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Getting pampered with aromatherapy, fuzzy slippers, and essential oils will do wonders for your soul but it will have minimal effect on your skin. Although there are a few similarities between Classic European Facials and Medical Facials, not all facials are created equal. Medical Facials are performed in a physician’s office, customized to your particular skin needs utilizing medical grade products and devices.


Aestheticians or Skin Care Specialists are well equipped to handle superficial skin exfoliation and classic facials. In California aestheticians are licensed and regulated by the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology. According to the BBC aestheticians can practice Esthetics which is defined as “Esthetics is the practice of giving facials, applying makeup, applying eyelashes, removing hair (by waxing or tweezing), and providing skin care, which includes microdermabrasion services. It includes beautifying the face, neck, arms, or upper body (from the shoulders up) by the use of cosmetic preparations, antiseptics, tonics, lotions, or creams.”

Medi-spas require a consulting physician medical director. However, the medical director is not necessarily a dermatologist or an expert in skin treatments.

Do your homework and ask questions before entrusting your skin to inexperienced hands. Keep in mind that there are a number of treatments that should never be performed at a medi-spa. A good example is Dermaplaning which utilizes a surgical steel blade and a very steady hand in order to shave off dry layers of skin. This treatment is a great option for patients that do not tolerate micro-dermabrasion but it should not be performed in a spa setting.

Unlike medi-spas, dermatology offices provide medical guidance, effective tools and techniques for ultimate results. “If your goal is to obtain a treatment that is truly corrective, makes a long-term difference, and is performed in a clean professional environment then seek a reputable dermatology office” explains board certified dermatologist Dr. William Schweitzer. “An effective facial removes dead skin cells so that healthier skin can be exposed and medical grade skin care products can penetrate. We have a comprehensive individualized approach to achieve that.”

Your skin will obtain the most benefit from a facial performed by a medical aesthetician in a medical setting as medical aestheticians are less likely to be persuaded by trendy ingredients and methods that bring zero to minimal benefit to your skin and may actually cause damage.

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