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13 Things All Estheticians Must Know

There's always more to be learned when it comes to professional skincare. In this week's post, courtesy of Lydia Safarti, esthetician, entrepreneur, owner of the prestigious Repechage skincare line and Chairman of CIDESCO Section U.S.A, the world's major international beauty therapy association, we take a look at 13 important things every successful esthetician should know (and do!).

1. A consultation form is key.

Perhaps the most important part of a consultation is learning what allergies or sensitivities your clients may have to certain ingredients.  Take an extra 5 or 10 minutes to give them a consultation form and take note before you begin a treatment or recommend any product.  Determining your client’s daily routine is also essential. If your client is using an aggressive exfoliator or scrub every day, or not using an SPF daily, this can impact the type of treatment you will perform.

2. Always ask this question: “What are your concerns with your skin?”

Finding out your clients’ routine and sensitivities are important, but listening to them talk about their skin concerns will offer you a window into why they’ve decided to visit you. Listen closely and provide a treatment that offers visible results for the concerns they have.

3. Don’t be afraid to give your professional retail recommendations.

This is something that many estheticians shy away from, but it should not be overlooked. Providing clients with professional retail recommendations is the most important part of your service. In addition to monthly visits to the spa, beautiful skin is achieved by taking care of it two times per day with a proper at-home skin care regimen.

4. Use your time wisely.

Take advantage of all the time you have with a client. Don’t leave the room to check your cell phone while a mask is on – use this opportunity to offer a hand massage or foot massage. If you are performing a depilation use this as an opportunity to offer product recommendations to help prevent ingrown hairs or discuss other professional services you offer. Be friendly, knowledgeable, and communicate with your clients while in their presence.

5. Social media is your friend.

Use social media to your advantage! If your clients are happy with their services, always ask them to  follow you on social media and encourage them to spread the word with their friends.  Offer them a complimentary upgrade service for their courtesy. You can also post your work on social media to help build up your clientele base. If your clients can’t pull themselves away from the phone while you’re doing a treatment, tell them to get on Facebook or Instagram Live and show the treatment they’re getting!

6. Embrace the idea of “Gift With Purchase.”

Rather than discounting your products or services, an effective promotional strategy I find is offering clients a gift with purchase, or purchase with purchase. A gift with purchase will begin to get them into the mindset of developing a retail relationship with you, and the gift allows them to try new products they may have otherwise not considered purchasing.

7. Always keep a sanitary environment.

This is perhaps the most important aspect of creating and sustaining a thriving business. Always practice sanitary habits in your treatment rooms. Use an autoclave for sterilization of all tools, do not double dip during depilation and remember to perform a proper clean up before and after services. Sanitation impacts your customer retention and credibility as a spa business.

8. Learn the art of the customized treatments.

Offer clients customized facials to address their multiple concerns.  Multi-masking, the technique of applying different masks to different affected areas on the face to provide a targeted treatment, is one way to offer a customized treatment.  Other ways include giving a longer massage or adding in essential oils to the treatment creams.  Your client’s will appreciate the couture service and your ability to address their various needs.

9. Always offer upgrades.

Give clients a taste of other services by offering upgrades or add ons. During a treatment, enlighten them about other treatments on your menu that will complement their current service. This is a great way to help build business and expose clients to treatments beyond their regular services.

10. Sell a series of treatments.

If you see clients are expecting dramatic results overnight, enlighten them about the benefits and effectiveness of booking a series of treatments. The long-term results will astound them and can help convert them into loyal clients.

11.Don’t forget the décolletage.

The décolletage is the delicate skin of the neck and chest and is frequently overlooked. Why? After your face, it is the most visible and exposed skin on your body that shows the signs of aging, and thus deserves proper treatment. With the facials you perform, also consider treating the décolletage area.

12.Consider a referral program.

Start a referral program to expand your clientele while at the same time doing something nice for current clients. Your clients will appreciate the extra perks you offer them and can plan spa visits with their friends and family. It’s a win for your clients and a win for your business.

13. Never stop educating yourself.

As I mentioned in the beginning, our industry is constantly evolving. It’s your duty as estheticians to keep current with what’s happening and take advantage of educational opportunities offered to you. Attend tradeshows and take part in classes offered, participate in webinars,, and look for post-graduate skin care classes. Education and knowledge is vital to your career and growth in the spa industry.


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