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Painful Body Waxing

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"[The wax] actually feels kinda good. What's so bad about waxing?"
Tory Belleci Tempting Fate, MythBusters

Pain is funny. A lot of pain is funnier. Humiliating pain is the best of all.

So nothing can be funnier than watching a man getting his body hair waxed, especially if he screams, yells, or swears while the strips are pulled off. Though this trope can still work and be funny with both genders (say, a woman tolerating a leg waxing when she's not used to it), it's generally funnier with a man, especially if he Screams Like a Little Girl. For one, waxing Bob's bare chest or back can invoke Naked People Are Funny and be shown entirely on screen (can't exactly do the same with Alice's bikini wax), plus it's amusing to think of a man going into hysterics over something that women endure without complaint.

Subtrope to Painful Adhesive Removal.


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  • There's a Bud-Light commercial with a fellow who enters the wrong room at a massage parlor because he sees an open fridge with Bud-Light bottles in it. He didn't look at the sign on the door, otherwise he'd know it said "Bikini Wax." What happens next is given a discretion shot.
  • A Klondike ad implies that a man would submit to a chest wax for an original flavor Klondike bar, or to a bikini wax for a dark chocolate Klondike bar.
  • One of several scenarios in adverts for is leg waxing. "W-OW!-cher!" says the woman as she gets her legs waxed, having apparently used a voucher to get it cheap via the website being advertised.
  • In 2007, there was a Virgin Mobile flash ad where you could click on whichever area you want this massage client to get waxed. His swear word shrieks are censored by cell phone beeps.

    Comic Books 
  • In the Tintin book Flight 714, the chief antagonist Rastapopoulos is tied up with duct tape over his mouth by the heroes. Rastapopoulos yells in pain when his henchman Allan peels off the tape, since the duct tape was stuck to his hair. The yells of pain also happen to tip off Tintin as to his whereabouts.
  • The French comic Leo Loden uses it as an interrogation method. On seeing a captive mafioso's Carpet of Virility, Leo's uncle grabs a big roll of masking tape, applies it to the mook's chest, and *shhhrrrkkktt*! They get the information not long after.

    Fan Works 
  • Played for drama in Vow of Nudity: In one flashback, Haara (an imperial slave) undergoes the apparently-standardized procedure of having all her body hair plucked out with tweezers. The process is mentioned to happen every three months until the slave's body hair stops growing back altogether.
  • In Saying No, chapter 3, Harry's annoyed by Dumbledore trying to sneak-Portkey him. Kreacher suggests shaving Dumbledore and using the hair for a sweater. Harry and Kreacher settle on dehairing Dumbledore and saving the hair for later use in Polyjuice impersonations. Kreacher decides to pluck all the hair on his victim's entire body, because plucking hurts more than other options.
  • In This Means War, chapter 9, a group of girls led by Lavender and Parvati subject Ginny to a makeover that includes leg waxing, which is a new experience for her. She doesn't like it.

  • In Big Hero 6, Tadashi places duct tape on Hiro's arm and yanks it off to activate Baymax and have him examine his pain.
  • Deuce Bigalow: When Deuce goes to enhance his physical appearance at a beauty salon to prepare for his new gig, he gets his buttocks waxed and when it ends at his genital area, his yell is so loud that everyone in the entire establishment hears it.
  • Happens in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. Steve Carell's reaction was genuine, as he was actually having his chest hairs ripped out.
  • The Hot Chick, although technically it was a girl in a man's body.
  • In Turbo, when Turbo takes a break from the race for a next round, the snails assemble for a pit stop. As the snails try to restore his stamina and determination a la car repair, Burn takes the opportunity to "wax" him by placing a piece of tape upon his face and pulling it off.
  • The screenplay and novelization for Home Alone 2: Lost in New York contained a scene in which Marv grabs a piece of cheesecloth to try to wipe the paint off his face, not knowing Kevin soaked the cloth in superglue; the cheesecloth sticks to Marv's face, and when he rips it off, he ends up tearing his beard and eyebrows off. (In the film the scene is replaced by the famous electrocution scene.)
  • In Miss Congeniality the sequence of Gracie being dolled up includes her screaming off screen and then limping into view. Victor then turns to the other FBI agents and explains "Bikini Wax" causing the two agents to wince.
  • In Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Scrat's acorn is stuck to his chest with dinosaur saliva resembling tar. Enter Scratte, who pulls it off, along with a sizable chunk of his hair. Cue scream.
  • Brazilian film Se Eu Fosse VocĂȘ 2 has this for a woman-in-man's body (though the waxing was done using Chromakey). Particularly funny because the male lead, Tony Ramos, is known in Brazil for his dense body hair, to the point where his name became another term for "hairy male".
  • In What Women Want the main character uses a bunch of feminine products in an attempt to get into the minds of women. One of these is a wax strip that he uses on his leg. Afterwards, he says that women are insane.
  • The main character in Persepolis waxes her legs. Set to Eye of the Tiger.
  • In Hitch, Albert gets his back waxed, yelling in pain with each pull. Hitch, who is on the phone with Sara while this is happening, ends up pushing Albert's face down into the pillow to muffle his cries.

