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The Making of an Esthetician

By: Cathy Christensen
Posted: April 29, 2009, from the May 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
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In this post, Nancy commented, “I encourage you to tell your clients what they need to do for a home care regimen for their skin ... Also, for me, a visit to an esthetician is like a visit to the doctor; when I go for a facial, the estheticians I trust the most tell me the truth ... I also love it when they recommend (but not push) products to me that will help with the problems I have. It’s all in the delivery, and the personal concern you show for your clients … and it is what will keep them returning to you.” According to Colleen, “Nancy’s comment was so helpful, honest and insightful, and I really enjoyed reading it. In the treatment room, I have learned that it really is all about how you deliver information and how you approach your clients.”

Lizz gave the following advice on the same post: “Tell the client that, ‘In any given month, I see you and you use my products on your face one time. You’ve come back several times, and I’m glad to see that what I am doing is working for you. Think about this, however: Chances are you wash your face and apply products approximately 60 times during that same month. What do you think will have a bigger effect, the one time I use products or the 60 chances you have to improve your own skin at home?’ ” Colleen says, “I mean really, this is an excellent point that Lizz brings up.”

Comments on one of Colleen’s last posts, titled “How Can I Stop Feeling So Stressed?,” that explained how crazy she was feeling in the days before graduation have helped her focus on her career. Donna commented, “Sorry if this sounds a bit harsh, but if this amazing career path is what you really want, focus, focus, focus. Turn down some of those dinner invitations and study. You won’t regret it.” Colleen says, “She was exactly right. As much as I didn’t want to hear it, that was all I needed to do to keep me focused. Some things are just more important.”

Sandra’s lessons

Sandra is still working full-time for Allured Business Media as assistant controller, but has plans of moving on in the near future. She has recently started working part-time at a salon, building up her clientele. The owner hasn’t had an esthetician before and so far, the response has been positive. Sandra is looking into renting a room at another salon as well, and hopes that between the two locations, she will be able to eventually become a full-time esthetician.

Sandra’s very first entry was titled “Something Positive,” and she wrote about how her mom’s death really affected her and made her think about things in her life. “I was going through such a major change,” says Sandra. Once she made the decision to go to school, she was nervous about being 43 and starting a new career. The comment that most impacted Sandra was from Maureen, who wrote, “What a inspirational story. It was the death of my own mother that lead me back into the wellness industry over 10 years ago. There is something very healing about the whole process of giving to others at a time in your life when you are grieving; that’s how most foundations begin. Good luck with everything.” Sandra says, “I received many more comments of encouragement and advice about how many spa professionals had also switched careers later in life, with success. It made me realize it wasn’t too late.”