An aesthetician, also known as a skin care specialist, is a personal care technician who works with clients in order to improve and maintain the delicate texture and condition of their skin. The skin is the largest organ of a person’s body, and so a person will need to find a good aesthetics program that teaches them both traditional and modern skin care practices and techniques, as well as how to perform them all safely and hygienically.
Aestheticians, like other personal care technicians, are usually paid by the hour, and those hourly wages are supplemented by tips from satisfied clients. Therefore, it’s difficult to arrive at an average annual salary for those who work in aesthetics. However, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2011, aestheticians earned a median hourly wage (including tips) of $15.42.
In addition to years of experience a person has, an aesthetician’s salary depends heavily on how much he or she works and where that work is located. Spas and salons that cater to a posh clientele will carry a higher price tag for services provided, and so it may follow that staff members get a higher hourly salary. Additionally, the number of hours one works per week will naturally play into the total salary; the more clients an aesthetician has, the more he or she will work and get paid for that work. Overall, however, superior work is usually rewarded, and therefore aestheticians with a large and loyal client following will always be in demand by top salons and spas.
Like other salon and spa technicians, aestheticians must be licensed in the state in which they will be working. They must also keep that license current through continuing education classes, which is normally not an issue for those aestheticians who strive for a successful career, as they will naturally want to stay on top of current trends and techniques in skin care.
Programs in aesthetics focus on facials and other basic skin care treatments, though many aestheticians also choose to study electrolysis and laser hair removal to expand their menu of services. Continuing or advanced education is also necessary for those aestheticians looking to establish their own salons or even their own line of skin care products.
Of course, we all know that the aestheticians to the stars normally don’t have to worry about living paycheck to paycheck, especially when they are being flown about the world to keep A-list celebrities and their skin looking fabulous for the red carpet. That is why the BLS report are a guideline only; if you aspire to be one of the most in-demand aestheticians, then you can expect to be compensated well for your services and expertise.