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Sunday, 23 April 2006 16:03

Great Clients are Made, Not Born (Part 3 of 3)

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And last but not least is the important consideration of your clients current skin care program. Directing your questions with respect to all of the products they are currently using will assist the aesthetician in finding areas of their existing skin care that may need to be addressed. I always encouraged my new customers to “bring their face in a bag” so I could review the products along with the ingredients. This snooping also uncovers how they use their products, how much, are they dipping their fingers in the jar, have the products been exposed, etc. Finding out how they care for their products means this would be time to instruct them how to use skin care properly.

I go so far by having them demonstrate to me how they apply it on their face. You would be amazed how one side gets 95 percent of the product and the other just dabs. Instruct the client to always to apply evenly paying closer attention to the problem areas. Reviewing of a customer’s products also provides valuable insight to their dedication of a skin care program, if they are consistent, how much they spend, what kind of formula viscosity they prefer and so on. Never underestimate the power of what attracts a client to a product.

To help you acquire the most out of this edutorial, analyze the following points of reference, which will be found through the length of the series, while reading along to assist you in answering the final questions.

- The aesthetician’s first point of difference to make a great client.

- The backbone of your professional services proceeding skin treatments and product dispensing

- Photo-dermatology skin analysis

- Photo-dermatology analysis two-step approach

- Analyzing the skin for Photo-dermatology analysis

- Educating your client about the enemies of the skin

- Nutrition and Photo-dermatology skin assessment

- Circadian rhythms

- The New Skin of Color

- Pets and your client’s skin

- The Second professional point of difference to make a great client

- Best aesthetic treatments achieved

- The “Mac Facial” attitude of yesteryear.

- The clinical treatment room.

- The third point of professional difference to make a great client.

- Education and sales

How does an aesthetician market a photo-dermatology analysis in their skin care clinic? By presenting it on your treatment menu and listing it as the most important service you offer. I recommend charging no less than $75 an hour. The information you gather during this session will always remain the main database of your client. No skin treatment should go forward without Photo-dermatology analysis.
Photo-dermatology analysis should be conducted once a year and offered to your clients to keep them proactive with respect to skin changes. The skin your client was in a year ago is not the skin they are in today and providing this exclusive health check-up is a point of difference that will build a client for life. All yearly treatments and product updates are based on the new findings.


Treatments make the client
The Second point of difference focuses on the treatments you provide and how your skin care environment speaks volumes to your clients. The cleanliness, neatness, and progressive environment send messages that are loud and clear indicating if you are a true professional or not.
Craft your skin care environment into a true Skin Renewal experience to project a positive and healing experience, one that is remembered where the client can’t wait to visit again.
Best results with aesthetic treatments are achieved when attention is paid to the needs and perceptions of the body and mind of your client. While a clinical environment must be maintained, your client's comfort, relaxation, overall health and feelings of well-being and security are critical to the success of the treatment in addition to building the confidence of your client.

When initiating any treatment to the skin always:

- Tune into your clients natural body and circadian rhythms to better direct your clinical efforts to maximize results
-Direct your massage to enhance circulation and lymphatic activity to effect greater changes in the skin
- Encourage a healthy attitude with your client toward overall skin maintenance and fitness and work together to achieve the ultimate health of this complicated immune organ to obtain the best results from both professional treatments and home care products

