A Walk Down Memory Lane

As 2015 reaches its end, so too does another decade for DERMASCOPE Magazine. Forty years ago, this magazine, which was original founded as The Aestheticians International Association, Inc. Newsletter, started as an eight-page, black and white publication with the following mission statement: “To raise the standards of education and public awareness of the aesthetics industry.”

Since 1975, DERMASCOPE Magazine has continuously evolved with the industry. Many of the earliest contributors have retired and/or passed and departments and columns have come and gone. At the same time, companies have grown, multiplied, and changed hands and trends have recycled. In spite of all these changes, including now being a 130-page, four color publication, one thing at DERMASCOPE Magazine has always remained the same – the mission.

In the 1970s, when skin care was starting to gain traction in the United States, there were a few people independently making waves in New York, California, and Illinois. As a result, the idea behind the Association was to create a forum to bring these like-minded individuals together. With the knowledge that there is strength in numbers, Founder Ron Renee had a vision of creating an organized association for aestheticians to begin networking and sharing information with one another. Renee believed that if this vision came to fruition, the industry would easily flourish and surpass imaginable expectations.
Soon after the creation of the Association, another need arose: the need for members to keep in contact with one another. A printed publication quickly became the obvious solution. The purpose of the publication was to further the goals and ambitions of the Association – to provide communication for practicing aestheticians and to highlight those who were making a difference by breaking new ground every day!

"DERMASCOPE always leads the way!"
Danné Montague-King, founder of Danné Montague-King®

Aesthetics in the United States began as a trend after the war. Although skin care had been viewed as a necessity in Europe since the turn of the last century, it did not enter the United States consumer market until the 1950s and ‘60s. Consumer aesthetics was established to serve the rich and famous by Estee Lauder and Helena Rubenstein.
Professional services saw their start as a trend with destination spas and rehabilitation centers. Since then, the industry has witnessed the growth of a number of treatments, including muscular stimulators, epidermal growth factors, microneedling, and more. Every one of these ingredients and treatments entered with, “This is a great service with considerable opportunity for profit,” to “How many clients can we get to repeat these services?”

Ahead of their Time
DERMASCOPE Magazine would like to thank the women and men who had the courage to venture down a path that had yet to be traveled. Edith Serei, Christine Valmy, Aida Thibiant, Grace Doran Francis, and Catherine Hinds, among others, were professional skin care before there was professional skin care. Without a doubt, these women worked hard and personified perseverance, determination, and passion. Their achievements consist of opening the first training centers and full-service salons and writing the first skin care training programs.

Early On
When professional skin care began to take hold in the United States during the 1960s and ‘70s, basic skin care was introduced to the client through their hairdresser. The client received superficial cleanings, mint julep masks, and moisturizers. They also had access to the newest cosmetics carried in the salon at the time.

"When DERMASCOPE first held skin care tradeshows, they had a lot of competitions for upcoming students. It was a delight to be part of the judging panels and discussion group sessions that allowed them to pick our brains at-will. It was always lively and full of fun to interact with the audience. It was a true delight to participate year after year, making sure the topic was totally new and completely different from
the previous presentation."
Shelley Hess, L.E., founder of Facemaker Enterprises

The 1970s continued to see more and more hairdressers and cosmetologists turning their attention to skin care. Names of note during this era of skin care include, but are not limited to, Kay Acuazzo, Luella Bailey, Robert Diemer, Eva Friederichs, Joel Gerson, Elizabeth Grady, Mary Ann Graffeo, Sylvie Hennessy, Hans Koste, Letti Lynn, Denise Miller, Erica Miller, Robert Oppenheim, Ron Renee, Maurice Stein, Barbara Salomone, Carole Walderman, and Geneva Wyatt. This list encompasses just a few of the distinguished innovators that made it their mission to carry the best of European skin care to the United States. These men and women wrote textbooks, founded associations and magazines, educated, produced congresses, and lobbied for the growth and success of the industry.

