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Beauty therapists are professionally qualified to carry out a wide range of treatments to the face and body.
How does it work?
There is a wide range of beauty therapy treatments, each of which is designed to provide specific benefits to the part of the body that is being treated.
What does it involve?
The wide range of beauty therapy treatments includes:
- eyebrow and eyelash treatments
- nail technology
- epilation (hair removal)
- specialised treatments.
One of the most popular skincare treatments is known as a manual facial treatment, which involves the use of cleansing, toning and moisturising preparations followed by a soothing facial massage. Depending on the specific needs of the client’s skin, a face mask may also be used to further soothe, moisturise and/or exfoliate dead skin cells.
The preparations used at all stages of a manual facial treatment are chosen by the therapist to provide the maximum benefit to the client, and the products used will be selected according to whether the client has a dry, oily, combination, mature or sensitive skin.
Eyebrow and eyelash treatments
Eyebrow and eyelash treatments include:
Eyebrow shaping: Depending on the client’s individual needs, this may involve merely plucking and tidying-up the eyebrows, or it may involve a complete reshaping to ensure that the eyebrows are trimmed and shaped to suit the client’s individual face shape.
Eyebrow and eyelash tinting: This treatment is popular with clients with very light coloured eyebrows and eyelashes who want to ensure that they have definition at all times; and is also popular with clients who have changed their natural hair colour and want their eyebrows and eyelashes to match and blend in.
Eyelash perming: This treatment is popular with clients who prefer not to have to use eyelash curlers on a regular basis, or those clients who want to look their very best for a special occasion.
A manicure, which normally takes between 30 and 45 minutes, involves shaping the client’s nails, tidying the nail cuticles, moisturising the hands and nails, massaging the hands and arms and, finally, either buffing the nails or applying nail enamel, depending on the client’s preference.
Many clients, both men and women, enjoy regular manicures to ensure that their nails are kept neat and tidy and that their hands look groomed and well cared for. In addition, clients with damaged or dehydrated nails often find that a regular manicure improves the condition and appearance of both hands and nails.
Clients book a make-up session with a beauty therapist for a number of different reasons. These include:
- learning how to apply make-up for the first time
- learning how to use make-up to disguise facial scars, blemishes or birthmarks
- wanting to look their best for a special occasion such as, for example, a wedding or an important job interview
- simply wanting to pamper themselves, have a wonderfully relaxing experience and learn how to improve their appearance through the use of cosmetics.
A make-up session allows the client to learn about the range of cosmetics best suited to their skin type and the colour palette to use for the best effect. A makeup consultation will involve talking through, with the beauty therapist, the ‘look’ that the client wants to achieve; deciding on the types of products and colours most suitable for the client; facial cleansing, toning and moisturising and, finally, the application of the cosmetics themselves.
These normally include foundation (plus concealer or any other corrective make-up necessary), powder, blusher, eyeshadow, mascara, eyebrow pencil and lipstick.
A pedicure is, basically, a foot manicure and is not intended to take the place of the work done by a chiropodist. Clients choose to have a pedicure because it is a very soothing and relaxing experience, which refreshes hot, tired and swollen feet.
A pedicure involves soaking the feet in tepid water to which an antiseptic or refreshing foot lotion has been added; the removal of any old nail enamel (if appropriate); clipping and/or filing the toe nails; removing any hard skin which has accumulated on the balls of the feet or the heels; a gentle foot and leg massage and, finally, the application of enamel to the toenails (if required).
Nail technology is the term used to describe the process of applying artificial nail extensions. These extensions can be used to conceal very short, bitten or damaged nails; to help a client stop nail-biting; or as a fashion accessory for a special occasion.
Sometimes, also, clients with long natural nails choose to have just one or two extensions added to disguise any accidental damage to their own nails. Nail extensions can be made from acrylic, gel, silk or fibreglass, and the beauty therapist carrying out the treatment will be able to advise as to which type is best suited to the individual client’s needs.
Epilation (hair removal)
Epilation is the process of removing facial and body hair. This is a popular treatment with both men and women.
Temporary hair removal: Temporary hair removal is carried out using either wax (hot or cold), or a process known as sugaring. The hot wax treatment is good for removing strong hair growth such as underarm or bikini line, whereas the cool wax treatment is more suitable for clients with sensitive skin. The application of a pliable sugar paste (sugaring) is a method of hair removal which dates back to Egyptian times and is thought to be more gentle on the skin as the product is used at a very low temperature. Always discuss your needs with the beauty therapist at the start of the consultation, and they will advise you as to which method will be most suitable for you. Generally, a temporary hair removal treatment will need to be repeated every four to eight weeks, depending on how quickly your hair regrows.
Permanent hair removal: Electrolysis or Short-Wave Diathermy are two methods of epilation which use a negatively charged electrical current to destroy the hair follicle. Sometimes a therapist will use a combination of electrolysis and diathermy to achieve the best results. The aim of the treatment is to permanently remove unwanted facial or body hair that may occur in the ears or nostrils, or on the eyebrows, upper lip, fingers, toes, feet, nape of the neck or abdomen. In most cases, a client will require a course of treatment for permanent hair removal and the length of the course will depend on the individual needs of the client.
There are a number of very specialised treatments designed to deal with a variety of problems and conditions.
Red vein treatment:This is a specialised form of electrolysis that helps to remove any unsightly red veins that may appear on the face or body, and can also help to remove skin tags.
Exfoliation:Exfoliation is a treatment that removes dead skin cells from the outer layer of the epidermis in order to reveal a layer of fresh, smooth, bright skin.
Botox:Botox is a wrinkle-smoothing product (made from the Botulinum Toxin A – a highly diluted form of the toxin taken from the bacteria that causes Botulism) which is injected into specific areas of the face. Botox relaxes the facial muscles and prevents creases and wrinkles of the kind most commonly formed by smiling and frowning.
Collagen replacement:Collagen is a natural protein that can be injected into the face to smooth out facial lines, plump up lips and generally improve the appearance of the skin.
Special note: As with all beauty therapy treatments, it is vital that these specialised treatments are carried out only by a properly trained and qualified beauty therapist.
What is it good for?Each beauty therapy has its own specific benefits. Make sure that before the treatment commences you discuss with your beauty therapist what you intend to achieve. This will give your therapist the opportunity to give you the benefit of their experience and expertise and guide you towards the treatment that will best suit your individual requirements.
What are the benefits?
Generally, clients report that experiencing any kind of beauty therapy treatment is a calming and enjoyable process that leaves them looking better and feeling relaxed, energised and optimistic.
What are the side effects and when should it be avoided?
As the range of treatments is varied, so are the potential contraindications. A qualified beauty therapist is trained to know under what circumstances a treatment should not proceed, and when to refer a client on to a doctor.
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