Pamper with Paraffin - Treat Dry Skin at Home

Warm Wax, Relax

Paraffin wax treatments are soothing to the skin. If you are suffering from dry winter hands that tend to crack or feel irritated from dry weather or frequent hand washing, a paraffin bath might be just what you need.

There are several models available, some small enough to just fit a hand, others larger to accommodate feet and elbows. Look for a unit that will fit your skin-care needs.

The reason that paraffin is so soothing to the skin is because the wax is mixed with mineral oil. The heated seal that the wax creates allows the oil to penetrate the skin for the softest effects. Oils come in a variety of scents to enhance your at-home spa experience.

How to Dip

  1. Wash and dry hands thoroughly. (Removing jewelry is a good idea - it's hard to pick the wax out of rings.)

  2. Be sure the temperature of the bath is correct. Read the manufacturers instructions. (A meat thermometer can help verify the temperature - make sure the thermometer doesn't touch the bottom or sides of the unit while testing.)

  3. Insert your hand into the bath and lift back out - allow the wax to drip dry for a moment. Don't wait too long - the goal is to build up heat, and the longer it cools the less heat you will have. DO NOT SOAK YOU HAND IN PARAFFIN!

  4. Dip about 6-7 times, building up a thick waxy coat. Be sure to keep your hand still so as not to break the seal. The wax should be uniform, smooth and crack-free when you are finished.

  5. Cover your hand with a plastic bag - most units come with them.

  6. Cover the bag with a towel or blanket. The more insulation, the longer the heating effect will last.
  7. In about 20 minutes you will notice that it has cooled significantly - simply use the bag to peel off the wax, as if removing a glove from the inside out. Your wax is in the bag - now discard.

You can recycle the wax and place it back in the bath to melt and reuse, but it will place some of your old skin cells in the wax and it will become dingy and with sediment before long. Replacement blocks of wax can be easily purchased.

Dip hand, being sure to cover all the parts you want to warm.  It's hot, don't be alarmed - dip and lift!
Dip hand, being sure to cover all the parts you want to warm. It's hot, don't be alarmed - dip and lift!
Lift and allow to drip dry for a moment.
Lift and allow to drip dry for a moment.
After 6-7 dips, you should have a smooth coat of wax built up on your hand.
After 6-7 dips, you should have a smooth coat of wax built up on your hand.
Slip your hand into the plastic bag that came with your unit.  The plastic helps to seal in more heat.  Wrap your hand in a towel to further insulate.
Slip your hand into the plastic bag that came with your unit. The plastic helps to seal in more heat. Wrap your hand in a towel to further insulate.
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Pull the wax off with the plastic liner, like removing a glove from the inside out.
Pull the wax off with the plastic liner, like removing a glove from the inside out.
Pull the wax off with the plastic liner, like removing a glove from the inside out.
Throw away the waxy-filled bag!  It's that easy!
Throw away the waxy-filled bag! It's that easy!

Tips for Dips

  • Most units take a few hours to melt the wax. If you know you want to treat yourself to a paraffin dip one evening, plug it in that morning so it can melt and heat evenly.
  • If you are planning to do both hands at one time, you might want to ask someone to help you wrap up the second hand.
  • If you are going to place it on the floor to dip your feet, be very careful! It might be best to place it on the floor cold and then plug it in.

Units

HoMedics makes a variety of sizes, some small enough just for hands and others large enough for feet. The TherabathPRO is usually what therapy clinics use, along with spas. It's a little more narrow, but deeper than most units. Hand mitts are nice to seal in the heat after the plastic is applied - the mitts are easier to handle than a towel.

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Comments 13 comments

JulieP 9 years ago

Nice article. Can you filter out/strain out the wax? How much does the paraffin cost? Thanks.


MrMarmalade profile image

MrMarmalade 9 years ago from Sydney

There is a lot of information and makes for good reading

thank you


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 9 years ago from Tampa Author

I don't know of a way to filter out the wax if you decide to recycle it in the unit. Different places carry the wax refills - WalMart, Target, Amazon.com, and Scrip-Inc.com are good places to look. Prices range from about $4-7 per block, and in a small unit 1 block will last for quite a few treatments. The more you buy in a package, the cheaper per block it comes. Refills come in blocks as mentioned, or in pellets which melt a little faster. Some blocks come with the mineral oil in them, and some come seperately, which is little more inconvenience, because it's usually premeasured out for you in a bottle and you simply pour it in. Hope that helps!


Kenny Wordsmith profile image

Kenny Wordsmith 9 years ago from Chennai

Very informative, as I didn't know about this before. But will the treatment remove th hair from the back of my hands? That I wouldn't like to happen!


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 9 years ago from Tampa Author

: ) No, not at all - it's not that kind of wax! The oil keeps it from adhering to hair. It's safe! : )


Raffaella 8 years ago

Thank's for sharing! Struggling with dry hands can be painful.


Kat07 profile image

Kat07 7 years ago from Tampa Author

It can be very painful! All those little tears in the skin, not to mention hangnails!


Naomi 7 years ago

thanks for the no brainer tips


claire  7 years ago

will be trying out that one.

Arianna

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John 7 years ago

Thanks for that! Will try.


Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma Alberts 5 years ago from Germany

Great hub. Paraffin wax treatment is really good not only for the hands but also for the feet which has dry skin. I tried it for my feet before having pedicure in a spa. It became smooth and the dried skin, gone. Thanks for sharing this in hubpages.


Max 22 months ago

The smaller wick and place it lower to the rim of lid, so less shows, may help avoid polniog. also, the snug fit hole may need to be a tiny bit looser. or the jar may be too full. I have not tried these yet, as we have oil lamps that work fine.


Savion 22 months ago

Evorneye would benefit from reading this post

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