Types of Skin Care Specialists


A dermatologist is a doctor who specializes in treating conditions that affect the skin, hair, and nails. After earning a medical degree and completing an internship, a dermatologist receives three more years of specialty medical training, becoming an expert dedicated to skin. Many dermatologists have general practices and see patients with all types of skin concerns. Some dermatologists gain additional training and expertise in a specific area of dermatology, such as pediatrics, surgery, or cosmetics. They may go on to have a practice that specializes in one of these areas.


An esthetician specializes in the study of skin care, including facials, microdermabrasion, body wraps (relaxing treatments which involve hot linens, plastic sheets, and blankets), salt glows (an exfoliation treatment), waxing as a form of hair removal, cosmetic make-up services and other services with advanced training. Estheticians may work independently in a spa or salon or may assist a doctor in his or her practice. Working with a doctor an esthetician may perform more advanced services that require a doctor's supervision, such as deep chemical peels. An esthetician can be licensed solely for that skill. An esthetician is not necessarily licensed in cosmetology, but is typically well versed in knowledge of skin care.


An electrologist offers hair removal services with the use of an electrolysis machine. As opposed to the hair removal via waxing offered by an esthetician, hair removal via electrolysis is permanent. It has recently been argued that barbers are also cosmetologists who extend the hair stylist speciality with services especially for men, such as shaving.