Things have changed. Maybe permanently. It might be me but it felt unexpected. It's scary. I don't like it. We touch people all day. Like it's part of our job. This stark new reality we have is not inside our wheelhouse at all. I can tell you I've spoke to some very scared and upset therapists this month. Those that struggle with closing or remaining open. That my friends is a personal choice only you can make. I've thought and considered all the options. I've come up with these ideas. Feel free to copy them or build upon them in any way you would like.
1. Virtual treatments. This sounds like a star trek episode to me but I'm embracing it. I am offering two options. Option 1: Clients schedule a virtual treatment that includes products they have at home. That's right, I'm diving into the unknown bathroom drawer. Sure there could be products like who knows what in there. It's a little terrifying. I'm sure it will be difficult. If it keeps my business afloat, I'm in. I am offering to do a consultation and walk them through a virtual treatment on messenger or FaceTime. (mainly because that's the technology I know, you can use anything). I am sure at some point I will ask someone to pull out the baking soda or some other household item but I'm confident in my knowledge base and I'm sure I can provide a valuable service. Option 2: clients register, complete a questionnaire and consent. I choose product samples for them. Write up a step by step labeled protocol and put them in a bag for pick up outside. That's right nobody has to come in. This works for my location and I'm sure somehow could be worked in for most of us. I set up the video chat and walk them through it.
I'm estimating it will take me about 20 minutes for the actual call. I am sure the product cost is probably less than $3. I keep small sample containers (single use) to send home with people after peels and other services to further manage them for a day or so. These will come in handy for this as well. I am charging $20 to $25 for these. You can charge whatever you feel your client base would pay.
2. No touch treatments. I own 2 Celluma Pro panels. My other esthetician has chosen to stay at home. I have a room and equipment sitting open. I decided to offer a no touch LED. Clients complete all paperwork, payment and consultation on line. They come in to a sanitized room (see my safety statement) and apply a serum to clean face, turn on the unit, put on eye protection and place the device over their face. The unit automatically shuts off in 30 minutes. They remove the unit, return the googles and apply SPF. They leave everything and there is no need to check out. This is something that can be done with any stand alone LED panel with modifications. I am encouraging people to do a series of treatments so I priced them: 1 for $50, 3 for $105, 6 for $150. This gives me an option for people who want to distance but still come in.
Lastly let me say that many clients still want to come in. I want to accommodate them. I did let folks know if they didn't want to come in that any appointment cancellation fees would not apply. I've given people an option to delay packages or any other prepaid appointment as well without penalty.
I put out a safety statement early and I keep to the promises I made there. All appointments have a 30 minute buffer. EVERYTHING is wiped. Handles, railings, surfaces, chairs, the works. Every single time. No exceptions.
I hope these things help you as you navigate these difficult times in your businesses. This is not easy and nobody has enough experience to know what is best to do. Be true to you, be good to people, do good. We will all be ok. If I can help you please don't hesitate to call me.
Sensitive skin is more and more of a complaint for both therapists and consumers. It begs the question what is best for home care and treatments? What can we do to keep clients happy, reduce redness, and still see results? I have pondered this my entire career as I have sensitive skin myself, diagnosed by a dermatologist with rosacea some years back.
The concept that all clients need aggressive treatments is a rut that some therapists slip into. It's important to remember not everyone responds to treatments the same way. Sure if you bring the client in and irritate the skin there will be results. Usually in the form of inflammation and swelling. It is short lived and often the client is dry tight and uncomfortable during the process. Some clients get to the point where they think this is the only way they should feel after a treatment.
So the big question is how do you get results without causing the client that dry uncomfortable feeling and causing downtime and inflammation? I use a combination of treatments to keep skin responsive but happy. I have a "go to" group of treatments that I mix and match to create a custom treatment for clients on a monthly basis. I would say I am definitely a microdermabrasion gal. It amazes me as to how many therapists use microdermabrasion with poor technique. You should brace the skin, work in that small matchbox size area, keep the suction low enough that you don't have a "popping" sound when you lift the wand. Also, work in strokes, not pecks. The pull and pop on the skin will compromise spider capillaries causing more harm than good.
I also use a combination of acids and enzymes in conjunction with microdermabrasion to get the desired effect. As a general rule, you should use an AHA or a AHA /Enzyme blend prior to microdermabrasion. Logically it lifts and loosens dull lifeless skin and makes it easy to remove with a light pass of microdermabrasion. Danielle Wachowski is the owner at Enlightened Skincare and I recommend you check out her educational video on micropeeling for more information on this topic.
LED is a big must have for me. It is a great solution for almost any client. Apply a growth factor or translucent mineral mask (greater conduction of energy) or a lifting mask (of course it must be translucent) and choose the LED cycle that applies.
I believe that home care is the number one thing clients can do to combat sensitivity at home. I found an amazing line during my oncology training and got to know Kris Campbell the owner and formulator at Hale and Hush. I consider her an expert in sensitive skin and I am proud to be working with her. Hale and Hush provides a tight selection of products to repair the barrier of the skin. There are also several back bar products that produce amazing results. Hale and Hush has a section of articles that will also help you understand more about sensitive skin. In addition to being a leader in education they are also now winners of an estheticians choice award!