  • The Hunger Games: Katniss Everdeen's first experience of the Capitol is a decidedly un-funny version of this. Her prep team waxes her entire body, but keeping her promise to her mentor she never complains. This becomes something of a regular procedure as she continues her role and takes on new ones later in the series.
    • While all Tributes are "beautified" before entering the Hunger Games Arena, Katniss notes that the boys apparently keep their body hair.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Friends, in the episode where Chandler, Joey, Monica and Phoebe are trapped in one of the bedrooms by Ross and Rachel's big argument. After Joey and Chandler are summoned across the hall by the sounds of Monica and Phoebe screaming, Joey is persuaded to wax the hair off his arms to prove his pain threshold. It is not as high as he had claimed, although he does just whimper rather than cry out as the girls did.
    • In a later episode Joey is persuaded to get his eyebrows waxed for his new set of headshots. He goes to a salon and finds the first brow being waxed so painful he runs out before the waxer can finish. He confides in Chandler who reveals he learned how to perform body waxing in a painless way helping his Drag Queen father get ready for shows. Once Joey stops laughing he agrees to let Chandler even up his brows.
  • America's Funniest Home Videos once held a challenge event to film men getting their chest waxed. One even got invited to the show to use one of the props to pull a patch off his chest.
    • One of the many videos showed a girl waking up her dad with this.
  • Host Adam Hills underwent a 'boyzilian' (a male Brazilian waxing) - and had it filmed for the programme - on Adam Hills In Gordon Street Tonight after receiving a gift voucher for the procedure from an audience member as a 'show-warming gift' on the first episode. It was hilarious.
  • In the Brazil episode of An Idiot Abroad, Karl is led to a body waxing salon by a Rio de Janeiro local named Celso. Celso is able to get himself waxed without flinching, whereas Karl, who only ends up getting his lower back waxed, reacts in pain.
  • Amy got one on The Big Bang Theory. She's shown walking very wobbly afterwards, and it's heavily implied that she had a lot of hair down there before the waxing.
  • Chest and nasal waxing were inflicted on Barsky in one episode of Dirty Jobs.
  • In an episode season 18 of The Amazing Race where all the contestants were in Brazil, one of the tasks to get the next clue was to endure a 15-minute body waxing. Surprisingly, all the contestants actually took it relatively well (they at least took the pain pretty well)...except for Zev and Justin, who were the hairiest out of all the contestants in that season (and possibly the show itself). And yes, they screamed like little girls throughout the waxing (one of the guys even threatened to punch his waxer in the face).
  • In an episode of Two and a Half Men, Walden goes to get a "Bro-zilian" wax at the salon Jenny's girlfriend works at.
  • Steve O of Jack Ass has had a full body wax for one episode.
  • On MythBusters they were retesting whether socks could be knocked off with enough force, and in order to see if leg hair had an effect Tory had one of his legs waxed so the Busters could compare them. Let's just say there's a reason the page quote is labeled Tempting Fate.
  • In the Firefly episode "Jaynestown" several characters find mercenary crewmate Jayne trying to smuggle a weapon into a settlement which forbids them by taping it to his stomach, with high-strength medical tape no less. When ordered by the captain to remove it, he complies. After about an inch of the tape is removed, he realises the flawed nature of his plan, and begins whimpering.
  • Taken to extreme in an episode of 1000 Ways to Die where a woman tries homemade waxing to remove her pubic hair, only to rip off a piece of her skin, which triggers an infection that kills her a week later.
  • The Spanish Game Show El gran juego de la oca features this as one of the challenges. A contestant, always male, is asked five questions. For each one he gets right, one of his toenails is painted; for each incorrect answer, part of his leg hair is waxed off.
  • In one episode of The Red Green Show, Red does this to his nephew, Harold, as part of a demonstration on how to make a lady shaver. However, Red being Red, instead of using wax, he uses strips of duct tape. He places the tape on Harold's leg and then explains that one doesn't need sharp blades or cream or messy cleanup anymore. All one has to do with the duct tape is just stick it on and then snap it off — which Red does. Harold is clearly in pain but tries to deny it to his uncle, then starts screaming in pain once he walks off.
  • In an episode of Ready or Not (1993), Amanda has Busy try waxing her leg. Amanda screams out in pain when Busy peels off the wax strip.
  • CSI: NY: "Point of No Return" opens with a scream coming from a cheap motel room. As the shot zooms, the viewer discovers that this is not a horrible crime but a group of women holding a bikini wax party. The actual murder takes place two rooms down.
  • Abbi suffers through one at the beginning of the Broad City episode "Fattest Asses."
  • In the episode "Young & Communication" of Young & Hungry, Gabi ties and blindfolds Josh to the bed under the pretense of sexual foreplay, but when he opens the blindfolds, he sees that he is forced to either tell her the truth about whether or not he actually lied about joining a swim team, or have her wax his chest. Josh, unfortunately not knowing what he'll go through, boldly chooses the latter.

