Hi Sam - hope this helps:
- sold primarily for home use. Paper or fabric strips are pre-coated with cold sticky wax and warmed between the hands before applying. Some shops also sell cold wax in a tube or pot, which is gel-like in consistency and is spread onto the skin before removing with a strip. You can buy these kits from Boots and Superdrug etc (and after using one you'll never resent paying to get waxed in a salon again!).
a.k.a. strip wax or soft wax, plus honey, gel or cream wax
(depending on consistency and ingredients). Warm wax is heated in a pot or roller unit, then applied to the skin with a spatula, roller or disposable tube, and removed with paper or fabric strips. You can also get microwaveable versions for home use... not recommended, as you can end up with hot spots and burns if not careful!
a.k.a. non-strip or stripless wax, hard wax, film wax, and Brazilian wax.
Traditional hot wax is applied in a thick layer or built up over several layers, usually in a figure-of-eight pattern to ensure a good coating of the hairs. It is left to cool on the skin and then removed by hand. The wax "shrinkwraps" each hair as it hardens, taking the hair with it when removed. Hot wax used to recycled by reheating and straining through a sieve, but nowadays it's thrown away after removal.
Newer hot waxes are cooler in temperature, go on much thinner and in one direction (no figure-of-eight needed), and stay flexible as they cool these new generation waxes are sometimes called hard wax or film wax to distinguish them from the traditional high-temperature hot waxes mentioned above. Hot waxes are particularly effective at shifting short, coarse and stubborn hairs, but can be tricky to master and may extend your treatment time as they need to cool before removing. Many people like using them for the bikini area, underarms and facial waxing.
primarily a mixture of sugar, water and lemon juice, the paste comes in two varieties: strip sugar and hand sugar.
Strip sugar is heated in a pot similar to warm wax, and is applied and removed with fabric strips in the same way. The temperature tends to be lower than with wax, and ingredients are totally natural and water soluble. Moom and Nads are variations on strip sugaring, with slightly different ingredients (Nads does not need heating). Hand sugaring involves spreading a semi-solid ball of sugar paste over the skin, then quickly flicking in the opposite direction to remove the hair.
- the Hive 1000cc heater is what I use at the salon - it comes with a removable inner bucket which allows you to decant hard wax pellets or bricks into it, plus you can insert tins of soft wax directly into the heater itself. The only thing to watch out for is if you plan on using small tubs of wax (450g and under) as they tend to get lost in the bottom of the heater! In these instances you would need to first empty the wax from the small tubs into an inner bucket (you can buy spares if needed) or use a smaller heater.