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Medical aesthetics defined

Navigating through the sea of options of the modern medi-spa

By now you have probably heard the term “medical aesthetics.” Though most of us are familiar with this term, many aestheticians are unaware of what a medical aesthetician does.

A medical aesthetician specializes in advanced skin treatments. They typically perform advanced facials, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, and various laser treatments such as laser hair removal, skin rejuvenation, and minor vascular treatments. Medical aestheticians may also assist physicians with cosmetic injectables such as Botox or dermal fillers.

Medical aesthetics is very much a growing trend. Clinical treatments are moving more mainstream as clients are looking for quicker results will little to no downtime. Many of these treatments are also very cost effective in comparison to plastic surgery.

It is important to acquire the appropriate training needed to be efficient and successful with these advanced skin treatments. Laser treatments require extensive knowledge of the skin and hair anatomy. In fact, constant training on new and emerging products and treatments should be required of all professionals working in medical aesthetics, as the technology and techniques can be exacting.

It is also necessary for you to obtain certification so that you or your employer can obtain proper insurance. Some medi-spa owners have staff training each other in-house and don’t realize their insurance many not cover an incident, should one arise.

Some treatments are particularly technical and require a well-trained expert to be effective and avoid safety issues. Chemical peeling, for example, requires extensive skin knowledge and the ability to recognize specific skin characteristics for an optimal outcome. It is important that you follow all manufacturer guidelines to avoid possible complications such as post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Many manufacturers will provide training themselves, to help you learn the specifics of their product line.

We are also seeing many “combo” treatments: microdermabrasion in conjunction with chemical peels or laser treatments, or dermal needling with clinical facials or chemical peels (not necessarily done at the same appointment). This is a great way to upsell your client and, in some cases, the best way to get maximum results.

On the business side of medical aesthetics, treatments such as chemical peels and laser hair removal have proven to be very lucrative. You can offer quick, effective treatments to your clients that can deliver immediate results that have a potential profit of up to 90 per cent.

The world of medical aesthetics is vast and growing and could be well worth your while to explore. Continue educating yourself. Education is an invaluable tool that will set you apart. As the saying goes, knowledge is power.

Stacey Johnson is the owner of Esthetics Plus, bringing you the latest trends, products, and education to keep your spa business up-to-date

Stacey Johnson

With close to 18 years of experience in the beauty industry, Esthetics Plus ( president and CEO Stacey Johnson purchased the company from its former owner. Since then, it has become one of the industry's most recognized and successful training and supply companies in Canada. Johnson also owns Derma Lounge Medispa & Laser Clinic in Edmonton, AB.

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