101 Things to do in Ballard: Wax On, Wax Off

February 9, 2015

The Ballard News Tribune
By Esther Shin

Waxing. It’s one of those things you do because you have to, not because you want to. There’s something that might make the experience a little more tolerable. The answer for you is at Ballard’s Wax Bar.

There’s nothing like some pre-wax booze to calm those jitters before the, “Holy *&#$!!!” when removing all that unwanted hair. Oh, the cost of beauty and the measures we take to look good.

The only spa with a liquor license in the state of Washington, Wax Bar serves $2 bottled beers to customers. So sip and relax in the lounge area before you get “shiny and new”, as that Madonna song goes.

Owner and aesthetician Karen Jahn grew up in Ballard, worked at Habitude for ten years, and has been in the industry for over twelve. “I’ve lived here all my life, and I still live in Ballard,” she proudly exclaims.

The Wax Bar has been open for a little over a year. Jahn wanted to open her own spa business. Her business goal was to create an intimate setting, giving customers an attentive, one-on-one vibe.

Which is exactly what makes Wax Bar a comfortable destination for not just women, but men. Non-girly magazine options and cold beer make Wax Bar a welcoming and friendly destination for men. “About 25% of the clientele is men. We want men to feel really comfortable about coming here,” says Jahn.

It’s not intimidating like a big spa. Men don’t have to feel embarrassed about a certain hairy issue. The most popular services for men are the brow and back services.

For women, it’s all about the brows and the Brazilians. If you return within four weeks of your initial visit, you get the Brazilian maintenance price of $55, ten bucks cheaper than the original service price.

Wax Bar offers facial waxing, upper body and lower body waxing, eye grooming, and skincare/facial services. Customers can also purchase skincare products from Aveda and Dermalogica.

If you hit up Wax Bar during happy hour, Tuesday through Friday from 1pm-3pm, you can get your brows waxed for $15, which is normally $22. Happy Hour discount prices apply to services that monthly rotate, and the brow service is available year round.

The space has three waxing rooms. The d/cor is white, modern, and very minimalist, different from the earthy and organic aesthetic of most Northwest spas. The super clean aesthetic goes with the simple, clean feel of Wax Bar’s services. You want to leave having brows that feel clean and simple. It’s the less-is-more approach.

Depending on the area being waxed, the service is fairly quick. When asked if she was in pain after getting her brows waxed, customer Grace Navaja answered, “Nothing compares to a Brazilian.” Aesthetician Debbie Hendricks took good care of her with Wax Bar’s special cooling globes.

These blue liquid-filled, light bulb looking globes are taken out of the refrigerator and applied after any facial waxing service to cool, calm the skin, and to reduce redness and inflammation.

For a fun time with the girls, plan a girls’ night out, throw a birthday or bachelorette party, as Wax Bar hosts private events.

Go with a friend or lure your significant other to go with you since there’s some liquid calm before the wax storm. Because no one likes unwanted hair, and Wax Bar offers a pleasant way to take care of it.