Medical Esthetics Sponsored by
Cell phones, computers and GPS navigation systems—these items are all commonplace now, but initially, they were expensive niche products that only a certain segment of the population could afford. The first cell phone offered to consumers in 1984 actually cost almost $4,000. More recently, when the first iPhone was released five years ago, it cost approximately $800. Now, it is just a fraction of that price. In many cases, a lower price point will equal higher sales and profits. And this is illustrated by the fact that Apple, maker of the iPhone, has become one of the biggest companies in the world.
These examples are similar to the evolution of the medical esthetics industry. In 2003, medical esthetics was a relatively new concept, and there were far fewer medical spas than there are today. Because of that, treatments were provided at a much higher price point than they are now. In 2003, a small area of laser hair removal—for example, the underarms—would cost between $300–400 for one session. Now, many businesses offer it for a lot less. This lower price point is a great thing for the industry because it allows more clients to enter the marketplace, helping medical esthetics to become a nearly $9 billion industry.
The popularity of medical esthetic procedures continues to grow because of more affordable prices and dramatic results. Through the use of cosmetic lasers, microdermabrasion techniques and chemical peels, women and men notice visible results in a short period of time. These range from anti-aging wrinkle and age-spot reduction, to skin-tightening, stretch-mark reduction and hair removal. As this marketplace grows, there is an increased demand for skilled medical esthetic technicians. In many states, you do not need to have a medical background to perform treatments. The required training can usually be achieved by attending a short course, which includes didactic classroom education on laser safety, laser science and proper procedures, in addition to hands-on clinical training.
Some technicians have learned to perform laser procedures on the job. The benefit to this is that you can get trained immediately instead of waiting for a course that may be offered only once a month. However, when you train on the job, you are usually only exposed to one training style and one specific laser. Taking a comprehensive course gives you the benefit of learning from several different instructors who train you on several different lasers. A wider range of experience can be gained, which allows you to make educated decisions as you start your career.