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 April 2012.

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 provide the best level of care for your ethnic skin care clients?

Do not use a chemical peel on them, only mechanical exfoliation. Educate yourself.
- Michaela Taylor, Esthetician, Olympus Spa, Lynnwood, WA
Keep educated all around for all skin types, not just the ones that come in to your spa most often. And keep a good range of products in your treatment room, and always provide a full skin read before every treatment because skin changes with weather, mood, nutrition, exercise level and age.
- Becca Zeis, Miss, Euphoria Day Spa, Genoa City, WI
By educating myself on the commonalities of their specific ethnic skin needs and abnormalities for a general overview and then examining their skin and working with them personally on their skin issues. It's all about each individual client as I am working with them. They may be a specific ethnicity but in reality it's only about them at that time.
- Brenda Griffin, Owner/Operator, Faces Plus, Tucson, AZ
My clients come to me for help, guidance and results. I provide this level of care through the core foundation of skin care therapy. Listen. Look. Touch. Ask. No matter what their skin type or ethnic background is, it is most important to listen to what your client's skin concerns are. You must look to observe as a professional what you're targeting; utilize mag and Wood's lamps and any other advanced skin screening systems to truly see the condition of the skin. Touch to get a better sense of what the client's subjective observation is and determine what your objective observation is. Asking questions is one of the most important steps in evaluating your client's skin. You must also inquire about their diet, lifestyle and medications to get a clear picture of the overall health of the skin. Our skin care concerns and needs are rooted inside and must be addressed here to correct or maintain what is reflected on the outside.
- Amanda Gudehus, Skin Care Therapist, Mia Enterprises, LLC, Scottsdale, AZ
Less is more! Hypopigmentation and keloids occur easily on ethnic skin. Sun protection is a must. Be gentle with ethnic skin.
- Barbara Wicklund, Owner, Cleopatra's Esthetics, Rockford, IL
I am learning all I can about the effect of peels on ethnic skin. Since darker skin hyperpigments differently by different peels from lighter skin types, this is, in my opinion, the most important thing we can do for our ethnic clients.
- Daniela Ferri, Owner/Esthetician, Daniela's Facial Studio, Chicago, IL
Really listen to your client... Also continuing education, stay on top of the reseach and new products in your field.
- Lisa Pagan, Owner/Esthetician, spa L, Vacaville , CA
I don't understand the question I am "ethnic" and have "ethnic" clients as well as those who are not defined as "ethnic". My skin care treatment or anyone else's has nothing to do with ethnicity. Skin is skin and it can be oily, dry, combination, sensitive, sun damaged, wrinkled, etc, and all skin care treatments should be customized for that skin type, not color. You wouldn't treat "ethnic" clients any different. Everyone should be provided the best level of care regardless of their skin color, type, or texture. We're all human beings! A true skin care specialist would know that.
- Shanna Burnett, Esthetician, Muriel's Bliss, Fort Mitchell, AL
Education in contraindications to ingredients! It's so important to be educated and be rehearsed in treating all Fitzpatrick skin types. If you understand the indications and contraindications for ingredients, you are able to utilize the critical thinking process and treat all of your clients appropriately. We have a results oriented business and would suffer greatly if we had to turn away clients because of lack of knowledge in their skin type. Listening to your client's input is also a great tool for treating clients as they are actually an expert at their skin care needs, even if they are treating their skin incorrectly and causing more problems, they are a great source of information when it comes to learning about their own personal skin. Always listen to what they have to say and ask questions to fill in any blanks you find during treatment. No matter what the skin type they walk in with, they are putting their trust in you as the professional, so make sure to always fill that roll with plenty of knowledge.
- Samantha Bastone, President, Luxi Skin Care, INC., Naperville , IL
Being an esthetician and a woman of color, I understand the care and understanding it takes when caring for ethnic skin clients. The most important thing is to never be aggressive with ethnic skin. I always find out what products my clients are using and what their main concerns are about their skin. For most of my ethnic skin clients the main concern is usually hyperpigmentation. I explain the importance of using the correct products and to always use sun protection. I give as much information as possible to help my clients achieve their skin care goals.
