Advanced Modalities for Immediate Results

Written by Shelley Hancock

As an aesthetician and skin care business owner, here is what I know for sure: to create and sustain a successful skin care business, we need to stay up with the ever growing and changing aesthetic equipment technology. Today’s clients are savvy and results-oriented. There is so much information readily available to them through the Internet. They investigate technologies and want to know that we are up on them as well. No longer are they satisfied with a good, old-fashioned steam facial. They want the latest and greatest, and we need to be ready and able to deliver.

Fortunately, we have the equipment available that allows us to achieve the kind of they are looking for. That is why I find this industry just as exciting today as I did when I started back in 1987.
I have followed the changes in skin care technologies throughout the years, testing just about every new modality that has shown up. I can remember when you were considered advanced if your steamer had aromatherapy! Things have definitely changed over the years and now we can truly offer our clients cutting edge, results oriented treatments.
Another thing I know for sure after 25 years is that doing long, relaxing, 90-minute facials will not fill your piggy bank – and will definitely not keep clients loyal to you. It is also not easy on your body. When deciding what type of treatments you want to offer to your clientele, think long-term. When a client gets up from a relaxing facial, they may be feeling wonderful and even thank you for the treatment. Perhaps they may even book another appointment in four to six weeks. But, no offense, they probably are not shouting praise about you from the rooftop! The relaxing 90-minute facial will not excite them enough to spread the word about your services. But when you offer your clients treatments using advanced equipment that achieves immediate results, they do not have to tell their friends. Their friends see those results and inquire where their friends have been. With this type of treatment, you have loyal, lifetime clients and instant referrals.


light-maskMicrodermabrasion certainly changed over the years. I purchased my first machine in 1990 and it looked like a huge ice cream cart. I had to wheel it in and out of my treatment room, and it seemed to be clogged more often than not and, boy, did it leave crystals everywhere! It cost me $12,000! Thankfully, the next generation of machines were much smaller, much more user friendly and also a little easier on the pocketbook.
It was really the only modality around in the 1990s. We did a lot of microdermabrasion treatments with acid peels. Even though I owned a day spa, I would go to a plastic surgeon’s office one afternoon every week to perform microdermabrasion treatments. We booked them every 15 minutes and charged $250. Can you believe that? I would cleanse, microderm, apply 70 percent glycolic acid, neutralize, apply sunscreen…next! I was completely booked every Tuesday with eight patients being a slow day and 16 being a busy day. I did this for over 10 years.
Today I use a microdermabrasion machine with infusion. There are so many other technologies I prefer to use over microdermabrasion that if I am going to offer it to my clients, I want to offer something a bit different than the typical crystal or diamond treatment.

Ultrasonic Spatula

Ultrasonic Spatula is a must have in every aesthetician’s tool box. It uses sound waves (28,000 vibration per second) to do exfoliations, extractions, and product penetration. Being able to perform three steps with one little tool is very impressive. My first experience with an ultrasonic spatula was many years ago when a manufacturer gave me a table top version. I have to tell you that I was extremely unimpressed and actually ended up leaving it there when I sold that center. It was several years later when I was introduced to a handheld unit. I immediately saw a brightening of the skin after I used it for exfoliation and it was great fun watching the debris from my clients’ pores come streaming out when using it for extractions! I am not sure if I was just given a bum unit many years ago, but I would not be without my spatula today. I use it in every single treatment.

LED Light Therapy

LED light therapy came next. I purchased my first light emitting diode (LED) machine in 2002. It had two hand pieces and I achieved wonderful results. But I have to tell you that sitting there holding them on one spot for a few minutes, then placing them in the next spot, then move to the next spot… oh my, that got old really fast! So I moved on to a full face panel and the increased results simply amazed me. At my center, LED is included in every treatment we offer. Every client gets a minimum of 10 minutes under the LED panel. I feel like it is just that beneficial for all skin types and skin issues.

