Differences Between Hard and Soft Wax

Many estheticians have preferences between soft and hard waxes. Normally, it comes down to what you are comfortable with. Don’t let anyone tell you there is a right or wrong wax or technique. It all depends on you and what you are comfortable with. There are pros and cons to everything we do and or try as estheticians.


Hard wax does take more skill to use but it is not as painful for the client especially in areas of the body that are more sensitive. Hard wax is perfect for Brazilians and facial waxing because it is gentler on the skin. Hard wax adheres to the hairs rather than to the skin, which gives it an advantage in the hair removal process. Hard wax is applied thicker than soft wax and hardens on the skin. It can be removed with your hands, so there is no need for strips. This makes the process less painful. Hard wax is gentler because it doesn’t adhere to the skin. It shrink wraps around the hairs instead.


  • Gentler, less pain
  • No strips needed
  • Doesn't leave sticky residue behind


  • Requires more skill
  • Can slow down service time
  • Can require more product for larger body parts


Soft Wax adheres to the skin as well as the hair. Traditionally, soft wax is the go-to for the large body areas in the waxing industry. The soft wax is applied to the skin very thinly and a muslin or paper strip is applied on top of the wax to remove the hair. After the hair is removed, the technician applies an oil or a treatment to remove extra wax from the waxed area, to remove any residue.

Soft wax will remove the outer layer of the skin as well as the hair. It is best to treat the skin before and after because this will produce skin irritation and redness afterwards. It is best to not retreat the areas even if the hair is not removed the first time, it will create more irritation. Removing the top layer of the skin is also known as exfoliation, but there is a higher possibility of removing more skin than desired.

Soft wax is good for larger areas of the body like legs and arms. It can be applied in larger strips and is removed with waxing strips. This is because it uses less product, and can be applied and removed faster than hard wax.


  • Good for larger areas of the body
  • Costs less because you use less product
  • Great for speed waxing


  • Requires an additional item to perform the service
  • Can be traumatizing to the skin
  • Can be more messy