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Medi-Spa, Aesthetic Clinic - what's the difference?

Medi-spa, aesthetic clinic or skincare clinic? You may have seen medi-spas, aesthetic clinics and skincare clinics advertised but what exactly do these clinics do?

The descriptions vary but essentially these clinics will all offer a simlar range of treatments. The term medi-spa is most commonly used in America and has only recently started to gain popularity in the UK. So what is a medi spa? Medi spa, also known as medical spa or med spa, are terms used to describe a clinic that aims to bridge the gap between a kind of a traditional day spa and a medical clinic. Essentially they strive to bring you the best of both worlds; a relaxing spa experience with the procedures and expertise typically only found at a Dermatologists office.

An aesthetic clinic on the other hand does tend to offer a more clinical experience, the treatments are essentially results driven and the pampering, relaxing element is not necessarily considered. As with medi-spas they are usually run by doctors and nurses with specialism in face rejuvenation.

The term skincare clinic can be a hybrid of both the above offerings, or a beautician who has decided to dedicate and specialise in skin treatments.

A clinic going under any of the above descriptions will not necessarily be any better than another. You could find an outstanding aesthetic clinic but equally you could find an outstanding beauty therapist in a skincare clinic that can offer you as much knowledge as a doctor (honestly!) and offer the same treatments.

So what type of treatments will I find?

While the treatment menu will vary depending on which clinic you visit, in general, you can expect to find advanced treatments for face and body rejuvenation. Treatments that are more sophisticated and advanced than those you would find in a a traditional beauty salon, treatments that would have traditionally only been found at a Dermatologists office. Some of the more common offerings include light and laser treatments, injectables like Juvederm, Restalyne, and Botox, as well as chemical peels and microneedling, cosmetic tattooing and mesotherapy.

You may also here the term ‘medical grade’ this refers to treatments and products that are carried out by a practitioner that has undergone more specialist and advanced training at degree level or higher level than a beauty therapist.

Who will perform my treatment; a doctor, nurse or a beauty therapist?

The person who actually does your treatment will depend on the clinic and the treatment itself. It could be a doctor, nurse, skin therapist or aesthetician. Its important to remember that a job title does not necessarily make for a great practitioner though. A doctor who has worked in general practice for years may have less up to date and in depth skin knowledge than a therapist who has dedicated to skin practice every day for the same amount of years. The experience and training of your practitioner is the most important thing and the only way to really know is to ask.

One thing to remember on this note is that a beauty or skin therapist cannot administer botox, dermal fillers or TCA peels in the UK. These treatments require a medical/dental background and are uninsurable for beauty therapists. All other treatments can be administered by different practitioners so long as they have had the relevant training and hold appropriate qualifications.

The main thing is that when choosing a clinic to visit you feel comfortable with the practitioner and trust that the treatment is the right one for your skin and your needs. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and discuss in depth the treatments available to you. Any practitioner worth visiting will be happy to spend time with you to alleviate any concerns and discuss procedures and treatments in detail.

Then all that’s left to do is relax and enjoy your newly glowing skin!



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