Home » Aesthetician
Healthcare, Medical & Pharmaceuticals

Aesthetician

For those interested in working in the skin care industry one might be surprised to discover there are a number of career paths to follow. In fact, there are two types of skin care specialists including the position of Aesthetician and the Esthetician. The two positions are quite similar in terms of responsibility, duties, and training, and both positions require that you become a licensed professional in order to practice the different skin care modalities available. However, there is a significant different between the role of an Aesthetician and the job duties of the Esthetician which needs to be immediately identified if we are to explore the answer to questions like “what is an Aesthetician,” and “what does an Aesthetician do?”  This article will primarily focus on the duties of the Medical Aesthetician, but may also mention the standard Esthetician’s responsibilities and skills to offer a contrast between the two jobs.

What does Aesthetician do?

A quick examination of the dissimilarities between the trained Aesthetician and the Esthetician helps in clarifying the Aesthetician job description immediately. The trained Esthetician and Aesthetician both master methods of healthy skin cleansing and care, but the Aesthetician is one who works in a medical environment, setting, or facility, while the Esthetician is one who works in salons and spas or dedicated skin care facilities. An Aesthetician must retain the necessary education and training as defined by the state in which one resides in and any other existing national standard or legal guidelines associated with the job. This career path requires the professional gain a license in order work with patients. Once a license is earned, the trained Aesthetician demonstrates the knowledge needed to deal with skin treatments like microdermabrasion, facial peels, skin peels, and basic skin care.

An Aesthetician often works closely with a physician and any of the findings they discover during a patient’s skin care treatment is provided to the physician. The same skin care professional might consult with a doctor about the appropriate care for a patient’s skin condition. The Aesthetician is one who will also document a patient’s treatment and keep records for future reference. The records are likely stored in a computer database so some knowledge of computer technology will be required.

Who is Aesthetician?

Along with a qualified license, the individual who wants to work in the skincare industry as an Aesthetician will likely have to gain at least a year’s work in a relevant field: This might occur during an internship opportunity or even through hands-on training in a medical facility under the supervision of medical professionals. Since the Aesthetician is one who works with people all day long, excellent communication skills are not only essential, they are a chief skill needed in order the for the skin care provider to prove successful on the job. The individual needs to have a welcoming personality and amiable attitude in order to make a success out of a career as a trained Aesthetician. At the same time, Aestheticians must stay on top of the latest products in the industry, and are required to retain knowledge about skin creams, lotions, and how to care for a wide range of skin conditions, diseases, disorders, and treatment modalities.

Aesthetician Job Description

An Aesthetician often works closely with a physician and any of the findings they discover during a patient’s skin care treatment is provided to the physician. The same skin care professional might consult with a doctor about the appropriate care for a patient’s skin condition. The Aesthetician is one who will also document a patient’s treatment and keep records for future reference. The records are likely stored in a computer database so some knowledge of computer technology will be required.

Along with a qualified license, the individual who wants to work in the skin care industry as an Aesthetician will likely have to gain at least a year’s work in a relevant field: This might occur during an internship opportunity or even through hands-on training in a medical facility under the supervision of medical professionals. Since the Aesthetician is one who works with people all day long, excellent communication skills are not only essential, they are a chief skill needed in order the for the skin care provider to prove successful on the job. The individual needs to have a welcoming personality and amiable attitude in order to make a success out of a career as a trained Aesthetician. At the same time, Aestheticians have to stay on top of the latest products in the industry, and are required to retain knowledge about skin creams, lotions, and how to care for a wide range of skin conditions, diseases, disorders, and treatment modalities.

Aesthetician Duties and Tasks

  • To keep all skin care equipment clean, stored, and sanitized before and after use.
  • To keep the work area organized and the equipment stored on or in it clean and sterile.
  • To talk to, examine, and recommend treatments to patients.
  • To implement different skin care treatment modalities as required based on condition.
  • To choose the appropriate cosmetic treatments, lotions, creams, tonics, and alternative products to treat a patient.
  • To store patient records for future evaluation and re-evaluation.
  • To make patient referrals to professional physicians when required.
  • Helping people improve the condition and appearance of the skin.
  • Applying peels, chemicals, masks, and other skin treatments meant to cleanse and improve its appearance.
  • Offering demonstration of product use, proper skin care, and offering of product recommendations, treatment plans, and what to use for specific skin pigmentations and issues.

