Wax, ear: The ear canal is shaped somewhat like an hourglass. The skin on the outer part of the canal has special glands that produce earwax. The purpose of this natural wax is to repel water and to trap dust and sand particles. Usually a small amount of wax accumulates, and then dries up and falls out of the ear canal caring with it unwanted particles. Ear wax is helpful in normal amounts and serves to coat the skin of the ear canal where it acts as a temporary water repellent. The absence of ear wax may result in dry, itchy ears, and even infection.