Here is an instructional video about how to make and use the depilatory, Halawa (Halaweh). We’ve been having a lot of fun figuring this out (and thank goodness for our resident expert, Hend!) Soon, we’ll be posting our own Halawa video, stay tuned!
One of our theatre for kids interns, Jessica Bland, (also a member of the run crew for Veils) wrote this awesome explanation of Halawa and agreed to let us use it here:
Followers of Islam (both women and men) believe that shaving and waxing certain parts of the body is an important component to enhancing one’s fitrah, or natural belief in God. Halawa is a traditional, popular, and very tasty sugar wax used by women across the Middle East to remove body hair. There are varied recipes to make this depilatory, but halawa at its most basic is comprised of a large cup of sugar, a fourth cup of water, a tablespoon of salt, and lemon. The mixture is heated and stirred over an open flame until the mixture turns to a golden yellow. When the wax is removed from heat and firms, the mixture must then be plied with hands and small amounts of water. The halawa is then spread over small surfaces of the body and then stripped off, taking body hair with in. While traditional halawa can easily be made and applied by anyone, improper waxing can cause significant damage to one’s skin, including severe burns. –Jessica Bland