What constitutes an expert?-Therapeutic Skin Coach

Over the last few years I have seen an incredible growth in the wellness community. We have evolved our hippie, woowoo reputation to a reliable source of transparency and natural health care. Since I’ve been in the game for over a decade, and that may just be long enough to recognize patterns, I’ve realized the most extreme pattern is how sick people are getting. With the amount of knowledge I’ve acquired over the years, I feel as though I constantly have to research and ask questions. I’m lucky to have a great group of wellness practitioners that I collaborate with so we can create a whole health wellness plan for just about any case. If a case gets a little tricky for me to solve on my own I have many estheticians who I can reach out to for advice. The collaborative effort creates a safe space to explore endless possibilities and potentially help catch something I would have normally missed in an assessment. So if it takes a village and a decade of experience among the leaders of this community for me to find success, than how come everyone is all of a sudden an expert?

I never called myself an expert until I worked for a company that granted me the title “skincare expert” which I simply adjusted it to “skin expert/esthetician”. Esthetician gives me more credibility because I’m licensed by the state and continuously have to renew my license to keep practicing. Skincare expert isn’t something I can back unless I have developed the actual skincare line itself. I understand skin and am qualified to accept the title of expert but even that feels presumptuous. My skills are always evolving and I never want to be the smartest in my field. I learn from each case and will continue to grow for as long as I am an esthetician.

I hate to call anyone out and this isn’t to dismiss someone’s passion but just because you sell mass produced skincare as a hobby or have an instagram dedicated to trying out products doesn’t make you an expert. If I have another client come to me with an idea in their head that a product a blogger wrote about is the best thing ever, I may freak out. So what constitutes an expert? How can you navigate the experts from the enthusiasts? Here are some ways how:

1 – What’s their education? Often times when I would attend a training for a skincare line, the first question I would ask the trainer is “What is your education?”. If they were a sales rep, I wouldn’t necessarily leave the training knowing more than a few buzzwords to excite a client on a product. If they were an esthetician or a nurse, that’s when I would get excited. I learned new applications and techniques that would apply to specific skin types and conditions. Those education sessions always helped my facial because I felt comfortable applying their knowledge to enhance my practice. So if you love a blogger or instagram thread, look to see their credentials and if it’s lining up to be more of a hobby you can just take their advice with a grain of salt. Unless you are educated and licensed to deal with skin you can’t really push your recommendations that would be like if I prescribed you a pharmaceutical, I’m not equipped to do so other than recommend someone who can.  

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