First practiced in ancient Egypt, sugaring is a homemade alternative to waxing that effectively removes hair with less mess and pain. Unlike traditional waxing, which causes pain because it involves pulling on both the skin and the unwanted hair against the grain, during sugaring the hair alone is pulled in the direction that it grows. Create your own inexpensive sugaring wax at home and use it to eliminate unwanted upper-lip hair in a matter of minutes.
Combine 4 cups white sugar, 1/2 cup lemon juice and 1/2 cup water in a medium-sized saucepan. Insert the tip of a candy thermometer into the pan and place the pan on a burner.
Heat the sugar-and-lemon-juice mixture on a low-to-medium heat until the candy thermometer reads 250 degrees Fahrenheit, stirring often. The mixture also is done when the sugar is completely dissolved, which takes about 4 to 5 minutes. Don't allow the mixture to boil. If it does boil, pour out the ingredients and start from scratch.
Remove the pan immediately from the heat and pour the mixture directly into a microwave-safe bowl featuring an airtight lid. If you're using the sugaring wax right away, allow it to sit without the cover. While the sugaring wax is cooling, wash your upper lip with a cleanser that is formulated for your skin type.
Rinse away the cleanser and pat your face dry. Once the mixture is warm enough for you to touch without discomfort, dip a butter knife into the bowl and apply a thin layer of the sugaring wax on your upper lip, paying attention to avoid getting it on your sensitive lips.
Press a cotton strip against your upper lip and allow it to sit, and the sugaring wax to harden slightly, for 1 to 2 minutes. Pull the strip away quickly in the direction that your hair grows. It's important to pull the strip quickly, or the sugaring wax and your unwanted facial hair will stay put.
Clean off any remaining sugaring wax from your upper lip with a damp towel. Pat your skin dry and apply a facial moisturizer to the area. Cover the microwave-safe bowl with the lid and refrigerate the sugaring wax for up to one month.