While an esthetician generally works in a salon and provides skin care for clients to make them feel 20 years younger and look their best, medical estheticians go deeper. While their jobs are technically very similar, a large part of a medical esthetician’s work is more similar to a counselor than to a cosmetologist. As with any career, however, it isn’t for everyone, and you must consider the drawbacks that are inherent in this position.
Pro: Growth Potential
Since being a medical esthetician is a healthcare position, it comes with all the perks. There’s a variety of environments available, whether it’s a clinic or a hospital. Additionally, there will always be something new to learn, and someone to learn it from. Working closely with doctors and nurses gives you the opportunity to pick up a lot of information you wouldn’t anywhere else, so for someone who loves to learn, that’s a great benefit. Yearly earnings aren’t too shabby either. The top of the field make over $50,000 a year, which isn’t bad for a career that only requires an associate’s degree.
That training, however, does include being board-certified, however, and that can change from state to state. You also have to have malpractice insurance, and that isn’t something anyone likes to think about, however necessary it may be. And being in a medical setting means dealing with all the things that are there - and that includes snot, spit, blood, pus, and a lot of other gross things that not everyone is cut out for. There’s a careful balance you have to consider between a strong growth rate and a seriously gross environment.
Pro: Helping People
While being an esthetician helps people enhance their beauty, being a medical esthetician helps people who have been through traumatic events remember how beautiful they can be. Medical estheticians work with everything from burn victims to chemotherapy patients. If you’re good with people, you get to use those skills to help people in a million different ways. It means teaching women how to apply makeup, fake eyelashes, and draw on eyebrows so they aren’t afraid to go out in public. It’s like beauty counseling - reminding them of all the things they do have, when they feel like they don’t have a lot to offer any more. You help reduce anxiety, build self esteem, and return people to themselves in ways no one else can.
Con: Harsh Realities
Not everyone has the stamina it takes to work with people who are very sad and very sick every day. Not only that, but a lot of those people are facing illnesses they won’t bounce back from. This means working with someone on a level of closeness that not a lot of other people get to see, and having to realize that there is every possibility that they could pass away before you see them next. It’s a taxing environment, but rewarding if you can face the realities.