Continued Growth
During the start of the 1980s, aspiring professionals began to lobby the cosmetology association for the recognition and differentiation of skin care. Newly licensed skin care professionals began to convert closets and small storage rooms into treatment stations. Usually located at the back of the salon, the aestheticians would solicit the patrons to a complimentary eyebrow wax or hand paraffin dip, enticing them into scheduling a service on their next salon visit. The clientele list was born!
As the industry began to gain more and more popularity, there was an increase in the number of schools and American-based skin care lines. The movers and shakers that dominated this era included Yvonne Berg, Alexander Desy, Miki Giunta, Lina Gleizer, Annette Hanson, Leah Kovitz, Judith Sans, Lydia Sarfati, Lia Schorr, Linda Seidel, Alice Thiel, Jerry Weitzel, and Marvin Westmore.

"I have enjoyed a long relationship with DERMASCOPE Magazine that began in the 1980s. Throughout the years, I have watched DERMASCOPE continue to bring educational advice to the aesthetic industry in order to assist the professional in keeping up with the ever-changing industry. I respect and admire Pat and Will Strunk and how hard they work to give back, not only to the industry, but also to those in need. It is their commitment to share of themselves and their loyalty is transparent with the quality of information produced in DERMASCOPE and the charitable endeavors they provide. I am looking forward to a long, lasting relationship with DERMASCOPE and their charities."
Christine Heathman, C.M.E., L.M.T., master aesthetician, CEO, and owner of Glymed Plus®

Facial rooms in the ‘80s started out with a basic, multi-function piece of equipment, including a vacuum wand, a magnifying lamp, exfoliating brushes, a vaporizer or Lucas spray, galvanic functions, and a reclining table and chair. In order to distinguish themselves from the colored drapes and smocks the hairdressers wore, aestheticians began to wear white lab coats. Aestheticians wanted to be recognized as professionals that were knowledgeable in the treatment and maintenance of healthy skin. It soon became obvious that the down side to having aesthetics in the hair salon was the chemical smells from the processing of artificial nails and the chatter. They wanted more! Their own rooms! Their own retail center! Their own ambiance! Silence!
Soon, small specialty skin care clinics that offered intimate attention began to open. Houses in the commercial district were converted into small skin care centers, with skin care services such as waxing and makeovers being offered. Alliances were made with local dermatologists to refer deep-cleansing facials, which they did not have time for. In turn, professionals referred skin diseases for medical attention. Although doctors had not yet embraced the preventative measures aestheticians offered, in the 1990s, they saw a market for retail and service through their medical facilities. Aestheticians creeped into the medical surrounding and took professional skin care to a new level.
To be full-service, most shops had a separate room for nail care, with some even opting not to do artificial nails because of the odor. They also had a separate room for hair removal services and massage and body treatments and a makeup counter for displays. All around town, strip malls had skin care salons popping up, making it easier and more comfortable for women to make a separate appointment for their skin and hair removal needs. New services, such as permanent makeup, reflexology, aromatherapy, bridal needs, and the newest breakthroughs in anti-aging began to be added to the menu.
Body services began to make their entrance onto the menu a short time later, as more manufacturers added body care products to their existing lines. With the addition of body services came massage, which, at the time, was still associated with “ladies of the night.” A basic relaxation massage was brought into the salons to balance the skin and facial services. In order to accommodate the massage requests, a massage therapist was soon brought onto the staff. They could not stay busy, so laundry, room preparation, answering phones, and customer retailing brought the massage therapist in more closely with the working aesthetician. By this time, a number of aestheticians were becoming duel licensed and vice-versa. This working relationship brought about the day spa era. Skin and body care with a personal touch in a soothing and nurturing atmosphere.

The 1990s and the millennium brought a new wave of trendsetters into the skin care industry. The names included in this decade are Catherine Atzen, Reinhard Bergel, Nina Curtis, Rebecca James Gadberry, Christine Heathman, Mark Lees, Jan Marini, Howard Murad, Lori Nestore, Manon Pilon, Paul Scott Premo, Douglas Preston, Victoria Rayner, Anna-Dee Rinehart, Tricia Yaniga, and Jane Wurwand.
The introduction of chemical peels was a major breakthrough in the skin care industry. The new development of the chemical peel incorporated old recipes from fruits, herbs, sugars and milk. Used on the body as well as the face, most aestheticians improved their clients’ skin conditions with some sort of chemical peeling treatment.

