When I came into this industry 12 years ago I had no idea how much it would grow in such a short period. In 2004 laser was not talked about in Aesthetics school and if it was it wasn’t explained as an option for a career. By 2009 Advanced Esthetics or “Medical Aesthetics” was quickly gaining popularity and lasers were making their mark. (no pun intended).
The first thing that I realized, out of school, was that by the time I had graduated and received my license the “industry” had already left me behind.
When I became laser certified, it took two weeks….yes two weeks! I knew that I wanted to be in a medical office but “how was I going to get training or experience?” I quickly realized that this was my responsibility. There is no requirement for continued education in our field in most states. In some states there is no laser law at all. I started searching and putting myself in every advanced class available to me. I attended any class I could from Dermaplaning to Advanced Photofacial. I interned at my laser school and finally was hired on as part of their team and piece by piece I gained the experience to be hired for the position that I really wanted.
After a year of working in the Aesthetics & Laser field, I was able to see how quickly the technology evolved and was refined. It is so exciting to see this happen but this brought me to one conclusion, that if I didn’t continue to truly educate myself I would not succeed.
So how do you do this? Since this is not a requirement in our industry you have to be very self motivated. First you have to plan out what you want to specialize in. It may be Advanced Aesthetics i.e.; Dermaplane, Microneedle, Chemical Peels, or even Aesthetic Oncology. For me it was Laser. I wanted to be the most educated in not only Laser technology but how lasers work and the theory behind them.
If you have the drive and the desire you need to take the first steps. Subscribe to publications such as Skin Inc or Derma Scope, become a member on Skindipity.com and get access to advanced videos and detailed articles to further your knowledge. Check into free webinars (there are many), just go to each company’s website and they will have educational webinars, especially Laser companies. Contact established Med Spas, Day Spas, and schools and see if they have an intern program. “What you focus on you will find”. You will be amazed how many opportunities for education there are out there.
This field is inundated with estheticians and laser techs with mediocre experience and training. If you do not strive to further your education and set yourself apart as an expert in your field than you will disappear into the crowd and your career as well. I have always said that there is a 70/30 split. 70% of people get into the industry because it is quick and relatively easy schooling and 30% because they have a vision and are passionate. You must decide which side of the “split” you are on.
If you have passion for this industry and a desire to thrive then advanced education is the only way to achieve it. Commit to at least 1 new certification per year and watch your career soar!