Skincare Specialist Career Info
Skincare specialists are also known as estheticians. These specialists work with customers to help achieve optimal skin and also offer other services. These services include removing unwanted hair and blemishes, advising customers on proper skincare, and evaluating customers' skin health. In addition, skincare specialists might help customers reduce signs of aging and sell products to help them develop a home skincare regimen.
Skincare specialists can find work at many places including salons, spas, health centers, and even medical offices. About a quarter of these workers were self-employed in 2012. Self-employment can give skincare specialists schedule flexibility, but the job often comes with long hours. These professionals spend most days on their feet and must take care when working with chemicals.
|Degree Level||High school diploma and postsecondary vocational training|
|Degree Field||Cosmetology training specializing in skincare|
|Licensure||All states except Connecticut require an exam to be licensed|
|Experience||No experience necessary for entry-level positions|
|Key Skills||Strong customer service skills, the ability to sell products, and knowledge of skincare products and skin types|
|Salary||Skincare specialists earn a median annual pay of $30,090 as of 2015|
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Many cosmetology schools offer programs for aspiring estheticians. Programs of study generally include instruction in anatomy and physiology, laws and regulations, safety procedures, hair removal, makeup application, and how to administer facials. These program can take less than one year to complete.
Salons may prefer that clients have sales experience and customer service skills. While some cosmetology students take courses in techniques that assist with the business end of esthiology, such as selling strategies and client retention, others will receive on-the-job training in those areas. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 30% of skincare specialists were self-employed in 2014. Individuals who serve as independent contractors or are self-employed can use tools found in these courses to enhance their business.
Work as Apprentice
Some states will require estheticians to have work experience as an apprentice prior to receiving a license. It is important to note that states may also have specific requirements for apprenticeships, so estheticians should review the guidelines set in place by their state board. Some training programs will provide ways for students to earn an apprenticeship, while others require that students pursue this training on their own.
Obtain a License
Upon completion of a state-approved training program and/or state-approved apprenticeship, estheticians become eligible for licensure. Although the requirements for each state vary, applicants will likely have to submit proof of their training and take an exam. Prospective skin specialists may also need to complete a physical to sit for their state's licensing exam.
Some employers may require or prefer that estheticians be aware of the latest skincare techniques. It is important to stay abreast of new and advanced techniques in skincare by taking additional training.
To recap, skincare specialists typically need to complete formal cosmetology training, gain on-the-job experience or complete an apprenticeship, and then obtain a license from the state in which they want to work.