Esthetician vs. Dermatologist: Who to See for Your Skincare Concerns?

When you have problems with your skin, it can be a very frustrating experience. Ideally, you want skin that looks gorgeous with a healthy glow and will continue to look amazing as the years go by. There are steps you need to take to make sure your skin looks and feels its best long-term. When you start to experience problems, you know there are professionals out there that can help, but how do you know who to see? 

The options outside of your favorite salespeople at different beauty stores who sell skincare products extend to estheticians and dermatologists. These professionals can help you achieve more beautiful skin in different ways. Which one to see depends on what type of skincare problems you are experiencing, and the goals for your skin. Let’s look at the differences between esthetician professionals and medical dermatologists to find out who would be better at solving your skincare issues.  

What Is an Esthetician?

An esthetician is a licensed skincare specialist who has received training from a cosmetology school specific to taking care of and beautifying skin. They work in salons, spas, and medical spas, sometimes called “medispas.” Not only do they work with the skin, but they also can perform services like laser hair removal, makeup application, facial treatments, and other non-invasive procedures that are designed to make the skin more glowing and radiant.

As for skincare specialists, licensed estheticians do more cosmetic treatments, like light chemical peels, deep exfoliation facials, body treatments, and waxing. These cosmetic procedures can help improve the texture and appearance of skin, but don’t deal with very serious skincare problems the way a dermatologist does. For those who are seeking basic skin improvements, having regular facials and skincare treatments with an esthetician at a spa or medispa can help to achieve that goal. 

What Is a Dermatologist?

A dermatologist is a medical professional who has a medical degree for the treatment of skin conditions and diseases. They undergo an extensive period of medical school and residency with certification given out by the American Board of Dermatology. As a medical doctor, there is a whole spectrum of skin problems that they treat from rashes and eczema to psoriasis and cystic acne with prescription medication. On a more serious note, they also treat different types of skin cancer that may occur from sun damage. 

A cosmetic dermatologist in a medical office can do more invasive procedures involving anti-aging techniques like Botox injections, fillers, laser treatment, and other surgical procedures. Cosmetic dermatology is performed with the goal of maximizing healthy skin, especially with skin issues that can’t be solved with over-the-counter topical treatments alone. 

According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, there are 3,000 types of skin conditions that a dermatologist is trained to diagnose and treat. It can involve not only the skin, but hair and nails, as well. It’s a highly skilled profession that deals with the largest organ in the body -- the skin. 

Key Differences Between Estheticians and Dermatologists

There are many key differences between estheticians and dermatologists. Following are several key differences that fall under a dermatologist.

  • Diagnose skin conditions
  • Treat medical conditions
  • Perform medical exams and order tests
  • Perform surgical operations
  • Prescribe medications
  • Located in a clinical setting or medical facility

On the other hand, an esthetician in a spa or salon primarily focuses on skincare treatments that are geared towards beautifying the skin on a surface level. They can examine the skin and make recommendations about skincare treatments that help with certain concerns like acne, dull skin, and hyperpigmentation.

Another big difference is the sheer amount and type of medical training that each professional goes through. A dermatologist spends approximately 12 years in medical school and internships before becoming an MD. An esthetician, on the other, can get their license after about a year of training.

Who Should I See for My Skincare Concerns? Esthetician or Dermatologist?

So, this is the big question. Who should you see to deal with your skincare concerns? Is it better to go to a dermatologist or an esthetician? It really depends on skin concern or problem and how deep you want to go into to correct problems such as acne or the effects of aging.

Visit an Esthetician for These Concerns

  • Minor blemishes and extractions 
  • Rough, dry skin
  • Sunspots and hyperpigmentation
  • Appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Hair removal

Visit an Dermatologist for These Concerns

  • Cystic acne
  • Skin conditions like eczema or psoriasis
  • Severe sun damage
  • Suspicious moles or growths
  • Itchy rashes or hives

When to See Both

You can see both an esthetician and a dermatologist if you have skincare issues that each can address. For example, you can improve the health of your skin by having regular facials with an esthetician and visiting a dermatologist for laser therapy to get rid of excessive dark spots. Or, if you have severe acne problems that require medication from a dermatologist, it may also help to see an esthetician for routine skin cleansing that helps to extract other blemishes, like blackheads and whiteheads, and minimize scarring.

Daily Skin Care Routine with Cosmedica Skincare

If you are regularly seeing a dermatologist or an esthetician for skincare concerns and treatment, you’ll still need an excellent skincare regimen with cruelty-free, vegan products that can maximize skin health. Following are Cosmedica Skincare products that can give you glowing and more beautiful skin on a daily basis.  

Try Our Derma Roller System

This is an amazing way to transform your skin. Cosmedica Skincare’s Derma Roller System is an at-home microneedling system that can make your skin more radiant and glowing. The way that it works is by using a derma roller device that has 540 stainless steel needles that, when rolled over the skin, helps to exfoliate it and stimulates collagen and elastin production. You’ll find that all of your skincare products are able to work and absorb better when derma rolling your skin on a regular basis. 

Other Ways to Improve Your Skin with Serums

Another way to make significant improvements in your skin is by using different serums. They are some of the most concentrated forms of skincare that you can use

For brighter skin, try our Vitamin C Super Serum. This serum is chock full of powerful antioxidants and three forms of vitamin C to protect against free radicals in the environment. You’ll have fewer dark spots and brighter, healthier skin that is fortified against future signs of aging. 

If you are experiencing dry or dehydrated skin, a great serum to use daily is our bestselling Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum. This little miracle worker absorbs 1,000 times its weight in water, hydrating your skin and making your other skincare products work more effectively. Your skin will feel plumped, supple and soft.

For aging skin, there’s hope with Cosmedica Skincare’s 2.5 % Retinol Facial Serum. This serum works to tighten skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. 

You can combine any of these serums as part of your daily skincare routine. Serums are meant to be applied right after cleansing and toning, but before moisturizing. If you need a great moisturizer to use with any of these serums on a daily basis, try our Super Nutrient Facial Balm, or Vitamin C Day Facial Day Cream

Finally, don’t forget about the eye area. This is one of the first locations where the signs of aging appear in the form of fine lines. There’s our Total Restorative Eye Cream and Brightening Eye Treatment Gel. Either product will help reduce the appearance of fine lines, dark circles and can puffiness.

Get on the road to healthier, better-looking skin with our cruelty-free, vegan products at Cosmedica Skincare.

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