This piece was written by  Ilse Vermeulen – Youth Beauty.

The modern beauty salon has changed dramatically. For many salon owners today their point of difference isn’t impressive marketing, the design or décor of their salon, or even competitive pricing – it’s their practitioners’ perceived expertise.

With the advanced technology, far more invasive treatments and cosmeceutical product choices now available, clients are looking for real experts in skin. They are attracted to salons because of the professional approach they have to skin analysis, treatment selection, programming of in-salon treatments and recommendation of home care. A salon’s perceived expertise in these areas is its primary point of difference over other well established opposition. Yet many salons really don’t take this aspect of their treatment regime seriously enough, and are missing out on a great deal of very astute customers as a result.

There is no doubt that one of the most important skill sets for an aesthetician is skin analysis. It is obvious to everyone that professional aestheticians must be adept at reading the skin and recognising conditions before determining the best method of addressing their client’s concerns. That goes without saying.

But the provision of a comprehensive skin consultation also acts as an integral sign of our professionalism.

Skin analysis equipment has advanced greatly from the days of Woods Lamps and Black Light Boxes. Now there is a new generation of sophisticated photographic skin analysers that are computerised to do everything from capturing multiple images from high quality cameras, utilising a variety of light sources, to graphical and pictorial analysis of the photographs and the measurement of spots, lines, pores, porphyrin, pigment, redness, dryness, dead skin cells and oil flow.

With astonishing zoom capabilities and the ability to compare side by side before and after photos, these new generation skin scanners are an invaluable aid in the correct analysis of clients’ skin conditions and provide the facts that enable practitioners to provide a comprehensive consultation.

The end result of skin analysis technology is customers seeing for themselves the “truth” about their skin, placing them in a position where the therapist can demonstrate their expertise, knowledge, experience and professionalism. In addition, by storing before and after shots, therapists can ensure customer satisfaction by providing proof of results or measurable progress, as changes in the skin’s condition can be tracked over time.

With many salons now offering advanced services like IPL, microdermabrasion, peels and needling, proper preparation of the skin and post treatment home care is essential to achieve visible results. Detailed photographic evidence and correct diagnosis of the condition of the skin will allow practitioners to ascertain what needs to be done, and when, both in salon and in determining appropriate home care.

In short, skin analysis and consultation, especially when it utilises photographic analysis equipment, is a valuable tool in showing off the professionalism of a salon. The discussion skin consultation generates with clients makes it the ideal time to sell retail, rebook, up-sell treatments and show off the expertise of the therapist.

Article Supplied by Ilse Vermeulen 

Ilse Vermeulen is the Director at Youth Beauty, creator of the DermaPro 6S, locally distributed in New Zealand

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