What’s the best treatment programme for a client with dehydrated skin?
Dehydration is quite a complex topic because it’s not just about how much water your client is consuming, although of course that’s a factor. Firstly, we need to know how to identify dehydration in the skin, and then how to solve it.
Lines can happen in the skin through dehydration alone. The collagen and muscle tone might be healthy but the client might still get dehydration lines. These are the sharp lines you generally see across the forehead and around the eyes and this can happen at any age.
So, of course we want to encourage our clients to drink plenty of water, but that’s not the only reason the skin will be dehydrated. Hyaluronic acid lives in our dermal layer and that is our water reserve. It’s a glycosaminoglycan, or GAG, cell and these cells hold water within them.
I always teach about hyaluronic acid being like jelly. Think of adding water to jelly cubes – the cubes will absorb the water and it becomes a bigger jelly-like substance. It’s exactly the same for hyaluronic acid; water doesn’t slosh around in the skin, it’s held there by the hyaluronic acid absorbing it.
So, it’s very important that we have hyularonic acid in the skin as well as water – they go hand in hand. If you had one without the other then your skin would still be dehydrated. So, if we are putting a client on a hyaluronic acid product or treatment, we’d team that with water sprays or get them to drink more water.
Even if the client is drinking lots of water and using hyaluronic acid, this skin might not be able to hold on to that water, and that might be because they’ve got transepidermal water loss.
This means that the water is leaking through the epidermal layers because they’ve got an impairment in their natural moisture factor. This is the lipid layer that lives on the surface of the skin and protects it from nasty pathogens but also keeps the water in.
So, it’s really important that we either identify the reason that someone’s dehydrated or tick all boxes: get them to drink more water, hydrate with hyaluronic acid, and repair the natural moisture factor. To do this, we would use things like ceramides, fatty acids and cholesterols to repair that lipid layer, and then of course, hydronic acid, water sprays, and even getting them to change their diet.
We can use fruit and vegetables to contribute to our water intake so if you have customers that really don’t like drinking water then encouraging them to increase their raw fruit and veg can help, as can things like herbal teas.
How can I find new therapists who are willing to work evenings and weekends?
More and more businesses are finding it hard to find beauty therapists who are comfortable with working on evenings and at the weekend. More therapists have gone self-employed since Covid-19 first appeared in early 2020. People have realised that they do not want to work 40 hours per week on the salaries they were earning – they now want a much better work-life balance.
During the pandemic, people found other jobs and took the opportunity to really think about what they want to do. This has had a huge impact on recruitment in the beauty and spa industry. Add to this the impact of Brexit, which has resulted in fewer people looking for positions in the UK, and it is quite clear why the industry is facing difficult times.
So, what can be done? It is vital from the start to talk to employees about their desired hours and what you are looking for from them. It is important to achieve compromise. The key for the employer is to accommodate therapists’ desired hours without it impacting negatively on the business. Discuss working every other weekend and a rota system for evenings, but ensure the employee understands they need to have full columns.
It can be very time-consuming to find the right person, so consider working with a specialist recruitment agency that can dedicate the time and energy into understanding your business and matching the perfect candidates.
They can also weed out the time wasters so that you are not losing valuable hours from your working week. This way you only receive suitable CVs from candidates who can impact positively on your revenue, allowing the business to cover the recruitment costs. Think about putting a structure in place for less weekend and evening work once a therapist has been there for a certain amount of time too.
However, the person needs to understand that if they are working on a Tuesday instead of a Saturday, for example, then they need their column to be full.
Looking at it another way, make the client work for your business. Be selective on bookable treatments at certain times. Only book the high-revenue treatments with more experienced senior employees.
Have incentives in place for your team to win days or hours off too – create competition and desire and do not feel that you must keep rotas the same for everyone. It is your business to run how you feel works best for you, your team, and your bottom line. If you already have a strong team and you do not want to rock the boat by bringing in someone who wants selected hours, then think hard if it is worth it as you do not want to lose amazing staff. However, always look at what someone new could bring and consider all options. Always think about the wellness and happiness of your employees.
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