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Aesthetician

Got a knack for identifying healthy skin, or an interest in helping others improve their skin's appearance from the inside out? There's an "app" for that, as they say: consider a career as an aesthetician.

In general, aestheticians provide tailored services to help clients look and feel their best. Specifically, aestheticians teach clients how to take care of their skin, not just for its visual benefits, but also for purposes of long-term health and wellness. Perhaps a client needs assistance choosing make-up to enhance their skin's tone and features. Sometimes aestheticians work in a medical setting and interact with patients dealing with skin irritations resulting from diseases like cancer or other illnesses.

The skin is the largest organ of the human body and aestheticians administer facials, give head and neck massages, and apply full-body treatments to keep the skin soft, supple, and radiant. They also work with clients to create a customized skin care plan, complete with dietary recommendations, to ensure that the old adage "beauty is skin deep" rings true.

If you are interested in pursuing a career as an aesthetician, some multi-tasking is required. As outlined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, keeping accurate and detailed records of the regimens used by clientele is part of the position. In some cases, aestheticians recommend certain skin care products available for purchase to help maintain the healthy glow that a facial or body treatment affords. Business sense is also a plus; in some salons, aestheticians may be responsible for hiring, firing, or supervising employees, or advertising the business in the local community.Work schedules vary for aestheticians, depending on the hours of business operation, the number of regular clientele, whether walk-ins are accepted, or other contributing factors. Since many clients need appointments during the evening hours or on weekends, the bulk of appointments may fall during those times. Skin care specialists are likely to spend a lot of their work time on their feet and therefore must be in good health and possess a great deal of stamina.

So You Want to Be an Aesthetician
Regardless of the state in which you live, aestheticians must be licensed. While qualifications for licensure vary by state, you must possess a high school diploma or GED, and you must be at least 16 years old. If you meet these requirements, find a state-licensed cosmetology school that offers aesthetician training. Upon graduation, you will be required to take the licensing examination for the state in which you reside and plan to use your licensure.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that employment prospects for skin care specialists are good, however, competition is likely when seeking employment at higher-end salons or spas. As of May 2008, about 26,300 people held skin care specialist positions, earning an average hourly wage of $15.40 (including tips and commission) and an average annual wage of $32,040. A robustly projected 34 percent growth in employment for aestheticians/skin care specialists is due in large part to the increase of facial procedures available for improving one's complexion, both in spas and in medical settings.


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