You might go to a spa to get a manicure or facial and walk out with freshly painted nails and cleaner skin. When you leave The Wax Lounge, however, you are not only revived on the outside, but on the inside as well.
Owner Raine Hewlett knows what it’s like to go to a spa feeling the pressure to dress or look a certain way. In a past life, she worked in the cosmetics industry first as a makeup artist at a well-known international brand and then she eventually made her way to the corporate sector of another international beauty and skincare brand.
As she moved up from promotion to promotion, Raine found herself focused on her appearance, knowing the expectations of the perfect tan, white teeth, and a chic pair of heels. When she would go to get a manicure, she knew she had to maintain that image at the places she visited. Not only that, Raine felt that each place had a cold, clinical atmosphere with black beds and patient-type paper.
Instead of feeling calm and inviting, the bright lights, loud TVs, and chairs of strangers sat side by side were over-stimulating. What was supposed to be downtime in a hectic day turned out to be just another appointment to get over with. “It’s kind of like going to the dentist,” Raine explains. “You just have to do it.”
Raine didn’t start her business simply because she wanted to be an entrepreneur. The idea for her own spa began when she thought about what all those previous experiences were missing. “What if it was dark, with zen music playing?” she wondered. Over time, more ideas came to mind of what the ideal situation would be. Raine wanted to ensure her clients would arrive to her spa feeling calm and finish the treatments feeling relaxed, pampered, and soothed.
As the concept materialized, she decided to open her own spot — a holistic beauty bar with high quality, eco-conscious, cruelty-free vegan products. Natural avocado butter, coconut oil, and essential oils are used in the manicures, pedicures, and massages, along with organic, fair-trade scrub and treatment balms made in-house.
The Wax Lounge opened in February 2014 on Ottawa Street with custom plush heated beds nestled in darkened private rooms with candlelight. Clients were treated to services in ways they had never seen before, including pedicures while laying down, under the comfort of a blanket and an eye mask.
Word spread across Hamilton of her small spot on Ottawa Street with the unique take on beauty treatments. Appointments booked up so quickly a waiting list started. After a hunt for a new spot, the spa connoisseur settled on a building on Locke Street in late 2018 to allow her to expand The Wax Lounge to better serve the city.
In addition to the famous so-relaxing-you’ll-fall-asleep pedicure (it really is that good), her spa offers full body waxing, facials, lash work, massages, and brow microblading. Of course, with rooms as tranquil as these, the Lounge’s Brazilian wax is among their signature services. And with Raine’s background and expertise in makeup artistry, she is renowned for her brow work, both shaping with wax and as a certified PhiBrows microblading artist (the first to be certified in Hamilton!). Raine says, “It’s more than just applying wax and removing stray hairs; it’s understanding the face and how the brow frames it.”
For other services, including reflexology, aromatherapy, and microdermabrasion to name a few, Raine hires staff who are experts at their craft. “Everyone only works on services they excel at. Reputation is everything, and we want each client to have only the best at every visit.” Each employee specializes in the service they are performing, so you know you are getting a highly-skilled professional each time. Not only are you getting a top tier aesthetician – you will receive unique and catered services. Since The Wax Lounge does not subscribe to a one-size-fits-all solution, each appointment begins with a personalized consultation to determine how best to suit your needs.
The spa also supports local by offering all-natural beauty products from female makers in the area for you to enjoy at home or to gift to someone special. The most popular items include soaps, scrubs, bath bombs, deodorants, body butters, lotions, and lip balms.
After over 20 years in the cosmetics industry, Raine truly believes wisdom comes with time. She knows that it’s fine to have a daily beauty routine, but that “it’s about letting go of the need to have our identity tied to our beauty.” Raine’s goal is to create experiences for clients so that they leave feeling their energy replenished and, as cliché as it sounds, beautiful on both the inside and the outside. And in return, she’s happy just knowing someone has chosen her place to come and unwind or that someone picked The Wax Lounge to buy a gift card for a loved one. “I’m thankful for the community of people choosing to come to our place every day,” says Raine. “If people didn’t come back or tell their friends about us, we wouldn’t be here. I’m truly grateful.”
Raine invites you to take a relaxing self-care moment at The Wax Lounge. One thing is clear when it comes to the catering provided by Raine and her team of experts: no matter what service you go for or how you look when you arrive, you’ll leave feeling rejuvenated and glowing.