How to persuade clients to stop taking skincare advice from influencers and internet searches
There is a wealth of information (and misinformation) in the ether for our clients to devour, yet, it’s not always a blessing for us skin professionals that our clients can access it.
We can all probably agree that we want our clients to be properly educated about their skin. However, more often than not, the advice they source is not relevant for their specific skin type or issues, leading to a host of self-inflicted problems.
Unsuitable ingredients or layering of incompatible actives, for example, could result in sensitivity, inflammation, an altered PH, or trans-epidermal water loss. In other words, a compromised barrier, which may cumulatively exacerbate skin conditions – from acne to eczema.
So, why is the internet, or the unqualified voice of an influencer, so damaging? In essence, it’s because they will never see our client’s skin. Simply put, the information they find is just that, information – it’s not tailored or bespoke advice. As skin professionals, it must never be forgotten that our unique selling point is our ability to prescribe relative to the individual’s skin.
Just because our client wants a specific product or treatment is actually no reason to sell or perform one. Step into your expert authority, trust your knowledge, experience and intuition. As professionals, we should always be able to justify our actions.
It’s just as important to understand why we don’t select a topical regimen or treatment protocol as understanding why we do. This level of integrity is what builds trust and what keeps your client coming back. Building a robust consultation into your process also allows you to properly assess your clients’ skin, understand their objectives, and plan a topical regimen and treatment schedule that’s realistic and suits their needs.
Don’t forget to use the opportunity to detail your expectations too. After all, it’s a two-way street, your client will need to be consistent and manage their part at home.
Your consultation should include questions to help you explore their skin in greater depth, such as: how long has this been an issue? What do you want to achieve? What have you tried already? What’s your current regimen? Choose questions that will start a meaningful conversation and allow you to build a picture of the skin and the person in front of you, giving you the opportunity to educate them about their individual skin.
The advice you then give is bespoke to them, yet, they are safe in the knowledge that you have their skin’s best interests at heart. This is something that the internet and the influencers can never compete with.
So, be bold. Don’t just take your clients’ money, offer them value that the internet can’t. Believe it or not, saying no and sticking to your principles will build your clients’ confidence and faith in you.
Maria Rylott-Byrd is a facialist and corneotherapist.