    Video Games 

    Web Original 
  • Smosh Games offered up the spectacle of Jovenshire dressed as Cupid as a reward for 1 million subscribers. Joven decided it would be funny to have his chest waxed beforehand. It was funny... but not for him.
  • One of the "Impossible Let's Plays" Markiplier involved this. Every time he lost all his lives in The Impossible Quiz, he had to wax some part of his body. The most painful one, apparently, was his armpit.
  • The punishment for wiping out in OlliOlli or losing the second challenge in Comedy Central UK's The Sidemen Experience was a leg waxing, which involved both legs getting fully waxed for the two losing Sidemen eliminated in that round. KSI got his leg waxed by Lucy Collett as punishment for losing the first challenge to Make an Example of Them. Harry, Ethan, and Simon each got a leg waxed for wiping out, while Harry and Ethan were given full leg waxings for losing the challenge.
  • Analog Control included a penalty game in which the losing host has a chunk of their leg hair ripped off using duct tape. Thayne lost.
  • The Slow Mo Guys described themselves as "very hairy." So they tried a home waxing kit on their thighs in slow motion, even capturing Gavin Free's scream of pain in slow motion.
    Gavin: Mine looks like a plucked chicken and yours looks like...blood beef.
    Dan: Ugh, I don't ever want to do that again.
  • Australian Super Smash Bros. YouTuber Little Z subjected himself to part of his chest being waxed every time he lost a stock while playing online matches in this video. He plays the video out with a pastiche of 'Stressed Out' by Twenty One Pilots.
    My name is Little Z and my chest is now pink
    My name is Little Z and my chest is now pink
    Wish we could turn back time to 'You Lose, You Cosplay'
    When Little Z said "I'll rip the hairs in my chest out"
    Wish we could turn back time to before today
    Why did I decide to rip the hairs in my chest out?

    Western Animation 
  • Bob's Burgers: In "Mother Daughter Laser Razor", Bob gets his legs waxed with Tina as a gesture of parental solidarity. It ends with both of them screaming.
  • Glenn Martin, DDS: In "Alma Mater Matters", Jackie places two pieces of duct tape upon Glenn's chest and rips one off while they are speaking, cue loud yelp. Then as she is about to rip the other one off, Glenn whimpers in fear even though she hasn't even pulled it yet.
    • In another episode, Jackie suggests Glenn should hire a professional to educate their son because he is not man enough to do so himself. Glenn, in denial, wants to prove it but when Jackie tries to remove a Band-Aid that he's had above his elbow for a year because he is afraid to pull it off, he wimps out and chooses hiring a professional over removing the Band-Aid.
  • In an episode of Six Teen, Jonesy is shown having a unibrow. The girls suggest having it waxed at the spa. He agrees, and after Screaming Like a Little Girl, he recommends waxing to Wyatt and Jude. They both accept...and then learn that "there's stuff you can do [at the spa] that doesn't hurt."
  • In one episode of The Simpsons, they let Sideshow Bob out of jail to catch a man attempting to murder Homer. He must wear a device that acts as a Restraining Bolt. "And don't bother trying to take it off. Because it's duct-taped to your leghairs. And that really hurts!"
  • SpongeBob SquarePants has a variant of this in "Survival of the Idiots." While a now-monster-sized Sandy is hibernating in her winter dome, SpongeBob and Patrick attempt to puck out her fur while she's sleeping, and Patrick comes up with the idea to use a roll of tape to wax Sandy's fur off, which causes the latter to roar in pain after continuous, impromptu waxing with the tape.
  • Johnny Bravo once managed to combine the humor of a woman doing this trope with a man when Johnny found himself temporarily turned into a woman. The first priority was to clean up, and this included waxing.
  • SheZow: In "Glamageddon", Droosha is helping SheZow for the Glamageddon showdown against Tara. This includes waxing SheZow's legs, which causes Guy to squeal in pain.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball: In "The Mustache", when Darwin's first facial hairs appear, Gumball uses chewed gum to get rid of them, which makes Darwin scream. Then they both become much hairier.
  • The narrator gets an unintended one in Rocky and Bullwinkle. After getting tied and gagged by secret agents in the "Banana Formula" story arc, they are later forced to at least pull the tape off of his mouth because without him, plot can't advance, so when they do, the narrator screams in pain as the tape had ripped off his mustache.
    Agent 1: One thing we forgot. he has a mustache.
    Agent 2: [looking at the back of the tape] He had a mustache.

    Real Life 
  • Anyone who's gotten any part of their body waxed can tell you that it is actually quite painful, especially if you take into consideration how, unlike shaving (which is just cutting off the top part of the hair), waxing is pulling the hair out by the root (which causes it to take longer to grow back).
    • While waxing may be more painful (and more expensive) than shaving, it is ultimately more effective, especially since you don't have to wax as frequently as you would with shaving.
  • Many charity events, especially common for charities protesting deforestation.
    • One example is the 'Shave For A Cure' event. Someone got one of their eyebrows waxed off. Ouch.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Wax On Wax Scream


Leisure Suit Larry 2: Looking for Love (in Several Wrong Places)

During the visit of the third barber for the second time, he puts Larry under body waxing despite his fear and it's so painful that Larry leaps to the ceiling afterwards.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / PainfulBodyWaxing

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