Beauty therapists provide and apply a range of cosmetic treatments and advice to improve the appearance and general well-being of their client. These may include cosmetic camouflage, massage, body toning, diet or exercise techniques.
Beauty therapists aim to improve the appearance of their client’s face and body, to make them look and feel better. They carry out such skills as manicure, pedicure, manual facials, waxing, makeovers and eye treatments.
The beauty therapist first talks to their client about the kind of treatment they want. This is called a consultation. The therapist uses the information the client has given them and their knowledge of the different types of treatment available to decide which treatment is best.
Beauty therapists work on all parts of the body. They do facials, using a range of products such as cleansers and toners. Often, electrical machines can be used.
They also do facial and full or part body massages. A full body massage includes the back, the legs and feet, the abdomen, the arms and hands, and the shoulders. They massage using their hands or special equipment. They may use aromatic essential oils.
Electrical equipment can be used for non-surgical facelifts – electric currents are used to stimulate the face muscles. Sometimes a client will ask for unwanted hair to be removed. The beauty therapist can do this using warm wax or sugar, or electrolysis.
Waxing and sugaring consist of applying the warm substance to the prepared area, allowing it to cool and then removing it, either by stripping, peeling or rubbing it away. Electrolysis is a method of removing hair permanently – the therapist inserts a fine needle into each hair follicle and switches on a low electric current. This destroys the hair root and prevents further growth.
Beauty therapists also do electrical treatments for slimming and toning, and give advice on exercise. Beauty therapists may specialise in the advanced use of electrical treatments, which can remove thread veins and skin blemishes.
Personal Qualities and Skills
Personality, maturity, and a sympathetic nature, a well-groomed appearance and an ability to get on well with others are essential requirements for the job. You need to have good communication skills, so that you can listen carefully to what you customer wants and to explain the possible options that you can provide as a solution.
Good health is also essential as the work can be strenuous.
Pay and Opportunities
Beauty therapists can work in hairdressers, health farms, beauty clinics or health spas. Hotels, leisure centres and cruise ships can also provide employment. With experience self employment is an option.
Entry Routes and Training
Persons who are interested in this career should follow a training course leading to a recognised qualification in Beauty Therapy. Appointments as Beauty Therapists are usually obtained by personal application.
Courses of training are available in private Beauty Schools and some Vocational Education Colleges. They cover the practical and theoretical aspects of beauty therapy. The usual length of a course is between six months and one year although shorter courses dealing in specialised subjects are also available in modular form. Training includes practical work to develop poise, confidence and ability, as well as instruction in the various beauty treatments and in the therapeutic aspect of beauty culture.
Beauty Therapist Qualifications
The minimum entry age is seventeen years. Leaving Certificate standard, preferably with a Science subject, is required for Beauty Therapy training. Biology is also a useful subject.
Candidates should check with the individual Institutions for more detailed information on courses and specific entry requirements.[Source: Beauty Therapist]