Skin care technicians can work in a number of environments, such as hospitals, physicians' offices or personal care stores. Appropriate state licensure is required to practice as a skin care technician, and continuing education is often necessary in order to maintain licensure.
Skin care technicians provide health and beauty treatments in spas, salons and doctors' offices using skin care treatments and techniques. Students can gain these skills through diploma, certificate and associate's degree programs. Other careers these programs can prepare students for include esthetician, massage therapist, dermatologist and facialist.
|Required Education||State-approved diploma, certificate or associate's degree program|
|Licensure||State license required|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)||12% for skin care specialists*|
|Median Annual Salary (2015)||$30,090 for skin care specialists*|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Skin Care Technician Job Description
Skin care technicians perform facials and skin care treatments, such as dermabrasion and facial cleansing, to improve a variety of skin conditions, including rosacea, dehydration and wrinkles caused by aging and sun damage. They evaluate and advise clients on skin care treatments and solutions, making referrals to dermatologists as needed. Skin care technicians' job responsibilities include keeping work areas and tools, such as magnifying lamps, clean and sterile. They could also record clients' needs and preferences for repeat visits. Skin care technicians can be self-employed, which might require additional duties, such as business-related tasks in sales and marketing, inventory management and bookkeeping.
Career and Economic Outlook for Skin Care Technology
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that skin care specialists earned a median annual salary of $30,090 in 2015; the average annual salary was $35,300 (www.bls.gov). However, wages fluctuated based on the employer. For example, professionals who worked in doctors' offices averaged $41,180 at that time, while those who worked in the personal care services industry earned an average annual wage of $39,940, and those who worked for general medical and surgical hospitals earned an average annual salary of $42,480. The BLS predicted that skin care specialists would see a faster than average growth rate, anticipating a 12% increase in jobs between 2014 and 2024.
Requirements to Become a Skin Care Technician
Education and Licensing
A skin care technician generally falls under the umbrella of cosmetology for the purposes of state licensing. All states mandate training requirements and licensure for cosmetologists and estheticians. In some cases, a single cosmetology license is necessary, though many states require separate licensing for skin care technicians. Continuing education is a common requirement to maintain licensure. Courses in anatomy and physiology, skin care treatments and techniques, safety and sanitizing protocols, pharmaceuticals, business skills, sales and marketing could be applied toward continuing education requirements.
Skin care technicians seeking advancement can participate in training programs through several technical schools and community colleges to become a medical aesthetician. These certificate programs usually last a year or less and teach students advanced procedures, such as chemical peels, micro-dermabrasion, skin analysis and hair removal techniques.
A skin care technician works in a variety of settings, so it may be a good idea to consider how wages vary depending on the working environment. Understanding the training and licensure involved in becoming a skin care technician is also an important step in determining if this is the right career for you.