Margaret Kelly Nu Essence

Being Educated Just Isn’t Enough for Therapists or Stylists in the Information Age

Connor Keppel

Margaret Kelly of Nu Essence talks candidly about what clients expect and why there’s no escaping the need for constantly building knowledge and not relying only on qualifications.

I want to start by asking you a question, “Would you let an untrained hairdresser cut you hair?”. “Absolutely not!” is more than likely the answer on most peoples’ lips. For the majority of us we want a hairdresser with experience, qualifications and know how before letting them loose on our hair. A bad meal is a once off – a bad hair cut is the last thing anybody wants because it lasts with you forever. Now let’s have a think about a similar situation; would you let an untrained therapist carry out a skin treatment on you?.

Again, I’m sure the answer is more the likely no. What could be more uncomfortable or off-putting then having a treatment with a therapist who is unsure of her products or unable to identify or diagnose skin conditions or concerns? Okay, I know a bad skin treatment is never going to be as disastrous as a bad hair cut; you have to wait for hair to grow back. However with a bad or below average skin treatment you can be left feeling frustrated, disappointed or ‘short changed’.

Clients expect and deserve the best and it is up to us as salon owners and therapists to ensure they are getting it. Now not for one minute am I suggesting that any salon out there is employing unqualified therapists, but there are most definitely ones that expect their staff to work with products that they have not been formally trained in. Think back to you college days, we learned cleansing routines, massage routines, full facials steps but what’s the point in knowing all these steps as therapists if we can’t identify skin concerns, diagnose conditions, devise a professional treatment to deliver targeted results for our clients, ensuring they will trust our professional judgment and ability and most importantly… return to us.

As salon owners we have a duty to ensure our therapists are 100% trained and knowledgeable with each and every product they use in the treatment room. Today’s clients have access to an endless world of information, many of them not only researching your business before visiting it but also researching the products. When they book a facial they are expecting us the professionals to give them more then they are getting from the products sitting at home in the bathroom.

Skin care and facials are not about using a sweet smelling cream to gently massage your client till she dozes off, they should be focused on consultation, diagnosis, treatment and results. Our client is paying for a professional treatment from a professional therapist… let’s keep it professional!

Margaret Kelly is Founder and MD of Nu Essence Beauty which provides over 10,000 treatments to clients every single year in Dublin, Ireland. If you have a question for Margaret, leave a comment below or simply email

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