 Skills Required

  • laser treatments
  • laser hair removal
  • skin care modalities
  • equipment sterilization techniques
  • Use of special equipment for examinations and treatment including visors and magnifying head lamps
  • Knowledge on cleaning skin with lotions, creams, and water
  • Knowledge for product selection
  • Blackhead extraction
  • Knowledge of industry trends and current research
  • Application of masks and peels.
  • body massage/facial massage
  • Age spot and fine line reduction via chemical peels
  • preoperative and postoperative skin care procedures and methods

Working Conditions

Aestheticians are likely to work under different titles like Spa Technician, Skin Care Therapist, Skin Care Technician, Skin Care Specialist, Medical Esthetician, Lead Esthetician, Facialist, Esthetician, Clinical Esthetician, and Aesthetician. The role of Aesthetician is usually a full-time when they have a role working in a clinic setting. Medical licensed Aestheticians work in a physician’s office or in a hospital environment, but they can also work in department stores, salons, and spas while working in the capacity of an Esthetician too. Usually however, the hospital environment is the preferred location to work as the individual is trained to help people who have had medical procedures performed to help improve their appearance or skin condition. The Medical Aestheticians often work with patients who have undergone radiation treatments or chemotherapy since the skin suffers some damage during such treatments. The Aestheticians with medical licensing are also apt to work with burn victims in a burn unit in a hospital setting. Some professional Aestheticians also offer services to those who have undergone plastic surgery procedures.

Aesthetician Salary

The Aesthetician salary varies based on experience. The national average is about $35,000.00 a year, and those who enter the career at an entry level make about 7% less than the national average. Those professionals who meet the mark of mid-career (around five to nine years in the field), have annual salaries that equal about 9% more than the national average salary. When the Aesthetician enters into the experienced sector, roughly 10 to 20 years in the field, the salary increases to about 27% of the annual salary. The professional Aesthetician working in the medical clinics, doctors’ offices, and hospital settings end up seeing a decent increase in salary up to 20 years in the field, but after 20 years of working there is a big drop in yearly salary – this may be due to fewer hours working in the field and reduction to part time work. After 20 years of experience, the Aesthetician makes about $38,000.00 on average, which is just about a $1000.00 more per year than those who start receiving $37,000.00 a year at mid-career level.

How Much do Aestheticians Make?

The question of how much do Aestheticians make varies depending on experience. The average hourly pay works out to be about $16.08 an hour and will continue to increase has high as $25.68 per hour. Some professionals receive hourly tips up to about $5.21 an hour. Overtime pay works out to be about $29.80 and there is the possibility of making about $4,793.00 a year in bonuses and/or up to $11,500 in commissions. Ultimately, the total pay for the medically licensed Aesthetician ranges between $21,151.00 and $55,087. The latter figure includes the base yearly salary or hourly wages on earns along with tips, commissions profit sharing, overtime pay, and cash earnings of any kind that one might make working in this type of position. It does not include retirement benefits, non-cash compensation like the medical benefits and healthcare one might receive, or equity like stock.

Entry-LevelMid-CareerExperienced
$32,000.00$37,000.00$45,000.00

  Aesthetician Employment

It should be noted that these figures also include not just the Aesthetician career path but also the role of Esthetician as well, so it does not paint a flawless or precise understanding of the Aesthetician position and how many people filled such a role during a specific time. The figures below should be viewed as an estimate only. In 2010 there were 30,230 skin care specialist positions, and one year later this increased to 31,450, thereby demonstrating an increase of 1220 jobs available in a single year. From 2011, when there was 31,450 jobs available a small increase occurs in 2012 of 360 more jobs up to $31,810. In 2013 there is a decline in job availability, however, as positions dropped a bit to 33,680, and then another decline presents itself in 2014 to 38,290 jobs. The decline in jobs does demonstrate serious competition for job openings in the field.

Year20102011201220132014
Jobs30,23031,45031,81033,68038,290

Of those in the industry working in the role of a professionally licensed Aesthetician, about 7% have been working in the field for less than a year. Of those who have one to four years of experience is a group size of about 35%. The Aestheticians who have five to nine years of experience include a group size of about 25%, and of those with 10 to 19 years of on the job experience is a group size of about 21%. Of those who have 20 years or more of experience is a group size of about 13%. Those who are working in the field that have medical insurance include about 39% of actively working Aestheticians. About 32% of Aestheticians have dental coverage. Another 16% report having vision coverage, but the largest group, as much as 59% of working Aestheticians report having no insurance at all.

Gender Distribution

There is a huge gender gap when it comes to men versus women in the skin care field, and this can be due to stereotypical understandings about how women are more beauty product oriented, and how society might otherwise view men working in the beauty field (which is a similar issue male nurses once faced, but which is a career choice that is growing far more acceptance and appreciation). Women who own their own business might only hire other women thinking men lack the knowledge or understanding of what women need when getting skin care treatments and examinations. Likewise, men often go for high paying jobs, academic careers leading to science or math oriented career paths, and this leaves the door wide open for women to take full advantage of the Aestheticians field and other beauty/skin care related fields. The differences in the fields that interest women and men will explain about 30% of a gender gap issue. One will find that in the Aestheticians field females will likely make 20% less than men working in a field that favors them.

