Esthetician and Nursing is it worth it?

  1. 0
    Not sure where to put this as I couldn't find it in Specialties.

    Background:

    I have been a nurse for 5 years, things have been choppy for me after having my son and going through an illness. I have lost my hospital skills since I hadn't worked in the ICU since 2008. I ended up working for a Sub-Acute floor when my son turned a year, but had to give my notice when I became ill. They wouldn't accommodate me at the time (I don't blame them and they don't have to) and they aren't hiring at the moment. Things sure aren't weren't they use to be 5 years ago. I apply every week to something, but it seems I am not hire-able with all the competition. In the Fall, I am taking a course to get me into a BSN program at a local state college.

    But, I wanted to know about Esthetician training, is it worth it? Will I get a job? Does anyone have any websites on this sort of information? Can you do this anywhere? Can you do this in your home?

    Thanks for whoever can help me out. It would really be appreciated.

    Get the hottest topics every week!

    Subscribe to our free Nursing Insights newsletter.

  2. 10 Comments...

  3. 0
    Hi there, I've been lurking on this site and specifically signed up just so I could answer this question for you. I'm actually in the reverse position as you. I've been an esthetician for 6 years and now want to get into the medical field. Right now I'm wrapping up a phlebotomy program- and starting on all the pre req's that need to be done before applying to nursing school. I've got a ways to go but I'm excited.

    I'm not sure what state/city you're in, but I'm in Chicago- and can tell you as of now it's not worth it being an esthetician in a major city so can only imagine what it's like if you're some place smaller. Generally- pay structure is commission only- and with the economy the way it is right now- no clients = no money. Summer is usually the busiest time for estheticians with very nice pay checks. I haven't had one good paycheck this summer yet. In terms of flexibility to work/take time off I'm sure it depends on the rules of where you work- as with any job- but usually time off is a big hassle (and not paid), you have to get someone to cover your shift, and forget about extended leaves such as maternity leave or needing time off due to illness, et. They pretty much see where they have availability for you when you return.

    I'm not trying to knock the professional as I said- I've been an esthie for 6 years and I love what I do. I'm passionate about skin care and love making people feel more beautiful/relaxed during their day. But financially it's no longer rewarding and I can't work for next to nothing. Maybe if you know any dermatologists/plastic surgeons they would be willing to pay you an hourly fee/salary. But that is not the norm in a day spa setting.

    If you have any other questions, I'd be happy to answer and also would love to hear what anyone else has to say about this.
  4. 0
    Thanks for your input. I live in a city, but that doesn't make getting jobs any easier. I can't find a "good" job for the life of me. Otherwise, I would have one. It is really competitive here in Massachusetts. I even tried hospitals that were in a 50 mile radius and nothing. So I did the nursing home thing to start over.

    I was definitely thinking of something different for a specialty, since the hospitals won't even pay attention to my cover letter, resume, or references. I am already enrolled for Fall courses that I can either use towards my BSN or Biotechnology. It would sure take me longer than the Esthetician program and is a hard decision to leave nursing all together but, just like you said we can't live on peanuts. If I don't find a nursing job by the time school starts my decision will be made up. I don't want to waste time on something that might help me just a little.

    BTW, what exactly is a Medical Esthetician?

    The school will probably call me tomorrow as you know they want my money. I can always come back and let you know what they said.

    Thanks so much!
  5. 0
    You're welcome. Glad I could help some! A "Medical Esthetician" is kind of a gray area term. Usually they are trained to work with a derm/plastic surgeon by taking advanced courses in microdermabrasion and chemical peels and some of the other machine (photo facials, lasers, etc). It's more of a certification- that isn't widely recognized and very expensive. Regular esthetics is licensed- just like nursing. I had to take a state board exam, pass, get my license in the mail, and maintain it by having a clean professional record and CE hours.
    Some doctors will hire an esthetician to do injectables as well such as Botox, Restaline, Juviderm...which is entirely out of an estheticians scope of practice. As an RN you could administer those under a doc's orders- however if you're hired as an esthetician and not as an RN and then if something went wrong you'd be screwed.
  6. 0
    Also- I just saw your question in the first post about practicing esthetics at home. It depends on your states laws about having a home business. Usually you'd have to have a private bathroom for clients, a designated area in your home. Also take into account insurance. If someone slipped coming up the walk way of your home to an appointment and injured themselves- they'd be after you in these sue happy days. Just food for thought. I perform services on my friends at home- but everyone else I make them come into the spa I work at just because if anything happens during a treatment to the client (a product burns them, they have an allergic reaction) or after (such as slipping and falling on something in the spa) I'm not liable.
  7. 0
    Wow thanks! It is something I probably would wait to see if a Plastic Surgeon would hire me for. I guess I don't need my Esthetics license just someone to train me. Not out here, I remember when I did travel nursing Plastic Surgeon were hiring for procedures in Arizona. Not many people in MA do the Plastic Surgery thing. They didn't pay well, but it was a job.

