Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Hair Removal: Halawa

Salam 3alaikum ya banaat!

One thing I had to be much more diligent about when I got married was hair removal. Because of my skin type/condition hair removal is very difficult, tedious and often painful. I am very prone to razor burn and ingrown hairs because of all that extra keratin my skin/follicles are producing.

The best method I have found for hair removal is halawa. Some people might know it as "sugaring." (halawa just means something sweet)

Because finding anything useful in my hometown is incredibly difficult, I had to learn how to make halawa in my own house. It takes some time but you can make a big batch and put it in little plastic tupperwares to keep it fresh. If you live somewhere hot it might be better to keep it inside the fridge so it will last longer, but generally I keep mine in a airtight container in the cabinet (not in the bathroom... it gets too hot in there).

So the method for making halawa is like this:
(this is for one batch, you could very easily double or triple it if you like, it wont make any big difference)

1. put 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water, juice from 1/2 lemon into a small saucepan
2. simmer on low heat until the sugar has started to caramelize, turning a nice dark amber color.
3. stir every 5 to 10 minutes, this size batch usually takes me about 30 minutes. larger batches might take longer to finish cooking.
4. be careful not to let it go too long.... if you cook it too long it turns into hard candy lol
5. let it cool a little in the pan, then distribute into containers. if i make a double batch i like to use several small containers which i use to delicate areas like face and bikini area and a couple bigger containers to use for larger areas like my legs.
6. when you want to use it, like it sit in some warm water for a little while so that it will loosen up from the sides a  little and come out easier. otherwise you will have to wrestle with it to get it off the plastic.

note: if you find after it has cooled that the sugar won't form a soft ball because it is too sticky, you can just put it back in the pan and cook it a little longer. there isn't a good way to save it if you cook it too long, but you could always eat it like candy :-P it actually has a nice and interesting flavor!

The color should come out something like the picture on the right inshaAllah. It looks a little goopy in the picture since it is still a little warm.

InshaAllah I will put together another post on how to use it!


  1. does it hurt to use it? Isn't it basically the same as waxing?? I think that is so painful!

    1. it is similar to waxing, but the pain is a little less in my opinion. the sugar is soothing for your skin and doesn't pick up live skin (like wax does). Also you pull the hairs with the growth instead of against the growth and that helps with the pain factor a lot.

      For me, sugaring like this is much much less painful than razor burn and ingrown hairs from shaving, so I'm all for it. Any method is gonna hurt for me, but this is the best one I've found.

  2. thanks! looking forward to the instructions post!;)

  3. Assalamu alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatu Ukhty....It is me Amira.....Mashaa Allah i wanted to try sugaring once but I never got the past right(always came out too thin/too granular)...Inshaa Allah I will try out using your directions....Nice blog Mashaa Allah

  4. I have tried sugaring before but it didn't turn out right. I will for sure try again! Can't wait for your next post on how to do it!

  5. i wanted to tell u i sent u an invite for my blog. want to be better muslim.

  6. eekk! Sounds messy! I think I will stick to the good old Venus smooth blade! lol I am glad I came across your post though as it may work for some since I have heard otehr mention this natural method.

  7. can u please post the direction to use it? I would like to try it!

    1. Yeah inshaAllah as soon as I get back from vacation! Sorry it took me so long but I have to make a new batch so I can demonstrate the process inshaAllah

  8. I'm too lazy to cook halawa. Where can I buy it in the US?

  9. You can buy Halawah online and from Islamic boutiques/book sotores that may carry it. In Egypt, there is one product simply called "Sweet". Sally Hansen has a product similar to Halawah that comes in sheet form to remove hair from the body and face. But it does not have the same effect as sugaring does (exfoliating and thereby, softening the skin).

    To use Halawah, I usually let a piece sit in my hand and get warmed up by my body heat, rolling it into a small flat sausage/slider burger size piece. Then I quickly roll the Sweet on and off my face in a quick, stroking fashion, as if I was wiping off a strand hair from my face.

    Practice on your arm or leg. Do not expect 100% total hair removal. And do not repeat the application too many times. But be consistent. I have been doing halawah for many years and do my arms and legs rarely as I now have no hair on my legs and arms. However, as an older woman, I focus mainly on my face. I considered getting the expensive NO NO product but have decided that Halawah is more practical, safer and more economical.

  10. Perfect place to solve my issue related to hair removal and very informative post you deliver to us.Thanks a lot!!