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PHOTO: THINKSTOCK

The body waxer who trained on her friends.

I always say, it’s going to be painful. You’re going to want to quit, but if you can hold off, it’s an hour and you’ll be done. But I’ve had people who say, no more, who are red and sweating and, if they could scream, they probably would. I try to talk them out of it, I give them a break, I give them a cup of tea and put ice on them, but once you feel that pain, it doesn’t really dissipate. The whole thing feels like it’s on fire.

I ask people, especially when it’s their first time, why they decided to do this. Some say they just wanted to try it, but most say they do it for their partner. I believe if they weren’t sleeping with somebody they’d let it go. Some do it for comfort; they surf and they’re in a bathing suit all the time.

I started off doing massage therapy at the salon, but I wanted to enhance my career, so I went into skin care, and I knew I would have to do waxing. Brazilians are a big money maker and you get paid on commission. I’m the type of person, if I’m gonna take something on I’m gonna do it full-on. So I had to learn how to do it, and my friends were my models. They were uncomfortable, but I did it and they helped out, because I wanted to be the best at what I’m doing.

Brazilians are $80. Some women tip you $5, some will tip you $20—$20 is the norm. I feel that people really appreciate what you’re doing for them because it’s such an intimate thing. No one can be comfortable doing it. I have people who are on their phone the whole time. Then there’s the type that cry the entire time, and I don’t know if I’m going to be able to finish waxing them. I do have a client who sleeps through most of her waxing. Then I have people who will basically tell me their life story, from their marital  problems to everything in between, and have a whole conversation with me, like I’m not even waxing their vagina, like we’re having coffee. I don’t judge them; they can’t be any more exposed and vulnerable.

I never imagined that I would have seen more vaginas than my husband. I don’t get grossed out any more, I’m very tolerant, that’s just a human being, and I’m doing this process on them by choice because that’s my job. When I first started doing Brazilians, I thought, why don’t we wear goggles or those masks like dentists? I’ve had wax hit me in the face, I’ve had it in my hair. But I wear gloves.

It is kind of a shame, I feel, that people don’t go natural. Your hair is there for a reason; it’s to protect you. I’m all about maintaining, but when it’s all for this trend, or a certain look for a man, it’s a bit shameful to me, even though I do this for a living.

As told to Tiffany Hill