    Thanks for helping me with my decision. I was wondering about the license thing. You know I applied for some flu clinic shooting, lol. Well their is some poking for me.

    Yeah, I don't have a house, lmao! I haven't had steady work since 2008, so thank goodness. But, for the future it could happen.
  8. 0
    My SIL is finishing up her degree in massage and will be starting esthetician school in a few months. She's also a cosmetologist. I think estheticians fit more into that career category rather than nursing.
  9. 0
    Well, I called since they didn't call me fast enough, lol.

    She said that the laws in MA are going to change with Estheticians something about that you have to be a nurse to administer. So that is a plus. However, they do not have Financial Aid for this program and not even student loans. It is only part-time, so it would take forever for me to finish.

    So I am going back to college. I will keep this in the back of my mind for the future.

    Thanks so much for all your input. :redpinkhe
  10. 1
    Quote from dance4life
    Not sure where to put this as I couldn't find it in Specialties.

    Background:

    I have been a nurse for 5 years, things have been choppy for me after having my son and going through an illness. I have lost my hospital skills since I hadn't worked in the ICU since 2008. I ended up working for a Sub-Acute floor when my son turned a year, but had to give my notice when I became ill. They wouldn't accommodate me at the time (I don't blame them and they don't have to) and they aren't hiring at the moment. Things sure aren't weren't they use to be 5 years ago. I apply every week to something, but it seems I am not hire-able with all the competition. In the Fall, I am taking a course to get me into a BSN program at a local state college.

    But, I wanted to know about Esthetician training, is it worth it? Will I get a job? Does anyone have any websites on this sort of information? Can you do this anywhere? Can you do this in your home?

    Thanks for whoever can help me out. It would really be appreciated.
    Hi there, in the past I worked as a nurse-esthetician then an NP in derm (I am still in the skincare field but in different capacity). Like you, I had worked as an RN in the hospital for several years then became interested in the skincare field. Since I had no prior experience or guidance, I took the esthetics course and became licensed. I found a job in a dermatologist's office through the school's job board and that led to other similar jobs including teaching skincare (it is definitely easier to find work in this field once you have some experience and your nursing license is a plus).

    Looking back, I can tell you that getting an esthetician license is not a requirement to work with a derm or plastics, but I am happy I did it because I eventually had a partnership in a day spa and for that the training proved to be tremendously helpful. Esthetics training is expensive (can run you several thousands of dollars) and can be time consuming. I think is is worth it if you plan on spending most of your day doing what an esthetician does (facials tx, body tx, waxing, etc) but most nurses who work in skincare don't.

    If you have no experience in the field, a simple way to break in is to take courses at a place like the International Dermal Institute. They have 1 day courses for about $110 and they are pretty thorough (plus they give you a certifcate for the course). You can spend $500 and learn enough basic information about the field such as skin analysis, peels, photo aging, basic facials etc to get you started. With that basic information you could approach several derms or plastics and ask to shadow or intern. You can learn alot that way and some may eventually hire you at the least you can get a great letter of recommendation for a future job. There are also places that hire nurses for laser treatments and they generally train you plus in many states your nursing license will cover you (you don't need an esthetic license). If you are interested in doing botox or fillers, some places will train you (as will some companys that you purchase from) while others expect you to come with some skills. Again, you can gain some experience by offering to intern with someone. There are plenty of weekend courses for botox and fillers but they can be expensive and I think if you attend one, it is important to use the skill right away. I know of people who took those courses then didn't use the skill for months (either because they didn't have a job or clients). After several months, they didn't feel confident doing it. A good friend of mine took a weekend course then started offering deeply discounted treatments right away to the patients in her primary care office, and that worked out well for her.

    Resources I would recommend include joining Dermatology Nurses Association if you plan on working in a derm office as a dermatology nurse (about $100 per year with a monthly journal and yearly conventions). Unfortunately the journal don't cover alot of cosmetics but when I was novice and worked in the derm office it was helpful to know some medical derm. You could consider subscribing to one of the skin care mags to stay current in the industry. There are several out there but I think Skin Inc, Dermascope and Les Nouvelles Esthetique and Spa are some of the better ones (you only need one). The International Congress of Esthetics and Spa also host conventions throughout the country. The times I have gone, I have learned alot and there is great networking. I once met an esthetician at one of those conventions who showed me how to negotiate a much higher bonus.

    Think about where you see yourself (mostly esthetician work vs. lasersbotox/fillers vs. medical derm) and it will help you figure out how you are going to get there. I think the patient population is very different from those you meet in the hospital but it is still a wonderful field. Good luck and let me know if you have more questions.
    Last edit by dianah on Nov 28, '10 : Reason: Terms of Service
    dance4life likes this.
  11. 0
    Thanks WellnessVerandah, I have always been interested in Cosmetology, Plastic Surgery, Esthetics, and all of the above and am very thankful for your input. Thanks so much.


Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

A Big Thank You To Our Sponsors
Top