Why would I see a medical esthetician? What are the over-and-above the services that I get here versus at my favourite spa?
We get this question all the time.
Estheticians offer relaxing and pampering non-invasive treatments that focus primarily on beauty. They often work in spas and offer diverse services that include facials, hair removal, makeup, and body treatments. Estheticians must graduate from a program at either a public or private post-secondary institution.
Medical estheticians perform therapeutic and specialized techniques that may even be invasive. As a result, they require additional in-depth training and certification that includes knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the skin. Medical estheticians often work with dermatologists and plastic surgeons and many have a formal healthcare background. The extra training means that they execute procedures that focus more on health and recovery versus purely cosmetic purposes.
Exfoliation by a Medical Esthetician
Medical estheticians are able to deliver more complex exfoliation services. Exfoliation is the process of removing the dead skin cells laying at the surface of the skin. Skin is constantly regenerating in the lower layer of the skin called the dermis. The newer cells push the older ones to the surface which then die and harden. As we age, this cell turnover slows down and the cells remain at the surface causing a complexion that is dry and rough. Exfoliation removes this layer revealing smooth and glowing skin underneath that absorbs serums and moisturizers more effectively and keeps pores clear. It also improves blood circulation which brings oxygen and nutrients to the newly revealed skin which improves elasticity and skin tone.
Exfoliation techniques delivered by Medical Estheticians are either mechanical or chemical. Mechanical exfoliation literally uses friction to loosen and remove dead skin cells. The gentle acids used in Chemical exfoliation break down the dead skin cells which are then washed away.
One of the more popular procedures that medical estheticians deliver is dermaplaning. This is an exfoliation technique that consists of using a fine gauge scalpel to carefully remove vellus hairs and dead skin cells. The clean, dry skin on the forehead, cheeks, nose and chin is gently scraped which removes hair, smooths the skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines and hyper pigmentation. It is a procedure that is best done on those who have dry skin.
This is a gentle procedure uses a handset that sprays micro-crystals that polish the top layer of the skin and then vacuums the dead cells away. Healthy patients with fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots and superficial scarring are prime candidates. It works on all skin types and does not cause any downtime. Because the procedure is so gentle, even those who suffer with mild acne and skin sensitivity can see results from microdermabrasion.
Chemical peels use mild acids to penetrate and burn off the top layer of the skin. The body reacts to chemical peels by sending blood to the area to heal it. This encourages the regeneration skin growth from the deeper layers of the skin. While peels are applied mainly on the face, they are also effective on other areas of the body like arms and hands. The acids themselves can be customized to be stronger or other products can be for supplemental benefit. Candidates for chemical peels are healthy individuals with aging or sun-damaged skin or those with light scarring.
Kathleen Browne is a certified Medical Esthetician who successfully completed the Medical Esthetics for Nurses certification at Centennial College in Toronto, Canada. Kathleen also has many years of experience as a registered nurse. She is passionate about educating clients on how to address and manage their conditions so that they look and feel their best.