A new LGBTQ-friendly waxing studio has opened in the Halifax area.
Fauna Sugaring Studio on Agricola Street is a dedicated full-service sugar-waxing shop. Sugaring involves removing body hair by quickly pulling it from the root using a paste that consists of lemon, water and sugar.
The studio, established by Faith Lamoureux, had already received multiple booking requests even before it opened on Tuesday.
Lamoureux, a sugar practitioner, says she became interested in sugaring at a young age after having her own struggles with hair removal.
"My mom actually went to school to become a sugar practitioner, and I was the one there every day while she practised on me and the results were just so impeccably amazing," says Lamoureux, who has been practising sugar waxing for six years.
"As I got older, realizing that this wasn't something that everyone had easy access to, I wanted to change that."
The ingredients for the sugary paste are heated together until it reaches a candy-like consistency. Once it cools it's applied directly to the skin, similar to other waxing methods.
"It's a natural form of hair removal," says Lamoureux. "It's all applied against the natural hair growth, so that when you remove the sugar paste it's all removed with the natural hair growth, which takes it out of the pore in a way that's smoother and easier for the skin to release so then you don't get ingrown hairs."
One of Lamoureux's core business values is making sure her shop is LGBTQ welcoming. Although many shops do a great job making people feel comfortable, she says, it's not uncommon for waxing services to be targeted toward specific gender representations.
"In the hair-removal industry, currently right now and in the past, everything has been very gender-based — either female services or male services — and there are so many people that don't identify with either of those labels."
Lamoureux says having gendered services can be exclusionary or exclusive to certain people, so she wants to change how services are typically offered.
"We want to approach things differently and offer services we can modify to fit each individual persons needs based on their lifestyle and situation that they're in moving forward."
'Keeping an open mind to the community'
Lamoureux says she has heard of situations where members of the LGBTQ community don't feel like their personal needs are being met or that certain gendered verbiage is being used that isn't inclusive for everyone — something she hopes to change with her shop.
"I think that it's really great that we have an opportunity to make the website that we have and the space that we have more approachable for everyone that exists, not just certain people."
Lamoureux says the process of sugaring tends to be less harsh, which can help avoid waxing after-effects such as red skin and ingrown hairs — something that may benefit those wishing to make their hair removal less noticeable.
The cost of services will be comparable to other shops but will refrain from using gendered services names.
"The biggest thing is keeping an open mind to the community. We are all human beings and we're not all always going to get it right every time, but we just want to make sure we are having open arms and open minds to any types of different types of services that we need to add or include that we haven't thought of."
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