Sugaring Basics: Hair Removal That Exfoliates Your Skin

Sugar Fly is one of the only salons in the Chicago that offers Sugaring an all-natural and ancient form of hair removal. 

For almost five years, we have performed sugaring with the highest standards of quality. Many of our clients come in never having heard of sugaring, but after their first appointment, become sugaring converts after years of painful waxing or tedious shaving. With so many first timers, we do our best to educate our staff and first time clients about sugaring. Here we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions.

What is sugaring?

Sugaring is a safe, gentle and effective solution to hair extraction for all hair and skin types.  Our sugaring paste is made of an all natural formula consisting of water, sugar and lemon juice. It's even edible! 

Warm sugar paste is applied and molded to the unwanted hair. The paste adheres to the hair follicle and is removed in the natural direction of growth with a swift motion of a gloved hand.

What's the difference between waxing and sugaring?

Waxing uses a chemical based product. It removes hair against the natural direction of growth, causing unnecessary pain and breakage that results in ingrown hairs. Because of the harsh chemicals in wax, skin often becomes irritated and is prone to breakouts.

Sugaring removes the hair in the natural direction of hair growth and seeps down into the root to coat the follicle. There are no sticks or strips involved in the sugaring process. The sugar is firm and moldable, allowing the paste to remove the hair itself. Sugaring is performed at body temperature so the client does not run the risk of burns or blistering that can be associated with waxing. Waxing also removes a layer of live skin every time it is applied and removed. Our paste does not adhere to live skin cells and therefore can be performed on the same area repeatedly, while can wax can at most be reapplied twice. This allows sugaring to safely remove more unwanted hair.

Does it hurt?

The sensation of hair being pulled away from the skin will always be felt, therefore the discomfort experienced will depend on your personal tolerance for pain. The sensation will be stronger where the hair is denser. Overtime, there will be less sensitivity as the hair grows finer and the base of the hair follicle shrinks. Sugaring does evade unnecessary discomfort from burns, damage to live skin cells, and pulling against the hair grain.  

Please note that there will be more sensitivity if there has been caffeine or alcohol consumed or within a week of your menstrual cycle.

How long does the hair have to be?

We require the hair to be at least the length of a grain of rice. This is the perfect length for the sugar to adhere, allowing for a clean pull. Wait 2-3 weeks after shaving and 4-6 weeks after waxing.

How long does it last?

First time clients may experience some stubble within the first week or two of their appointment. That is because we are trying to get the client on a hair growth pattern. Once we have the client's hair all on the same growth pattern with regular sugaring, they can wait anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks in between appointments.

Can sugaring remove hair permanently?

Sugaring could reach permanency, although it would depend on several factors such as how often a client receives treatments, their hair type, and growth pattern. After a few treatments, hair may grow back in patches, which can be a sign of reaching permanency.

How much time between appointments? 

Hair grows at different rates. For best results, we recommend clients book their follow up appointments within 4 to 5 weeks to maintain a cleaner result and reduce the amount of discomfort. 

Will it get rid of my ingrown hairs?

Sugaring helps to reduce the amount of ingrown hairs because it seeps deep down to remove dead skin clogging the pore, therefore exposing the hair and removing it. With consecutive sugaring appointments and exfoliating regularly at home, the amount of ingrown hairs will drastically decrease.  

How do I prepare for an appointment?

For best results:

Exfoliate regularly to remove dead skin build-up from the surface to allow for the sugar to adhere to the hair better

DO NOT exfoliate the day BEFORE/OF/AFTER your treatment

Please refrain from tanning or exercising 24 hours prior to treatment

Avoid treatment while on antibiotics or during menstrual cycle

Wear loose breathable clothing to appointment

Do not use razors or depilatory creams between treatments
to prevent irritation or chaffing.

What is the aftercare procedure?

We recommend:

Waiting 24 hours before exposing your skin to the sun or infrared lamps

Avoid applying makeup, fragrances soaps or products with chemical irritants on the treated area

Soak in dead sea salt to detoxify the skin and clean out the hair follicle

Use a weekly mud mask to pull out any impurities

Why can't I get a Brazilian while on my menstrual cycle?

We do not perform Brazilians during menstruation for sanitary reasons.  Unlike waxing, where strips are disposed of after each pull, the sugar is molded and re-used over the area until the treatment is complete and all hair has been removed. Using contaminated paste can spread bacteria and cause irritation. The use of tampons does not reduce the risk of contamination.

