? (Ok, I just answered the question of WHAT is in a sugar wax)
I mean, there are only 3 ingredients, plus you can usually make a good exfoliating scrub from sugar and water or oil.
So, how can sugar, water, and lemon put together make the perfect match made in heaven, which removes unwanted hair?
If you want to try it at home you’ll need:
- Lemon juice
- A jar to store the wax in
Since the amounts differ on the consistency you want for your wax (either hard wax or soft wax), watch the video below.
What is the Difference between Sugaring Gel vs Paste?
Continuing a bit on the topic of the sugar wax itself. To put it shortly…
Sugaring paste is the more traditional sugar wax. It is a thick consistency wax, which is applied and pulled out with hands. It is also applied in a thick layer.
Sugaring gel, on the other hand, is a more runny consistency. Like honey. It is applied in a thin layer with a spatula (or a butter knife if you’re waxing yourself at home) and then a waxing strip or fabric is placed on top of the thin layer of sugar wax and then ripped off.
If you’ve ever wondered how to make sugaring wax without strips in the picture, then you need to make the recipe for hard sugar wax. See the video above.
Does Sugaring Work on Coarse Hair?
Yes, it definitely does thanks to the removing method.
Does Sugaring Hair Removal Work for Sensitive Skin?
Since sugar wax is a water-soluble wax for hair removal, then sugaring is perfect also for people with sensitive skin!
Is Sugar Waxing Good for Facial Hair?
If you’re wondering is sugaring safe for the face? Then yes it is because sugar wax is made out of eco-friendly, biodegradable ingredients.
Can You Use Sugar Wax for a Brazilian?
Can you sugar wax your bikini area? Of course, it’s completely natural and toxic/chemical free.
Side note though, it’s a bit trickier/more difficult (around the lips especially) to do a full Brazilian wax than a bikini wax.
How Long Should Hair Be for Sugaring?
Generally, for sugaring, the hair can be shorter than for regular waxing. Again, due to the removing method sugaring uses.
If you want to know the answer to this in numbers then you should have the hairs at least 1/4 inch long (or a grain of rice) when using a sugar gel and 1/8 inch if using a sugar paste.
How Long does Sugar Waxing Last?
It depends on the body part that is being waxed. From the waist down hairs usually can be gone for 4-6 weeks (but it also depends on your genes.
For me, a Brazilian meant being good for 2 weeks maximum)
And from the waist up it will mean a more frequent visit to the sugaring expert.
So, if you’re asking how long does Brazilian sugaring last? For me it’s 2 weeks of pure smoothness, for you it may be all of those full 6 weeks.
If that’s the case – God bless you and your genes! Also, may I borrow some of those genes?
Does Sugaring Hurt Less than Waxing?
I’m guessing that if someone is asking does sugar waxing hurt, they either haven’t been waxed or are hoping that it will be less painful because waxing is torture.
So the answer is: Yes and No.
No, it doesn’t hurt less because, well… it’s still pulling the hairs out completely, and it’s not shaving after all.
Yes, it may hurt less because for one it uses friendlier ingredients to the skin and secondly, it pulls the hairs out in the direction of hair growth (in regular waxing hair is pulled against the grain)
Can Sugaring Remove Hair Permanently?
I once saw a video on Youtube (not only that video, even a lot of blog articles) where someone tried to explain that waxing is not permanent because the hair is pulled out during Catagen phase, whereas sugaring is permanent because it is pulled out during Anagen phase.
Catagen phase is the transition phase when the hair detaches from to the papilla (like the root of a plant), whereas the Anagen phase is the growing phase when the hair is attached to the root.
The video kept on explaining that in sugaring you are removing the hair with the root, therefore harming it, and with time it will become permanent (like laser hair removal).
I’ll say it right here and now.
Firstly, both waxing and sugaring pull the hair out with the root. Secondly, the video makes no sense, you cannot know which phase the hair is at exactly when pulling out the hair.
Of course, with each time you harm the papilla, the root gets weaker and is no longer able to grow a new hair – this is the case of laser hair removal and electrolysis, they really weaken the hair by lasering it.
But it’s not the case for sugaring because it is ultimately the same method as waxing and epilating – you’re just mechanically pulling the hair out. You are only prolonging re-growth, not eliminating it completely.
Trust me, I did a Brazilian wax for 3 years, without skipping any monthly salon session. Every time I changed a waxing specialist, they said the same thing: “Damn, girl, those roots are strong.”
Really, you think so? Didn’t feel it!
Please don’t believe those kinds of videos or blog posts because…
How to Prepare For Sugaring
- Exfoliate, moisturize and repeat. This should be done every 2 days for at least 2 weeks before sugar waxing, just to avoid clogged pores or dead skin cells getting in the way of the sugar wax.
- Let there be at least a 3-week gap between sugaring sessions.
- The skin needs to be clean and dry, in an ideal world don’t use any moisturizers, lotions, body sprays of deodorants on the day of sugar waxing.
- Have at least 1/4 inch long body hair.
There’s really not much to keep in mind when considering how to prepare for sugaring.
However, keep in mind that sugar wax is not a miracle worker, you have to treat your skin with love also post-sugaring.
Two days after your sugaring experience, continue gently exfoliating your skin, as well as moisturizing it to really keep it at its best health.
Pros and Cons of Sugaring
There really aren’t any major sugaring hair removal disadvantages.
I’ve heard people say that a little redness may occur for people with sensitive skin, but that really goes without saying, once again, you are after all ripping the hairs out of your body.
Apply Aloe Vera and you’ll be good to go.
However, there are major benefits for sugar waxing.
Pros of sugaring vs waxing
- When using a sugar paste it is faster than waxing.
- Can apply to large areas at once.
- Both sugar wax options (paste and gel) are water soluble, so if you want to get off any left residue, plain old water will be perfect in doing the job.
- Cheaper to make at home.
- Can be applied to one patch of skin more than once.
- Very gentle to the skin while still lightly exfoliating the skin.
- Improves skin’s tone and texture.
- Less ingrown hairs after.
Cons of sugaring vs waxing
- Can be more expensive than regular waxing if you’re going to a salon.
- Will take some practice in mastering the consistency of the sugar wax if you’re making at home.
As you can see the benefits of body sugaring vs waxing far outweigh the cons. If you haven’t tried sugaring, I really encourage you to try it.
Start with a small part of the body, for example, armpits.
My hope is that you now know a bit more about what is the difference between waxing and sugaring.
Is sugaring better than waxing? Well, that’s for you to decide. It is not only better for Earth with the ingredients it has in it, but also for your skin. At least that’s my opinion.
Keep in mind, in the debate of sugar waxing vs regular waxing, sugar loses as it is usually more expensive than regular waxing (in a salon).
So, if you’re not able to bring upon yourself the main of self-waxing and you don’t want to pay even more money at the salons each month, perhaps stay with waxing.
Try both hard and soft wax for regular wax as they also make a difference.
At the end of the day, it is your body, if you just give up on making your own sugar wax at home, well then you can always go au-naturel!
Which side are you on in the battle of sugaring versus waxing? Comment below!