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How to Find an Esthetician, Part 1: The Research

~| 8 minute read |~ 

Finding an esthetician who is local to you, exceptionally trained, and an excellent fit for you and your skin is no easy task. Word of mouth is one of the best recommendations you can get but it isn’t always that easy. In my next few posts, I’m going to tell you how to help create that match made in heaven between your skin and your skin specialist. 

Do Your Research 

When you can’t rely on personal recommendations, you can use the next best thing: the internet. Here’s where you start: 

  • Create a list of estheticians/facialists that are local to you.
    • You can do this easily by googling “facialist/esthetician/skin treatments near me” and the search engine will give you a list. Right-click the link to every website and open each of them in a new tab of your browser. Now you can begin narrowing down the list. 
  • Use the process of elimination to shorten your list. 
    • One at a time, sift through the list of websites and take a close look at their menus and training. If you are in the market for a facialist, you want to see facials front and center on their menu. You don’t want to see a single facial listed at the very bottom after wax and lash services. Other things to watch out for are their communication style and esthetic: Are they clear in what they’re saying? Do they have their contact information clearly listed, or an online booking system available? Do they present themselves as a professional in their field? Which brings us to: 
  • Stalk their social media accounts.
    • Of the remaining contenders on your list, check to see if they have any social media accounts (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc). This is a great opportunity to get to know their personality and philosophy about skin. If they don’t use any of these platforms, it doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker but it does mean you are limited on your touchpoints to get to know them better before committing to meet with them in person.  If they do use any of these accounts, you want to see quality over quantity. Some will use their account purely for business purposes, while others may share parts of their personal life on their feed. No matter what, you should see them utilizing their presence to inform, inspire, or invite you. Whether it’s showing the results of their work, sharing educational tips to help you understand skincare a little better, or stories that help uplift your day, what you see should not be focused on just them. Selfies captioned with an emoji are cute but don’t do much to convince you to trust them with your face. If you’re not in any rush, give them a follow and scope them out for a few days/weeks. You can learn a lot simply by observing from the sidelines. This could also give you a clue into how their past clients interact with them. 
  • Read reviews. 
    • Reviews can be found on google, on a website, on a booking site, or they can be shared on social media. The overall star rating is going to give you a quick peek into an individual/company’s quality of work, but if you can find a collection of comments they can prove much more insightful. Look for common themes, the frequency of dates, and if the track record appears consistent. A well-established company will have a higher chance of accruing a longer list of client feedback but don’t discount the business with little to no reviews yet. Fantastic professionals work with very satisfied clients who will happily tell you how awesome they are in person, but it may not make it to the internet. Plus we’ve seen reports of companies being sued for fabricating customer reviews and you never know the full story when you’re only reading one perspective online. It can be a clue but take them with a grain of salt. 

A Note About Solo Estheticians vs Spa Companies 

When you’re booking with a franchise or chain company, you may or may not know the name of the person performing the service until you show up on the day of your appointment. This model is based on employees following the company’s protocol to ensure consistency between services for a commission or hourly wage. This also means any social media accounts for the company do not usually reflect on an individual, but rather the brand overall. 

When you book with a solo esthetician, whether they are renting their space or are working out of their spa/studio, you know you are booking with them directly. They are the definition of a small business. The upside to this is they have a personal investment in every single client they take and want to give you incredible results that keep you coming back. The downside is there is no way for you to know their training or philosophy unless they’ve posted it somewhere. 

I’m biased toward the solo estheticians as A) I am one, and B) I like to support small businesses. 

Schedule Your Consultation 

By this point, your list should be pretty small –possibly with only one professional who knocked your socks off. Your next step is to meet with them! 

In my humble opinion, a professional who takes a holistic approach to treat the skin will have a consultation on their menu as its own item. A free 10-minute sit-down is a sales pitch, not a thorough consultation. As a first-time client (or someone who is doing their research) you deserve the opportunity to ask questions and get answers. But also don’t expect this 45-60 minute appointment to be free. This consultation should include at the very least a skin analysis, a comprehensive dialog about your health history and skin conditions/concerns, questions about any products you are using in your home care routine, as well as you having the opportunity to ask them your questions. 

You’ll want to prepare those questions in advance to maximize your investment which is what we will discuss in the next post. If you aren’t already subscribed and would like to stay up to date, you can register by clicking this link. 

If you have a regular facialist, I’d love to know how you found them and what it is about them that keeps you coming back. Let’s start a conversation in the comments!