Once a source of controversy and giggling, the Brazilian has become almost as common as getting a pedicure. Or...has it? As Brazilian waxing has become less of a buzzy beauty trend, we couldn't help but wonder if women have moved on to newer, trendier methods of hair removal (or are simply going a more natural route). "I think that one of the reasons why we don't hear about Brazilian waxing as much these days is that it has become routine, a de riguer part of the beauty regimen of many women in New York City and other major cities throughout the U.S.," says Ramon Padilla, U.S. director of Strip Ministry of Waxing. "The service itself is not as 'news-worthy' as it once was 10 years ago — although it's still considered to be the new hot thing in some cities around the world."
Jessica Coba, CEO of European Wax Center, concurs. "Brazilians are definitely not going out of style, they are still are one of European Wax Center’s most requested services," she says. But what exactly is a Brazilian? According to Coba, "Everyone has a different definition of Brazilian. At EWC, our meaning of a Brazilian is the following: The guests can do as much or little as they want in the front, but it also includes the back area — meaning the butt strip."
The next question: How often are women actually getting the full monty — and how frequently? Says Padilla: "Over 80% of our clients are regulars, who come religiously (once every six weeks, sometimes more frequently during the summer months). The Brazilian wax is part of their basic beauty regimen — and for many, it's not even about beauty; it's about grooming and hygiene." And, are they really waxing everything every time? Padilla says that it varies depending on trends (oh yes, there are definitely 'hair trends' in the va-jay-jay realm). "Most of my clients still request full Brazilians, although we are seeing more people doing 'landing strips' of various shapes and sizes. We've started to adjust the width, length, and even shape of the landing strip so that it, believe or not, looks more flattering. For example, a landing strip in the form of an elongated triangle (with the tip pointing downwards) can have a slimming effect. A tiny triangle can also be cute and playful."
Aside from flattering designs, what else is new in the realm of Brazilian waxing? Wait for it: Brazilian facials. Yes, skin care for your vertical smile. But before you roll your eyes, let us persuade you; if you're a regular waxer, it actually sounds like a great idea. "[Strip Ministry of Waxing] introduced the Brazilian Facial last year — we use a facial machine to perform micro-dermabrasian facials on the Brazilian area, and apply solutions to aid with hydration, preventing acne and ingrown hairs, and evening out skin tone," explains Padilla. "The skin in the Brazilian area is quite sensitive. We're continually researching new ways of approaching waxes and technique, and trying out products that address Brazilian-specific issues like ingrown hairs, hyperpigmentation, and post-wax irritation."
So, there you go. Just in case you were lying awake at night wondering what the heck is going on with the Brazilian (no? Yeah, that must have just been us), sources show that the waxing technique is alive, kicking, and that yes, everyone really is doing it. Well, maybe not everyone, but if you do prefer to bare all, be consoled that your 'haircut of choice' is not by any means going out of style.
Like this post? There's more. Get tons of beauty tips, tutorials, and news on the Refinery29 Beauty Facebook page!
Photo: Courtesy of We Are Handsome