Microphototherapy Rejuvenation

Microphototherapy Light and Heat Energy (LHE) was introduced to microtherapy in 2009. This is a light-based treatment. I describe it as LED on steroids. Microtherapy employs light and heat energy (HE) to address varying skin concerns. This is one of my favorite pieces of equipment and the most asked for treatment at my center. There is so much to say about this technology. If you want to offer a cutting edge treatment with leading edge results, then this machine is a must-have. You will have impressive before and after pictures of clients and you will achieve incredible changes with re-texturizing of the skin, fine lines, reduction of pore size, skin tone, redness (light rosacea), pigmentation issues and acne. This device is safe and effective for most skin types.

Oxygen Infusion

Oxygen infusion facials are one of those treatments that clients thoroughly enjoy. The sensation is refreshing and relaxing. My first experience with an oxygen infusion treatment was a disaster. An aesthetician who was renting a room out of my center way back in the 1990s purchased an oxygen machine and was so excited to have me experience her new treatment. She literally sprayed air on my face for 30 minutes! I was lying there counting down the minutes until the treatment would be over. Because of that experience, I did not take a second look at oxygen machines for another 15 years. I thought if that is all there is to an oxygen treatment, then no thank you! But I have since learned the proper oxygen infusion technique and my clients love this treatment. Once they have experienced a quality oxygen infusion treatment, they always want it included in their facial. It is great for deep hydration, and depending on the product you infuse, you can help other issues such as pigmentation and acne.

therapyMicrocurrent Therapy

Microcurrent is another well-known modality in our industry. My first unit was $10,000 and then I tried another style of microcurrent for $7,500. It just was not my cup of tea. I did get some pretty good results but they never seemed to last very long. It felt like a lot of work on my body for something that did not hold. What I do believe is that with microcurrent you need very good training to do a proper treatment and many machines come with little or no training. It is very technical and needs to be done properly. I do know many aestheticians who swear by microcurrent and love performing it.


Electroporation – that is a mouthful! The first time I heard that word, I had to ask the person to repeat it. Once it was explained to me, though, I loved the concept. Simply put, it is an electrical current that opens a pathway in the skin for deeper penetration of product. So, instead of pushing through layers of skin, it opens the door for whatever product you want to penetrate. I purchased a $4,500 machine and loved the results. I could feel a density to the skin after the treatment. My clients really loved the way the treatment felt. However, I thought the equipment was expensive. This inspired me to go on the hunt for another machine with the same technology. It was not easy to find. I finally came across a handheld unit and purchased one to check it out. I was impressed. It was more powerful than the expensive unit and had three modalities working simultaneously. The machine uses low levels of electroporation, microcurrent, and radio frequency. I believe that the three working together how I can get such incredible results with my clients. It is also a really interesting feeling for the clients. If you want to wow your clients with a simple, yet effective tool, this is it.

Some aestheticians who know me have officially named me the “tool time gal of aesthetics.” I definitely love to use different modalities and my clients love the results. The results are phenomenal and they keep the client coming back for more. I believe that modalities are one of the biggest reasons that my business has been
so successful.
It is a fabulous industry we have chosen to be a part of. Draw people in with your positive energy and enjoy your work each day. Keep yourself educated and you
will prosper.

shelley-hancockShelley Hancock started her career in a dermatology office in 1987 and purchased her first skin care center one year later. While growing that center, Hancock spent one day a week at a plastic surgeon’s office to keep her hands in the medical end of the industry. She opened Real Transformation Treatment and Training Center in 2010. Although she still sees clients, she spends most of her time helping her fellow aestheticians take their businesses to the next level. Hancock is considered a trusted aesthetic advisor by the aestheticians who have worked with her. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Login to post comments

More in Business

Featured Company

  • Celluma by Biophotas, IncCelluma by Biophotas, IncDescription: No matter the age, we all strive to be healthy, pain free and to look and feel our very best. The Celluma from BioPhotas, Inc. is a specialized light emitting diode (LED) device designed to treat arthritis, muscle spasm, muscle and joint pain, muscle ti ...

Client Care

AIA Featured School

  • Christine Valmy International School For Esthetics, Skin Care & MakeupChristine Valmy International School...Description: Christine Valmy International School for Esthetics, Skin Care & Makeup offers a quality education in the beauty industry, based on the teachings of the Founder of Esthetics in the United States—Ms. Christine Valmy. Ms. Valmy opened her very first sc ...