"Over the years, the industry has become extremely diverse in products, techniques, and philosophies. DERMASCOPE’s stewardship as a leader in industry journalism provided articles and features that helped us objectively navigate the course of change."
Anne Willis, L.E., CEO and founder of De La Terre Skincare®

Major advances in technology elevated exfoliation to a whole new level with the introduction of the microdermabrasion machine, peeling without chemicals, and epidermal removal with crystals. This decade also brought about LED light therapies, ultrasound, and lasers. Each piece of equipment is unique in its treatment and its delivery system, providing the aesthetician with tools for maximum penetration of products and stimulation of cellular activity.
Plastic surgery brought about more requests for massage therapy. Pre- and post-treatment massages were recommended to reduce swelling and improve healing time. Body wraps were improved with better delivery systems and lymphatic drainage techniques allowed aestheticians and massage therapists to aide in healing. Hydrotherapy tubs, infrared saunas, oxygen saunas, wet tables, Vichy showers, and steam cabinets completed the salon and professionals unique in their services.
While the retail aspect of the aesthetic industry started with cleansers, masks, and moisturizers, it now includes products for clients with mature, sensitive, and problem skin. It also encompasses a range of body products, including products for slimming, toning, and firming. Nutritional supplements ranging from vitamins to detoxing have added depth to retail lines. Now the new millennium has brought the wellness concept into spa spaces with pilates and yoga, in an attempt to help us help clients regain their center.

DERMASCOPE has had the pleasure of having two very passionate and dedicated owners. The first owner was Ron Renee and the second, and present, owners are William and Patricia Strunk. The Strunks came to purchase the organization in 1994 after William Strunk became the last student that Renee trained. Through a series of conversations, Renee discovered that Strunk shared many of the passions and visions that he had in his early years. Since Renee was ready to retire, it seemed like the perfect opportunity.
DERMASCOPE’s organization, as well as it logo, is a triangle with each of the three points representing a different division of the company: the Association, the Congresses, and the Magazine.

"I first met Pat and Will Strunk in a board room at the Waldorf Astoria in New York in 1993, the day before a tradeshow organized by DERMASCOPE. Ron Renee called the meeting to order and proceeded to tell us he felt he should pass on the baton. He said: “I laid the foundation, started the educational programs and tradeshows, and have found the people who have the talent to lead both organizations to future greatness.” As Renee brought Pat and Will into the board room, I felt their warm personalities and energy and liked them immediately. Pat’s warm smile and Will’s integrity shining through his eyes won the entire board over during this first meeting. They have continued and surpassed what Renee had envisioned by educating on technical knowledge, business acumen, and industry trends, as well as giving a forum to vendors to feature their products and helping all parties build sustainable and profitable businesses."
Catherine Atzen, M.B.A., CIDESCO, founder of ATZEN Superior to Organic Skincare

Point One: The Association
Aesthetics International Association (AIA) was founded to bring aestheticians together to network and share information and education. Within a few years of its founding in 1975, AIA developed into a national organization with chapters in Texas, New York, California, Florida, Illinois, and Louisiana. In the early 1980s, Renee played a key role in the merger of several small aesthetics associations, eventually forming the Esthetics America division of the National Cosmetology Association. Unfortunately, Esthetics America, being run by a hair organization, never really served the aesthetician. After considering the international growth AIA had during those years, with successful chapters in Canada, Korea, and Puerto Rico, Renee decided to reactivate the American chapter. AIA still continues to build its network of professional education from around the world, as well as consistently delivering cutting edge education. AIA offers members an international network and benefits that developed over 40 years.

Point Two: The Congresses
The first congress was hosted in Dallas, Texas in 1979 under the name Aesthetics World Expo (AWE). Despite the fact that a horrific blizzard unexpectedly hit the area, the turnout was remarkable and the event was a complete success. In the early days, the congresses were strictly an educational forum; AIA brought together the best educators from around the world to teach the classes. After much success, the congress eventually expanded and was, at one time or another, hosted in Beverly Hills, Dallas, New Orleans, Chicago, Toronto, Atlantic City, and New York City.