MaleFemale
1%99%

How to Become an Aesthetician?

When asking how to become an Aesthetician, you will find there are several steps involved in launching a career path in this field. First, you will need to take up a field of study in cosmetology, esthetics, or Aesthetics, and the program you join must be approved by the state you reside in: Licensing is expected in all 50 states. You do not need experience to begin studying to become a licensed Aesthetician. The job does require quite a bit of on your feet stamina and superior customer service skills. Many students pursue study by entering a state approved cosmetology program that integrates skin care into the curriculum. Some pursue an associate degree, and there are also certificate programs available for completion. Either type of program will combine hands on work and lectures as well as lab work.

Students looking to excel in this career need to develop customer service skills and communication skills to excel. Students are encouraged to use free time to do some practice runs of skin care procedures, and some schools allow students to gain hands on experience with real customers while under the supervision of a licensed professional.

Aesthetician Education Requirements

The licensing of a student involves passing a set state exam given only after completing the number of hours required in a training program. The state exam will include a practical section and a written portion. Ongoing education to maintain one’s licenses is expected as well especially if one is interested in license renewal. What the specific requirements are will differ from one state to another. Aestheticians who want to make advancements in the field will do well to master every aspect of the Aesthetician’s field.

Aesthetician Education Requirements are decided by each individual state and, in most instances, the cosmetology board within the state regulating such programs. Before earning a license, the student must gain the state approved training typically supplied by a cosmetology course. Some students can begin this pursuit in High School when such programs are offered. In the program, they will study skin conditions, nail conditions, hair dying techniques and hair cutting methods. Hands on applications will allow the student to, at first, use a mannequin head to practice styling hair, washing and shampooing, and eventual cutting of the hair. Skin care modalities are also included in the program, and these programs typically consist of at least 600 hours of both practical and technical instruction in some states. There are other states that require 350 hours to be completed and in others, as many as 1500 hours are expected. The cosmetology boards in every state will have information on the training hours one must fulfil and any other licensure obtaining guidelines to which the student must adhere.

An alternative means of entering this career path includes the option of an apprenticeship program, although temporary licensing is necessary to participate in such a program. This type of program is excellent for allowing the student to gain the hands-on experience one needs in the Aesthetics field. Again, licensing requires a written exam and a practical portion of the test is performed in which the student is given the chance to demonstrate the skills they have mastered while studying cosmetology and/or skin care modalities. There are some students that must do a full study in an approved cosmetology program and their student must then be followed with the completion of a year-long apprenticeship. The individual who pursues this career path needs to be willing to continue to keep current on the newest trends and product availability. Many Associations for Aestheticians offer post-licensure education and training that focuses on specific skin care modalities and product use.

Aesthetician Colleges

Aesthetician colleges or facilities include early learning opportunities in high schools offering cosmetology programs. If the student must pursue the career outside of high school, there are state approved programs and apprenticeships one can participate in; requirements vary from one state to another so the student must do a bit of footwork to determine what requirements must be met to become a licensed Aesthetician. Below are ten leading locations in the United States where students can pursue an education in cosmetology and skin care modalities.

  1. Westside Tech, 955 E Story Rd, Winter Garden, FL
  2. Penn Foster High School, 925 Oak Street, Scranton, PA
  3. West Tennessee Business College, 1186 US-45 BYP, Jackson, TN
  4. West Georgia Technical College, 1302 Orchard Hill Rd., LaGrange, GA
  5. West Academy of Salon and Spa, 520 San Ramon Valley Blvd, Danville, CA 94526
  6. Victoria’s Academy of Cosmetology, 23 W 1st Ave, Kennewick, WA 99336
  7. VICI Aveda Institute, 233 Spring St, New York, NY
  8. University of Spa & Cosmetology Arts, 2913 W White Oaks Dr, Springfield, IL
  9. Wiregrass Georgia Technical College, 4089 Val Tech Rd, Valdosta, GA
  10. Universal Career School, 10760 W Flagler St #5, Miami, FL

Major Subjects

Skin care methods, physiology, and anatomy. If cosmetology is pursued then the individual may also learn about hair coloring methods, styling, and nail care as well as cosmetic application. Good electives to undertake include communications, writing, speaking, and listening courses as well as public speaking. Students will learn about skin treatments, cleanses, massages, waxing, and facials as well as chemical peels. To become a Master Aesthetician one will be required to complete additional training and this training may consist of as many as 600 additional hours of study and training in advanced skin care modalities. The advanced studies one pursues will involve learning the latest anti-aging treatment methods, lymph drainage, chemical exfoliation, microdermabrasion, physiology and anatomical structure. As the professional, licensed Aesthetician continues in the profession and remains active, whether the individual has a standard or masters understanding of the field, continuing education is required to renew licensing. Advanced studies for license renewal include the study of laser treatments, chemical peels, and attending conferences or available workshops.