Sensitive skin can be a challenge. Education on the topic will help you make great treatment decisions and win the hearts of sensitive clients! If you want to talk treatments or products I'd love to connect.
When I say cocktails to most clients they light up and look for the wine bottle or martini glass. Well don't get me wrong I get excited about those too. Today's cocktail will focus on customizing chemical exfoliants. We all have the book from our vendor that lists out the protocols. I would challenge you to push the limits of the book, get creative with your treatments. We all have the same license, the same basic set up in our businesses. The thing that sets us apart really is our practice. What we do with what we have. I can't remember the last time I opened a bottle and used it just as it was. I ALWAYS cocktail things for each client. I specially mix the exfoliant and the mask, always. I feel like it gives each client a great experience and it is tailored to what they need today.
I love to mix eznyme products with brightening products. I use Lira Clinical on my back bar. I find the versatility to be a huge benefit. For example I go to the best sellers in this line over and over again. VitaBrite is awesome but if you cocktail it, it remains safe for all Fitzpatrick Types but more meaningful to that particular treatment. Are you in a rut or using "out of the bottle" treatments? Give me a call let's talk about your treatments and what you can do to enhance your clients experience. Register at www.liraclinical.com to learn more about the options offered.
Tell me about your favorite cocktail (chemical or otherwise)!
Everyone is getting in shape and eating less doing more and you get it, new year's resolutions. I would challenge you to play a game with me. I like to call it menu match up. Grab a copyo f your menu. Now take out your inventory list of retail products. Put them side by side. Draw a line from each menu item to 3 retail products. The first line should be a cleanser, the second one a management product like a serum, the third a moisturizer. If you have multiple sunscreen products add those in if you like.
So how many do you have left? I bet there are products there with no lines. Why? Most of the time when I ask clients to do this they say something like:
1. That's too expensive to go with this service
2. I'm not quite sure how to fit that into home care
3. That product, oh, I don't like it.
What is really being said?
1. I'm unable to afford that product so surely no one else would buy it.
2. That product scares me, I know what it does, kind of, but as far as putting into the "line up" I just leave that one out. When the class was held, I missed it. OR The rep was here but I was afraid to ask what it does because everyone else seemed to understand it.
3. I don't like that product so who would want to buy it, the owner she likes it let her sell it.
Play the match game in your business, give me a call or email with your results. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
I am always quick to self evaluate and decide that I haven't accomplished enough this month or this week. It is a personal flaw. I am my toughest evaluator. It is too easy to want more out of yourself and not put the time in to feed the machine. Every month, take stock in your activities. Review your priorities. Make sure the "things" you are doing every day are still important to you. Look at your goals every month, see how you did. Be honest with yourself and do your best. Be your own evaluator.
I have been sick this week, sick enough to not go to the studio or be on the phone, so pretty sick. I actually took medicine! Having that couch time self inflicted reminded me that I need to spend more time taking care of me. You know, making the plan for the day to start with something for me. It is funny to me how quickly I forget that promise I made to myself after breast cancer. I am going to take care of me! I say with conviction! I say it every day but rarely do I do it. Being thankful for my health is a way I count blessings. I also stop and look around at the other things I am thankful for. I have an amazing husband, great family, awesome business. I've got it pretty darn good.
Be fair but firm with yourself and your dreams. Just don't forget to be thankful and hey, be nice to yourself!
I have had the same website for let's say a little too long. I find that it was boring to me so it must be boring to you! So here it is, blog and all. I miss blogging. It allows me to talk about things without the drone of my own voice going on! I like change, most people don't but it's exciting to me. Even as I look out a rainy window and know good and well Labor Day will not change the weather, and we don't have 4 seasons here in Charleston, I feel excited about all the things fall brings even here in the sunny south.
A change for me always includes work on some level. A new product line, a new treatment, a new client, something new! We all love new stuff even if we don't like change. What's new? Rezenerate is new, it's a super cool device and if you haven't seen it, you should. It's designed just for esthetics practices, affordable and financeable, who doesn't love that!
I add things and rate them on performance every quarter. It keeps me honest with myself. If something just isn't a good fit I rearrange it. If I know I haven't worked hard enough on something I rearrange my focus. As some of you may or may not know, I now have two adorable grandkids with me full time. This my friends takes energy, more than I remember. I am adjusting. All of these things taken into consideration I feel I haven't been out there, on the road and doing things! For this I must apologize. I guess I learned the hard way that indeed you can only be in ONE place at ONE time. I'm still committed to multi-tasking but physics is hard to beat!
In an effort to renew my commitment I created this new site. It is easy to update, navigate (so my core group of critics tell me) and allows for better communication. That's not all though, I'm committed to better organizational skills (thanks to an amazing Jill Magnuson, who is queen of admin at the studio or as she prefers, Studio Coordinator!) and kicks me back into play when I need it. Thankful for her and all she brings to my business!
If you haven't made a change recently or are in a rut, sit back and think. How effective are things? What is important to you? What makes you happy? Are you missing something or are things a little too heavy? I am fairly famous for my "sayings" as people tell me. Today I'm thinking: You make your own luck, do no harm and take no sh*t, and most importantly; be true to you!
As always thank you for your business, your interest, your good wishes. I'm still here and I'm ready for all that fall will bring!