Job Description of a Beauty Therapist

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Beauty therapists bring calm and soothing service to the personal care industry. Also known as skincare specialists, estheticians or beauticians, beauty therapists work on cruise ships, at destination resorts or in spas, salons or hospitals. Their primary function is to pamper their clients and induce relaxation by providing exfoliation and spa treatments, foot reflexology, body wraps, facial massages and aromatherapy. Some beauty therapists specialize in specific skincare areas, such as holistic therapy or body and detox methods.

Trained and Licensed

  • Most states require beauty therapists to complete training at an esthetician or cosmetology school with skincare specialty programs. Generally, beauty therapists must complete approximately 600 hours of specialized instruction, but each state has its own requirements, which can range from 250 to 1,000 hours. After completing the program, beauty therapists must pass the state's licensing exam. Some employers prefer candidates with training in laser hair removal or who are qualified to operate machines with body galvanic and faradic currents for electrotherapy facials.

Clean, Caress and Perfect

  • Beauty therapists' primary function is to provide face and body treatments that calm clients while enhancing their features. They discuss each client's preferences or desires, sterilize equipment and deliver therapeutic massages. Beauty therapists clean clients' skin with creams, soaps or lotions that suit their type of skin. They may extract blackheads, apply wax and remove hair, administer body electrical or mechanical treatments, apply makeup, treat lashes or brows, and provide chemical peels or European facials.

Advise, Schedule and Consult

  • Beauty therapists advise clients on makeup application methods and the colors or types that would enhance their features. Many actively sell the products they recommend, such as lotions and cleansers. Beauty therapists maintain records of their clients' needs and the services they usually request. They try to schedule future appointments with their clients and may ask for referrals. Those employed in hospitals or physicians' offices work with dermatologists or plastic surgeons on preoperative and postoperative patient skin care.

Employed and Compensated

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics recognizes beauty therapists under the broader category of skincare specialists. It estimates that employment opportunities for skincare specialists will increase 40 percent between 2012 and 2022, which is much faster than the 11 percent estimated average of all occupations. The BLS reports that skincare specialists earned an average annual income of $32,990, as of May 2013, but beauty therapists' income often depends on their pay structure, education, industry experience, location and client base.

References

  • Photo Credit AndreyPopov/iStock/Getty Images
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