- Trina Johnson, Esthetician, BeautyNeverExpires, Riverside, CA
No matter what the ethnic background of each client, I treat them all the same: with utmost individual attention. I listen to their concerns, analyze their skin, identify their needs, personalize their facial treatments and customize their products. All skin is different, even with the same person from visit to visit, so each facial should be different. It's all about caring about your clients and getting to know them.
- Heather Owens, Master Esthetician, Body-Mind Unwind, Inc, Newport News, VA
Being an ethnic skin type myself (Fitzpatrick 4-5), I know the challeges that we ethnic woman have to deal with in terms of skin care. One of my best approaches is to first hear the concerns that the client has with their skin. After I have made a list concerns, I try to approach each concern separately. For example, dark circles around the eyes ... I would ask more indepth about sleep habits, current skin care regimens, trial of previous products, etc. My feeling is that a lot has to do with just understanding how your client feels about her current skin condition and how much she wants to change about it. I do believe in being conservative when it comes to using chemical peels on ethnic skin. Over all it is a challenge as we are dealing with skin that has plenty of melanin and so for any procedure the less aggresive approach is the best. I highly recomed attending the Skin Of Color Seminar lecture series that happen twice a year in NYC and Las Vegas. I loved my experience with them! Challenges and improvement in ethnic skin is the new frontier for the skin industry. Its exciting to be a part of it!
- Kavita Beri, Physician, Beri Esthetique, Ocean, NJ
The best way to provide excellent and top-level care for your ethnic skin care clients, is to make sure you educate yourself about ethnic skin. Make sure you know all the differences in ethnicity and also skin types. The best level of care for any client is to be educated, but also to "care" about your clients and truly do the best job you can.
- Dorothy Buitron, Esthetician, Venice Day Spa, Venice, FL
The first thing to be considered is the initial client consultation. A written, signed, and reviewed consultation form is your best insight into a persons lifestyle and their views, not only of their skin but of themselves. When a client seeks out an esthetician, she is seeking something. I want to contribute whatever I can to help them find it, and to address all of their skin care needs (face and body). Achieving quality skin care is the bonus. Once common ground established we move forward as to the type of treatment recommended for their skin type. I want their views, and I want them to feel comfortable with my services. By taking these steps, I can provide the best level of care for my ethnic skin care clients as well as the other clients.
- Thelma Carole Edwards, Owner/Esthetician, Edwards' Wellness & Skin Care Facility, Wilmington, DE
I think every client needs to be addressed as an individual. Certainly, climate and, environment may be indicative of what clients need to be in all ethnicities. Some clients suffer with acneic issue, and although ethnic skin if one was to categorize, tends to be thicker, and less sensitive, I feel it's always best to start off slowly. I lean toward keeping my clients in categories relating to what their skin needs, depending on climate and how their skin has been behaving, and/or reacting to their personal lifestyle.
- Christine Gotis, Esthetician/Massage Therapist, Self-employed, New York , NY
After the client consultation and assessing her needs, I would do a service that would not cause hyperpigmentation. The service would also be less aggressive but yet very effective. We should be very careful when addressing ethnic skin due to the amount of melanin some clients may or may not have.
- Sharon Walker, Owner, My Daughter's Secret, Lynwood, IL
I provide the best level of care for all clients by understanding the importance of Fitzpatrick skin typing and global heritage in choosing safe and effective skin care treatments. “Ethnic” skin generally refers to skin with a higher Fitzpatrick number, a "high sun, hot and humid” global heritage, increased sensitivity to active treatments and predisposition to hyperpigmentation. By doing a thorough client intake and consultation, taking a more conservative approach to ingredients and modalities to avoid aggravating skin issues rather than improving them, and providing education to the client at every step, I know that I am providing the best possible care to clients with ethnic skin.
