My understanding is that this is genetic; some people have liquid earwax which does not build up, and some have more solid earwax. So if you are in the latter category, I would think the best thing is to clean out the ears a little more often, before the wax builds up enough to cause discomfort.
There are other types of treatment for excess earwax; which one you use is up to you.
Somebody recommended Hydrogen peroxide, and this will work, but it can be irritating to use it repeatedly. I imagine it's okay once a month or so. But there are other brands of earwax remover that fizz the wax out, and you don't have to do overnight. Then there are "ear candles" - kind of fun actually, but may not soften the wax sufficiently if yours is very tough. Even a few drops of mineral oil in the ear will help soften the wax.
As you mentioned, using a Q-tip is not recommended with hard earwax, although it works fine for the more liquid kind.