From selecting your menu of services to getting your legal and financial ducks in a row to setting up your space (whether it be a solo suite or an entire building with multiple treatment rooms), there is no shortage of things to check off the business to-do list.
But by far one of the most critical decisions for any esthetician and spa owner is selecting the right product lines to carry because not only will these products be used during treatments, but will also serve as a large chunk of your incoming revenue through post-care products and at-home regimens.
The products you carry and send home with your clientele are also an extension of your expertise that bridges your client from treatment to treatment to ensure loyalty and a high lifetime value.
When considering which product lines to carry, here are the six steps to help make the product selection process easier to navigate:
Step 1: Core Values
Everything starts with your core values (hence, they sit at the core).
These core values are going to be your North Star in helping you to find great product companies that have the same or aligned core values, making for a strong and mutually beneficial relationship.
For example, at Herbal Skin Solutions, we hold ourselves, the labs, and ingredient suppliers whom we work with, in addition to the brands we distribute for, to the highest caliber of standards to ensure that every offering brought to our audience meets our high standard of ethics, efficacy, results, and aesthetic.
Our company was created by an Esthetician who experienced the need for a support-backed company and today it is led by knowledgeable, licensed spa professionals who are here to support you.
Those are our core values, and because we’re crystal clear on them, it’s very easy to distinguish the companies and products that would be a fantastic fit as well as those that are not.
Step 2: Top-Shelf Performance
Proven efficacy allows you to sell with ease. (And who doesn’t want that?!)
See, when you truly believe in the product you are selling, you will never “sell” a day in your life, rather you’ll simply educate your clients on your experience with the products and the reviews from other skin care professionals.
With the beauty industry exploding and everyone from YouTube influencers to beauty bloggers and reality TV stars creating skincare lines, it’s critical that your clients understand what *actually* goes into crafting a quality skincare product and specifically why you love and advocate for the brands you carry.
It’s for these reasons that we rigorously research and test each of our new product concepts and ask questions like:
- Do the supplements have special delivery systems?
- Does that serum truly correct?
- Is that device long-lasting?
We ask all of these questions to formulate and engineer accordingly so you don't have to do any second-guessing and you can feel confident in educating on our product lines, especially against those that may only have a celebrity endorser as their notable quality.
And circling back to our core values of efficacy and results, if something in our product development process doesn't make the cut, it doesn't make our virtual shelves.
Step 3: Ingredient Integrity
With consumers becoming increasingly more aware of ingredients, benefits and potential side effects, it is vital that you, the professional, do your due diligence to align with product lines that meet your clients’ needs and what is ethically important to them.
And again, core values — these ethical concerns need to be of true importance to you as well because it all comes back to believing in what you’re using in your practice and sharing and selling to your clientele.
For us, our motto is always “stay on the right side of karma.”
We do this by only offering multi-faceted safe skin options, meaning no parabens, sulfates, phthalate fragrances and other toxic ingredients will touch our product formulations.
We also formulate our products to be safe and effective for all skin tones and types, as well as all species including animal and Mother Earth-friendly.
The bottom line is that we stand by being cruelty-free and always strive to better our standard as we continue to grow.
For a full list of ingredients we will do not allow in any of our products, see our HECK NO list of restricted ingredients as follows:
1, 4 DIOXANE
BUTYLATED COMPOUNDS (BHA/BHT)
LEAD, MERCURY, & CADMIUM
MIT (METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE) AND MCIT (METHYLCHLOROISOTHIAZOLINONE)
TOLUENE & TOLUENE-BASED INGREDIENTS
MINERAL OIL (PARAFFIN OIL)
NAIL POLISH REMOVER INGREDIENTS (ACETONE, MIBK, MEK, NMP)
PLACENTAL EXTRACT (animal derived)
Step 4: Ethical Manufacturing
Remember our blog on how to balance your qi and boost your immune system a few months back?
There, we encouraged readers not to source sage for burning unless grown yourself due to the sage burning trend causing a rapid deletion of this plant source sending it to the “unsustainable” category.
How your products are made affects their vibration from seed to stem.
If the ingredients in the products are over-farmed and improperly extracted, the vibration and nutrient count is more likely to be lowered.
If you’ve ever had a homegrown tomato or any other veggie for that matter, you know the difference between that and store bought. It’s a difference you can see, taste, and smell. And it’s a difference your body knows on a cellular level, even if we’re subconscious to it.