- Sandra Landish, Esthetician, SkinFitness at Timberhill Athletic Club, Corvallis, OR
Education about ethnic skin and its resulting disorders is essential to providing competent treatments. Remember, the more melanin the skin has, the more sensitive your client will be. Using the appropriate products correctly will ensure success. Their are many products available, specifically for ethnic skin, and these products always provide up-to-date treatment education.
- Kathryn Pacelli, Owner/Master Esthetician, Sanctuary Day Spa, Sequim, WA
The same as every other client. You have to sit down with them and talk to them. Find out when they start seeing oil in their T-zone. Take a deeper look at their skin. Does it appear oily or dry? Or maybe mixed? Then find a product you think will work best and note it in there paperwork. Call them to find out how they are reacting to the product and make any notes on change you see with their skin.
- Rebekah Mitchell, Esthetician, Independent, Garden Prairie, IL
The first rule is never to pigeon-hole a person into a skin type, because they may have many different issues in different areas. Dark skin may still tan and thus needs sun protection. Dark skin can also look just fine until a good look reveals a lot of congestion underneath. Pigmentation, keloids and ashiness are outcomes that we don't want as a result of our exfoliations, extractions and under-moisturization. We can't forget that anyone can have sensitive skin, and if we keep all these factors in mind , we treat the skin, not the ethnicity.
- Susie Knight, Owner, Skin Care by Susie Knight, Leamington, Ontario
It is always a welcoming sight to have clients enter my esthetic space, and when they are a person with dark skin tones, I let them know they are wise to be here, receiveing the best care for their special skin. I put them into a comfort zone with a healthy, refreshing beverage and let them tell me about their skin; they, after all, have been with it longer than I. We discuss diet and hydration, and the importance of both. I let them know the steps we will take in the salon to refresh the skin and leave it glowing with beauty and health. At this time, I give them pause to change and enter the treatment room, and just breath in the relaxing atmosphere. As I enter the room, I begin with a cleansing and let them know why their skin is so special; it is sensitive to touch and products. I use products targeted to their skin type and depth of color, especially when exfoliating. I remove toxins, use steam and usually a hydrating facial mask. There are many options for product choices, but suffice to say, I usually use sensitive and dry skin targeted products. As the service continues, I discuss what I am doing to them and its importance, and the way they can maintain beautiful skin at home. I give a quiet pause during massage and any hair removal to let them experience these needed services their own way. After we wrap up, and meet in the lobby, I suggest needed take-home products that will help them maintain the monthly facial visit. I always suggest a quality moisturizer, with a complimenting skin tone SPF, as this is the most important daily-use cosmetic product. We plan our next date and say adeiu until we meet again. And this is how I provide my best level of care to my special ethnic clients.
- Mareyk Ryan, Owner, Catwalk Boutique, Portland, OR
By staying up-to-date with the latest skin care procedures and cosmeceuticals available for the treatment of the various skin care concerns that plague darker skins.
- Carla Lambooy, Clinical Esthetician , Mosaic Spa and Laser, Fort McMurray, AB
I start by first recognizing that people with ethnic skin have a higher trigger for inflammation, so during skin analysis, I look for hyperpigmentation. Ingredients, touch and gentle protocols work best when working with this delicate skin. Hyperpigmentation is usually on a deeper level with ethnic skin and understanding that this is their most concerning issue allows me to build effective treatments. Although ethnic skin has a higher natural protection from the sun, I strongly suggest to all my ethnic skin clients to be diligent with the use of broad-spectrum sun protection to shield against making hyperpigmentation worse.
- Nora Holloway, Esthetician, Glowing Solutions, Baltimore, MD
Do a thorough history, ask about her current skin care routine and products she uses. I also specifically ask about hair care products, as well as their menstrual cycle and horomonal and health issues. This gives me a great outline of how to best educate my clients regarding concerns with skin problems.