Tweet us @sugarflychicago with questions or call us at (773) 661-1541 to book an appointment. 

Women in Business: WAH London

Sharmadean Reid is the coolest chick

As creator of WAH London, one of today's trendiest beauty brands, she knows everything she is and everything she is not. In an interview with Broadly, she talks about starting her own business, feminism, and her hopes for the women she inspires. 

Sharmadean founded WAH nails in 2009 and immediately understood that in order to build a successful business, she had to stay true to her vibe. WAH stands for “We Ain’t Hoes,” and is described as “uptown, downtown, expensive, street, but also low-fi, garish, grime, jungle, hip-hop.” WAH is located in the Dalston neighborhood of London, home to the bad ass girls she calls her friends and most importantly, those who inspired WAH nails to come into existence. 

WAH London is more than the importance of having nice nails, it is about celebrating the culture of the community and the creative individuals who make it up. Sharmadean stresses that the world of nail art is inclusive and open to all kinds of people.“You don’t have to be rich, you don’t have to be thin. Anyone can get involved in the trend of having nice nails.” 

As a female entrepreneur, Reid credits feminism as influencing her business model. She believes it is most liberating for women, especially women of color, to be economically empowered. She shares five tips for women who wish to start their own business.

1) ALWAYS have a vision

2) Community = Loyalty

3) Every part of your business should stay to your vibe (down to the toilet paper!).

4) Ask your friends and family for money first.

5) Only hire people who embody your vibe/brand

Watch Sharmadean's interview with Broadly below:

5 Looks Inspired by Instagram Muse @heyclaire

A photo posted by Claire Marshall (@heyclaire) on

In our interview with Kim, she shared that she was inspired by Claire Marshall. After checking out Claire's amazing Instagram, we easily fell in love with her too. Claire always looks simultaneously casual and polished. She is a t-shirts and jeans kinda gal. Claire builds up her staple pieces by stacking on a mix of delicate and chunky bracelets, chokers, strappy shoes, and leather belts and jackets. 

Here are five ways you could effortlessly look like Claire: 

Denim cutoffs + flowy off the shoulder top: Mix these boho pieces with a black structured bag and heel. A wrap choker always finishes off the look.

Comfy pull over + leather pants:  Incorporate a pop of color with a burgundy bag. Slip on sneakers and go for a coffee run with friends. 

Distressed pants + lace body suit: Go for bold red. Don't forget to layer on long dainty necklaces. It's a casual and girly look perfect for a night out. 

Army jacket + boyfriend jeans: Running late? Don't over think it. Throw on an over sized jacket and comfortable boyfriend jeans. Switch out your plain black heels for velvet heels. No one would guess you only had 10 minutes to get ready!

Stan smiths + jersey dress: Claire loves bold chunky necklaces and it gives a basic outfit a spark of personality.

Get a look at just how easy breezy Claire's style is in her OOTD video!

A Summer Solution: Brow Sugaring & Tinting

Artwork by Mel Stringer

For us with sparse eyebrows, powders, pomades, and pencils have helped us but the paranoia of rub off keeps us from enjoying our boldly enhanced brows. It can also be exhausting to spend time filling them in everyday. For longer wear and a consistent look, we recommend brow tinting. Brow tinting lasts up to four weeks and will begin to fade out after two weeks. To prolong the color, touch ups are recommended. On the day of application, avoid washing the brow area for a few hours to allow the product to settle. An appointment starts by shaping the brows and removing any stray hair with our sugaring method. Sugaring, which removes hair with an all natural sugar product, generally lasts longer than waxing. 

Brow tint is than applied in a shade suitable to the client to fill in any gaps and create a more prominent arch. The tint processes in only a few minutes and is quickly wiped off. And you’re set! You can enjoy your summer days without worrying about your brows sweating off. More time for fun and less time spent filling in your eyebrows!

The Team: Kimberly

Kimberly has been with Sugar Fly for 4 years and has recently become certified as a Designer Stylist. She specializes in all aspects of the styling process and loves creating complete hair and makeup looks custom tailored to her clients.  

Why did you decide to become a stylist?
I remember watching a TV show when I was a kid and seeing a woman get her hair done. I saw that it made her day and as a kid I thought it was the coolest thing. I wanted to do something that would help people in some sense, even if it was just giving them a haircut to make them feel better. I fell in love with doing hair and beauty so I just kept up with it all throughout high school. 

What are your sources of inspiration?

