How to Leg Wax Just Like the Pros

Woman doing the Brazilian wax hair removal
Yagi Studio/Digital Vision/Getty Images

We love the long-lasting smoothness of a leg wax but not the expense. We'll show you how to wax just like the pros. Don't expect a do-it-yourself version to be as easy as it looks when a skilled technician does the work. But with a little time and effort, you can get smooth without the professional price tag.

Difficulty: Average

Time Required: 1 hour or so

Here's How:

  1. Buy waxing kit. Compare waxing kit prices.
  2. Have enough hair. Hair needs to be at least 1/4" long for the wax to be able to grasp it. If it's too long, that's not good either. If the length is over 1/2", use hair clippers with a guard to trim it down to an even 1/4". Scissors don't work well for trimming because you run the risk of making some hair too short.
  3. Cleanse legs. Use a pre-wax cleanser on legs to remove any dirt and excess oil. If you don't have a cleanser, take a quick shower cleaning legs with warm, not hot, water. Apply a light dusting of waxing powder. Don’t over do it on the powder, as more isn’t better.
  4. Wax on. Apply wax evenly in the direction of hair growth using an applicator at about a 45-degree angle to a large area of hair. You want enough wax to cover hair, but not so thick that it’s hard to remove.
  5. Cover with strip. Apply strip in the direction of hair growth, leaving some a leftover strip at the end not attached to hair (say hair grows from left to right- leave the leftover strip on the right side). The leftover strip not attached to hair will be used as a tab to remove it. Press and firmly smooth hand over the strip in the direction of hair growth a couple times, to ensure wax is attaching to hair.
  6. Wax off. Grasp onto the end of the strip with the tab. Hold skin taut with one hand, and remove strip in opposite direction of hair growth in one quick pull, all the way to the other side. Don't pull up, which might be your natural inclination. Press hand down on skin to help relieve some of the pain after the strip is removed. (Sounds silly, but it works!) If a little bit of wax with hair remains, simply put the strip back on hair and pull off.
  7. Repeat. Work your way through legs repeating steps four through six.
  8. Clean up missed hairs. Use tweezers to remove any hairs missed by leg wax.
  9. Clean wax off skin. Remove any remaining residue, with wax remover, baby oil or petroleum jelly.
  10. Soothe skin. Apply an after-wax lotion, or an aloe based lotion or gel.
  11. Well done. Congratulate yourself!


  1. Cream wax is great for fine to medium hair and sensitive skin. Honey wax is good for coarser hair. Cold waxing strips might seem easier and less messy, but don’t grasp onto the hair as well as heated wax.
  2. Test a small amount of wax on hand before putting on leg, to make sure it’s warm, not hot.
  3. If you have varicose veins or phlebitis do not wax legs. Read: Waxing Precautions & Warnings for the full list.
  4. Take an aspirin or ibuprofen 30 - 45 minutes before waxing, and apply a numbing spray (compare prices) if you're concerned about the 'ouch factor'. Read: Top Ten Tips to Reduce Waxing Pain for the full run-down.
  5. Watch the way the hair grows on various areas of the legs, because it can change direction on you. You need to apply wax in the direction and remove it the opposite way to remove it from the root and avoid breakage. Try getting someone to help you wax the back of your upper legs.

What You Need:

  • Wax warmer
  • Cream or honey wax
  • Pre-wax cleanser
  • Baby powder
  • Muslin or pellon strips
  • Wooden applicators
  • Wax remover for the skin (or you can use baby oil or petroleum jelly)
  • After- wax lotion, or aloe based gel