Aesthetician Specializations

 Aestheticians can specialize in offering specific skin care treatments or helping patients. For example, a student can undertake study to specialize in Oncology skin care which allows the individual to treat and help cancer patients. Some of the techniques the student might then offer to a patient is the help in choosing products, moisturizers, and sunscreens for their skin that helps in improving/protecting the skin following radiation and chemotherapy treatments. Advanced skin care modalities will likely involve lymphatic drainage and detoxification. Since certain medical treatments can harm the skin and diminish the nutrients the skin needs to repair and rejuvenate itself, the job of the Medical Aesthetician is to then help in replacing the diminished nutrients to lend in the repair of one’s skin. In kind, the Aesthetician can help the patient gain greater self-esteem and to have a better self-image, which is an excellent contribution to the patient’s healing and well-being overall.

 The certification for oncology skin care can be completed through online programs offered by approved programs. Such programs are open to licensed nurses and Estheticians and Aesthetician. Completion of the program and requirements depending on the state one resides in at the time the courses are taken. Such programs might include the study of cellar growth, both normal and abnormal, and the study of the integumental and immune systems in oncology patients as well as the role of such symptoms in the patient’s immediate and long-term well-being and health. The student may study the types of cancer medications offered to patients and the effects the medications have on one’s skin conditions. Students will learn how to offer skin care evaluations, analysis of skin conditions, and methods of patient consultation. Additional topics of study will likely include products to avoid when treating patients, product ingredients and their effects, safety when treating cancer patients, skin restoration, detoxification, and important post-oncology protocols.

Professional Associations of Aesthetician

There are several professional organizations available to the Aesthetician, all of which can help the individual network, continue their education, and advance their careers. Groups like the Associated Skin Care Professionals and the Aesthetics International Association (AIA) are just two organizations available that can help in advancing the career of a qualified Aestheticians. As for the AIA, the organization was established in the early 1970s and is the first organization to cater to the needs of professional aesthetics. It took only a couple of years for the group to go worldwide once a chapter was launched in South America, Asia, and Europe. In the 1980s, the organization’s mission was to improve education standards and to increase the level of public awareness about the profession. The group has a major impact on the development of separate and special licensing for the aesthetic position and the group is also responsible for offering training to thousands of professional aestheticians all over the world. They continue to offer symposiums, conferences, workshops, classes, and special educational events.

Famous Aestheticians

 Among the list of famous Aestheticians is Erica Miller, who studied at the London-based Christine Shaw School in the early 1970s. She has made major contributions to the industry of esthetics. Her original training involved the study of body massage, facials, kinesiology, manicures, cosmetology, facial treatments, and beauty culture. Her training continued in Paris, France at the Sothys Produit de Beauty under the tutelage of Madame Liyane. Following her education time in Paris, Miller when to Tokyo, Japan where she worked for Kanebo Cosmetics as a Chief Esthetician. There she trained others as the chief instructor for all Southeast Asian Beauticians training programs sponsored by the company she was employed for; she mastered the Japanese language and was the only foreigner in a conglomerate corporation employing 35,000 people. She earned additional certifications in esthetics technologies, professional specialities, advanced makeup, facial massage, soin esthetique, and she went on to author overseas marketing material, publicity materials, guide books for cosmetic application and textbooks. She worked as an interpreter for Kanebo and she translated not one, but two films related to the beauty-genre. Later, she eventually returned to the US where she helped in setting up the congress for the Aestheticians International Association. Even later, she became the Associate publisher and editor of AESTHRIC’s WORLD Magazine, the first of its kind in the industry.

Aestheticians FAQ

What are the advantages of being an Aesthetician?

Some of the perks associated with the role of Medical Aesthetician include a higher pay rate than those who work in salons, with as much as 10% more being attached to one’s annual salary, but this is dependent on where the individual works. The Aesthetician gets to help patients feel better about themselves and this makes the job emotionally rewarding, and there are some opportunities to teach once one is licensed. There are different work environments too, so the Aesthetician can work in whatever environment is most comfortable whether that is in a medical facility, hospital, or a doctor’s office.

Are there disadvantages associated with the job?

Licensing requirements vary from one state to another, and the student must renew licensing and continue education throughout one’s career. The individual in this role sometimes deals with blood and bodily fluids, and some positions require the Aesthetician purchase malpractice insurance. Additionally, it is possible to become emotionally attached to ill patients who later die from their illness so it can have an emotional toll.

 

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment

Scroll Up