Advice for Therapists and Nurses Looking to Carve a Career in Aesthetics
Aesthetic Career Options For Beauty Therapists
As a Clinic Co-Ordinator you will be responsible for managing diaries for practitioners and Doctors/Nurses, answering the telephone and taking payments. You will be the first point of contact to anyone who enters the medispa, you will also be the first person that clients will ask for advice from, either in person before any treatments or on the phone possible after treatments. You will need to have passion about the products and treatments that your clinic provide and be able to deal with clients who may have had reactions or are unhappy with the service provided in the first instance. A flare for sales will also go down well in this role as mentioned before you will be the first person a client sees and will ask for recommendations and advice from you. In some clinics you may also be needed to take initial consultations, this means finding out what goals a client has and providing a treatment programme or plan for them before handing them over to a Practitioner for treatment.
This role is the closest role you will have to when you were doing beauty. You will be providing different treatments to clients inline with company guidelines. Every clinic and business use different products and machines however the main treatments you will be doing are; Laser/IPL Hair Removal and/or Skin Rejuvenation, Skin Peels (most probably a variety ranging from mild to strong), Microdermabrasion, Dermaroller, Advanced Electrolysis, Electrolysis (quite old fashioned but some clinics do still provide this treatment) and most importantly initial consultations. You will be given monthly targets to hit for treatment and retail sales so it would be beneficial if you do have some retailing experience.
Brand Representative/Business Development Manager
As well as working within a clinic performing your treatments you could also work for the product companies as a Brand Representative/Business Development Manager. This would mean you traveling around to clinics who stock your products to ensure that they are happy with what they are selling. You are also there to answer any queries they might have about the treatments and possibly to train them in the products.
Aesthetic Career Opportunities for Nurses
Aesthetic Nurse/Medical Practitioner
As an Aesthetic Nurse/Medical Practitioner you will be performing treatments from Skin Peels and IPL/Laser to injectables such as Dermal Fillers and Anti Wrinkle Injections. As a nurse certain treatments you provide may be priced at a slightly higher rate due to your medical training, this is always the case for treatments such as Dermaroller. If you have not already done so on your own a company may ask you complete a Nurse Prescriber course which will allow you to prescribe Anti Wrinkle Injections. Depending on the clinic and company you may only be administering Injectable treatments however this will all depend on the clinic.
There are many rules and regulations in place to protect patients when having aesthetic treatments. As a Medical Director you will work with the team in clinic or the company to ensure standards, guidelines and protocols are followed and maintained. You may also be asked to provide medical advice to non medical trained staff if needed.
The Lead Nurse role includes all those duties of an Aesthetic Nurse, however you may also be responsible for teaching injectable treatments to new recruits in a company specific way and ensuring that treatments are up to the company’s standard. You will be responsible for the training of medically trained staff including organising and signing off individuals.
Who to approach?
There are also a lot of different organisations who offer aesthetic treatments from beauty salons with an injectable clinic once a month to medispas offering every aesthetic treatment you can imagine. The most popular type of organisation is a MediSpa or Clinic. These are places that offer only aesthetic treatments so on the treatment menu. You may find; Laser/IPL Hair Removal and/or Skin Rejuvenation, Skin Peels, Dermaroller, Anti Wrinkle Treatments, Fillers, Advanced Electrolysis and Cellulite Treatments to name a few. More and more beauty salons are also starting to offer more medically focused treatments so do not rule Beauty Salons out all together, check out their website and see if they offer aesthetic treatments, they may be looking for someone to be their ‘Laser Specialist’ and this could be you.
Job websites such as Hair and Beauty Jobs are great ways to find aesthetic jobs near you with current vacancies. Once you have found a job, do some research of your own about the company, look at their website and see what treatments they provide. If you have found a perfect job for a company you would like to work for but there a currently no vacancies or it is in the wrong area send them your CV anyway as they will probably keep it on file and contact you when a position does become available.
On the Application & in the Interview.