Ask the product companies you work with how the ingredients are extracted, what they are derived from, and how they are grown. As much as you need to educate your client on the product, the company needs to do its job in educating you as well.
This not only equips you with the knowledge you need to make an informed buying decision, but it’s also insight to be able to share with your clients about what makes the products you carry unique and special.
Not to mention, your enthusiasm will be contagious to your client and fill them with pride for what they are putting on their skin.
For us, that means Herbal Skin Solutions products contain absolutely NO GMO ingredients, there is NO animal testing or partnering with brands who sell in areas where animal testing is required.
We also don’t manufacture in ANY countries with lower worker standards than the USA unless the brand can provide clear proof of fair worker standards, and we also work with US organic farmers who specialize in sustainability.
Now you may have noticed the ethics piece of the sustainable sourcing conversation here also fits in with the integrity of the ingredients step above, and that’s because they truly go hand in hand.
For example, Calendula is extracted from Marigold flowers using co2 extraction. Other options like heat extraction can still get the job done, however, loss of potency is inevitable. We believe that you are worth the potent extraction process, plus, when professional skincare companies extract efficiently, like through the distillation process, we are able to purify the extracted ingredient to remove possible allergens associated with the plant.
Step Five - Exceptional Aesthetic
Does the voice of the company you are considering working with resonate with the messaging you want to share?
Does the content the company shares provide helpful information to support your marketing efforts?
Do they offer opportunities to position you as the expert by highlighting you on their social platforms, thus boosting your credibility?
As product creators and developers, we know that listening to our retailers is paramount to our success and yours, which is why we’re relentless on listening to the feedback we receive so that we can continue offering the best experience that is only good for your soul, your body, animals, and the environment, but also adds extraordinarily to your quality of life by helping to support you in building a thriving esthetic business.
For example, currently, Herbal Skin Solutions is in the process re-branding to what we like to call an “Eco-Lux” feel that still maintains our core value of being eco-friendly while integrating the elevated element of luxury by way of heavy glass and screen printed bottles.
Content-wise, everything we create is made with you, the professional, in mind. We are always working on new ways to create content to educate your client on our products that you retail, treatments that you offer, and find ways to incorporate your voice and work to grow your platform, which brings us to our next point…
Step Six - On-going Opportunities
Finally, look for the ways your product lines can support your future growth.
After all, if the idea is that you will become more successful by selling a certain product line, isn’t it important that the brand will walk with you on that path to provide greater opportunities to position you as an expert in your field and spread awareness of your work?
We believe the answer is yes.
One way we do this is by highlighting spas and estheticians retailing and incorporating Herbal Skin Solutions products into their treatment rooms as well as CIT Pen Providers on our social media platforms so that we can highlight the protocols that can be used on all skin types.
As we strive for inclusivity and diversity, it’s critical that all skin tones be visually represented and backed by education, which is why we encourage that you tag @herbalskinsolutions in all your photos and videos using our products and tools that you would like to see featured on our platforms.
To take it a step farther, if you feel called to teach about our products in the form of video content that highlights how they work synergistically and safely for deeper melanated skin tones and any other key points that could be of service to clients and other Estheticians, we would love to feature you!
We also have guest blogging opportunities available here on The Esthetics Academy, which is a more in-depth medium for showcasing your esthetic expertise, establishing industry credibility, as well as getting a link back to your website, which is prime for SEO perks given that our website has established search engine authority.
If you would like to contribute an article and be featured, please send over your topic idea(s) that could add value to end consumers and Estheticians alike and we can move forward with the writing and editing process to get your piece published and shared via our social channels and email list.
And finally, (we know we already said finally, but really there’s really a secret seventh step), you never want to stop learning.
Part of this industry is staying on top of the latest in product science and technology, continuing to evaluate if your current product lines are still working for you and your clientele, and connecting with other estheticians to further your skillset.
We help facilitate these learning experiences by hosting free meet-up events to bring the esthetic community together, attending esthetic industry events, and traveling for private trainings. CV-19 has put a temporary hold on most of our in-person activities, and we are thrilled to announce in-person community starting back up soon (with upgraded ppe of course)!
Stay in the loop on the latest in events, educational opportunities, and more by subscribing to our email list at the bottom of our site, and connecting with us on social!