Career Development

What Does an Esthetician Do?

Find out what an esthetician does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as an esthetician.

Estheticians are responsible for providing a variety of services that help people look and feel their best. They commonly specialize in one area, such as skin care or makeup application, but they may also provide more general services like facials or massages.

Estheticians work directly with clients to provide these services. They must be able to communicate effectively and build trust with their clients so that they can provide the best possible service.

Esthetician Job Duties

Estheticians have a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Explaining the process to customers and making sure they feel comfortable during their treatment
  • Cleaning clients’ skin with exfoliating agents or special cleansers to remove dead skin cells and reduce the risk of infection
  • Applying lotions, creams, gels, toners, or other products to the face in order to improve skin texture or remove blemishes
  • Exfoliating the client’s face using various methods such as scrubs, brushes, and masks
  • Evaluating client’s current skin condition and recommending appropriate treatments for improvement
  • Providing advice on skincare products and treatment options to customers
  • Treating acne with chemical peels, microdermabrasion, extractions, or other methods
  • Performing facials, including steam baths, extractions, massage, and application of masks or lotions
  • Preparing and applying facial treatments, including applying lotions, creams, cleansing agents, toners, and makeup

Esthetician Salary & Outlook

The salary of an esthetician can vary depending on a number of factors, including their level of education and experience, the size of the company they work for, and the geographic location of their job.

  • Median Annual Salary: $49,500 ($23.8/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $67,500 ($32.45/hour)

The employment of estheticians is expected to grow much faster than average over the next decade.

As the large baby-boom population ages, demand for cosmetic services such as facials and microdermabrasion is expected to increase. As people age, they are more concerned about their appearance and less tolerant of wrinkles and other signs of aging. In addition, medical advances have increased the quality of life for older people and allowed them to remain active later in life.

Related: In-Depth Esthetician Salary Guide

Esthetician Job Requirements

There are a number of requirements for becoming an esthetician, which may include:

Education: Most states require estheticians to have at least an associate’s degree in cosmetology or a related field. These programs typically take about a year to complete and include both classroom and practical instruction. Students learn about topics like anatomy, chemistry, business, ethics and safety.

Training & Experience: Most estheticians will receive on-the-job training from their employers. This training will help the esthetician learn the specific products and techniques that the salon or spa uses. It will also help the esthetician learn the specific procedures and methods that the establishment prefers.

Esthetician training may also include instruction on how to interact with clients. Estheticians should be friendly and welcoming to clients. They should also be able to answer any questions that clients may have.

Certifications & Licenses: Though most states require at least a basic esthetician license to qualify for an entry-level position, additional licensing can be procured to advance your career and work in higher-level positions.

Esthetician Skills

Estheticians need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication: Communication is another skill that can help aestheticians be successful in their careers. They often work with clients one-on-one and may need to explain treatments and procedures to them. They may also need to communicate with other medical professionals, such as doctors or nurses, to ensure their clients receive the best care possible.

Customer service: Customer service skills can help aestheticians communicate with clients and make them feel comfortable. Customer service skills can also help aestheticians provide information to clients about the different treatments they offer.

Time management: Estheticians often have multiple clients throughout the day, so time management is an important skill for them to have. They need to be able to multitask and complete all of their tasks in a timely manner. This includes keeping track of their schedule, staying on schedule with their treatments and completing each treatment in the allotted time.

Organization: Estheticians often work in fast-paced environments, so it’s important for them to be able to stay organized. This can help them keep track of their work schedule, client information and other details that may be important to their job. Estheticians may also need to keep track of their supplies and order more when they run out.

Nail art: Nail art is a skill that can help aestheticians create unique nail designs for their clients. This can be a fun way to add variety to a manicure or pedicure. Aestheticians can learn nail art by taking classes or by watching tutorials online.

Esthetician Work Environment

Estheticians work in a variety of settings, including salons, spas, and dermatology and plastic surgery offices. They usually work full time, and some may work evenings or weekends to accommodate their clients’ schedules. Many estheticians rent space from a salon owner and are considered independent contractors, which means they are self-employed and responsible for their own taxes and benefits. Estheticians must stand for long periods, and their work requires them to be in close contact with clients. They also use potentially hazardous chemicals and electrical equipment. Although estheticians typically work in clean and well-lit environments, they may be exposed to contagious diseases.

Esthetician Trends

Here are three trends influencing how estheticians work. Estheticians will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

More Focus on Skin Health

As the beauty industry grows, so too does the focus on skin health. This trend is leading to an increased demand for estheticians who can provide skin care services that promote healthy skin.

Estheticians can capitalize on this trend by becoming certified in skin care treatments and products. They can also develop relationships with dermatologists and other skin care professionals in order to stay up-to-date on the latest trends.

More Use of Natural Ingredients

The use of natural ingredients in cosmetics and skincare products is a growing trend that shows no signs of slowing down. Consumers are increasingly looking for products that are free of chemicals and additives, which makes them a good fit for estheticians who specialize in using natural products.

This trend presents a great opportunity for estheticians who are able to utilize natural products in their work. By doing so, they can help clients feel more comfortable about the products they are using and create a more positive experience for everyone involved.

A Greater Emphasis on Preventative Care

As the world becomes more aware of the importance of preventative care, estheticians will need to adapt their services to meet the needs of their clients.

Preventative care includes everything from basic skin care to early detection of skin cancer. Estheticians can capitalize on this trend by becoming experts in preventive care and by developing strong relationships with their clients. In doing so, they will be able to provide the best possible care for their clients and help them to stay healthy.

How to Become an Esthetician

An esthetician career can be a great choice for anyone who is interested in the beauty industry. It’s a great way to learn about different skin care products and techniques, as well as how to provide excellent customer service. Additionally, an esthetician career can lead to other opportunities within the beauty industry, such as becoming a makeup artist or hair stylist.

There are many ways to become an esthetician. You can attend school for esthetics, which will give you classroom instruction and hands-on training. You can also become certified by taking online courses or completing an apprenticeship program. No matter which path you choose, it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in skin care and cosmetics so that you can offer your clients the best possible experience.

Related: How to Write an Esthetician Resume

Advancement Prospects

Many estheticians start their own businesses, which gives them more control over their work schedules and income. Some open their own salons, spas, or skin care clinics. Others work from their homes or rent space in salons. Some estheticians become instructors in cosmetology schools or postsecondary institutions.

As with other occupations, estheticians may advance by taking on more responsibility, such as managing a salon or spa, teaching, or doing research. They may also move into related occupations, such as massage therapy, cosmetology, or teaching.

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