A lot of my style inspiration comes from TV shows. I also get inspiration from Youtube gurus. They have such a big influence with the younger crowd because the looks are usually more geared toward everyday wear which is a lot more realistic for people. 
Is your focus as a stylist to create realistic/manageable looks?

At Sugar Fly, we have a broad span of clientele but the majority of my clients are big on everyday wear. We like to have fun by adding in pops of color.

What is it like working at Sugar Fly?

This October I will have been with Sugar Fly for four years. My favorite thing has been that I've always been given support with everything that I've wanted to do. It has always been more important to Claudia that everything be good at home and that has made me feel like part of a family rather than just another employee.

What makes Sugar Fly different from other salons in Chicago? 

We are able to provide all of the services you need in one. You don't have to constantly jump from one salon to another. Its great for clients that are need in something local. 

What was the journey to working as an educator for Keune?

I've always known that I wanted to do something more than stand behind the chair but I didn't know what exactly it was. We've carried Keune products at the salon for about a year. Working with the product, I realized that all of my work was consistent and I never had to worry about it failing on me. When the opportunity to work with the company arose, I decided to go for it. What made me want to work with them is that they prioritize getting their products into the hands of experienced stylists rather than selling to major beauty retailers like Sally's. 

I was worried about being too young to work for them as an educator but what pushed me was that everyone I spoke to about applying assured me that the company would dedicate their time to extensively train me. When I began training, it felt right—like it was meant to be.



Interview with Claudia: Sugar Fly's #GIRLBOSS

"I'm a dreamer...I have it tattooed on my back. If I didn't follow my dreams, then Sugar Fly wouldn't be here." 

How did the idea for Sugar Fly come about?

Initially the idea for the salon was much more limited and it later evolved into what it is now. I wanted to start out specializing in nail art and selling small unique accessories. It was after a trip to Japan that I saw a whole other world. Nail art is on another level in Japan. When we started Sugar Fly, nail art was just starting to get popular in America. Back then, there wasn’t really any well known nail artists and only a few in the city. It wasn't something people typically asked for because they thought it was “too out there.”  I wanted Sugar Fly to bring the whole Japanese feel here but in an urban, American way.

Fashion is so much what influences beauty trends and a lot of it is kept separate. Sugar Fly would be one fun place that you could incorporate the whole beauty experience like nails, hair, makeup, clothing, accessories, and shoes. It would be a one stop shop for trends in all of those areas.

How is Sugar Fly different from other salons in Chicago?

We focus on what the trends are and stay ahead of what is basic. Not there is anything wrong with basic... that's why classic is timeless! We just believe in giving things a little something to make it your own.

It’s also very important for us that everyone feels welcome and that Sugar Fly be a fun place to come. I feel like the staff and the environment kind of embodies that. We’re not pretentious at all and we’re very team oriented.

Who is the Sugar Fly client?

There is not one typical client or customer, but the one thing I would say that they do have in common is that they are not afraid to express their feelings and personality. They are very strong willed. They’re fun.

What kind of team did you want to build for your business?

One that was positive, fun, and creative. People who are all about supporting. People with big ideas who aren't afraid to express them. I feel everyone that we have embodies that.

How do you know when someone makes a good addition to your team?

It is a feeling that I have. No interview is the same because it is based on their personal experience. When I interview, I like to look through the resume to see where their head is at and the road that they’re taking. I ask them “What are your goals? Where do you want to end up?” Based on those answers, if I feel like they have a good grasp on who they are are and how they could complement the team then they're in!

Where do you see Sugar Fly five years from now?  

I want to expand our brand to meaning more than just a salon. With the talent that we have, if we could do more editorial photo shoots and fashions shows and get clients that would be interested in that, it would be great.  Many stylists enjoy that type of work, but it’s not very consistent, so you need to have a home salon to have a steady clientele. I feel like if we’re able to develop talent and promote them well enough, we can get them that type of work and we can also be their home base. We have the space and the the talent to do it. We have already published several issues of our very own magazine, The Hive, we just need more time to grow.

What do you want Sugar Fly to be known for?

I want us be a trusted name. A lot of times, when people see looks in a magazine and they want to get them done, they’re not entirely sure if they can go to the salon down the street and have it done well. It’s a big risk that a lot of clients are not willing to take unless they know for sure it can be done. If our clients pull something out of a magazine and ask if it can be done, I want them to be confident that they came to the right place. If we can develop a reputation for that, I would be happy.


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