Before you begin to initiate a treatment protocol, direct attention to the health and care of the client based on the photo dermatology analysis data collected, then move forward.
First and foremost, the growing trend of professional skin care basically means aesthetics is coming full circle by returning to its roots of integrative wellness focused on corrective and preventative applications for the skin. Professional skin care is where luxury reigns. Instead of the “Mac Facial” attitude of yesteryear where aestheticians only applied a placebo cream and moved it from one facial point to another, the attention to outcome and pampering is the current motto.
The professional skin care environment no longer encourages the traditional line-up of clients who come and go, instead the services are focused on preventative skin care to make your clients feel healthy, more alive, well and vital. The 21st century professional skin care environment has also become a haven for stress release and a sanctuary of relaxation, another major point of difference to build a long and lasting relationship with your client.
Skin care is as old as Hippocrates who encouraged individuals to have a "massage daily" for good health. Water therapy with respect to spas, dates back many thousands of years, having been used by highly developed, ancient civilizations for treating disease and by primitive shamans for purification of body and spirit. Through tradition and legend, continued use of certain mineral springs has brought about the establishment of healing centers. The spas of Roman times included elaborate bathhouses where an array of treatments associated with healing were offered and today’s skin care environment reflects similar influences.
Much of the driving force of today's professional skin care can be attributed to the new perspective and demand by the baby boomer generation for wellness and longevity to combat aging. Aestheticians who strive to maintain the most progressive edge in skin care today are listening to their aging clients and are providing cutting edge treatments such as IPL and ultrasound, advanced state of the art methods that enhance the efficacy of the new generation of purely professional skin care products. Keeping your clients happy and loyal to you will also depend on you “stepping out of the box” to make available progressive edge professional skin care, which cannot be pirated by non-professionals.
Aestheticians who practice in a professional environment should strive to provide a wide range of services that include but are not limited to; clinical skin treatments for acne, aging, menopause skin and pigmentation; pre and post operative treatments for the face and body, waxing, lymphatic drainage, body massage, permanent cosmetics, camouflage make-up application, ultrasound therapy, IPL, Alpha hydroxy and Beta hydroxy peels, etc. Although you may be well qualified to offer a wide menu of different treatments to your clients, when starting out, focus on one area of expertise whether it be acne, age management, pigmentation, etc. and learn all you can.
Master your ability in one area of proficiency before you move on to the next, avoiding the aesthetic hopscotching mistake which can cause you to make errors in judgment and clinical treatments. I started out my career in aesthetics focused on acne, moved on to post operative skin, which eventually led me to offer extensive menu options for aging skin, pigmentation, skin of color and more. I never stopped my educational journey and recommend this as your only way to achieve success in aesthetics. I have been in the field of aesthetics for over 25 years and continue to this day setting my educational bar higher each year to challenge myself. I suggest you do the same and gain knowledge from the established masters in aesthetic education who will work with you to achieve your goals. Remember, your clients embrace the education you learn after you return from an advanced training and are always the first to want the new treatment. This is another part of the formula that makes a great client; education. Great clients want their aesthetician to be progressive. Wouldn’t you?
Professional skin care was the first to legitimize cosmeceutical product use for the consumer. Aestheticians continue to this day to be the first opportunity to offer progressive skin care and treatments. Retail ratio should dominate your environment and each professional should reach the goal of 70 percent retail sales vs. 30 percent professional treatments. A major part of retail is to always keep your clients informed of new products and ingredients. This keeps the client loyal and coming back for more, and will be discussed in detail later in this series.
For lasting client retention it is also important all staff of the skin clinic and spa project the appropriate image as set forth by the message it chooses to communicate to the customers. Each staff associate should be knowledgeable in ALL the treatments and products offered. No employee of the skin clinic or spa should act on his or her own behalf, philosophy or judgment that conflicts with the mission statement of the owner. This unified message to your client creates stability that keeps patrons coming back.

The clinical treatment room should be a refuge for comfort, stress relief, and release. If you have your treatment room in order, and every professional is responsible to ensure neatness and sanitation, then the positive effects of the procedure will be felt on the nervous system and the mechanical stimulatory powers on the circulatory system.
The treatment room should be quiet; comfortably warm-the difference for heat and cold receptors in the skin is 33 degrees-with low, soft lighting and music consisting of sounds, harmonic sequences and rhythmic patterns. Studies indicate that our bodies and minds are affected by sound. Pilot studies of music therapy have provided data suggesting a link between music, positive emotions, and the immune system.

The appropriate aromatherapy in the treatment room is suggested for enhancement of the healing environment and will help set the right atmosphere that can directly affect your client's mood. It is recommended to use either a diffuser or air spray for diffusion. As we have learned how Hippocrates suggests a massage daily to bring about good health, we also learn that the Greeks had an awareness of the therapeutic properties of oil and its value as a sedative and stimulant.
As these highly volatile essences evaporate, they are inhaled and enter the body via the millions of sensitive cells that line the nasal passages. These sensors send messages to the brain to affect emotions through the limbic system, which also controls the major functions of the body. Thus, aromatherapy enhances both the physical and psychological state of your client during treatment. A sensual experience your client will remember and want to experience each time.

Limit Your Conversation….speak only when necessary!
It is a good idea to explain to your client the process that he or she will experience in the treatment room. To avoid unnecessary interruptions of the treatment itself, have this conversation prior to the start of any actual work on the client. A good time may be while the client is consuming a pre-treatment glass of water and becoming accustomed to the surroundings of the environment if this is their first visit. On subsequent visits, this preparatory step will probably not be necessary, however it will be VERY important that you inquire how the last treatment worked and ask if there are any conditions you should be aware of before treatment commences. Always allow for any questions about their treatment protocol and after each clinical remedy, call your client within 24 hours to see how the treatment worked. Always take that extra step it helps build client alliance.
Conversation during therapy diverts attention and prevents autonomic changes. Instead of encouraging your client to talk, use your voice to encourage visualization. Help your client concentrate on feelings in the skin to evoke the attunement of the autonomic system via the skin senses. This also assists in elevating the immune system.
For the same reasons, prevent the intrusion of ringing telephones, abrupt noises or anything that may break your client's, or your, concentration during the treatment. Remember the client is there to take refuge not for public speaking.
Before your client surrenders to the relaxation, while she is still in a sitting position, present her with a full glass of room temperature water. (Be sure your client has made a visit to the rest room before treatment and water consumption). Water occupies a special place in the chemistry and function of the body and its response to the skin. Water is vital to health. Excretion of waste products via water is a function important to the body's natural rhythms, it maintains proper function of internal organs, digestion, and elimination and is critical to skin health.