- Stacy Page, Master Esthetician, Stacy Page Aesthetics, Augusta, GA
With so many different types of skin out there, I find the best way for me is to deal with each person on a individual level. I ask loads of questions about their history with skin care, and what has and has not worked for them in the past. I also provide each of my clients with all risk involved with each procedure.
- Nyki Mace, Esthetician, The Papaya, Farmington, AR
I find out what their concerns are and what they would like to achieve. Many are concerned about uneven pigmentation and occasional breakouts. I give them a deep cleansing facial and a simple home care program to follow. I encourage them to use sunscreen diligently, use a gentle exfoliator with lactic acid and an antioxidant night cream with vitamin A and skin lightning ingredients. If their skin responds well, I have them come in for a series of weekly light peels with antioxidant treatments for four weeks on and then maintain it with monthly treatments.
- Teresa Villanueva, Esthetician/Massage Therapist, Pacific Skin Care, Eleele, HI
Skin of color has high levels of melanin: Asian, Africian-American, Latino. The first step is to knowing the uniqueness of darker skin. Establishing a skin care regimen based on their individual skin. Cleanser, toner, moisturiser, SPF, etc. Explain how essential tools can help fight anti-aging, such as microdermabrasion, peels and Botox to name a few. Care for this skin as sensitive skin and slowly ease them into services. Every race needs a prescription for beauty.
- Donna Longo, Owner, Bronze Beauties, Melbourne , FL
It all starts with your consultation. You must know all you can about your client before you start your treatment ... that is very important. Ethnic skin clients are more sensitive, and you need to be more careful. Always ask open-ended questions with your client during your consult.
- Colleen Scott, Instructor, Cosmetology & Spa Institute, Crystal Lake, IL
Very carefully. Skin of color is very sensitive and easily can create damage or create more hyperpigmentation. That is usually the battle for ethnic skin. Plus, acne can be an issue for African-Americans. I find that calicylic peels work well for both. And I can sometimes incorporate microdermabrasion on darker latin skin and get great results. Acne cleansers with salicylic also is a great daily routine for both problems.
- Vivian Gilkey, Medical Esthetician, Essenza MediSpa, Hanford, CA
I provide the same level of care as with all my clients, I just understand the differences. Ethnic skin is definitely different in all aspects of texture, tone and sensitivities. I definitely use my Wood's lamp, because the coloring can make it difficult to see any hyperpigmentation or congestion. Always make sure to question allergies, contraindications and medications. I also understand that the physiology and makeup of ethic skin is a little different and some products work a little different. I educate myself, so therefore, I can educate my clients
- Gregory Coltren, Head Esthetician, Syeni Salon & Spa, Apex, NC
As an African-American esthetician, I know much about the challenges with ethnic skin. Many of my clients fall into the "ethnic skin" category. There are many issues with uneven skin tone, dark spots and hyperpigmentation. I always take the gentle, but still effective approach, to treating these issues to avoid additional hyperpigmentation. The use of enzyme exfoliation treatments and a supportive home regimen with skin brighteners and melanin inhibitiors works well on the majority of my clients. I also recommend consistent daily use of sunscreen to protect the skin from sun damage. Many clients with ethnic skin don't realize that their skin is subject to sun damage, just as much as all other skin tones. Education plays a huge role in giving these clients the best level of care.
- Mailaka Udoro, Owner/Esthetician, Skin Deep Skincare & Makeup Studio, Sparks, MD
Doing a more detailed skin care analysis, and being sure to be mindful of products that may cause hyperpigmentation, with is usually one of the biggest concerns with ethnic skin.
- Joy Bell, Owner , Jb Persona , Allen, TX
Ethnic skin care clients, like all clients, have concerns that are specific to their skin care needs. The best care starts from a thorough consultation, listening to the client, understanding their concerns and desired outcome, communicating and explaining a treatment plan that addresses their concerns, managing realistic expectations and delivering positive results.
