Prize provided by:

Skin Inc Video Education

One lucky respondent to this month's Vocal Point question will receive free registration for the Physiology of the Skin course from Skin Inc. Video Education, a $149 value! Based on the beloved book by Peter T. Pugliese, MD and Zoe Draelos, MD, this 4-lesson course will arm you with the knowledge you need to better serve your clients.

Note: Winners will be chosen by random drawing and will be notified by e-mail. Prize will be sent directly from the sponsor. Winners are only eligible once every 12 months. All decisions of the editor are final.

Vocal Point Survey

The results are in! Here's what you had to say about our question from December 2011.

The Vocal Point responses have not been edited, and are posted as they were originally submitted. The opinions expressed in these responses are not necessarily those of or Skin Inc. magazine.

How do you use science to back up your treatment and retail recommendations?

By explaining the functions of each peptide/growth factor.
- Barbara Wicklund, Owner, Cleopatras, Rockford, IL
I try and really simplify what I am explaining to my clients and make it something they can relate too. For example, when I am trying to explain about keeping collagen fibers healthy, I will give the analogy of a tree having strong branches. If the tree is not properly taken care of with the right nutrients and water, it will begin to break down. Clients can then understand that having treatments and using retail products that feed the skin what they are looking for is part of the total picture. I also try to explain retail ingredients to them and show an example of what something that has that ingredient in it is.
- Rachael Cerullo, Owner/Esthetician, Pozitively Young Salon & Spa, Tyngsboro, MA
I have a printed card that I give each guest stating what action their treatment may have on their skin. Like vitamin C (lightening and tightening) or hyaluronic acid (building collegen and wrinkle reduction). I also give them a sample and another action card to go with the sample explaining the actions of a recommended treatment. Each customer has been given a card index box to keep their cards in so they can refer to what they had done on a certain date so they can refer to it the next time in.
- Sandra Guenette, Owner, Spa1, Colorado Springs, CO
I go to the International Dermal Institute for training on a regular basis to stay current with what's going on in the industry. I also use pH strips to show a client why their cleanser isn't suitable compared to the ones I sell. It always helps to do a demonstration and explain why it's not good for their skin.
- Laura Robinson, Owner, Sparkle, Elm Grove, WI
I consider the science in the products as important to educating the client in home care. Every active ingredient has a purpose and can be communicated to the client as beneficial, which stimulates home care sales. As for recommending treatments, the science of the ingredients is key to choosing and suggesting treatments for every client.
- Janet McCormick, Consultant, Spa Techniques, Frostproof, FL
We use science in quite a few ways actually. But, primarily we use the research and data of our suppliers, our trade publication articles, and subscription data from our assocation e-mail newsletters to educate not only our clients, but also ourselves.
- Marcie Spires, Owner, Chocolat Day Spa, Alvin, TX
Ummelina strongly believes in the science of products and results. If you cannot tell your client more than it smells good, then you will not make the sale. We believe in inspiring our clients. When you tell them something they do not already know about an ingredient, they are more likely to purchase it. All of our training starts with this. We ask our staff to start off remembering two ingredients and build from there, choosing of course the most important ingredients!
- Meghann Lawrence, Chief of Operations, Ummelina and Yakima Valley Spa Retreats, Seattle, WA
Science is using knowledge to explain things by what is known through practice (what has been practiced). I, as well as other professionals, use that knowledge to predict what is going to happen, along with certain fulfilled recommendations. Things have been proven time after time. We should have the education and knowledge that will make our recommendations correct.
- Kelli White, Esthetician , Madison Avenue Style, Indianapolis, IN
Since most of my clients are not exfoliating and breaking out, I talk about how acne is a bacteria and feeds off of dead skin. If they're not exfoliating regularly, they're basically feeding that bacteria, which creates the vicious cycle of acne. When I use the professional exfoliation in treatments, I discuss the enzymes in the product that are eating away at the dead skin and the hydroxy acids that are penetrating into the skin to speed up cell renewal.
- Kelly Mack, Owner/Esthetician, Absolute Precision Skin Care, Chicago, IL
I work in a retail setting with many superior brands of skin care. When speaking with someone who asks a lot of questions, I refer them to the science behind the development of the products that will give them the results they desire with their skin care regimen.
- Warreen Phillips, Owner, Arom Fleur Skin Care, Elgin, IL
I use the basics and recommend facials every few weeks to once a month, depending on the client. In the interim, they use products to keep their skin healthy and glowing until another facial.
- Deborah Lynn, Owner, Esthetician, L Utopie by Deborah, Green Bay, WI
Make a visual, 3D skin structure in a glass or plastic jar and explain skin science in an easier way for client to understand, such as which product goes how far in the layers, or whether the product is effective for which part of skin to do what. Use each layer with food, (for example, dried up brown fruit roll-ups as stratum corneum, then oatmeal, granola, cranberries for other layers), stack them in the jar and make it colorful and familiar for clients. Then sell appropriate products for client's skin condition.
- Hiroko Hasado, Sales/Skin Consultant, L'Occitane, Centennial, CO
With each treatment and skin care product recommendation, I used science to back up what I say. I have taken cosmetic chemistry classes and in-depth skin analysis/physiology classes, both with Florence Barrett Hill. I feel very confident using the science and latest research that really began with those classes. I am able to inform my clients why some products work better on them and why certain procedures will speed up the results that they are seeking.
- Susan Wright, Owner/Esthetician, Radiant Day Spa, Huntsville, AL
Well, for starters, I always use science along with my client education. Clients are more likely to listen and purchase products based on your information regarding peptides, lipids, hyaluronic acid and more. I also give them the science 101 about why these ingredients are important for fantastic skin. I provide why a particular ingredient may be important for that client. For instance, products that contain licorice are great for redness, slight sensitivities and can help rosacea clients with controlling the redness and irritation. This information gives you a backing with your clients and fosters a level of trust.
- Gregory Coltren, Head Esthetician, Syeni Salon & Spa, Apex, NC
I've always found that it's so important for me to understand the science myself, when it comes to making decisions about treatment selections and a home care routine. Our clients come to us because we are the skin experts. They trust us to understand exactly what makes these products and treatments work the way they do. So we have to continue to educate ourselves about the many new ingredients that surface in our industry, monthly. Also, we need to learn and continue to learn about the the scientific information that hopefully comes along when ordering a product line. If you really have it down to a science (pardon the pun!), then when you give your recommendations to your clients in a way that makes sense to them, they are going to be more than willing to purchase a treatment or product from you versus someone who didn't take the time to explain the science behind why products/treatments work. I know that my clients trust in my suggestions for treatments and products because I go through continuing education, I keep up with the latest advancements from books and magazines like this one. Understanding the science of both products and treatments, and sharing that information with clients will bring more sales, happier clients and a great feeling that you really are doing what's best for them.
- Sadie Ranov, Spa Director, North Scottsdale Medical Group, Phoenix, AZ