You know the drill, you’re spread-eagle and in as vulnerable a position as you’re ever likely to be, and the pudgy Russian aesthetician with the hairy mole and the skin tags goes about ripping the follicles from your most tender area with careless aggression, attacking your genitals with disdain and berating you in broken English for your twisted sense of vanity: “For why you do this to yourself?”

This was but one of my many traumatic bikini-waxing experiences in Los Angeles. There was another time, when the aesthetician at a waxing hole in Sherman Oaks was having a bad day and projected about 30 years of unresolved childhood issues on my pubis. I limped home bruised and bloody, literally, swearing I’d never wax again. Time heals all wounds, and eventually bikini season returned, and I found myself, once again, staring at the ceiling while having hot wax spread over my labia, sweating profusely and hyperventilating through the fear, prepared for the worst.

Luckily, it was Meredith at Wax doing the spreading (well, to be completely accurate, we were both doing the spreading). With three quick, strong pulls of hardened “hot wax,” I was bare as a prepubescent grade-schooler and amazed at how painless the experience was. Not only did Meredith attack the area with deftness, mastery and, not to be underestimated, a sense of humor, but her down-to-earth vibe, her optimistic awakening essence, her whole demeanor, completely transformed the experience of the dreaded bikini wax from one of fear and trauma to something almost pleasant.

Meredith uses hot wax for the larger jobs (Brazilian, backside and bald), which goes on hot (duh) and thick and takes an extra minute or two to dry. The hot wax requires no muslin strips, no swathes of anything. It dries hard and blue and will never, ever rip your skin. She takes hold of one end and pulls. Quick. Superhero quick.

“That wasn’t so bad!” I exclaim.

But the real fun is Meredith herself, a no-bullshit kind of girl’s girl, who speaks in long, gushing run-on sentences, not just because she’s distracting you from what she’s doing, but also because she has a lot to say. She cuts to the chase, literally and figuratively, and while in her cubicle, we hang out in the thick of it, down deep and dirty at the level of the heart, discussing chemistry, meditation techniques and positive intention. And before you know it, she’s cleared the brush, plucked the strays, moisturized and sent me on my way with a hug, a colonic referral, a list of skin-care products to try, and a strange longing to stay and hang out.

She does guys, but charges more, “because I have to deal with their dicks,” she says with a wince. The rest of us pay the standard absurdity ($45 for Brazilian, $55 for nude), which is more than worth it for solid girl time and a lightning-fast wax job.

WAX 7924 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood, (323) 951-9616

LA Weekly