Allergic Reactions To Waxing (What To Do & How to Prevent It)

So you spent the day looking for beauty but somehow you have ended up finding the beast. 

I’m sure you still look beautiful even if you are RED and SWOLLEN (I promise I’m not laughing). 

Although rare, it really is possible to have an allergic reaction from waxing. Normally this would simply mild red, itchy, hot skin but it could lead to more serious symptoms such as swelling, wheezing and coughing.

So read our guide to help you understand which reactions are completely normal and which you should seek medical advice

Can I Really Have an Allergy from Waxing?

To get straight to the point, ABSOLUTELY. You can have an allergic reaction to waxing but it’s important to understand what an allergic reaction is so you can be sure what is normal or not. 

We all know what could be completely harmless to you, could be fatal to others. 

An allergy is simply a hypersensitivity to a substance that your body has taken a disliking to. Just because you were fine last time, does not mean you will be fine this time. 

Unfortunately, allergies can start at any age, even if you have never suffered before. Especially if you have had any change in hormones for example in pregnancy, allergies become more apparent. 

Your body is actually pretty intelligent. 

The body learns that some substances are dangerous and the immune system reacts by having an extreme reaction to battle it out of the system (I mean I guess it’s pretty annoying if it’s not harmful, but its means well). 

When your body is trying to fight the ‘threat’ it releases what’s known as histamines (which is why we choose to take anti-histamines when suffering from allergies). 

Once histamines have been released this is when symptoms of allergies then become apparent, such as wheezing, coughing, sneezing and itching. 

moisturize after waxing

What Causes an Allergic Reaction During Waxing?

There is no set in stone answer for the cause of allergies, as every person allergies are triggered by different substances and by different amounts. It really all comes down to how much your skin has reacted to the waxing treatment. 

Typically there are different products used within waxing that could be the cause of your allergic reactions, such as; 

  • Pine Rosins 
  • Jojoba oil 
  • Copolymers 
  • Lanolin
  • Beeswax 

Another common cause of a histamine reaction after waxing (not as severe) is if you use heavily perfumed or tinted products straight after waxing, as these products are advised against as will cause irritation to most. For some people, a mild reaction depending on how much your skin reacts. 

Most beauticians would recommend staying clear of lotions, perfumes, deodorants and makeup after waxing, for at least a few hours and up to 24 hours to let your skin rest. 

It is also possible to be allergic to the waxing product itself, which could cause redness, itching, swelling, bumps, rash, hives, blisters and a rise in temperature. 

In serve cases, this could lead to an anaphylactic reaction. 

This is an extreme allergy that causes airways to be swollen, resulting in the airways blocking air from getting in and therefore inability to breathe. This is a medical emergency and you should take no chances. 

Get to a hospital FAST. 

How Can I Avoid an Allergic Reaction to Waxing?

It can be extremely hard to avoid allergies in general. 

To try to avoid an allergic reaction before waxing, it’s suggested to make sure you do a patch test before your appointment or the day before you are planning to wax at home. 

This way you will be sure that no adverse reactions to the waxing products are going to happen as you would have tested it on a very small area of skin. 

It would also be sensible to purchase waxes that are designed for sensitive skin, this will then be sure you are using the most gentle products to remove your hair from your skin. 

Most of these waxes are filled with soothing, emollient ingredients. This will guarantee that your health is safe, and you avoid any type of reactions. 

How Can Allergies from Waxing be Treated?

Firstly, let’s decide how serious your reaction is. 

If you are having any breathing difficulties then contact a professional. 

Then it’s essential you take an antihistamine tablet as this helps relieve many allergy symptoms like rashes, itching and swelling. 

You can also use hydrocortisone cream on the areas which are feeling hot and itchy to help relieve the skin. 

If the reaction includes inflammation, it is necessary to take an anti-inflammatory too. Ibuprofen is safe in most cases and easy to find.

Skin Allergy Infection on Male Body

Normal Reactions to Waxing

Let’s find out what’s a normal reaction to waxing. 

Its the inevitable that you will suffer from some side effects after waxing which is completely normal. These side effects do not suggest you are having an allergic reaction, unless they are accompanied by several other severe symptoms such as; wheezing, swelling or difficulty breathing. 

So let’s take a look at the normal reactions that may happen after waxing and you do not need to worry, these side effects will go down within a few days; 

  • Red / Warm Skin 
  • Itching / Mild Burning 
  • Rash 
  • Mild Bruising 

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is a Bacterial Waxing Reaction?

There a many different bacterial waxing infection that causes a reaction. The most common being folliculitis infection, which is white bumps filled with puss due to ingrown hair. 

If a hair follicle is damaged during waxing it may get infected by the staph bacteria which are usually present on the skin. Just be sure to follow all the aftercare of waxing correctly to help avoid any reactions. 

How long does a wax allergy last?

Typically, waxing allergies should only last around 1-2 weeks. The problem is they may last longer if you do not treat and get on top of your symptoms. 


On a whole, it’s clear allergic reactions to waxing are rare and not something you need to worry about. 

If you think you are having an anaphylactic reaction then get seen immediately. Most other side effects should be able to be controlled by simply taking anti-histamine. 

See there really isn’t any need to STRESS! 

How did you find out guide for allergic reactions to waxing? I hope I have answered all your questions, if you need to ask any further questions please contact me, I love to hear from my readers. 

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