MYTH: Drinking six or eight glasses of water a day will keep skin moisture levels high, and is an essential factor in renewing cells and hydrating the skin to prevent wrinkles from forming.
FACT: Drinking more will not cause water to enter the skin selectively, unless the person is seriously dehydrated. Normal skin is well hydrated naturally. The excess water goes into all the tissues of the body, and ultimately to the bladder!
Detoxification of the body is carried out by organs such as the liver, which do not need vast amounts of water to function.

Breathing and Body Rhythm
Arrange your client on the treatment table, lying down, with the appropriate boosters to elevate head, arms, legs or abdomen for maximum comfort. Have your client take at least ten deep breaths, concentrating on inhaling deeply through the nose and exhaling slowly through the mouth. Always pay attention to detail. Clients tune into these small fine points and even though they might not be “actually aware”; they retain every piece of professional information in the subconscious.
Stress and tension often result in improper, shallow breathing. In fact, most of us do not breath well in our day-to-day life, depriving our bodies of vital oxygen.
Correct oxygen intake will enhance your entire treatment for a variety of reasons:
1.Oxygen is cleansing. It helps remove toxins from the lungs, blood, and organs and stimulates lymph.
2.Proper breathing relieves tension, allowing the body to relax. Where the body goes, the mind will follow.
3.A relaxed client is more receptive to visualization, body sensations and the positive attitude necessary for complete treatment success.
4.Learning to breath properly will help your client maintain better health, a better emotional state, a more optimistic outlook and will give him or her more energy in daily life.

The lungs are the body's most intimate contact with the environment. More than three thousand gallons of air move in and out of the lungs every day-and that is while the body is at rest. Most of this air reaches deep into the respiratory system, allowing the diffusion of oxygen to the blood through the tiny capillaries in the lungs. Because of the lungs' environmental exposure, they serve as an important barrier to negative environmental factors that affect the immune system and the body as a whole.
As your client practices deep breathing, have him or her also close the eyes and visualize serenity and healing. Speak in low tones and suggest imagery such as calming blue or aqua-colored water flowing gently through the body, cleansing, and renewing. Have your client concentrate on the feelings the skin senses evoke. Harness the minds healing power to create a synergy between your client and yourself, working as one unit.
It is a good idea to teach and follow the full visualization routine on your clients' first visit. On subsequent visits, observe your client to see if your assistance is necessary to obtain focus and relaxation.

Introducing Touch
Once your client is relaxed and breathing slowly and rhythmically, gently massage the face and neck, prior to the cleansing process, to encourage a deeper relaxation. Massage should be in concert with your cleansing, treating, renewing, and protective professional skin care technique. From beginning to end the professional treatment should maintain balance and consistency for your client. Touch builds trust and confidence that make for a better client.

