Today we are going to have a look at the pro’s and cons of waxed laces!
I personally prefer unwaxed laces in my skates. Waxed laces are definitely easier to tie and hold the skate tighter for a lot longer than unwaxed laces. However after using them for a month or so, depending on often you skate they begin to feel somewhat dried out and crusty, they also can be hard to get a good grip when tying them once this happens.
Some people find Unwaxed laces harder to tie tightly without having to re-tie the laces after 20-30mins on the ice, this is mostly down to personal preference as both have advantages over each other. On a number of occasions I’ve had my waxed laces snap on me, unwaxed have not. However the ends blow out on the unwaxed laces and are very hard to get through the lace holes (eyelets) on your skates, while waxed laces are not as bad. If you are having trouble keeping your skates tight I’d definitely recommend you try out the waxed laces and see the difference.
Waxed laces have one big advantage over regular laces – they are designed to stay tight without having to tie them over and over. They are also meant to give the skater the ability to have specific areas of the skate loose and others tight but it hard to get 100% right. The reason I choice to use unwaxed laces is I find that when tightened up around the ankle that I lose forward flex in my skate and find myself in more of stand up skating position as the pressure on my ankles when bending my knees is too much. As mentioned above this all personal preference and you need to try them both out for yourself!
Advantages of waxed laces
- Stay tight after being tied for a longer period of time.
- Easier to put through skate eyelets.
- Meant to last longer with-out fraying or breaking.
- Allow you to control how tight specific areas of your skate are (i.e. lose mid portion and tight top)
- Waxed tips are easier to grip and tie up.
- Does not stretch (as they are stretched before the wax is applied, then they harden/waxed)
- Some feature fused tips (no more plastics ends that come off while putting through your skates eyelets)
- Water proof and last longer.
Disadvantage of waxed laces
- Hard to untie or pull up to get your foot out.
- Waxed wears off and feels funky.
- Rough on the old hands once the wax starts to wear off.
- Can sometimes snap unexpectedly
Advantages of unwaxed laces
- Easy to get hold of as they are a little thicker.
- More forward flex in your skate as they loosen.
- Soft on the hands
- Doesn’t leave a waxy residue on your skates.
Disadvantage of unwaxed laces
- Not as easy to get tight without having to re-tie them every 20-30mins
- Look horrible when worn out
- They get thinner and curl up on itself the more you use them
- Cant have different portions of your skate tie separately (unless you use two laces per skate).
- Not as easy to grip without the wax
- Stretches when tying ( some people like this )
- Don’t have fused tips
- Water soaks in and pre longs the life of the lace.
- Bauer unwaxed laces are pretty fluffy and thick.
- Bauer waxed Laces are not as fluffy but a little thicker than the Elite laces.
- Elite waxed laces are generally pretty tightly woven and not at all fluffy.
The brand of laces will definitely control the life time or break down, there isn’t anything more annoying than having the tips break and not being able to get the lace through the eyelets on yours skates.
There you have it, give both styles a try and see what you like the best! Everyone has their personal preference!