Medical Aesthetics vs. Spa Aesthetics: Love the World You’re In

SWINA-Spa-skincare-1.jpgAccording to American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), more than 15 million cosmetic nonsurgical and surgical procedures were performed last year (2015), ranging from microdermabrasion, chemical peels, laser hair removal, to botox, liposuction, and facelifts, respectively. While traditional medicine focuses on the treatment or prevention of disease, medical aesthetics is for improving the skin’s appearance. Procedures may be motivated by the request of more youthful skin, yet more serious intentions could be chronic acne and scarring, inflammatory skin disorders (acute and chronic), or skin that has been effected by chemotherapy, trauma, or surgery. Medical and spa aestheticians offer some of the same procedures, however personal interests, education, and working environments might differ.

What is beautiful about SWINA’s programs is that as a graduate, you will have the confidence and ability to choose either side of the cosmetological spectrum, so prospective students would not have to be affirmed in a decision until they are ready to look for employment. Here is some insight to some of the choices you would have to work, as a SWINA aesthetician graduate.

Medical Aesthetics

Environment options:

  • Offices of plastic surgeons, dermatologists, & oncologists
  • Medical spa
  • Post-operative care in a hospital
  • Cancer center

Spa Aesthetics

Environment options:

  • Salon
  • Nail salon*
  • Resorts
  • Hair salons
  • Cruises
  • Department stores

Both branches are extremely rewarding and valuable. There is no price tag on a person’s self-image. Gone are the days that spas, facials, or augmentation is frivolous or vain. Like everything else in life, moderation is key and almost every person deserves to feel special and good about themselves. Everyone has their thing: whether it’s going out to dinner, the nice car, the designer clothes, the haircut and dye every six weeks, the sports game tickets, etc: we all spend money on things not essential to our survival…..just things that make us happy. Life is full of enough challenges. What this world needs is more people in careers that help others see their potential, to make the planet a better place. Making money is 100% great; helping people is great. So what if….

You could do both?


At the end of the day, working in aesthetics is a tremendously rewarding industry. There is nothing like meeting a client on day one, who is embarrassed, sad, depressed, or upset about the current state of their skin. And as their skin care practitioner, you receive the gift of watching a process of healing which promotes  physical, emotional, and mental revolution. When you meet someone for the first time, what do you see first? You see the face: skin, eyes, and smile. Whether it’s age, trauma, or acne, every single person feels a positive shift when a skin issue is corrected, because we are all human and we care what people think. (Don’t be fooled by the ones who say they don’t care.) I believe we all need human connection to be in balance; homo sapiens are social creatures. It’s a fact.  Living in isolation—by choice or not, does not render a happy person and if someone says like being alone or rather be alone, it is usually a fear-based shield to protect them from being uncomfortable or in pain. If combining a passion for skin care and helping people in pain is something that resonates with you, I would invite you to look into our Natural Aesthetics & Master Massage Practitioner program, or if you are already a licensed aesthetician, you could add a Massage Therapy or Life Coaching certification to your practice. In talking to graduates from SWINA, they all comment on the relationship between practitioner and client:

There is a highly personal and intimate exchange of energy when you are assisting with someone’s skin. A condition is often embarrassing with underlying issues that can be very personal or emotional, causing the stress in the tissue, or dis-ease.

Every person that shows up as your client will not necessarily have an underlying issue that needs your attention, but the important question to ask is,

What if they do and imagine if you are the person that could change their life, and in return, change yours?

Discover a Career in Natural Aesthetics

*A nail technician is a separate certification, but often facials, waxing, and eyebrow modification is offered in a back room.

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