- Tiffany Hendren, Owner, Day Spa Confidential, Escondido, CA
Being an African-American licensed master esthetician in the state of Virginia, I take great interest in researching, examining and treating the different skin disorders that are more prone to affect ethnic skin types more than other ethnicities. I value taking part in continuing education opportunities geared towards ethnic skin to broaden my knowledge and research opportunities to better treat ethnic skin. Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation, vitiligo and ochronosis are just some of the few skin disorders that highly affect ethnic skin types. I am careful in my treatment and home care protocol recommendations to make sure that I make a thorough analysis of the skin, including performing a patch test and obtaining medical history prior to any advanced exfolation treatments on ethnic skin. These actions allow me to properly measure the sensitivity levels, to ensure safe and effective treatments to ethnic skin types without causing further trauma leading to damaged skin. Educating my clients on how to maintain the health of their skin at home beyond the treatment room is my main objective in caring for their skin.
- Tiffany Crews, Master Esthetician, Dermacare Laser & Skincare Clinic, Norfolk, VA
I advise my clients to stick with a simple and safe skin care routine. Cleanse your face daily — as little as once a day if it's dry, up to three times if your goal is to remove excess oil. Gentle treatment is key for any skin type — avoid abrasive cleansers or irritating cleansing puffs or loofahs. And use moisturizer only if your face feels dry without it. I ask them to let me help them pick the best products for their skin type. I also advise them to protect from skin cancer. Darker skin does provide some protection from the sun's UV rays, but don't count on it alone. Skin cancer is less common, but can be more deadly, in those with darker skin. Begin each day by applying a sunscreen or moisturizer with an SPF 15 to 30. And reapply sun protection often while you're in direct sunlight.
- Sandra Guenette, Owner, Spa One, Colorado Springs, CO
Depending on the ethnic type of the skin. first I will double check with the usual reaction and concern the client has on her skin and check what type of skin care products she used before. Then, to understand her skin type reactions, I will give her a basic skin care treatment and check her reactions and analyze her skin more deeply to check the most visible diffrences on her skin compared to a normal skin type. Then from there I will guide her on what type of facial she need and on her on the best products she can use in the market.
- Aynur Gedik, Teacher, MiraMar, Istanbul ,
In order to provide the best care for my ethnic skin clients, I listen to their skin concerns and the results they would like to achieve. I then provide them with a few options and thorough skin analysis, I inform them of the best treatments for their skin type and provide various top-quality products to address their skin issues. I also provide visible advertisements, ensuring them that I am well prepared and trustworthy.
- Trevor Diggs, CEO, Persephanie Cosmetics, Chicago, IL
When talent is mixed with passion, my work becomes a masterpiece. I treat every service as such.
- Dena Pagel, Esthetic Student, The Salon Professional Academy, Fargo, ND
One of the ways to provide the best level of care for ethnic skin is to use products that will suppress the melanocytes and to treat ethnic skin very carefully, in efforts to avoid any type of scarring.
- Angie Suarez, Manager, SimplyBe Salon & Spa, Palo Alto, CA
I recognize that there are different shades of ethnic skin. Ethnic skin, especially Asian and black, are the most sensitive skin types. I provide the best level of care for ethnic skin by doing my research, trying certain treatments myself and listening to my clients. By doing this, I'm able to use products that cater to all skin types. Because of constant education and experience I know what types of peels or more aggressive treatments can or can not be used on ethnic skin types. I am a medical esthetician with a Fitzpatrick of V and I am amazed how many estheticians don't know how to manage or treat ethnic skin types. Sometimes this is unavoidable because of demographics. Even when I was going to school to become an esthetician, I was teaching and talking about my skin and how certain products did well or didn't. I'm the only black esthetician in my city. I have a profound passion for skin care, and I have been able to build the trust of clients with ethnic skin types. I'm always looking for ways to keep up with how to manage and treat ethnic skin types.
