Waxing Vs. Sugaring: What’s the Difference?

Are you looking for the best way to remove unwanted hair? You’ve come to the right place. Waxing and sugaring are both hair removal techniques that extract hair from the root. However, there are a few key differences between sugaring and waxing. So how do you know which is right for you? Keep learning which is better: Waxing VS. Sugaring. 


waxing vs sugaring

Both waxing and sugaring have been used for hair removal since ancient times. On the surface, waxing and sugaring look pretty similar. Both involve applying a sticky substance to the skin and then removing it to pull hair from the skin. Both hair removal techniques will leave you silky smooth much longer than shaving, and there’s no razor burn involved. 

But that’s where the similarities of waxing vs. sugaring end! Two of the biggest differences between sugaring and waxing are the formula of the products and how they’re applied. 

Sugaring paste is made from a combination of lemon juice, sugar, water, and glycerin. Sugaring paste is applied to the skin at body temperature against the hair growth, then removed in the same direction as the hair growth. Since sugaring paste doesn’t require hot temperatures and removes hair in the same direction that hair grows, some people say that it’s more gentle for sensitive skin types. 

So what about waxing? There are two types of wax: hard wax and soft wax. Both are made from a mixture of paraffin wax, beeswax, and other ingredients. Soft wax is the kind that requires strips to remove, and it’s probably what comes to mind when you think of waxing. Hard wax, on the other hand, doesn’t require any strips. Hard wax doesn’t pull on the skin as much as soft wax, which is why it’s considered less painful. Hard waxing is also more gentle on sensitive skin, and it’s easier to do at home with a kit like Happy Waxing® At Home Kit.

Wax is applied at a hot (but not scalding) temperature in the same direction that the hair grows. After the wax cools and hardens, it is removed in the opposite direction of hair growth (the exact opposite of sugaring). This removes hair from the follicle. 

Over time, waxing damages the hair follicles, which means finer hair and less overall hair growth in any repeatedly waxed areas. 


sugaring at home

No hair removal technique is without pain, but does sugaring hurt more than waxing? According to some fans of sugaring, sugaring actually hurts less than waxing because it doesn’t pull on the skin as much while removing hair. Less pulling on the skin also means less irritation and redness. 

However, sugaring is not as effective as waxing. So while waxing may hurt more, your hair removal session will be shorter in duration, which means less overall time in pain (a plus in our book!). 

With both waxing and sugaring, the pain should subside with regular treatment.

According to Carolina Tincovan, a master esthetician at WaxSpa in Miami, "Waxing, if done with premium-quality hard wax, is not painful, especially if maintained every three to four weeks." However, if you experience extreme pain or redness after a waxing or sugaring session, talk to a dermatologist. 


When it comes to the debate between waxing vs. sugaring, we believe waxing is better for several reasons:

sugar wax at home
  • Waxing Works for All Hair Types

If you have thick or coarse hair, sugaring may not be sticky enough to give you the results that you want. If you’re not sure whether your hair is thick or coarse, sugaring could potentially be a waste of time and money. Waxing works every time for every hair type. 

  • Waxing is Faster

Since sugaring paste isn’t as sticky as wax, it can take several passes to remove all the hair (including those pesky baby hairs). Waxing is more effective and only needs one pass, which means a quicker overall hair removal session. And while waxing may hurt a bit more, that’s less time overall that you’re in pain!

  • Waxing Covers a Larger Area

Wax can cover a larger area in one pass than sugaring, which is especially helpful when you’re waxing more sizable body parts like your legs, chest, or back. This is another reason why waxing is faster than sugaring. 

However, there may be some scenarios where sugaring is better than waxing. If you’ve tried waxing in the past and had adverse reactions to it, it may be worth testing sugaring since it’s more gentle on sensitive skin. Sugaring is also effective enough for use on fine or sparse hair.