Build great clients through a passionate retail skin care center
The emphasis for professional skin care in the 21st century is not just focused on wrinkles, acne, pigmentation or dry skin; instead the spotlight has been turned toward all skin colors and types to boost the health of this intricate immune organ. Complexities associated with aging, acne and environmental assault of the skin are as diverse as the skin care products available for treatments and the clients who request to purchase and use them.
The third point of difference is all about the aesthetic retail center. In the professional retail environment today, the aesthetician has become the central figure for cutting edge skin care science and the guiding resource the consumer relies on for the proper products to use in the best interest of their skin health. Advanced education is the key! Great clients respect the aesthetician when they have been certified with a prestigious skin care line as it builds lasting deference and credibility with the customer.
Licensed aestheticians have gained the utmost respect and these elite professionals are regarded as the best among retail skin care beauty advisors. Knowledge is power, and the more an aesthetician understands an ingredient, the formula in which it resides, and how it synergistically works with the skin, the more credibility the aesthetician establishes with the client. This builds towards a lasting client/aesthetician relationship.
Education and your sales go hand in hand. Never sell your client, educate and empower them. Based on the photo-dermatology analysis information collected from your client, educate them with accurate data and information to how and why a specific product is best for their skin. This process will build confidence, trust, credibility, and more retail stability through future sales.
Consumers almost beg to purchase the proper products and look for guidance from the professional. This makes perfect sense. After all, the main reason the customer has chosen to see an aesthetician for corrective skin care is to be educated on their skin and sold the correct products to maintain it. Many aestheticians concentrate only on the clinical treatments ignoring this valuable continuance of professional skin care, which is the backbone of all your treatment success. If your client leaves without purchasing your skin care and obtaining new information to be useful in the war against unhealthy skin, then you did not satisfy the needs of this client. This oversight can erode client confidence.
An aesthetician should select the professional product to reflect their practiced image. It is important they recommend and sell a professional skin care line only after a thorough review is completed with respect to the mission statement, ingredients, skin-types to be treated, benefits, results, sales support, and advanced education the company provides for the aesthetician.
Always display your retail skin care product to reflect the passion of your professional mission statement. Maintain full shelves with plenty of product. Clients do not like to “shop” empty shelves and will forgo a purchase if the display looks dusty, fragmented, or old. No one ever likes to buy that last loaf of bread!
Keep the display fresh, clean, and fun. Implement seasonal packaging, make special gifts and rotate your products often. Keep holiday fun items by the reception desk for clients to make a last minute purchase for a friend, family member, acquaintance or even themselves.
Be proactive with your client and be sure you have your tester product where the customer can touch, smell, and apply it to their skin. Always give your clients plenty of samples to try before they buy making sure the trial sizes are for their skin type. Never just throw them in a bag. Take the time to wrap in colorful tissue paper, place them in a shopping bag and personally come around the counter to hand deliver to the client along with their next appointment card. It’s all in the presentation to make the customer feel special. Pay attention to detail always focused on building that lasting relationship with your client!
When selecting a skin care product for your aesthetic business, avoid the brand merry go round. If you elect to have more than one product line, ensure the brands you choose are compatible and do not conflict with each other.
With that said, it is best to dedicate your retail environment to only one skin care line to avoid customer product confusion. Too many brands can create product complication eliminating the exclusive discernment of the professional skin care environment and placing you on the same level as a department store, especially when some of the “so-called” professional brands sold to aestheticians are also available from TV or in a chain retailer environment.
Too many brands can compromise your identity and leave the client feeling overwhelmed or unsure. Rather than having two or three of several products consisting of various lines, it makes more sense to stock your shelves with a singular brand inventory that always says to your client “this is my professional product and I am confident in it!” If you are secure in all you do, you will inspire the same in your client. Confidence is a product that cannot be purchased and a required ingredient for a lasting client/aesthetician relationship.
Up-selling, or best illustrated as “synergizing,” product linking allows you to select and sell additional skin care products which relate to ingredients, compatibility of skin type and other essentials to “fill in the hole”, add-on, or complete your customer’s program for better skin health. Product linking is a great way to build a complete skin care regimen for the client. Always be sure your client has all the necessary products they need, otherwise they could fall victim to an impulse buy at the department store to fill the void. Each skin is as individual as a fingerprint, just as every product in the professional line possesses its own identity intended for a specific condition. If you have provided all of the necessary products and the proper education how to use them, chances are your client will never give a second thought to purchase an incompatible product.
Great clients are made, not born, but so are aestheticians. Making a great client also means you have to make yourself into a great aesthetician. Ask yourself if you were to select an aesthetician for professional skin care, would it be you?
Professional skin care is serious business and to grow and flourish you will be required to develop great clients. The process is all about education, professional competency, and relationship building, never losing site that it is the customer who drives your business and leads you to success.

  1. What is The Second point of difference to make a great client?
  2. Explain how the best aesthetic treatments are achieved when attention is paid to the needs and perceptions of the body and mind of your client.
  3. What is the “Mac Facial” attitude of yesteryear?
  4. What is the 3rd point of difference to make a great client and what are 5 reasons this is important?
  5. How do Education and your sales go hand in hand with the success of your business and the relationship with your client?

Christine Heathman, Master Esthetician, CME, LMT is the Founder and CEO of Glymed Plus. With over 20 years of practicing clinical aesthetics, her experience with the medical profession is well established. As a licensed professional she holds 3 licenses in aesthetics, one in California, a Master License in Utah and on in Europe. As the Director of Education for the Gly-Med Institute of Skin Sciences in Spanish Fork, Utah, Christine directs and provides the skin care professional with exceptional training. Her dedication to education is well established in the skin care industry and is known on a global basis for exceptional schooling in advanced skin care.


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