"I had the opportunity to speak at the tradeshow in Long Beach in 1999. It was called “Preparing for the Age Wave.” I had a packed classroom and distinctly remember Mark Lees popping in as I was in the classroom next door and I almost lost my nerve!"
Annet King, director of global education for Dermalogica and the International Dermal Institute

In 1999, Strunk felt it was time for a change as the industry had grown and was being served by multiple magazines and tradeshows. In a very bold and political move, Strunk dissolved AWE and began co-producing the International Congress of Esthetics and Spa with Rodolphe Legrand. The International Congress of Esthetics and Spa now produces four regional, annual tradeshows in Dallas, Long Beach, Miami, and Philadelphia. Every year, these venues continue to grow and gain strength. All of the tradeshows even offer continuing education credits, accredited by the state, for use toward license renewal. No other event offers that amount of focused skin care education and networking to professionals.

Point Three: The Magazine
DERMASCOPE Magazine is unique from other professional publications in that it is for aestheticians, by aestheticians. Both of the owners were salon owners and aestheticians prior to their ownership of the magazine. Furthermore, a number of the editors, and certainly all of the consultants and advisors, were aestheticians prior to and during their terms. This knowledge and real-life experience has guided, and will continue to guide, this magazine. It is also the reason that every person who has chosen to serve this publication prefers to remain behind the scenes.

"The secret of youth and beauty is the proper circulation of vital fluids and the regular discharge of waste materials,” said Harish Johari. Like many in the industry, I have been loved, encouraged, and supported by Pat and Will Strunk endlessly. We have watched their children become part of the business and now both of their children have children. This is one amazing family and it makes me smile through and through when I think of them and the journey we have taken together. They know business is all about relationships and we value that dearly. Thank you DERMASCOPE for keeping the flow of vital, new information flowing and gracefully letting go of what no longer serves. You have truly brought more beauty into the world with your loving work."
Melanie Sachs, co-owner of Diamond Way Ayurveda

DERMASCOPE’s greatest desire is to help develop those who are still working in the field to become the educational leaders of tomorrow. It is this desire that has kept us from ever hiring a staff of writers, because no amount of book research can ever replace practical experience. The editorial content in these pages has always, and will always, come from real, working aestheticians and full time, practicing educators. Furthermore, in an effort to offer quality information that is applicable to the majority of readers, regardless of the product line they use, DERMASCOPE insists that all editorial content be free of self-promotion.

While the triangle will always be comprised of these three points, DERMASCOPE is committed to advancing the future of the virtual world of skin care through DERMASCOPE.com. Established in 1995, the website has developed into the most comprehensive skin care database. In addition to publishing the archives, monthly content is constantly being added. We developed a community where professionals can network and share problems and solutions. We have also created a product guide for professionals to find and compare product suppliers. For our 40th anniversary, we are committing to an online, skin care news and education magazine driven by video and online-only content.

Thank you for keeping our industry professionals on the cutting edge of skin technology!"
CA BOTANA International, Inc.

To Our Readers
Words cannot express the level of appreciation and gratitude felt for the readers. Your loyalty, support, and constant feedback is truly amazing! Over the years, we have tried to play a role in developing the crème de la crème, which we celebrate with the Academy of Legends. Our primary purpose is still focused on providing you with the information and tools used in the treatment room every day. Without the readers, the rest is just fodder. Please accept our sincerest thanks for everything you do for us and, more importantly, for the clients you touch physically and emotionally each day! Thank you!

To Our Writers
Once again, we cannot begin to thank you enough! A quick estimate puts the number of our printed publications to 350 issues, containing an excess of 4,000 articles contributed by over 1,100 writers. These 350 issues comprise over 4.6 million copies and contain 570 million pages. What a remarkable amount of knowledge to share! Thank you for dedicating your lives to both caring for others and passing your knowledge on to the next generation, as well as each other. There is strength in numbers and these are some impressive numbers. Thank you!

To Our Advertisers
One more group we could not possibly survive without! You make it possible for us to do what we do, which is offer an objective, unbiased journal for the skin care professional. You have always understood when we were unwilling to compromise our editorial content because we know it will serve you and the reader better if we do not. However, we have and will always work to help you reach your marketing goals in every way possible. Thank you!

In Closing
It all comes back to the triangle. There are three points to our organization: the association, the congress, and the magazine. Likewise, there are three points to what makes it all successful: the readers, the writers, and the advertisers. The two bottom points create the base and the strength to support the pinnacle.
As we begin a new decade, we are dedicated to the future! We are working diligently and using advanced technology to create a new level of education and delivery systems. The skin care industry is all grown up and it is time, once again, “To raise the standards of aesthetics!”


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