- Tonya Fanning, Medical Esthetician, Ageless Zone Medpa & Salon, Reno, NV - Nevada
Appropriate moisturizers should be a must. Ethnic skin tends to appear ashy. Sunscreen is also really important .
- Karina Aranibar, Esthetician, Alamo Plaza Spa, San Antonio, TX
In order to give the best level of care to ethnic skin care clients, you need to first and foremost understand their skin and its unique anatomy. You must understand the differences betweeen each Fitzpatrick type and the different activities that take place on a cellular level. This way you can be confident that any treatments you perform will not exasterbate the very conditions for which they have sought your help to improve on. You must keep yourself educated and in the know on all the latest skin care trends, products, ingredients and procedures available today. Know all contraindications associated with products and procedures that may effect a certain Fitzpatrick type of your ethnic clients. With the devotion to proper education and research, you will understand that when dealing with ethnic skin care clients, your approach needs to be gentle when choosing treatments. When selecting home care regimens, it's best to use a lower percentage of active ingredients in synergies rather than one or two ingredients at higher levels. As an esthetician, it is also your responsibility to educate your clients on a level that they can understand and relate to. During a consultation, the client will explain their skin care concerns and their favored outcome after treatment. After a thorough skin analysis, you will offer your recommened treatment plan. At this time, it is impairative that your client understands that they must take the "no tanning" pledge and commit to using proper sun protection during treatment and every day thereafter. Once again, you are putting the safety of your clients first. I have found that offering the sun protection in the price of treatment works very well. Make sure that you are keeping very detailed records of each treatment. This information should include and current medications, allergies, current skin care products and the ones they used on treatment day as well as any reactions during your treatments or any treatments they may have recieved prior to receiving treatments with you. With meticulous charting of a client's skin care treatments you are able to give the best possible care by knowing in detail how every product and treatments has effected your clients skin. Ethnic skin care clients are typically very particular about who they choose as their esthetician. They often feel comfortable with someone who has a similar Fitzpatrick type. When you understand ethnic skin types and using a gentle approach, you can very easily give these clients their desired benefits and have a very loyal client for life.
- Jennifer Kelley, Owner/Esthetician, Skin Savvy Skin Studio, Lake in the Hills, IL
By understanding the sensitivities and common conditions of the skin of each ethnic group and offering proper treatment and home care regimens along with educating your clients about their specific skin type and conditions.
- Kayla Sleator, Esthetician, Opulence, Dickinson, ND
Educate them about their skin and use skin care products for ethnic skin.
- Nhu-Hai Nguyen, Esthetician , DeepOcean, Stone Mountain, GA
Because ethnic skin can develop lighter and darker pigmentation (hyper- and hypo-pigmentation), it is extremely important to address these situations. I would consult with the client and then find out what they are trying to achieve in their services. Depending upon the severity of the pigmentation issues, I would recommend either microdermabrasion or chemical peels along with the facial. I would make sure the client took home the proper skin care treatments. I would follow up with calls during the product use and treatment time in order to make sure the client is achieving the results they were intending.
- Gloria Spraguer, Esthetician, Millennium Salon and Spa, Pocono Lake , PA
The best care I can provide to ethnic skin care clients is through a thorough consultation and education. Determining the right Fitzpatrick is paramount in developing any kind of skin care regimen as well as choosing the right treatment or products. We also need to familiarize ourselves with the Lancer Chart, which is broken down by nationality. Our country is becoming a melting pot of colors due to the blending of ethnicities. We as estheticians need to broaden our scope to become educated about different ethnicities and cultures in order to be able to meet the needs of these clients. Even among ethnicities, skin tones can vary and should be treated with care.
- Margaret LaPierre, Master Esthetician, Skin Therapy of Virginia, Richmond, VA
Examine the condition of the skin; deep pore cleanse; treat with exfoliants to diminish dead skin cells a d reduce shine; nourish with serums/masks; use a regimen based upon analysis using nonirritating products that rebuild the skin barrier.