Some businesses will require you to complete an application form with set questions, others will just want a CV. Most jobs will most probably involve having an informal conversation with the head of recruitment or HR, an interview with the Clinic Manager and in some big companies you may also be asked to attend a second interview with the Regional Manager. I have listed some of the things that would be beneficial for application forms, CV’s and in the interview. Some of these things will be easier to portray in the face to face interview.
- Explain why you want to move into aesthetics.
"You are a fantastic nurse or beauty therapist...so why do you want to move into the aesthetic industry?"
This is one of the most popular questions on application forms and in job interviews. This is where you will be able to show how enthusiastic you are about joining the industry. Do your research and find out exactly why that is. Aesthetics is an ever growing industry, there are always exciting new developments and treatments launching..who wouldn’t want to be part of that?
- Able to demonstrate that you can manage clients expectations.
A lot of clients expect miracles from aesthetic treatments for example that after laser hair removal every single hair will never ever come back again. You need to be able to manage these client expectations and convey this ability to your prospective employer as well as you can on your CV or an application form get this across.
This is key in any aesthetic job role. You need to show that you can be confident to use and perform the treatments that are provided by the clinic. Clients will be coming to the clinic quite nervous before treatments, you need to show in your interview that you are confident to show clients that you know what you are doing and what you are talking about.
Beneficial Treatment/Training Courses
For Beauty Therapists there is an additional VTCT Level 4 Qualification in Laser and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Treatments. This course takes you through the following;
- Management of health, safety and security in the salon
- Client care and communication in beauty-related industries
- Laser and light treatments for hair removal
- Laser and light treatments for skin rejuvenation
COURSE KEY FACTS:
- Laser core of knowledge
- Understanding Laser and IPL
- Differences between Laser hair removal methods and IPL
- Anatomy of the skin and hair (revision)
- Practical workshops including full client consultation
- Points to consider when buying a laser machine
- Sales and marketing
- Training in small groups up to 6 students
Anatomy of skin and hair, health and safety, laser cleaning and maintenance, sales and marketing of laser treatments, client consultation, Fitzpatrick skin typing, contra-indications, patch testing practice
Hair removal practical workshop:
- legs, back, arms, underarms, bikini line, Brazilian/Hollywood and facial areas.
Skin rejuvenation practical workshop:
- Anti-aging: working on fine lines forage reduction
- Pigmentation (age spots): working on discoloration by evening the pigmentation of the skin
- Capillary damage: reduction of superficial telangiectasia, spider naevi and Campbell De Morgan spots (blood spots)
- Improving in the appearance of the photo-aged skin (sun-damaged)
This would be beneficial however at the moment you do not have to have this qualification. Every clinic uses different lasers and IPL machines which may work slightly differently so even if you do have this you will still be required to attend the traing that is provided by the company. Aesthetic clinics can also provide you with Laser Core of Knowledge and you will be given time to practice before you start treating actual clients.
For Nurses I would highly recommend attending some courses on Dermal Fillers, Anti Wrinkle Injections and Chemical Peels. This will give you an understanding of all the treatments and how to get the best results. Most courses are only one day however they will give you the back ground knowledge you need. Below is an example of what the courses might entail;
Basic Anti Wrinkle (Botox) & Dermal Filler Injections: For medical practitioners who have had no prior experience of using botox
- Neurotoxin pharmacology
- Consultation process and legal aspects
- Dilution and storage
- Muscular anatomy
- Injection technique
- Complications & Corrections
- Practical training on live models
- Q & A
- HA Dermal Fillers - background and usage
- A & P, Ageing process & skin health
- Injection technique
- Contraindications & cautions
- Expectations, complaints & trouble shooting
- Practical demonstration
- Practical training on live models
There are also courses available for Chemical Peels, Dermaroller and Laser Training. These are available all over the UK so you should be able to find one near you.
The company you go to work for will probably also provide you with their training programme however it is essential that you have the foundations for this. Everybody is very aware of who and what is being injected into their skin so the more training and experience you can get the better off you will be.