- Kendra Ciardiello, Sales, Epionce, Santa Rosa, CA
By being mindful of the potential risks that this type of client may present and by trying to meet the challenges each ethnicity has
- Lisa Bucci, Esthetician, Brinton Lake Dermatology, Glen Mills, PA
My first response would be: skin is skin. However, I know that with the diverseness in ethnicities, there are inherent skin differences. Probably one of the greater concerns would be hyperpigmentation. Having said that, here is the rub: Our culture is so integrated now that many have a varied mix of ethnicity. So you must talk with your clients first. Try to learn from them if they have experienced any hereditary skin problems. Secondly, you must observe their skin. Is there scarring from previous acne or other injury to the skin? Ask questions. Once you have done your Sherlock Holmes investigation regarding their skin, then you can let them relax and enjoy their facial treatment.
- Debra Hunter, Owner/Esthetician, SKINplexions, Fresno, CA
To provide the best level of care for all my clients, I continue my skin care education. I read Skin Inc., and I take extra classes often. It's very important for estheticians to stay updated!
- Jennifer Wight, Skin Therapist, Ulta, Fullerton, CA
I like to ask my clients a few questions first. For instance, "What are your concerns and desires for your skin and skin care treatment with me today?" "What are you using for your skin care at home?" What are you doing morning and evening for your skin?" I also ask about diet and hydration (water). As I hope, we all know that your skin reflects what is going on inside our bodies. It's just as important what we put in our bodies as what we put on them. I like to educate my clients on all of that so not to assume they know. As far as ethnic skin goes, its not all created equal. Some is related closer to the olive skin and others are very dark. I find that generally ethnic skin is more sensitive. I then start assessing their skin, looking for oil production and asking them more questions, such as: "After cleansing your face, how long does it take to feel oily?" if they are dehydrated, areas of sun damage and so on. I love chemical peels for the amazing results that you can achieve with them. I always start out with the lowest progressive chemical peels for their skin needs. Not cookie cutter by any means. That's what makes it fun! I customize the whole treatment toward their needs and wants. Then at the end of it all, don't forget home care! I go through what professional products are good for their needs and wants. I never want to bombard or pressure anyone. Comfort is key. So I start out small with product and let them know what the future holds for their home care and skin care treatments with me after they try the product out. I write down a list of the products and product protocol. I suggest they call me with any questions or concerns and send them on their merry way after re-booking.
- Jessica Peterson, Esthetician, Skin Deep, Dixon, IL
I try to educate myself at every opportunity on the differences between the different ethnicities, and that each type of skin must be treated accordingly. What I find is there is so much I don't know and so much more I need to. I can never learn enough.
- Angela Young, Owner/Esthetician/RN, Fabulous Faces Esthetics, Inc., Lake City, FL
The common assumption is that dark and black skin is resilient and tough, when clearly, the opposite is true. While ethnic skin types are considered oilier and thicker, they can be fragile. Reactions are hard to see on darker skin. Skin of color is prone to acne, keloids, hyperkeratosis, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Dark skin still needs protection from sun damage On the positive side, some folks with ethnic skin do not age as quickly since there is more melanin for added sun protection (it is well known that sun is our main culprit in aging and skin cancer). We all need individualized skin care treatments; just remember, the sensitivities that skin of color possesses and treat it accordingly, following an indepth consultation.
- Kathleen Jones, Esthetician, Jonsies, Three Rivers, MI
As an esthetician previously working as a prestige consultant/makeup artist for Ulta Beauty stores, I provided the best level of care for my ethnic skin care clients by lending a compassionate ear and working from the skin health level outward. Excessive oiliness, dryness, acne scarring and hyperpigmentation are of primary concern for darker skin types, and providing targeted products for these conditions gains trust. Next, being diligent (and sometimes creative!) about precise color matching for concealors and foundation, along with formulation preferences (cream vs. mineral) makes these clients want to return again and again.
- Jennifer Schultz, Esthetician, SkinSolutions Dermatology, Ames, Iowa